Have you ever tried giving your cat a bath? How did it go? Since you’re reading this article, we bet your sweet ball of fluff turned feral and fought you tooth and claw. We can only imagine the ensuing bloodbath (no pun intended!), which probably ended with you admitting defeat as you blindly aim a blow dryer into your cat’s hiding place. Since you managed to survive all that, we salute you, brave soldier!
Yet have you ever wondered why don’t cats like baths? More importantly, is all that trouble really necessary?
Why doesn't My Cat Like Baths?
Why do cats not like water? Some feline behaviorists believe that domestic cats’ early ancestors lived in the dry deserts of North Africa where they had little exposure to rivers or lakes. Because of their unfamiliarity with it, cats developed a natural aversion to water.
Another reason is cats don’t like getting their fur wet. Imagine walking around with a wet towel wrapped around your body. This is how a cat feels when its fur gets drenched. Wet fur is heavy, and thus feels uncomfortable. Wet fur also makes cats feel less agile. This heightens the threat of being caught or attacked by predators. No cat wants that!
Another reason your cat may avoid baths can be due to a previous bad experience when bathing. Believe it or not, cats get traumatized, too. For instance, if a cat fell into a river or any body of water when they were young, then they may be frightened of water for the rest of their life.
Now you get why they’re scared of baths, but why are they scared of blow dryers? Think of it this way. They’re already tense after a bath. The sound of the blow dryer is like the sound of a dental drill when you’re already anxious. It’s scary! Plus, cats are extremely sensitive to noise. They can hear sounds 1.6 octaves higher than humans. Dr. Ernie Ward, pet expert from VetStreet says, “Excessive or loud noises can create what is known as acoustic stress, which affects felines.” The noise from your hairdryer can psychologically affect your kitten. Not only that, the heat from the dryer also adds to your cat’s distress.
So… Do Cats Need Baths?
Self-grooming is a well-known feline trait. Cats spend 40% of the day cleaning themselves. There are some parts of their body, however, that are impossible to reach like their ears, the spot beneath their chin, or the back of their head. In addition, there are cats that can’t self-groom properly. These include overweight cats, felines with arthritis, and sick and depressed cats who do not have the required physical agility and strength for grooming.
There are also other circumstances when cats need our help to cleanse them. For example, when they roll in muck and get very soiled, or when they encounter guests or other pets who might infect them with bacteria or fleas.
If your cat is a hairless breed, they can over produce oils. Sphynx cats, for instance, don’t have hair to distribute these oils properly so it can accumulate and form a greasy layer on their body. As such, they need to be cleaned once a week.
So, to answer the question, cats don’t need regular baths, but they do need to be cleaned.
Why you shouldn’t force your cat to bathe?
This was briefly mentioned before, but a bad bathing experience can traumatize your cat. Like humans, cats can suffer from PTSD after exposure to a terrifying event. Never force your cat into a bath if it causes obvious distress. Stress disorder is ultimately harder to treat and cure. You wouldn’t want your cat to go through that for the sake of vanity.
Worst case, you’ll end up not only traumatizing your cat but also yourself. When cats freak out during bath time, they may lash out and hurt you. Forcing your cat to bathe not only hurts your fur baby but may also hurt your relationship with them. Trust, once broken, is difficult to repair. It would take lots of quality time and delicious treats to win back your pet’s affection.
That’s why for your own safety and the happiness of your kitty, don’t waste time and effort getting your feline to love baths.
Clean Your Cat Without Water
A bath or shower is not the only way to clean your cat. You can always clean your cat without washing them. For most occasions, the dust, oils, and dirt on your cat’s fur can be wiped off without submerging your fur baby in water.
Using pet wipes for cats specifically formulated for your pet is one of the most effective methods to clean your cat. These are formulated with ingredients that are safe and non-toxic for pets. By doing so, you can supplement your cat’s self-grooming efforts by helping them deep clean hard-to-reach areas.
Grooming Gloves – A Great Bath Alternative
Introducing HICC GROOM! Pet Grooming Gloves, an easy-to-use pet bath alternative specially designed to simplify the complicated process of bathing a cat. Made with pet-friendly ingredients, HICC GROOM! Pet Grooming Gloves can thoroughly clean your cat’s fur and skin without the need to rinse your pet with water. Moreover, HICC GROOM! Pet Grooming Gloves innovatively separates the wipe and essence shampoo in the package to ensure each component is fresh when you open it.
Since the product is shaped like a wearable five-finger glove, you can easily use it to wipe your cat clean. It’s even safe to use on sensitive areas such as the spots around the eyes to wipe tear stains and your cat’s nether regions. Unlike the terrifying experience of getting engulfed by water, the process of cleaning with HICC GROOM! provides a pleasant experience for your kitty. The stroking motion you need to do while cleaning is like the pleasurable experience of getting petted. It even mimics the way cats naturally groom each other.
We hope you found the answer to why doesn't my cat like baths.
Since HICC GROOM! Pet Grooming Gloves is rinse-free and air dries quickly, you can totally avoid the horrifying experience of bathing and blow drying your cat. Instead, after wiping down your cat’s fur, you can leave them to bask under the sunlight. Don’t worry if your cat starts licking their fur after, too. The product is completely safe for your pet!
Now, you can say goodbye to stressful baths. Keep your fur baby happy and clean with HICC GROOM!’s Pet Grooming Gloves!