Your Kitty: Not As Hard As You Might Think
by Kaanii Cleaver
an over-the-counter cat shampoo and note Step One. More often than
not, the label will instruct you to 'wet cat thoroughly'. As if
it were that simple! Now, washing a cat isn't exactly rocket science,
but it does take finesse. And patience-- washing your pussycat is
not a task to be rushed.
in many jobs worth doing, preparation is key. Gather the following
items before gently luring (or carrying) kitty into the bathroom:
2 good-sized towels-- beach towels or bath sheets are perfect.
Quick-working, tearless shampoo-- baby shampoo works just fine.
Brush-- a pet brush or recycled hairbrush will do.
Plastic cup with sturdy handle
the exception of tigers and Maine Coon Cats, no feline naturally
enjoys being in water. A few simple steps can make bathing a cat
fun for everyone involved. Try these: Before you bring kitty to
the room, lay one towel on the bottom of the bathtub. Kitty can
grab onto it while he's wet, rather than latching onto your bare
arms. You can also use it to restrain pusskins gently as needed.
Then, fill tub with about two to three inches of nice warm water.
Temperature is vital here-- kitty will definitely freak out in cold
water. If it's just a little warmer than room temperature, your
cat may feel a bit more comfortable and not leap out at first touch.
calmly to your cat the whole time, reassuring him that he will,
indeed, survive the experience and be a better cat for it. Carry
him into the bathroom and quietly close the door behind you. Be
prepared to hear kitty produce vocal sounds you've never heard before
as you carefully lower him feet-first into the warm water.
may find it useful to lift a corner of the immersed towel and drape
it around cat's shoulders. This will start getting him used to wetness
and the weight feels comfortable to him, and not so exposed. Wrap
towel around his front feet, too, especially if he's a climber/scratcher.
And really, what wet cat isn't? Use the plastic cup to slowly pour
warm water from the tub over kitty starting at his neck and moving,
cup by slow cup, toward his tail. Don't pour water directly over
his head; he simply will not tolerate that. Talk to your cat calmly
while maintaining a firm grip on his shoulders. Push them gently
downward if he starts trying to climb the side of the tub (or your
kitty is wet except for his head, use one hand to open shampoo and
pour a dollop about the size of a quarter on an uncovered part of
his back. Baby shampoo is ideal for this; it's made to foam fast,
clean quickly and rinse thoroughly in a snap. And, if a mistake
happens, the suds won't burn your kitty's little eyes. It helps
to have an assistant to help hold the cat, but you can do this by
yourself. Take another wet corner of tub-towel and get a bit of
shampoo foam on it. Use this to wipe top of cat's head, behind his
ears, snout and jowls. If he hasn't chomped by now, you may try
squeezing water from towel onto his head, behind his ears.
kitty's been good and lathered, slowly pour cups of warm water over
him, again beginning at his shoulders and working toward his tail
end. Speaking of which.. once everything else is sudd and well-rinsed,
take another corner of the wet tub-towel, squeeze a dime-sized drop
of shampoo on it and gently scrub the not-so-fun end of your cat
well. Rinse well and -voila- a clean cat!
still a very wet cat. This is where towel number two comes in. Folded
in half it will be comforting to kitty, protective to your arms
and big enough to wrap around him tightly. Really-- wrap kittycat
firmly. It'll calm him plus he won't be able to take off and hide
somewhere, shivering. Hug kitty and hold him close as you rub and
buff him with the thick, cozy, absorbent towel. Patience again,
as drying a cat tends to take time.
your cat is never a good idea, for several reasons. Not the least
is that the noise will freak him out badly and you may never get
him to agree to a bath again. Also, that water-plus-electricity
thing; add a squirming cat and it just gets worse. Buff kitty as
dry as you can, using a fluffy towel. Of course the bathroom was
well warmed before the bath began, so go ahead and leave towel-dried
kitty on the bathroom floor in his towel for a half-hour or so.
He'll look fairly hilarious, but try not to laugh right at him.
The feline ego is a weird thing indeed, and you want to make this
experience one he'll agree to repeat someday, remember?
the word 'bath' often, before and during the experience, then once
he's all clean, dry and fluffy again, tell him 'Oh, the BATH made
you so nice to snuggle with", "that BATH was sooo goood
for Mr Kitty" -or however you talk to your cat. The thing is,
your cat will eventually connect the word/sound 'bath' with extra
hugs, treats and a general good time. See? Washing a cat needn't
be a frightful experience for anyone involved. If you begin bathing
your cat at a young age, say around six months, he'll at least tolerate
-and perhaps even learn to love- bathtime. And a clean kitty is
a smoochable kitty indeed.
above article is written by an independent author and may not represent
the views of The Refined Feline Cat
Furniture. Reproduction is not allowed without consent.