Cats territorial marking behavior

Cats are very attached to their territory. They have their own territory and defend it thanks to olfactory and visual markings against any feline intrusion.


The territory

The size of the cat’s territory depends on the space available. Un-neutered cats have a much larger territory than the neutered ones. They fiercely defend their territory which they consider as their “property”, with the help of markings in order to warn other congeners that the space is already taken!

In their territory, cats have an observation area that is high (the edge of a window, at the top of a cupboard…). From this post, they can quietly monitor their territory and jump if there is an intruder.


5 Cats marking behavior


Territorial marking

Cats mark their territory by emitting olfactory (pheromones) and visual (urine, scratching …) signals. They have sebaceous glands which produce a particular odor, the pheromone.

This smell turns out to be a real identity card for the cat. She will know the sex of the animal, whether she is neutered or not, as well as her state of health.


Urinary marking

This behavior is much more observed in the entire tom cat. This is why it is strongly recommended to get your animal neutered in order to correct this type of behavior.

Urine marking is a small spray of urine projected on a surface or on a vertical object. The goal is to mark and / or cover a passing area.

Do not punish your cat for marking! The owner should clean the soiled area with a urine destructive spray.


Scratch marking

It is a vertical laceration of an object (sofa, trunk of a tree, wallpaper …). These scratches leave visible traces for other congeners thanks to sweat glands which are located under the pads.

This behavior evokes a stressful situation for the animal. In order to make the space a little more peaceful, using synthetic cat pheromones is recommended!


Facial marking

The cat also has secretion glands on the cheeks and around the ears. It is by rubbing on objects or on the legs of her owner that the cat marks her territory. When she rubs against her owner, it is to say that her owner is an integral part of her environment!


Fear marking

The anal glands around the anus secrete a foul-smelling liquid when the animal feels unsafe, especially when it is scared. Sometimes it is necessary to have the anal sacs “empty” during a routine visit to the veterinarian.

An article from Céline Taphaléchat.