A large plastic bucket, sink or bath (lined with a non-slip floor mat) to use as a cat bath. Specialist cat or kitten shampoo. Find a mild all-rounder with no harsh chemicals or perfumes. Never use human shampoo, as it’s unsuitable for cat hair and skin due to the difference in pH levels.
All that fastidious licking means cats have little oil buildup on their fur. Oil helps repel water, so when cats do get wet, the water soaks all the way down to their skin. It makes their fur feel heavy and waterlogged, and they can feel less quick and agile.
Dampen a towel with lukewarm water.
The towel should be wet, but not dripping, and the water should be warm, but not hot. You don’t want to wipe down your cat with a cold, wet towel. Make sure to do this in a slow and calm manner, as to not scare your cat.
The average indoor cat may never need a bath, but if you do decide to take the plunge, we do not recommend bathing your kitty more than a couple of times a year. Only you know your cat’s personality and levels of aggression, which can be a key deciding factor when it comes to bathing a cat.
Only use fragrance-free shampoos. Baby shampoos are designed to be gentle for human babies and also work well for kittens. You can also use fragrance-free dish detergent. No matter what soap you use, avoid your kitten’s eyes and try to keep the inside of their ears dry.
Yes, you can use Dove soap on cats.
In other words, while Dove soap is okay occasionally it should not be your go-to when cleaning your cat. Dove soap is formulated for human skin and is quite gentle but it will mess with the pH level of your cat’s skin causing skin irritation and dryness.
The answer is simply: NO. Human wet wipes and baby wipes are not suitable for use on pets. In fact, Human wipes can be up to 200 times too acidic for your pet’s skin. This is because the pH balance of your pet’s skin is very different to that of a human’s.
The cat bath temperature should be around body temperature, in other words pretty warm but not so hot that it’s uncomfortable. Place a towel or rubber mat in the bottom of the tub or sink. Cats hate the insecure footing of slippery surfaces and this will make it less stressful.
More likely, however, cats don’t like getting wet because of what water does to their fur. Cats are fastidious animals that spend a great deal of their day grooming themselves. Wet fur is extremely uncomfortable for a cat and often takes a long time to dry.
Even with a fur coat, cats that are exposed to cold environmental temperatures, especially when wet, can result in hypothermia, which in cats is defined as a body temperature below 100° F.
Why Are Cats Afraid of Water? Cats hate water as they understand their environment through their nose and getting wet can remove their personal scent. They can also notice chemicals in the water that humans cannot sense.
One of the best ways to keep your cat stink-free is to bathe her. A bath will not only remove the odor but make her feel fresher. Also, don’t forget to trim her hair as the long hairs are no good for their healthy lifestyle. Before a bath, trim the hairs of your cat, and don’t forget to cut the tip of her nails off.
Use cat-specific shampoo – preferably with no smell – and lather your cat from tail to neck. Rinse with the pitcher, cup or gentle sprayer, being sure NOT to get soap or water on kitty’s face. Don’t forget to rinse those out-of-the-way places, like the belly, under arms, tail and neck.
Cats do a good job of cleaning most debris from their coat, but their self-grooming won’t get everything out, nor will it make them smell any nicer. The National Cat Groomers Institute of America recommends a bath once every 4-6 weeks.
While a baby shampoo can be gentle and not as harsh as a regular human shampoo it’s still not made for cats. Bathing your cat with baby shampoo will most likely disrupt the pH balance and the acid mantle, which is a thin layer on the skin that discourages contamination by viruses and bacteria and maintains hydration.
Mix one-part each of apple cider vinegar and dawn dish soap together with four parts water. You can use this shampoo like regular pet shampoo—wet your cat’s fur first, and then add the cat shampoo. Rub the shampoo through all layers of your cat’s fur, then rinse well with warm water.
Conditioners for humans and horses are made to leave some product in the hair. Since cats self-groom (i.e. lick their fur), they can end up ingesting this and getting sick. Only use coat conditioners that are made specifically for cats. Use a dandruff shampoo to help with coat conditioning.
If you don’t have kitten shampoo on hand, you can use baby shampoo or gentle dish soap. Treats: Have treats or canned kitten food ready to distract your kitten if it starts to get anxious. Towel: A dry, soft towel should be ready to dry your kitten off as soon as bath time is over.
Made specifically for pets and safe for use after outdoor playtime or indoors, these Wet Ones antibacterial wipes keep and your home clean and smelling fresh.
Cats have few ways in which they let us know they’re experiencing discomfort, illness, or pain. Neglecting to groom is one clear sign. Whether the cause is age, weight, illness, or distress, if you notice your cat isn’t keeping up their appearance, consult your veterinarian to work on a treatment.