Why Do Cats Like the Smell of Bleach? This is the Answer

The smell of cat pee should never be cleaned with bleach, it would be counterproductive and risky for the cats

There’s a reason your vet always tells you not to clean up cat pee outside the litter box with bleach. The reason is simple: cats like the smell of bleach and could be stimulated to urinate more where they shouldn’t. Yes, but why do cats like the smell of bleach so much? And can it be dangerous for them?

cat and a bleach bottle

Cats and bleach, a strange relationship

It is undeniable that cats have a much more developed sense of smell than ours. They can detect and respond to odors that are imperceptible to us. Sometimes, they may pause to investigate and smell something with great intensity that we wouldn’t even notice. Their reactions to various scents can differ from ours, showcasing the remarkable depth of their olfactory abilities.

Cats are indeed drawn to the scent of bleach, and it’s believed that the chemical composition of bleach may resemble some of their own pheromones. In fact, some have gone so far as to say that it reminds them of the aroma of real catnip, known as Nepeta cataria.

two cats on a carpet in a room

For this reason, cats might be inclined to rub themselves against surfaces that carry the scent of bleach, as it may remind them of their own pheromones or catnip. However, a potential issue arises when cats come into contact with actual bleach, such as drops left on the floor after cleaning or worse, when they lick it.

The main issue with cats coming into contact with bleach is that ingesting it can be hazardous. Bleach is a toxic, highly irritating, corrosive substance capable of causing severe damage to a cat’s skin and mucous membranes.

bleach is hazardous to cats sine they might lick it.

For this reason, veterinarians do not recommend using bleach for cleaning up a cat’s mess or for regular house cleaning. The exception may be when dealing with specific infectious diseases that require bleach as a disinfectant. In situations where you must use bleach, it’s crucial to thoroughly rinse all surfaces and then completely dry them. This is to prevent the presence of toxic or irritating residues that could pose risks to your cat or other household members.

Absolutely. If you’re using bleach to clean the toilet and need to let it sit there for some time, be sure to close the toilet lid to prevent your cat from coming into contact with it. Additionally, it’s wise to store bleach bottles in a cat-proof cabinet or a place inaccessible to your feline friend.

Related articles