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Bathing - how much is too much?

Discussion in 'Cat Chat' started by HeartofClass, Oct 31, 2012.


  1. HeartofClass

    HeartofClass PetForums VIP

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    I LOVE bathing my cats, and they are actually beginning to enjoy it aswell. I love how they smell after and how their fur feels so soft and they feel soo clean. They mostly sleep on my bed but they are also allowed to be out so I also like to bath them for hygiene purposes. But - how much bathing is too much? I keep getting bugged by my family that I should never even consider bathing a cat as they're clean animals and they even seem to think that by bathing them I'm hurting them. How often do you bath your cats? Do you think once a month is too much?
     
  2. K337

    K337 PetForums VIP

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    I bathe my Selkirk once a week - sometimes once a fortnight. She quite likes the bath but doesn't enjoy being dried as much. We have a big groom after the drying bit though which she loves. Her curly coat is beautiful after!

    My ocicats only get a bath if they need it - like for a bad case of dire rear.
     
  3. NEW2CATS

    NEW2CATS PetForums VIP

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    People do not tend to bath cats unless they are actually dirty. I have only ever done it once when one of mine came home rather stinky and mud over one side!

    you need to be carefull you are not stripping out the natural oils of their coat - they could get dry skin and dandruff etc
     
  4. Treaclesmum

    Treaclesmum PetForums VIP

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    Inishka might need bathing, especially before a show, but I don't think the others need it! :001_smile:
     
  5. Bexsta158

    Bexsta158 PetForums Junior

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    I haven't ever given one of my cats a bath, though chaos fell in my bath once, smelt like lush bath bombs for a week. He wasn't too impressed though. :lol:

    If I thought I wound sustain injuries I probably would once every few months, would make it easier to check them for any lumps, bumps or injuries.
     
  6. Prince33Sp4rkle

    Prince33Sp4rkle PetForums Member

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    whats the best way to dry them?

    as an indoor cat Jett tends to smell of my perfume and fabric conditioner where he gets cuddled, but sometimes OH comemnts he smells *catty* (suprise suprise, he is after all a cat!) and i think if i bathed him every so often it would ease the tension between OH and myself over *animal smells*(he isnt a great animal fan but accepts i adore Jett).

    im guessing warmed towels as dont think a hair dryer would be welcome!!!!
     
  7. carly87

    carly87 PetForums VIP

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    I wouldnt' bath more than about every 2 weeks, 10 days at a push if they're stinky. i bathe the cats that I'm showing two weekly, as it helps keep the coat in tip top condition. All of mine are dried with a hairdryer set on cool.
     
  8. Oscars mam

    Oscars mam PetForums VIP

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    I used to use a hair dryer to dry my Persian Claude! :)
     
  9. egyptianreggae

    egyptianreggae PetForums VIP

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    I think once a month sounds reasonable, especially if they enjoy it. My old outdoor cats used to love to be rubbed dry with a towel after going outside in the rain :) My current boys are highly opinionated Glaswegian indoor cats, so I don't ever bathe them. I do love their smell, though they don't smell strongly "catty" to me at least, it's so comforting and reassuring. I've just had a good sniff of Simba to check it's still true :)
     
  10. Fiji444

    Fiji444 Guest

    I have only ever bathed Kizzy when kept sitting under cars and getting oil on her coat. It wasn't a pleasure for her or me and after a couple of times I gave up and cut it off as I never went near her skin and she did look funny as I am no hairdresser!
     
  11. NexivRed

    NexivRed Guest

    If they benefit from a bath before a show, then what's the best way to introduce a cat to having baths? Sink? Bath? To shower or not to shower?
     
  12. Chiantina

    Chiantina PetForums VIP

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    I have only bathed a cat once and that was when we bought Milligan back from the rescue centre! He was so happy about it, he pooped in his box and then had managed to spread it all over his underside by the time we got home! So, a wash down was a necessity!!
     
  13. OrientalSlave

    OrientalSlave Shunra Oriental Cats

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    If you are going to show, then yes, some cats certainly need bathing.

    The easiest was in a friend's kitchen sink. We had diluted shampoo ready, and plenty of warm water for rinsing. We put a rubber mat on the bottom of the sink, clipped the claws first, did it quickly, and wrapped the cat up in a nice warm towel when we had finished. We used very little shampoo - if you use too much you just end up with an awful lot of rinsing being needed - and diluting it in warm water makes it easy to do the whole cat. I think we wetted the cat first.

    Have also done it in a bath and that's painful with the leaning over, though being able to use the shower head to rinse is a plus if the cat will tolerate it.

    You also need to find out how far before a show you should bath. It can be up to a week for some cats, depends on breed and coat.

    I used to show a black & white moggie and we simply washed his feet before a show so they were really white.
     
  14. carly87

    carly87 PetForums VIP

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    I'd disagree. Kittens will respond much better if showered. I find that mine panic if put in a sink, and these are placid cats who enjoy their baths. Shower every time!

    NR, do you want talking through the procedure? If so, drop me a message and I'll tell you there. Would do now but I'm just about to leave work for home! Yippee!
     
  15. SiaAndMaxsMum

    SiaAndMaxsMum PetForums Senior

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    Ah I'm glad I've seen this post...

    I've never had to bath a cat before but Max's long hair is starting to get greesey and scruffy even after brushing so I'm wondering if he needs a bath?? He's possibly a Maine Coone cross so I'm wondering if that side of him has given him fur that needs cleaning?

    I have no experience with this so any advice would be brilliant, thanks xx
     
  16. apricot

    apricot PetForums Member

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    People BATH CATS??? Given that most cats hate getting wet it sounds cruel. I only bath my dogs a couple of times a year and my cats keep themselves clean.
     
  17. Chiantina

    Chiantina PetForums VIP

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    Not all cats do hate getting wet! My 2 burmese and my BSH will happily place themselves under dripping taps, dip their paws into the bath and play with the water and do various other things that get them voluntarily wet!!
     
  18. Space Chick

    Space Chick PetForums VIP

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    The only time I have ever bathed a cat was when my (now departed) Thomas came home smelling of bleach :eek: He took it very well :D

    That said, Sabrina has fallen into the bath when she's been "chatting" to me on the side and lost her footing :lol:
     
  19. messyhearts

    messyhearts PetForums VIP

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    I don't think it is cruel to get them accustomed to something they will need to do at some point (could need to be bathed by a vet to clean a wound) & encourages a more relaxed & socialised pet if you introduce it correctly.
     
  20. carly87

    carly87 PetForums VIP

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    New puppies don't like water either. Does that mean it's cruel to introduce them to it to get them used to it? Nope. Cats hate getting partially wet mostly, i.e patchy wetness, but how many times have you seen a cat go out in the rain? Some demand to go out whatever the weather! Anyway, a cat will respond well when the whole body is wet. Not once have I ever had an outright stressy cat, and I've bathed many.

    In terms of procedure, make sure the bathing and drying rooms are draught free. Clip the cat's claws. take cat plus 1 small towel and one large towel, shampoos you'll use etc into bathroom. Next, decide that you're going to do this, that it's no worse than bathing a dog, and that you're silly for being worried. Cats respond poorly to a streessed owner. If the owner is stressy, then the cat picks up on those signals, and will also act stressed, which is why so many people think that cats hate water. A calm, firm but gentle approach will see your cat happy and tolerant.

    Put the cat in the bath. With new cats, i find it better to clip the shower off to one side, but have it running already so that the initial hiss at turning on doesn't startle them. Start by wetting the cat's hind quarters, then move up to their fronts. Scruff the cat lightly to encourage it to sray still. I'm not suggesting that you pull on or squeeze the skin, only that you pick up a fold and hold it gently. This is the same thing that mum cat does when she's telling her kits to stay still. With young kittens it works superbly, and calms them too. With older cats it works quite well too.

    Give oodles of praise when they stay still.

    Suds the cat in the chosen shampoo, then rinse, rinse, rinse. I tend not to dilute the shampoo overly, as I find that the coat water does that on its own. However, I only use a little, and really work it into the coats.

    Rinse until the water runs clear, then rinse some more just to be sure. On a side note, you need to bath a cat in nice, warm water. Their body temps are warmer than ours, so what feels nice and comfy to us will feel cooler to them. They get cold quickly when wet, so don't bath in tepid water, another mistake folks make, then wonder why the cat hates it so much.

    Next, blot the cat dry with the hand towel, allowing it to soak up excess water, then wrap in the large towel for up to 10 mins or as long as the cat will tolerate. If the cat is a short-hair, a towel dry is all they're likely to need, but for long-airs, you'll need to use a pet dryer or a hairdrier on cool. Dry them thoroughly to avoid them chilling.

    And that's it!
     
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