Cole & Marmelade learn to take a bath (screenshot from video, below)
I have one bit of advice for you if you want to bathe your cats: start when they're young. Otherwise, wear heavy armour.
Confession: I don't bathe my cat. He's an indoor/outdoor cat, he rolls in loose dirt to bathe himself and he shakes the dirt off, gratefully, outside. He gets brushed nightly, checked for critters, and rubbed to his heart's content! I have white sheets and blankets, and (I guess I'm lucky) he doesn't leave any stains on the bedding - just some black fur I can brush off.
That's cool for me and him. But some cats don't clean themselves so well and some have special needs for a shampoo because of a skin condition or allergies. And some cat owners just want their cats bathed - for whatever reason.
If you want to bathe your cat, there are several high quality cat shampoos that are mostly chemical free and gentle; your challenge will be to get your cat to like, or even tolerate, a bath. This clever videographer, owner of cats Cole and Marmelade, will teach you how to bathe your cat....
(Note that no cats or humans were harmed in this video. That should generally be the case if you bathe a stuffed animal.)
Okay, now that you've got the hang of it, let's pick out a good shampoo.
Popular Shampoos For Cats
Earthbath is a very popular pet shampoo. The shampoos are made with all natural ingredients - nothing that can harm your cat or the environment. You can use most Earthbath shampoos on your cat, but I would choose either the fragrance-free Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo or the 2-in-1 Conditioning Cat Shampoo. Don't use any shampoos on cats younger than 3 months old.
Whether or not your cat has allergies, the fact that the Earthbath Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo is fragrance free and gentle is important. Cats don't usually go for sweet odors (they prefer fish odors, actually), and even if a cat's skin is not especially sensitive, it should be treated as such. The Earthbath Hypoallergenic Cat Shampoo contains purified water, renewable plant and coconut-based cleansers, aloe vera, vitamins A, B, D & E, glycerin, and natural preservatives. Earthbath shampoos are chemical free.
If your cat does have itchy skin, I would try the Earthbath Oatmeal and Aloe Shampoo. It doesn't have much of an odor, and it's great for dogs and cats with allergies and/or other skin conditions. On the same link, you can browse all of the Earthbath shampoos.
Burt's Bees is a very well-liked brand for cat shampoo that advertises itself as the "Best Anti-Itch Hypoallergenic Shampoo For All Cats and Kittens With Dry Skin." Customers say it gets their cats clean and makes their fur shine!
Its description states that Burt's Bees Hypoallergenic Shampoo For Cats contains 99.8% natural ingredients. I presume that that description excludes phenoxyethanol, a chemical used as a preservative in many shampoos and cosmetics. I would make sure you keep this product out of your cat's eyes and mouth and that you check for skin reactions after use of Burt's Bees shampoos and others. Just use it from the ears back.
Pro Pet Works Natural Oatmeal Pet Shampoo + Conditioner is very well liked by pet parents and contains many natural ingredients such as organic almond oil, organic aloe vera gel and vitamins A, D & E - and oatmeal, of course. It also contains EDTA, a chemical that acts as a preservative and aids in the removal of soap from your pet. This very popular shampoo is well tolerated by the cats who use it and cat parents comment on the conditioning the shampoo provides for their coats.
Pet Pleasant is well-liked by cat owners as well as dog owners. It has anti-bacterial action that cleanses your cat's fur and skin, but it's very gentle. In addition to cleansing, the primary ingredients, lemongrass and citronella essential oils, act as natural flea, tick, and mosquito repellents for a period of time after bathing. Honeydew claims the product is all natural.
If you're looking for a slightly fragrant shampoo that leaves your cat's fur clean and shiny, Perfect Coat may be your answer. The shampoo claims to contain lots of antioxidants, but lists its ingredients simply as omega 3 fatty acids, flaxseed oil, and fragrance. Cat parents are pleased with the way this shampoo controls shedding, and hairballs are largely a result of shedding, so we should assume it also controls hair balls. I have not read about any cat objections to the fragrance.
The above shampoos will help to discourage fleas and mosquitoes and other pests, but most likely only for a few days. So it's important to use other repellents in your environment and, perhaps, on your cat. I cover the grounds outside my home with diatomaceous earth and my dog and cat both wear beautiful raw Baltic amber necklaces to repel whatever pests dare try to hitch a ride on them.
Other ways to clean your cat? Stay tuned...
That's the buzz for today!