Our feline companions are relentless when it comes to cleaning themselves. It seems that every time we look around the corner, there is our adorable cat completely focused on giving their fur coat a once over. Or if your cats are anything like mine, a twice over and maybe even a third cycle of cleaning.
Cats are extremely clean animals when left to their own devices. And most of the time, your cat really won’t need a bath anyway. However, there may be certain moments when you are going to have to give your feline furbaby a bath.
If the thought of giving your cat a bath makes you cringe, you are definitely not alone. Most cats absolutely hate water. And let’s not forget the fact that it can be quite dangerous for you as well if you’re not properly prepared to bathe your cat.
So how do you properly bathe your feline friend without losing an eye or shedding any of your precious blood? I can definitely help you with that. I’ve been there and done that with my own cats.
Some methods are easier than others. And it really all depends on your cat. Below are some tips on how to give your cat a bath without getting seriously injured.
Gather Everything You Need
Make sure you have everything you need set out and ready to go before you grab your cat for a bath. If you aren’t prepared ahead of time, then giving your cat a bath will take much longer than it needs to.
You’ll either have to hold onto your cat for dear life while you go find that thing you forgot or you’ll have to search high and low for your missing cat because they will run and hide once they figure out what’s going on. And if you’ve already gotten them wet at that point, you’ll have to start all over again when you do find your scared and stressed out cat.
Trim Your Cat’s Claws Beforehand
The next thing you’re gonna wanna do is trim your cat’s claws before you get them in any water. This is the key to preventing any injuries for obvious reasons. And if your cat is anything like mine, they don’t like getting their claws trimmed.
So after you trim your feline companion’s claws, give them a good 15 to 20 minute window to calm down. The last thing you want to do is bathe your cat while they are still stressed out from having their claws trimmed.
Make Sure The Water Temperature Is Comfortable
This should go without having to say it, but I’ll say it anyway. Please make sure the water is comfortable enough for your cat. You should never use very cold or very hot water. In fact, I wouldn’t even use lukewarm water. Try to use water that’s as close to room temperature as possible – maybe a tad warmer.
Brush Your Cat’s Fur
Another thing you’ll want to do is to brush your cat’s fur before bathing them. This will allow you to cut down on the hair that may clog up your sink. It will also get rid of any tangles and snarls they may have.
My cats always seem to get matted up fur on their tails, so especially watch for these areas. Also, most cats hate when you touch their stomach, so be very gentle with your feline’s tummy.
Wear A Long Sleeve Shirt
Unless your cat loves to be bathed, you’re definitely going to want to make sure your arms are protected and maybe even your hands.
You can try using those long rubber gloves they sell at most department stores, however, they tend to be bulkier and may get in the way.
Give Them A Reward Afterwards
After you give your cat a bath, make sure you reward them with something such as treats, wet food, or a new cat toy. And reward them regardless if the bath was successful or not.
Think about it. You’re basically forcing them to do something that they are deathly afraid of. I think at the very least they deserve a treat.
Use A Waterless Shampoo Instead
If you don’t think subjecting your cat to water is a very good idea, try using a waterless shampoo instead. I’ve tried a few varieties and they seem to work quite well as long as your cat isn’t covered in mud or some other messy substance.
The main thing to remember is that for the most part, cats really do NOT need to bathe that often. They actually do a pretty great job of keeping themselves clean. But there are a few instances where giving your feline companion a bath is a must.
If they get any harmful chemicals on them or they got outside and somehow got themselves covered in mud, then I would definitely give them a bath in this case.