Bathing your cat is a debatable topic, and many owners are under the impression that a cat will always bathe itself. However, there are times where your cat is going to need a bath: when the dirt on him is too much, or if he is covered in something potentially toxic.
Here are some tips on when to decide it’s time, how to do it, and when to go to a vet or groomer instead:
When is it a good idea to bathe?
For everyday activities, your cat will likely not need a bath very often especially if he is inside-only and doesn’t have access to much dirt, oil or other greases. Your cat will groom himself with his tongue, but daily brushing and spot cleaning with a pet wipe are also beneficial. This will help to remove excess hair that can be swallowed as well as minor dirt he may not be able to clean.
If your cat has a bout of illness that results in him getting messy, or if he ventures outdoors and comes back covered in mud, grease or other strange substances, then it is time for a bath. Cats are lot pickier about being bathed than dogs, so take some care before you get started.
Placing a harness on your cat (normally used for walking cats) can help during bath time as it will give you something to hold onto while you wash your cat without hurting him, especially if he is nervous. Be sure to fill the tub with just enough water that he can still stand without it being over his head. Instead of using running water, which can terrify your cat, use a cup and dunk it in the tub for rinses. Be sure to use a pet-safe shampoo that won’t dry the skin.
Should I take my Cat to be groomed?
There are several times when a groomer or vet may be better off bathing your cat than you. If your cat is particularly fractious in the bath, or has a substance on him making him ill, then bringing him to the vet where he can be sedated and then safely groomed is best to prevent injury to you or your cat. If your cat is very long-haired to has very tangled or matted fur, a groomer may also be needed as they can safely bath and then trim/shave your cat to help keep him looking great and cleaner without a strange hairdo. Groomers usually work with calmer cats, however some will come to vet clinics to give a bath and haircut to a sedated cat so that he still looks great!
No matter the size or shape cat you have, a bath will likely be necessary sometime in your future. Just take it slow, and if needed, find alternative options to cleaning such as pet wipes or a grooming visit. Your cat will thank you!
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Mr. Bentley & Ms. Bella
About our Writers
Pet Wish Pros is proud to have Bentley and Bella contributing to our pet health blog. For many years, Bentley has been passionate about improving and learning from the lives and experiences of homeless pets in the greater Atlanta area. Bella is usually busy discovering new pet health products and medications. In her free time, Bella enjoys working on her horse farm. Both Bentley and Bella are devoted to animal health & their experience allows them to keep you informed while saving YOU money!
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