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How To Get Cat Pee Out Of Backpack 

If you have seen cat pee on your backpack the chances are you are annoyed, trying to understand why, and looking for ways to stop it from happening again…

Why do cats pee in backpacks?

Cats pee in backpacks to mark the pack with their scents and because a backpack, especially an open one, is a comfortable and clean place to urinate. Your cat doesn’t view it as a convenient bag for carrying necessary items, but rather a cloth cove that they can go inside and private go about their ‘potty business’.

As such, it’s definitely in your best interest to hang a backpack (especially a new one, as they have its own strong scent that makes your cat uncomfortable) high up and out of easy reach.

How to get cat pee out of a backpack

Picture of a red backpack on a white background

A red backpack.

Once your cat had peed on your pack, you’re going to need to give it a thorough cleaning with the RIGHT cleaning solution. Don’t just stick it in the washer – detergent only masks the smell for a day or two at most, and you’ll get cat urine in the washer and dryer and have a hard time getting it out!

What you’ll need is enzymatic cleaner, as it takes a more effective approach to cleaning where cat urine is concerned. By breaking down uric components of your cat’s pee, the cleaner lets you more thoroughly clean the urine and since it is breaking down, with each cleaning you will be destroying the urine slowly but surely.

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

Keeping your cat from urinating on or in your backpack doesn’t have to be complicated. There are a few basic common-sense strategies that are quite effective – all you’ll need to do is take advantage of them. Let’s take a look!

Hang your bag where your cat cannot get to it

With their shoulder straps, backpacks may easily be put out of reach, as a well-placed nail or more formal hanging hook allows you to put it where your cat cannot get to it. When you use the backpack, simply hang it immediately, taking it down only when you need it again.

Praise your cat for eliminating in the correct place

Get in the habit of praising your cat for using the litter box when they need to potty – even when they’ve already learned to do this. With each bit of praise, petting, or treats, your cat will build a positive association with using the box when they need to potty.

This will help to reinforce the idea that any time they need to ‘go’, they should immediately relocate to the litter box to ‘do their business’. Cats learn quickly with positive reinforcement, so this is a tip that you’ll want to use.

Keep their litter box clean

An untidy box is a surefire recipe for a ‘potty accident’. Cats are fastidiously clean by nature and when the litter is untidy, your cat may immediately start looking around the house for somewhere cleaner that they can use to meet their potty needs.

Other cats will try to wait, but if the litter box is not clean then they will eventually have to make a decision – go against their instinct to keep clean by using a dirty box anyway or find another place to do it. This is not a choice that you want them to have to make, because instinct will win 99% of the time.

Does my cat pee on my backpack out of spite?

Black and white cat inside a green backpack.

Black and white cat inside a green & black backpack.

No, your cat isn’t peeing on your backpack out of spite. Revenge and spite are human concepts and while we tend to think of our cats as furry little guys and gals, the kind of planning and premeditation that goes into acting on them is simply not something that your cat is capable of.

Your cat doesn’t like the smell of the backpack or it appeals to them for its pleasant texture and its resemblance to a small, unused ‘cove’ that seems like ‘prime potty real-estate’. It’s as simple as that.

How does vinegar get rid of cat urine?

White vinegar can help to get rid of the urine smell, usually when employed in a mixture of 50% water and 50% vinegar in a spray bottle. The reason that is helps is that the vinegar effectively neutralizes the alkaline salts in the cat urine, though you should keep in mind that enzymatic cleaners will be more effective.

That said, with regular spraying and drying, the white vinegar can help, provided that the concentration of urine is very low.

Does Laundry Detergent get rid of cat pee?

No. Laundry detergent will smell like it has done the job, but this is short-lived, lasting 2 – 3 days at the most. An enzymatic cleaner is going to be your best option, as the detergent is not designed to break down the uric components that make up your cat’s pee.

Once you’ve cleaned it thoroughly 2 to 3 times with enzymatic cleaner, detergent may be used afterward but if the smell comes back then you’ll need to give it further enzymatic cleanings until the urine breaks down sufficiently enough to remove it.

How long does cat pee smell last?

Cat urine is designed specifically to bind your cat’s signature scent to whatever your cat sprays it on and if you don’t clean it, it can last virtually forever.

You need a cleaner that focused on breaking it down, and while white vinegar will help by dealing with the salts, enzymatic cleaners are best for breaking down individual components in the urine.

This will take multiple cleanings, but be patient… eventually, the enzymes will break it down, it’s just to take a goodly volume of enzymatic cleaning solution and the power of ‘elbow grease’.

Why do cats pee on things?

Cats pee on things primarily to mark them as their own. Territorial creatures, your cat is highly scent driven, and they feel secure when everything in their ‘turf’ smells like them. This makes sense – your cat is a predator after all – and if something smells weird then it might mean another predator is nearby or has been recent.

This is not the only reason that they do it, however, and urination outside of the box may indicate that the current box is not clean enough or it could be a symptom of a health condition, such as an infection of the urinary tract or even struvite stones making your cat’s urination painful.

Rule out health issues first with a quick trip to the local veterinarian and then you may strategize from there if needed.

Lindsey Browlingdon