How Long Can Cats Hold Their Pee Before An Accident?

If you travel, your biggest fear might be what if my cat pees in the carrier? Well, today, we’re going to answer your question of “how long can cats hold their pee?”

How Long Can Cats Go Without Bathroom Privileges?

Most cats can comfortably hold their pee for 24 – 48 hours. If they hold it any longer, they may be suffering from an infection or other health issues.

Of course, it will differ greatly from cat to cat depending on their age, how much they eat, the food you feed them, medical conditions, supplements, and the metabolism rate of the cat.

If you’re traveling with a kitten, like children, be prepared to make more stops as they will need to pee more often.

Elderly cats that have lost their bladder muscle will also need to use the bathroom more often than a young healthy adult cat.

Now let’s take a closer look at your cat’s bodily functions to help you come up with a schedule so they won’t pee or poop in the carrier.

How Often Should Cats Pee?

Most cats will pee two to four times daily.

However,  it will vary from pet to pet, because it will depend on how much fluid your cat drinks throughout the day.

As a cat owner, it’s important to learn the bathroom behaviors of your cat. This will help you notice any sudden changes in your cat’s urination routine, so you can consult your veterinarian.

How Do You Know When A Cat Has To Pee?

how often should a cat pee
Cats should pee at least 4 times a day.

It’s important to understand when your cat is telling you they need to go to the bathroom. Unlike humans, they can’t speak, so you need to learn to listen to their body language.

If you’re at home, they most likely have access to a litter box. So they’ll just go and use the bathroom on their own.

However, if you’re traveling with your cat, it can be much more challenging to know when your kitten or full-grown cat has to pee.

Most cats will start whining very loudly when they have to pee or poop.

As I mentioned most will be fine holding their bladder for 24 – 48 hours. If it’s been a day since they’ve gone to the bathroom and your cat is crying for no apparent reason.

There’s a good chance that she has to go potty and you need to let her.

Why Cats Hold Their Pee When Traveling?

Cats don’t like being outside of their comfort zone. Whenever they travel, they are in unfamiliar territory and this causes them to get off their regular routines.

This means that they don’t eat, poop, pee or drink water on their normal schedule.

Cat Not Peeing For More Than 48 Hours?

If your cat is not peeing for more than 48 hours and they have access to a litterbox after being in a cat carrier, there are a few things that can prevent a cat from peeing.


Just like people, cats can suffer from stress.

Whenever you travel with your cat, it’s important to make frequent stops and give them access to a litter box.

These disposable litter boxes make it easy to keep your cat on their regular schedule. Plus they won’t have to hold their pee until you reach your destination.

Bacterial Infection

Your cat could have gotten a urinary tract infection while traveling. It’s not extremely common, but it can happen. You’ll want to consult with your veterinarian so they can perform a bacterial culture on your feline friend.


A cat’s urinary tract may become obstructed for several reasons. If this is the case, you need to get this checked within 72 hours as it can kill your cat.

Males are more prone to urinary tract blockages than females.

A blockage will be extremely painful and cause your cat to cry out when urinating, most cats will do anything to avoid having to go to the bathroom.

Their urine may also have blood in it.

If you think your kitty is suffering from a blockage, you’ll want to consult your vet.

How to Help Cat Relieve Their Bladder

If it’s been over 24 hours and your cat has been out of their crate for a while, yet they’re still not peeing, it’s time to take some action. Use these methods if you know your cat doesn’t have any health problems that need to be treated by a vet. 

Here are some of the most common ways to help your cat relieve their bladder.

Ragdoll Technique

This technique will help you relieve your cat’s bladder. You’ll want to grab your cat by their armpit to where their legs hang over the litter box. If you don’t have access to one, just take your kitt outside or use a makeshift litter box.

Your cat will most likely be frightened, so make sure you rub her back and pet him to keep her calm.

Locate your cat’s bladder at the bottom of your cat’s rib cage or sometimes near her tail, sometimes in the middle of her body, or on the side depending on how full the colon has gotten.

The bladder will feel squishy and small in your fingers.

Once you locate the bladder, squeeze it gently while pressing downwards. This should help your cat relieve herself.

Cat Can’t Pee Home Remedy

There are many home remedies for feline UTI’s, on the Internet, you just need to take the time to find one that works for your cat.

Many cat parents don’t want to give their baby antibiotics, because it can lead to several undesirable side effects.

I recommend talking to a holistic veterinarian if you’re planning on using a home remedy to help your cat pee.

However, there are a few that I found online to help you out.

Marshmallow Root: This helps stimulate your cat’s immune system and attacks the bacteria that is causing the infection. This herb is also known to help reduce and soothe bodily irritations.

Parsley Leaf: This is an effective diuretic that will help eliminate waste in your feline friend’s body. Several holistic pet owners use it because the parsley leaves contain antiseptic qualities that have been known to treat urinary tract infections.

Cranberries: Several cat foods contain cranberries, because of their antioxidant fighting power. While you can’t give your cat cranberry juice like we drink whenever we have a urinary tract infection. They will benefit from the Cranimals for A UTI home remedy for dogs and cats.

It’s important to make sure that your feline friend is peeing on a regular basis, or is peeing too much.

If you notice any unusual symptoms then you’ll want to take your cat to the vet to get a clear diagnosis and begin treatment.

Final Take Away

Unlike dogs, cats can hold their pee and poop for a ridiculously long time. However, this doesn’t mean that you should make them hold it that long.

Always allow your cat access to a litter box, even when you’re traveling. As a pet owner, you have access to disposable litter boxes there’s no reason not to buy one before you travel.

If you don’t travel with your cat, make sure that the litter box is always clean. Most cats won’t use a dirty litter box and this can eventually lead to health problems.

References and Further Reading

PetMD – My Cat Can’t Pee Difficulty Urinating In Cats

Walkin Pets – Expressing Your Cat’s Bladder