17 Dec, 2023 @ 10:00
1 min read

Why do some homes in Spain have bottles of liquid outside them?

Why do some homes in Spain have bottles of liquid outside them?
Why do some homes in Spain have bottles of liquid outside them?

BOTTLES filled with water are a common sight outside homes in Spain and are placed to prevent cats and dogs from urinating against walls or marking their territory.

Some buildings or houses have two or even more bottles of water placed at the property’s entrance in the street, usually strategically positioned on either side of the main door on the pavement.

Many houses have a stone (frequently marble) facing to inhibit damp penetration and dog wee can react with some marble facings- leaving a persistent smell that attracts more dogs.

The common belief is that sunlight sparkling in water bottles bothers eyes of cats and dogs and will keep them away, and therefore stops them from flushing their bladders.

Using the bottles is not unique to Spain and is promoted as a ‘Creole invention’ in Mexico, Argentina and Columbia, while Japan uses bottles as a type of cat scarecrow.

Despite the endless use of plastic bottles on Spanish, basic science says the remedy has no basis at all.

When it comes to urinating (either to mark territory or simply because it needs some relief, a dog is guided by its most powerful sense: smell. Through it, he or she selects the ideal point to realise its goal of urination.

Therefore, the fact that a couple of bottles of water have been placed in their field of vision is not going to get them to change their mind.

The only way of stopping unwanted urination is to buy specific repellent products which do not harm animals and then spraying in areas that you don’t want them to do any ‘business’.

Alex Trelinski

Alex worked for 30 years for the BBC as a presenter, producer and manager. He covered a variety of areas specialising in sport, news and politics. After moving to the Costa Blanca over a decade ago, he edited a newspaper for 5 years and worked on local radio.

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