How to Give Your Cat a Bath

How to give a cat a bath? It can be tricky, but with some basic know-hows, this is something you can do at home without needing professional help. Below is a collection of tips and tricks which should help make your job much easier to. From start to finish, we have got you covered. If you’re a new cat owner be sure to check out our best cat litter guide as well to help you keep your home nice and clean!

Are you supposed to bathe a cat?

We’ve already established that, yes, you can bathe your cat. Now, this is something that you don’t have to do on a daily basis. In fact, most vets would recommend that you avoid bathing your cat everyday as it can make them sick. Bathe them as needed.

In bathing your cat, you must also consider the tools and hygiene products that you’ll be using. It is highly recommended that you go organic products as these do not contain chemicals which might be harmful to your pet. Consider the fact that even cats can get allergies from products that are too harsh. Their fur might begin to fall out or appear coarse if you use the wrong shampoo. There are also cases wherein they might develop different skin issues due to the chemical content of the soap or shampoo you have been using. This is why it pays to do a little research in order to find the best product for your beloved pet. You only want the safest one for them, after all.

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Funny red-haired cat lying in the sink, taking a bath

Best Ways to Bathe a Cat – Step by Step

Once you have all the basic necessities on hand, it’s time to move on to the actual task of taking your cat for a bathe. Now, this is much easier said than done for most people. It helps if you try and acclimate your pet to the new surroundings first. Of course, knowing the proper ways on how to bathe a cat and how to make them comfortable will make your job much easier.

  1. Brush your cat’s fur. Doing so would help get rid of any knots as these would be much harder to remove once your cat is wet and it can be more painful for your pet too. If you find that they relax better whilst being brushed, try and do this while they are in the shower too.
  1. Prepare toys for distraction. You know what your cat is most attracted to so give them something to play with in the shower. This would not only get them more comfortable, but it would also lessen their motivation to try and escape. Also, do secure the kitty’s spot on the tub. A rubber mat is all you really need for this. It would provide your pet with stable footing so they won’t start slipping and sliding as you try to bathe them. Adding towels on the floor should help as well.
  1. Use warm water. Running water isn’t recommended so if you can avoid it, do so. Your cat should feel soothed by the bathe, not attacked by it. Use watering pots or even small cups when rinsing your cat as this allows you more control when it comes to the amount of water pouring over them. Remember, do not rush the process!
  1. Soak your kitty from the neck down and do avoid getting shampoo into their eyes, nose, and ears. Make sure that you massage the product slowly and carefully so you don’t end up startling your pet. Non-scented shampoos are recommended as cats do have a very sensitive sense of smell. Use a washcloth to clean your pet’s face and ears.
  1. Once you’re done, use a towel to gently blot the water out of your cat’s fur. Wrap the fabric around your cat as you do this to make it more effective. However, if you find that your pet is distressed by this, stop and use a blow dryer instead. For this, use a normal setting and make sure that it is a safe distance away from them. Test the heat against the back of your hand first as another precaution. If your pet runs away from the noise, respect this and allow them to air dry instead. Working with your pet is the basic step when it comes to how to give a cat a bath.

How to Avoid Being Clawed When Bathing Your Cat

  1. Trim your cat’s claws before you bathe them. Make sure that you do this a few hours before bath time to allow your pet ample time to relax. Trimming their claws can be pretty tricky too so make sure that you do it carefully to avoid any injuries. There are many claw trimmers available out there that come with skin guards—they might be more expensive than regular ones, but these can help guarantee your pet’s safety.
  1. Never force your kitty into the bath. This only spells disaster and might even traumatize your cat. Make sure that you keep an eye out for any signs of distress and discomfort manifested by your pet. Respect their needs too—if they aren’t reacting positively to what you’re doing, stop and change your approach.
  1. Be patient. Introducing bath time to a cat isn’t something that you can rush. Do things slowly and reward your pet each time they advance in the process. This would put them in a good mood and teach them to associate bath time with treats.

How Often to Bathe a Cat

This depends on the cat itself. For the most part, they are very hygienic creatures and are capable of grooming themselves to an extent. However, they would still need some basic maintenance, especially if you have an indoor and outdoor cat. Certain breeds might require more bath times than others too! Twice a week usually works for most breeds, but if your cat is a little explorer and often end up in something smelly or dirty then you might want to make sure that they’re always clean. Remember that good hygiene equals good health.

So are you supposed to give a cat a bath? Definitely! With these tips, you can get through it much quicker and easier. We hope this was able to help you better understand how to bathe a cat without injuring yourself or your pet in the process. Good luck!

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