3 Reasons Why Your Cat Needs A Bath
Many cats go their entire lives without having a bath at all – and that’s totally fine. However, there are times when your cat simply needs to get in that bath! Here, you will find a handy list of the most common 3 reasons why your cat needs a bath as well as some explanation of each scenario and a few handy hints for making bathtime with your kitty go as smoothly as can be.
Reason 1: Your Cat Finds Grooming Hard.
Elderly cats can find twisting and turning around to lick their fur difficult. Cats that are wearing those funnel like collars (you know the ones – they are designed to stop your cat from licking their stitches after an operation) can find it hard to groom their entire body, too. And, some cats simply do not have very good hygiene (this is sometimes the case with stray or abandoned cats, who were never taught to groom themselves by their moms). Cats who are unable to groom themselves properly for any reason may need to be bathed from time to time.
If your cat finds a full bath too stressful, though, you can always give their fur a good brush and then rub it down with a wet cloth. You could also try purchasing a special dry feline shampoo from your vet or pet store if it’s the experience of getting into water that is posing the problem for your cat.
Reason 2: Your Cat Has a Skin Infection.
Some skin diseases are treated with medicated shampoo, which needs to be gently lathered in to your cat’s skin and fur before being rinsed off with warm water. Baths are also pretty good for ridding your cats of adult fleas, which is a great bonus! But, of course, you do not need to bath your cats in order to de-flea your kitty: flea powder or serum will do just as well.
Reason 3: Your Cat Has Something Toxic On Their Fur.
It happens. Cats can accidentally get laundry detergent spilt on their fur, or they can knock a bottle of shampoo onto themselves as they go exploring the bathroom. In cases like these, it is paramount to cleanse their fur thoroughly to prevent their skin from getting irritated. Moreover, if your cat licks their fur, they could swallow toxic chemicals that will leave them feeling sick! So get them into that bath straight away!
How to give your cat a bath
Giving your cat a bath does not need to be a distressing experience either for you or your cat. Keep things calm and gentle, talk encouragingly to your kitty the whole time, and keep the bath water nice and warm – not too cold that your cat starts shivering and not too hot that they feel uncomfortable! Don’t make the water so deep that your cat cannot stand up in it!
Cat baths are usually quite quick affairs. Just get the water ready, add any shampoo you need to that water, and gently lower your cat in. Give them a gentle ‘groom’ with your fingers whilst they’re in the water, rinse them if necessary and then let them hop out. Placing a variety of towels all round the bath or sink that you are using will ensure that your whole bathroom doesn’t end up soaking wet at this stage of the bath. The important thing is not to force your cat to stay in a situation that they do not enjoy – this will just panic them! So, set things up properly at the start and your cat will not need to spend too long in that bath if they don’t want to.
Whatever you do, though, do not use bathing products designed for humans. Plain water will usually do if you want to rinse some detergent off your cat’s fur or help them to groom those hard to reach areas. In other cases, your vet will be able to provide you with some special feline shampoo. It is always a good idea to test this shampoo on a small area of your cat’s skin before you wash the entirety of their fur, to ensure that your cat doesn’t get irritated by their shampoo.
And, in fact, some cats absolutely love to have a bath: you might be surprised!
What are your experiences with bathing cats?