A research group at Iwate University has revealed why cat spray urine tastes worse than regular urine.

 To mark themselves, cats raise their tails and spray urine onto vertical objects ("urine spray"). Many people feel that sprayed urine tastes worse than the urine normally excreted by cats, and the odor problem is a source of concern for cat owners, but it is not clear why sprayed urine tastes worse than regular urine. Ta.

 In this study, we investigated the chemical composition of cat spray urine in detail and found that there is no difference in the odor components of spray urine and regular urine, and that cats cannot distinguish between the odors of spray urine and regular urine.

Since the cause of the foul odor in spray urine was not due to its ingredients, we next investigated the physical properties of spray urine and found that cat urine has high wettability (the ease with which liquids adhere to solid objects) and that it adheres to vertical objects such as walls. It was found that it has easy-to-understand characteristics. For this reason, the urine droplets that are sprayed and spread thinly over a wide area further expand the area on which the urine adheres as they fall from a height of about 30 cm to the ground, and release odor components into the atmosphere moment by moment, making them very powerful. It is said to be a source of bad odors. On the other hand, regular cat urine immediately soaks into soil and sand, and the odor components are trapped in the soil and sand particles and do not volatilize, making it less likely to become a source of bad odors.

 It was also discovered that the wetness of cat urine is due to a urine protein called coxin, which produces a malodorous component. They found that the higher the concentration of coxin, the lower the surface tension of cat urine and the higher its wettability. This is the first discovery that coxin, which is present in large amounts in cat urine, not only creates substances that cause bad odors, but also has the function of increasing the wettability of urine and making it easier for malodorous components to adhere to areas that cats have scented. It is.

 The results of this research are expected to provide new knowledge about the role of urinary proteins in mammalian olfactory communication, and will also be useful in devising methods for deodorizing sprayed urine.

Paper information:[Journal of Chemical Ecology] Sprayed urine emits a pungent odor due to its increased adhesion to vertical objectsvia urinary proteins rather than to changes in its volatile chemical profile in domestic cats

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