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New to cats- How to bathe?

Good grooming practices are essential for maintaining health and happiness for you and your cat. This is a forum to exchange tips and advice for proper care of your cat's hygiene needs.


A little cat- with a lot to- learn
Purred: Thu Aug 22, '13 7:25am PST 
Hi, I am new here and to cats in general. Wondering how often to get a bath and any tips on doing so. Thanks in advance!


Raw fed &- polydactyl!
Purred: Thu Aug 22, '13 8:15am PST 
I've never bathed my cat, he cleans himself. If your cat did something silly like stepped in poison or got something toxic on himself, you can wash a kitten off in the sink. Otherwise, good luck!

Merlin - An Angel- Forever

Purred: Thu Aug 22, '13 9:08am PST 
Cats don't need baths at all unless they get dirty sticky stuff or something on their fur.

Pet stores sell pet cleaning wipes. You can use a wipe to clean the fur a bit. Once a week is plenty. You can also buy waterless pet shampoos. Just rub a little bit into the fur.

For an actual bath, there are some videos and tips here

Claude- Hoppurr - Master GR- Com

Claude NOT- Clod!!!
Purred: Thu Aug 22, '13 11:16am PST 
Clip the claws BEFORE you bathe your cat! Most cats do not need a regular bath unless they get into something or like a male cat (not neutered) may have "stud tail" and become very greasy. Sphinx cats and other "hairless" breeds are often oily cats and may need a regular bath too.
Use a mild shampoo that is specifically for cats (I avoid shampoos with fragrance). Dawn dishwashing detergent (the one they use for the cleaning of marine animals after an oil spill) works well for degreasing a very oily cat.
Wash the cat in water that is slightly warmer than you would bathe in (they have a higher body temperature than we do) and make sure you rinse rinse rinse. Avoid water in the ears and eyes. Towel dry. I put my cats in the bathroom or in a warm area (in winter I use a space heater in the room) without a litter box (clumping litter will end up sticking to the paws and coat) for an hour or so. Then once the coat is dry - groom as usual. Grooming a wet coat may damage the fur especially in a long-haired cat.
Bathing more than once a month will dry out the skin and coat.
Be patient and having a second pair of hands to help is often very useful!
Bathing your cat gives you the opportunity to inspect your cat for lumps and bumps and other issues you may not normally see!
Good luck!!


A little cat- with a lot to- learn
Purred: Thu Aug 22, '13 12:30pm PST 
thanks everyone. I got some special shampoo from the vet since Tillie has some dry skin, plus I want to wash the shelter off of her. smile once I do that I hope to take your advice and rarely bathe her. thanks again.


Biscuit Maker

Purred: Thu Aug 22, '13 2:41pm PST 
Be sure to hold on to her! She will be slippery and twist and be as hard to hold as a snake. I brace the palm of my hand against her chest, with my thumb and forefinger around her neck (but not choking her, bracing against her as she tries to leap up). If possible, try to keep your arms above her legs as she will be trying to grab hold of anything in an effort to get out. Let her grab the edge of the sink with her front legs to give her a feel of security and to keep her from trying to grab hold of your arm with her claws. Some cats try to claw you, some, although desperate to get out, will not use their claws. Since you don't know each other well yet, expect the worst. Always bathe in the sink, not a bathtub.

Merlin - An Angel- Forever

Purred: Sat Aug 24, '13 5:01pm PST 
My link didn't show up confused Here it is Videos of how to bathe a cat