Do Tabby Cats Really Need Baths? – FAQcats.com

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It’s no secret that most house cats don’t like to get wet for whatever reason. However, if a cat never takes a bath, how on earth can it stay clean? This got me thinking about tabby cats in particular and whether they really need baths or not.

So, do tabby cats really need baths? Baths are not necessary for most cats. Most cats stay clean through self-grooming. Short-haired tabby cats that shed excessively, aren’t well groomed, or get too dirty will need occasional baths. Brushing the cat’s fur, maintaining a clean litter box and sleeping areas will help keep your cat clean.

In general, most cats don’t need to bathe, and that doesn’t just include tabby cats! Of course, there are times when a cat needs a bath, so it’s important to train your cat to be prepared for those situations. We’ll talk about some strategies to help bathe your cat as well as ways to help keep her clean.

Do tabby cats really need baths?

Do Tabby Cats Like Water (Why Cats Hate Water)

Before you try to force your cat to take a bath, it’s important to understand why he hates water. Domestic cats may have evolved from their wild counterparts, but make no mistake, they are very different when it comes to water.

Unlike feral cats, domestic cats have a hard time drying themselves off once their coat is wet. Historically, domestic cats were not exposed to the same outdoor conditions and climates during their evolution. Because of this, their bodies have developed in a way that does not work well with water.

Tabby cats, for example, have short coats that absorb water rather than repel it. This means that once they get soaked, it takes hours for their hair to dry completely. Not only is it unpleasant for the cat, but the weight of the water scares him a little.

Their fur is much heavier with all that water, and they can experience temperature drops as well. It is not uncommon to find a cat shivering for a moment after a bath. A cat’s range of motion slows dramatically with water weight, which bothers most cats. Long-haired cats tend to suffer the most, especially if they have a double or triple coat.

Dogs, of course, are very different in that their fur coats aren’t as thick and they hardly groom themselves.

In addition to this, water and non-pet shampoos can alter the PH levels of the cat’s skin. For some cats, this temporarily disrupts their senses, making them confused and restless.

However, not all cats hate water and some domestic breeds have been known to actively swim in it. Also, training a cat to get used to baths while her kittens are a good way to prepare them when they become adults.

How Often Should You Bathe Your Indoor Cat

There are many benefits to raising an indoor cat. Indoor cats don’t get as dirty as outdoor cats, but they still need occasional baths to stay clean and healthy. So how often should you bathe your indoor cat? It is recommended to bathe an indoor cat at least once a month. Some cats may go longer depending on their hair length and active lifestyle.

Bathing a cat every 4 to 6 weeks helps you get rid of potential flea problems and keep their coat in good condition.

What can I wash my cat with

There are many different solutions you can wash your cat with. From pet shampoos to household items, it’s pretty easy to keep a cat clean. The PH level of the cat’s skin must be well maintained, so it is important not to use abrasive solutions.

Ideally, you don’t want to bathe a cat with a product that has a lot of chemicals in it. This includes scented soaps or shampoos containing essential oils. For the most part, dog shampoos simply won’t work for cats and may even harm them. Instead, a cat should be washed with specially formulated shampoos.

The other reason you want to use chemical-free shampoos is that these ingredients could be absorbed into the cat’s skin. It’s important to remember that cats are self-toilets first, so anything you wash them with can easily be ingested internally.

Here is a list of everyday shampoos that can work well with cats

  • Baby shampoo (those without dyes or fragrances)
  • Pure Castile Soap (Olive Oil Based & Chemical Free)
  • Dawn (has a PH level of 7 which is safe for cats in moderation)

When using any of the above solutions, be sure to wash the cat’s skin thoroughly. Some of the solutions on this list contain natural oils that can leave the cat with an unpleasant coat.

To keep your cat happy and healthy, take the time to make sure all the soap scum is rinsed off. Although these solutions are safe for cats, you should only use them in moderation. Be sure to use a small amount of these shampoos as they are not specifically formulated for cats.

Yes, you can wash your cat with Dawn dishwashing liquid. The important thing to remember with Dawn is that it is specially formulated to remove tough stains, oils and residue from dishes. That being said, it can be a bit harsh on the cat’s skin and often it dries out their skin.

There are, however, great benefits to using Dawn dish soap to wash cats. It does a terrific job of getting rid of flas, eliminating them almost immediately. If you notice itching in your tabby cat, it may help to apply a cat skin lotion. ResQ and HomeoPet make excellent lotions for cats to help moisturize the skin under the fur.

Some cat-specific shampoos that I recommend trying for your pet are listed below.

  • Earthbath All Natural Cat Shampoo
  • Oster Oatmeal Naturals
  • Four Paws Magic Coat Tearless Cat Shampoo

When looking for a good cat shampoo, it’s important to get something your cat needs. For example, if you have a tabby with really patchy fur, it’s wise to get a two-in-one shampoo conditioner.

Most cat shampoos contain all natural ingredients like oatmeal. Oatmeal is good for improving the overall texture of a cat’s coat as well as relieving dry skin. Tearless shampoos are also great if your cat’s eyes get irritated easily.

How to Dry a Cat After a Bath

If you decide to give your tabby a bath, chances are he’ll be a little upset afterwards. Drying your cat after a bath isn’t an exact science, but there’s a right way and a wrong way to do it.

It is important to remember that cats can air dry themselves. So if your cat is upset and doesn’t want to be touched, it’s important to leave him alone. Unfortunately, the cat will shiver for a while as its body cools down from the water. They will also move a little slower due to the heavy coat.

If your cat is cooperative, the easiest way to dry him off is to wrap him in a towel. I find microfiber towels work best when it comes to quick absorption.

Another solution is to put the cat in a room and turn the fan on high. If you have an outdoor space, the cat can also be put outside to air dry in the sun.

Many cats aren’t fans of loud noises, but portable hair dryers work just fine. Place them at a low to medium temperature to keep the cat comfortable. You’ll notice that as their coat dries out, they’ll start to move a little faster and wiggle their legs and body.

Remember that taking a bath can be a scary experience, even for tabby cats who like it. Always make sure they are 100% comfortable before you engage in this activity with them. Be ready to hunt your cat, especially during the dry phase!

Keeping your cat clean

Giving a cat an occasional bath is always a good idea. Of course, there are times when cats can get into a huge mess and need a bath. There are several things you can do to keep your cat clean and reduce the number of emergency baths he will need.

The most important thing to do is to keep a clean litter box. Cats that have stacked litter boxes will not only smell bad, but are more likely to have litter stuck to their coats. A litter mat is a good idea as it helps catch loose litter preventing it from getting into their paws.

The other thing you can do is trim your cat’s claws regularly. This will keep them from getting stuck on grime. Additionally, brushing your cat’s coat regularly can help get rid of knots and tangles that may be clinging to dirt and other messes.

My final piece of advice is to monitor the play space the cat has. Cats that have free reign of the house can get into just about anything. Make sure the cat has no access to garbage, gardens, tubs and sinks, and other places where it can get dirty. Always pick up after your cat and place objects around the room to distract it.

By following these tips, you can limit the number of baths your cat will need.

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