How To Get Cat Pee Out Of Shoes?

It’s Friday night and you have a great night out planned with your friends. You already know what outfit you are going to wear which includes your favorite pair of shoes.

As you approach your shoe rack, you kinda noticed a peculiar odor but didn’t think much of it. When you slipped your feet into your shoe, the entire sole was soaked!

You only pieced the puzzle together when your cat walked by and gave you a “Yup, that’s me alright” meow.

As outrageous as it might seem, finding cat urine in shoes is a rather common occurrence for many cat owners.

In this article, we will be sharing the possible reasons that would make a cat pee on shoes and how to get rid of the cat urine smell.

Why Do Cats Urinate On Shoes?

Your cat isn’t jealous of your shoes and wants to ruin them. Most of the time, such behaviour is triggered by external factors or medical reasons.

Here are some plausible reasons why your cat is peeing on your shoes.

Marking Its Territory

Cats are very territorial in nature and this applies to both domesticated and wild felines. Cats in the wild need to hunt to survive. And they increase their chances of a hunt by marking their usual prowling territories to ward off competitors.

Even though our cat’s meals are provided for, it isn’t possible to remove this instinctive trait from your cat.

This issue is more prevalent in unneutered male cats. They have a stronger desire to mark their territory during mating season. Female cats do this but not as often as male cats.

So if your cats are not fixed, it would be best to do so to prevent having cat pee all over the house.

Litter Box Problems

Cats are very particular about their litter boxes and any problems with a cat’s litter box can make them pee outside of the litter box.

There are a few common litter box problems that can cause this.

Dirty Litter Box

If you are not cleaning out your cat’s litter box often enough, your cat won’t be too keen on using it. Cats are clean creatures and prefer to not have their litter box seem like a swamp pit. Unfortunately, they can’t flush their waste and depend on you to clear it out.

Make it a point to scoop out your cat’s waste once a day and it will be back to using its litter box in no time.

Wrong Type Of Litter Box

Have you recently changed your cat’s litter box to something new? Cats aren’t fond of change especially when it comes to their litter box.

If your cat is used to using an open lid since young and now has to deal with using a covered box, it might not adapt to the change well.

When trying to get your cat to use its new litter box, make the change gradual. Start off by having both litter boxes side by side and put some of your cat’s used cat litter in the new litter box.

Once your cat gets used to going in and out of the new litter box, it will start to use it.

Wrong Type Of Cat Litter

You might not have changed your cat’s litter box but the type of litter. This can also cause your cat to not want to use its litter trap.

Cats are just as particular when it comes to the type of cat litter. Changing the type of cat litter can affect how it feels to their paws.

You will find your cat peeing elsewhere if it doesn’t like its cat litter.

As with the litter box, make the change to the new cat litter a gradual one as well. Slowly mix in the new cat litter with the old one over a few weeks.

Doing it this way won’t cause your cat to feel that something is off.

Insufficient Litter Boxes

The rule of thumb if you have more than one cat is to give each cat its own private litter box. Litter boxes are very important valuable resources to cats and your current cat might not like sharing litter boxes with another cat.

A cat that is unhappy with its litter box will start peeing elsewhere in the house.

Medical Issues

cat vet bills

A urinary tract infection (UTI) can also cause cats to pee outside their litter tray. When a cat has a UTI, peeing becomes painful and stressful. Your cat will start to fear its own litter box as it thinks that’s causing the problem.

Any health conditions that can affect your cat’s bladder or bladder movements will make your cat pee on itself or outside the litter box.

How To Remove Cat Urine From your Shoes?

Getting rid of the smell of cat urine and urine stains can be a tricky affair given how potent cat pee smell can be.

This is because cat urine is very concentrated and it consists of this compound called felinine which gives out a really bad smell when it starts to break down.

Here are the methods that I have personally used to get rid of my cat’s pee in my shoes.

Use Old Newspapers

When you find cat urine in your shoes, the first thing to do is absorb as much of the urine from the shoe. Old newspapers do a great job of this.

Just stuff as much old newspaper as you can in your shoe till it’s packed right in and leave it for an hour to do its job.

To make it more effective you can sprinkle some baking soda in the shoe before stuffing it with newspaper.

Use Baking Soda

Baking soda is a great ingredient to use to remove urine odor and urine stains.

Once you have absorbed as much cat urine as possible, it is time to give it a good scrub.

Use some warm water and add baking soda to form a thick paste. Rub this paste over the urine stain and let it sit for a few hours till the paste dries out.

Give the shoe a good scrub with a shoe brush and remove all the dried paste.

Use Vinegar

vinegar spray for cats

Vinegar is another common household item that is great for removing odors and stains. It works really well as a disinfectant too.

In fact, a vinegar and water solution is what I use most of the time when removing cat urine from my carpet.

Mix one part vinegar or apple cider vinegar with two parts water in a spray bottle. Spray it generously on the parts where your cat peed on and leave it for an hour.

Take a cloth soaked in warm water and wiped it after that.

Use An Enzyme Cleaner

There are many commercial enzyme cleaners that you can get from your pet store. These cleaners have enzymes that can break down the urine smell.

However, make sure to take a look at the ingredients label to make sure that it contains nothing toxic to cats.

Get one that is labeled pet friendly and biodegradable.

Use Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is another common household item that most would use for cleaning or disinfectant.

You can easily get it from your local pharmacy or supermarket.

Pour some hydrogen peroxide over the affected areas and let it sit for a few hours. Use a warm cloth to give your shoe a thorough wipe and let it dry.

One thing to note about hydrogen peroxide is that it is an acid and can be rather abrasive to your shoe.

If the concentration level is too high, try diluting it with water before using it on your shoes.

Wash Your Shoes

If your shoes are made of fabric or canvas, you can just use the washing machine for this. Add a generous amount of baking soda and vinegar into the wash as well.

Place the shoes and laces in a laundry bag to prevent any damage to your shoes or washing machine.

If your shoe has removable insoles, soak them separately in the same solution of baking powder and vinegar.

Some washing machines allow you to control the temperature of the water used for the wash. Set it to around 86-90F (30 deg celsius).

Don’t use water that is too hot or it can erode the adhesives in the shoe.

Dry Out Your Shoe

Once the washing process is over, make sure to dry out your shoe thoroughly. It would be best to avoid direct sunlight as that could damage the shoe and cause the colors to fade.

How To Stop Your Cat From Peeing On Your Shoes

I’ve had my fair share of discovering cat urine in some of my shoes before. And as frustrating as it can be, you can stop your cat from doing so.

Most of the time, I managed to solve my cat’s peeing issue by resolving its litter box and cat litter issues as mentioned above.

But here are a few more methods that you can try if it isn’t a litter box issue but it is just your cat being a pain in the butt.

Use A Shoe Cabinet

It is time to stop leaving your shoes on the rack or out in the open and keep them safe in a shoe cabinet.

Get a shoe cabinet that has a latch or lock so that your cat won’t be able to open it.

Don’t underestimate the dogged eared persistence and curiosity of some cats.

Use A Deterrent Device

There are some sprays and devices that you can get from your pet store that can help deter your cat from accessing prohibited areas.

These sprays usually contain a scent that cats don’t like and won’t go near.

A deterrent device can be a motion sensor electronic device that lets out compressed air or a loud noise to scare your cat away when it gets too close.

Bring Your Cat To The Vet

If your cat meows a lot when using its litter box, has frequent visits or there’s blood in your cat’s pee, bring it to the vet immediately.

There’s a chance that your cat has a bladder or kidney issue and needs medical attention.


It can be a frustrating experience finding your cat peeing on your shoes. Know that your cat isn’t doing it out of spite but it’s due to an external factor. You need to get your cat to the vet right away if your cat is not able to pee due to a medical problem.

It can kill your cat if the problem is left untreated.

Use the above methods to get rid our your cat’s urine from your shoes and it will be smelling as good as new in no time!