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Cat Peed On My Microwave (What Now?)

If you have noticed cat pee on your microwave, the chances are, you are upset, looking for reasons why, and ways to prevent this from happening again… 

Why did my cat pee on my microwave?

This can happen for several reasons. First off, the new microwave smells weird to your cat. Typically, with any furniture or appliance changes, there is a little risk as your home already smells entirely like your cat – you just don’t notice it.

Cats have scent glands all over their bodies, including spots like their paws and their faces, and this is why you see them rubbing against you and your furniture a lot. Aside from getting a good scratch, it transfers their scent. When something new doesn’t smell like them, the faster way to ‘scent mark’ it is spraying.

Cats can also do this when they are feeling territorial, and if your cat is not spayed or neutered then it’s a good idea to take them to the vet for this, as it can calm or even eliminate territorial behaviors such as marking appliances.

Finally, health issues can cause this behavior, such as urinary tract infection or struvite stones – so a quick vet checkup to rule this out is a good idea.

Should I discipline my cat for peeing on my microwave?

A white microwave.

A white microwave.

No, don’t discipline your cat for this behavior. They won’t understand why you are angry and it may erode their trust in you a little. Clean the spot with a commercial enzymatic cleaner – detergent will only work for around a day, as the uric acid content of the urine will still be there.

With Enzymes, that acid will break down and truly clean the microwave exterior.

How can I clean the cat pee off my microwave?

Use a commercial enzymatic cleaner to clean the exterior of the microwave. Enzymatic cleaners break down the uric acid content of your cat’s urine and while other cleaners might seem to work, once the spot dries the uric acid recrystallizes and you’ll get the ‘pee smell’ again.

It may still take a few cleanings, but as long as you use enzymatic cleaner then the smell should fully go away once you’ve cleaned it thoroughly enough.

How long will the cat pee smell stay around?

If you use a detergent cleaner or a mild dish soap, then the smell will only go away for a matter of hours or possibly even a day, but it won’t be clean. This is why you need commercial enzymatic cleaners.

They will break down the uric acid in your cat’s urine and this is the biggest part of that awful smell. You can also clean the exterior with white vinegar mixed 50/50 with water first and then when this dries, use the Enzymatic cleaner, and repeat as needed.

It can take a few cleanings, unfortunately, as your cat’s ‘spray’ is designed to create a scent marker and this makes it very potent stuff, but if you keep cleaning it with the enzymatic cleaner then it WILL eventually go away.

How can I get rid of the cat pee smell from my microwave?

Avoid ammonia cleaners – these will not only fail in cleaning the urine, but as ammonia is derived from urine your cat is going to smell the cleaner and will likely spray the area again. From their perspective, some other creature just marked that spot with urine and they will respond in kind.

Detergents and mild soaps won’t help either, so you will need to go to the store and look for commercial enzymatic cleaners to use on the microwave exterior.

Make sure when you use it on the microwave that you have it unplugged and that you are only cleaning smooth, exterior surface areas, and not any vents or other small apertures where you could get water into the microwave.

Clean the areas thoroughly, let them air dry, and then check the scent. If you still smell the cat’s urine, then clean it again until the smell is gone. This is very important – if your cat can still smell traces of the urine, they will mark it again, so cleaning it thoroughly is going to be VITAL.

Can I still use my microwave if my cat peed on it?

A cat in the kitchen on top of a microwave.

A cat in the kitchen on top of a microwave.

As long as the urine hasn’t leaked inside of the microwave, then using it is still certainly safe, but you want to get it cleaned as soon as you can. Cat urine has uric acid in it, which crystallizes into place and produces that awful smell that is impossible to ignore.

With enzymatic cleaners, you can break down that component, and while it may take numerous cleanings (as cat urine is tenacious stuff), it will eventually dilute the uric acid content and you can remove it.

If the urine has managed to get inside the microwave, then it will depend on the age, brand, and internal design of the unit, and you might be better off purchasing a cheap replacement microwave.

This is a great option if it is an older unit, as new microwaves are quite inexpensive and will perform much better than your old ones. That said, as long as it’s external, the enzymatic cleaner will eventually remove it, but it will take a lot of elbow grease on your part.

How can I prevent my cat from peeing on my microwave?

Ben Franklin was definitely on to something when he said that an ‘ounce of prevention’ was much, much better than an entire ‘pound of cure’ – especially where cat urine is concerned. Let’s take a look at some preventative strategies that can help keep your kitty at bay in regards to your microwave oven.

Lock the room door

One of the easiest methods is simply shutting the door securely and locking it if you happen to have one of those clever door-opening kitties. Unfortunately, you have to keep a close eye on them, as cats are notorious for sneaking into places right on your heels, so this may not work for everyone.

Offer more litter boxes

Sometimes adding a second litter box in the house can keep your cat from spraying other places. One common reason that they urinate outside of their box is that another cat is using the litter box when they need it or the current one is not ‘tidy enough’ for their exacting standards.

Convenience is also important, especially if you have a large house, so try adding more litter boxes if your cat is getting a bit spray-happy in the home.

Keep the litter box clean

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Keeping the litter box as clean as possible is vital to avoid any urine mishaps around the house. Cats are quite fastidious about their hygiene and if the box is dirty, they might decide to ‘go’ elsewhere. For easy cleaning time management, put a pre-prepared litter box under the sink, so that you can quickly change the current box.

Just switch in the new, dump the old box and clean it, and prepare a spare for next time – easy peasy.

Consult your vet (Check for health issues)

The most common reason for ‘out of the blue’ kitty spraying is going to be health issues. For instance, struvite crystals form naturally in cat urine, but these can grow to become painful stones that can cause your cat to spray around the house because suddenly urination is painful!

Anytime your cat changes their potty habits, you should bring them to the vet, as this is usually the first symptom that you see when something is affecting your kitty’s health.

Lindsey Browlingdon