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Discussion Starter #1
Prince is white and his fur is not as beautiful as it could be after a nice shampoo... Especially since he's an outdoor cat, long-haired and so huge that the poor thing couldn't possibly go over his whole body every day, though he washes a lot.
 

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Of course! I recommend clipping his nails first. And if you don't know how he'll act maybe have someone help. :) Also try to keep him inside until he is totally dry to avoid him picking up excess dirt etc right away.
 

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Cats can be bathed, but you have to use a soap made specifically for cats or a small amount of dawn dish soap. You have to be very careful to rinse all the soap out because the cat can get sick if they lick it out of their fur, and then you need to keep the cat warm while it dries. If I have to give my cats a bath, I like to put a few towels in the dryer to dry my cats afterwards. Never wash the cats head because you might get water in their ears; instead, you can wipe their face with a damp washcloth or papertowel. Most cats dislike being bathed, so you shouldn't do it often (maybe a couple times a year). Another alternative would be to buy pet wipes that will soak up any excess dander/oils they have in their fur; cats tend to find those much more agreeable ;)
 

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About the only time you should bathe a cat, is if it got into something icky like lots of mud, oil, or some other grime that they can't get out themselves.
With a long haired kitty like Prince, it might be best to get a CAT shampoo with a bit of conditioner in it, just so it's easier to brush out tangles.

With a long haired kitty, it's best to brush them a lot... once a day would be preferable (some cats LOVE it) or at least once a week (if he's like Paizly and hates it), just to make sure it doesn't get all matted up. If it gets too matted, you'd have to end up shaving him! Mats aren't just annoying...depending on how bad they get, they can actually end up hurting (for the outter hairs pulling in with the inner mess), leaving chunks of skin exposed, and other various issues.

I agree with the Dawn. Since they use it on wildlife in oil spills, it should be safe for kitty... in small amounts (probably only a few drops), and rinsed out completely!
And the warm towels fresh from the dryer, too! While I doubt he'd actually get hypothermia from a bath (especially if you use very warm water), it still isn't pleasant to get chilly from being wet too long.
 

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I agree with the prior posters, but I particularly second Nicole's suggestion about having someone to help. Prince is not used to baths and, if you try it yourself, he could wriggle away once he's wet and you'll be chasing a soaking wet cat all over the place. I'd also close the door to whatever room you're bathing him in (assuming there is a door), just in case he does wriggle free and tries to get away.
 

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I really don't think cats should be bathed in the winter unless it's absolutely necessary if you live in a cold climate, especially if they go outdoors. The natural oils in the coat give the cat protection from wetness and cold.

The most important thing to remember with bathing cats is that they have a higher body temp than we do (normal being 100.5F to 102.5F and may be higher if cat is excited). Bathing should be done in a room where it is warm (75F+), and bath water should be at least the same temp as cat's body temp or slightly hotter is better. Most cats dislike bathing because the water feels too cold for them. Kittens especially cannot regulate their temp well and can get chilled very quickly.

After bathing and towel drying, the cat should be dried as quickly as possible in the warm room, combing out the coat from time to time as you're blowdrying. Even shorthair cats with a thick coat, it takes longer to dry thoroughly to the skin than you would expect. Backcombing to the lie of the coat helps it to dry faster.

Some cats will tolerate a "low speed" on a blowdyer, but there will be some that won't have anything to do with it. So for those blowdryer haters I suggest you confine the cat to a dog crate, or carrier, and have a portable heater near it to help with drying. Also, you could use an electric heating pad under a towel for the cat to sit on, as the undersides are the last to dry well. The important thing is you don't want your cat to be cold and shivering.
 

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Our vet had recommended a waterless shampoo, that you just spray on and wipe off. But I hate using it and Cherry hates it too.

But you never know if Prince will like water, until you've tried!
 

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I bathe my himmie around once a month (helps with our allergies). I do a good combing before then bathe (with dawn and conditioner) then towel, then blow dry while combing out. The breeder had gotten her use to it so she's easy to bathe, as well as nail clipping (which I do when she's wet as her toe fringe makes it more difficult to see otherwise). Now if she'd only be as good for brushing....
Anyway I agree with having help, it'll be quicker and perhaps less stressful
Good Luck!
If it was me I would have bathed him before I let him have free reign of my place (bed especially)as ya never know what he's carrying in his paws and fur from the great outdoors, but I'm a closet germaphobe LOL
 

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I don't think a cat should have a bath unless they need one (fleas and such), or unless you need them to have one (allergies). It's just unnecessary and stressful for them, and stressful for you too! The cat certainly won't thank you for your efforts.

If your cat doesn't have as nice a coat as you'd like, brush it daily and feed a quality diet. Or give him a raw egg yolk once in a while.

Blacky has longer hair and all I do for her is cut away the occassional matt on her tummy. She doesn't even shead much and I have never seen her have a hairball, which I attribute to her outdoor adventures.
 

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Yeah, I'm not a big believer in bathing cats. Mow does a darn good job and if I notice he's got schmootz he can't reach I'll just clean it off with a damp rag. Brushing keeps his coat nice and diet does the rest.. at least imo.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Prince is not fond of water, except watching me do the dishes and drinking from the fawcet. A wet cloth starts sounding like a good idea, maybe with some dry or wet shampoo... I think he'll let me do that. He loves being brushed. But he's not yet so trusting as to let me brush (or touch) him below the chest and shoulders.

He has no knots (is that mats or hairballs?).

He sheds a lot, the carpets are getting covered with small fur bunnies... Then again, aren't cats supposed to shed before summer? Summer will be here in a month or so. Should I use a Furminator?
 

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The only time I ever bathed one of my cats was when Eric fell in the river and came home covered in bright orange gunge. I honestly thought a soggy ginger tabby had come home in place of the new one.

We've come to a mutual agreement that baths will never happen again. He doesn't like getting wet, and I don't like having to buy a new shower curtain as he destroyed it whilst trying to escape.
 

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If a total water bath is needed, I suggest getting a thermometer to make sure the water is just right... it's hard to guess just by feel. My fish tank is 70F, but when I put my hand in it to do stuff, feels much cooler to me.

I actually use an aquarium thermometer for my own baths! Every Sunday afternoon, I have a bubble bath just for the sake of relaxing. If the water is not at least 100F, I usually don't enjoy it as much (most public swimming pool water is about 85F, and I consider that "chilly"). I prefer it to be 104 or 106 (same temp as a jacuzzi/hot-tub). I have actually marked with a dot of paint on the faucet where the controller should be, but I use the thermometer too...just in case! Last year the tubs plumbing went wonky and the hot water just wouldn't heat up past 90 no matter how far I turned the knob!
I never monitored my showers...I just turn those up to where I'm comfortable...and I'm guessing it's about 95-100 or so. My bathroom rarely steams up, so it can't be too hot I'd imagine.
 

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I'm with all of those recommending against bathing cats. I just don't see any good reason for and lots of reasons against. I've got six cats, three with long fur, and I've never bathed any of them ever. The most I've done is rinse down their backside if they had a litter box issue.

Just my two cents. :)

AC
 

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It IS possible to bathe cats...I bathed 6 today and flea combed them. I will say however you have to be very calm and very firm when you do so because they will take advantage of every weak spot and open bit of skin to let you know exactly how much they DO NOT want to be taking a bath. I found with the kittens the easiest way was to hold under their bellies and use a cup of warmish water to wet them, then the same method to soap them with diluted shampoo and then rinse until they have no more soap on them. I also recommend one at a time (bathe, dry, treat and cuddle) other cats or animals nearby just makes them freak out more.
 

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Cats are supposed to be perfectly efficient at cleaning themselves. The enzymes or whatever it is when they lick themselves is "supposed" to do a good enough job.

However, sometimes... My guy does start to smell a lil off.

I get this completely safe ingestible lavender vanilla pet shampoo from the natural pet emporium. Problem is when I have g/f's over they tend to like using it...and its like $13 a bottle.

Now Freya never needs to be cleaned. She always smells like fresh laundry.. dunno why but she just does.

When you wash it is best to make sure that you help to get them as dry as possible, a lot of people forget that when a cat get's wet it literally get's drenched. Unlike human and dog hairs cat hair does not wick water away instead it will absorb it and there is an increased risk for Pneumonia.

However, warm bathroom and a nice dry towel you should be good.

Depending on your cat you will judge how he will need to be treated, I can literally tell my cat to get into the tub and he will. He's mad and it shows but he wont run or fuss. Some cats, will try to murder you.

:p
 

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I bathe our crew on a regular schedule but everybody has been introduced to bathtime as tiny kittens. I'd try using a wet washcloth (wring it out thoroughly) with either a dilute solution of Dawn or a very gentle cat shampoo). Start slow with Prince on a table or counter with a thick towel underneath with the goal of wiping his face. Long strokes in the same direction his hair grows except under his chin. Use water that is hot without discomfort on your skin - a cats body temp is higher than a humans and we don't like cold baths. And as far as the cat fur everywhere, Are you brushing Prince everyday? Our Maine Coons have to have a thorough brushing or combing everyday to prevent furbombs everywhere. Evenings around here are spent with 6 rotating cats on our laps looking for their brushings & cuddles.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Prince won't let me touch or brush him under the collar... He has no tangles, though. I think his hair is not as long as pure Maine Coons'.
 

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I bathe Torri about every two months. I've been doing it since she was a teeny kitten so it's not a big deal for her. She's all white, and has long fur. We got her too young (abandoned) so she just enever learned to clean herself properly. She tries but by the time 2 months have gone by she's off-white and her fur is kinda clumpy.

For the few days after her bath she's always much ahppier, but she doesn't enjoy the bath time itself. She tolerates it, but doesn't like it.
It's also the only time I can trim her nails (but we're working on that) and her long bum fur. If I skip out on bath and trim time she gets tons of yucky things stuck back there.

I use a gentle kitten shampoo I got at a small natural pet store, it smells great and works wonderfully.

All that being said, I wouldn't start bathing a cat as an adult. That would be way too much stress, so unless it's nessecary I wouldn't.

My younger three are all used to bathing, Torri for the reasons above, and the boys because they got into so many yucky gunky things when they were little!
 
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