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Old 01-17-2010, 08:56 AM   #1
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No cooking content, my cat

Y'all have been soo good with info for my cat...

I've never owned at cat, before I "inhereted" my Mom's old cat..

he's soo sweet, but he stinks!..

can I give him a bath in the tub with warm water?

my SO. says, no way , he'll bite you!..

but somethings got to give here.. my old cat is good about "cleaning himself" but he stinks and seems to be very "oily"..

Eric, Austin Tx.


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Old 01-17-2010, 09:09 AM   #2
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It might be a dietary thing. Check with your vet. I agree with your SO, no bath! I have 7 cats and I never thought about bathing any of them. I value my life! Good luck.

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Old 01-17-2010, 09:24 AM   #3
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cats don't need a bath...
I agree with silentmeow, go to the vet and check... somethings seems to be wrong with him.
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Old 01-17-2010, 09:56 AM   #4
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Show cats are frequently bathed, and one way to reduce allergic reactions to cats is to bathe the cat regularly, so it can be done. Some cats are surprisingly compliant about baths and they sit calmly thru the whole thing. Some, of course, do not!

Fill the sink, first--don't attempt to put the cat in the sink with the water running. Dilute your shampoo with water--that will make it easier to rinse out.

One thing that may help is to get a couple of the spring type clothespins, and clip them on the back of the cat's neck--this makes them react much the same way they do when you pick them up by the scruff of the neck. This technique also helps when you are administering medicine, clipping nails, etc.
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:07 PM   #5
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Oh, good grief. Yes, bathe him. Just be prepared. I lived in Hawaii and in Florida before frontline and other anti-flea meds, and bathed and dipped (if your so thinks bathing is bad, let him try dipping!) cats, both mine and my parents' and friends'. And I mean I bathed my cat on a weekly basis. They don't like it, but too bad. A few years ago a friend asked me if I'd really bathed cats before. Yes. Would I help her? She and I got into shorts and T shirts, got in a big bathtub that has a hand-held hose, and bathed her enormous Himalayan cats. I felt like we did really, really well, only coming away with two scratches each. After drying the cats as much as possible (we didnt blow dry them, just towel dried then let them run), we had a glass of wine, changed clothes, and went to town for a bite and drink. But if your cat stinks, DO wash it. It won't kill him. Do go get a good quality shampoo. If he's a male, then for goodness sakes, have him fixed, or he might always stink and your house will as well. Some guys have a problem neutering their pets. Well, if you have un-neutered males then you are asking for trouble. Boy cats sometimes spray and stink when they haven't been neutered. It isn't something fun to live with. But, yes, some believe that cats never need to be bathed. I've had cats that I've bathed weekly for flea control, and they were easier to bathe than dogs that I've owned. Just buy a good quality shampoo, strip down to shorts, make sure your tetanus shots are current, and go for it. The Kitty will actually forgive you!
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Old 01-17-2010, 04:12 PM   #6
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You might want to try the least invasive type or washing. Just use a wet washcloth and wipe him down a couple of times a day. It will make a difference in no time.

I do think you might want to check in with the vet if there are other symptoms than just not cleaning himself. Lethargy, weight loss/gain, appetite change, litter box changes are all symptoms of other issues.

Hope you come out unscathed.
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Old 01-17-2010, 10:53 PM   #7
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If he has never been bathed before be really careful... he will NOT like it. Don't just dump him in.. don't have the water running and don't fully submerge him, especially if it's his first time.... I agree with Alix that a wet washcloth is a great idea. Though unless your kitty is sick/spraying, he probably just needs a skin scrubbing.

He WILL yowl like you're killing him.. just let the neighbors know :) hehe.
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Old 01-19-2010, 01:46 PM   #8
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Although I did medium sized cats myself, who, I might add, were used to being bathed (in those days, at those climates, you had a choice of living with fleas or bathing your cats, there was no in between). They didn't like it, but it wasn't an unusual occurence for them. But the larger cats who were not used to baths were a different story, and it was far better for two people to work on it together. Another option is to spring for the bucks, and the next time the cat needs to be put to sleep for surgery or teeth cleaning, ask your vet if they do baths and they can do it pre-surgery when the cat is somewhat sedated (this was a biggie when I worked for a vet in FLorida, we'd almost always ask if they wanted the cat bathed)(it costs, of course, but grooming can help keep the problem down). If it is a long-haired cat, it may help to have the groomer/vet give him a sanitary cut or a lion cut. Sometimes all that hair makes it difficult for the cat to keep himself clean or creates more hair-balls.
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Old 01-19-2010, 02:22 PM   #9
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I have bathed my kitty once when she had a bit of an infection in her anal gland. Once antibiotics took over and she was bathed we never had to do it again. It too 2 of us though, one person to hold the back legs and hold her by the scruff of the neck, the other did the bathing and rinsing. I would have used 3 people, but she was declawed in the front by the previous cruel owner. I worked in a grooming shop once and we had a 20+ lb persian that was so strong. He was matted on his belly. I held the front feet while another girl held the back and another girl was detangling. Needless to say someone let go of the back feet and I got sliced from my inside wrist to my elbows on both arms. Blood everywhere!
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Old 01-20-2010, 07:24 PM   #10
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My cats have all been adult rescues, and I bathed each one the day after they moved in my home. In all cases I needed only one person - I found that holding them down too tightly made them panic - and they seemed much more content once we were done, not to mention the other cats were more ready to accept them without the shelter/vet smell.

When one of my boys was too old to wash himself, and too cranky to let the others do it for him, I would give him a bath once a week - any more frequent and you risk drying out the skin. He didn't mind either.

Just don't expect to dunk them in a full bath, put only a few inches of water in and use a cup to pour it over them. Don't get too close to their eyes or ears.
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Old 01-20-2010, 11:14 PM   #11
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i had a Siamese cat that let me bathe him by myself. it yowled piteously but usually didn't put up a fuss.

my current cat. thomas just has to stay dirty. he would just attack me. i do wipe him off from time to time and he is very clean, in his own grooming. good luck to you.
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Old 01-21-2010, 01:39 AM   #12
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Tale of Two Kitties

We have two cats and both are either rescue or had been abused. What is ironic is the older cat, who is sedate, calm, and sleeps after stretching is a holy terror to bathe. It takes two people. One would think we were killing her as we coo and make calming sounds at her. No, she doesn't like the water. No, the gentle baby shampoo is not gentle enough. No, the drying is not any better than the bath. You get the idea. In fact, she will bolt if we even spritz her with water. (And Frank wants to take this animal on a boat! But I digress.)

The younger is a lean, mean, little scrapper that is stinking cute. Unlike jello kitteh (the older), the younger is active and willing to throw down if anyone says no to her. When spritzing for wrong doing, she will sit, puff her chest and glare at you like, "Bring on the hurricane, baby! I've had worse!" (Again, I digress.)

When the younger needed a bath as her white fur looked like snow the morning after at the pound, we feared...really feared what might happen. My two nieces got towels, bandages, etc. Off they went to bathe our little devil cat. The cat batted at the water pouring from the faucet. She didn't care that they scrubbed her at the same time. And she preened when they dried her with the blow dryer! She purred for days. The older did not have anything nice to say to anyone for...well...hmm. I'm not sure we have ever been forgiven.

New learning: Pre-bath temperment has no bearing when it comes to bath time...but bathe the kitty.


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