Do cats hate water?

January 16, 2017

Do cats hate water? Well, generally speaking, yes. While cats are constantly cleaning themselves, being fully submerged in water is not something that they usually enjoy. We examine below several reasons why this may be the case.

Why do cats hate water?

Your cat’s fur is not designed to be fully submerged in water. When your cat gets soaking wet, their fur becomes waterlogged, weighing them down. This is very uncomfortable for your cat and would explain why most felines say no thank you to bath time.

Additionally, cats are quite sensitive to smells. Some say that the reason most cats dislike water, in addition to the uncomfortable feeling of being weighed down by wet fur is because they can smell the chemicals in the water and dislike the odour.

Do some cats like water?

While most cats can’t stand getting wet, some cats do in fact enjoy water. For some domestic cats, the reason may be inexplicable. Sometimes though, the climate your cat lives in can impact their willingness to get wet. Cats in a particularly hot, dry climate for example are more likely to enjoy the water. It cools them down and refreshes them. For cats in cold climates, getting wet is even less desirable because it causes your kitty to lose body heat, getting very chilly very quickly.

While some cats may be okay with water, those that are not will likely remain curious. Most cats will put their paw in a pool of water or under a faucet to explore what it is. It’s important not to interpret this as a willingness to get completely soaked, though. Forcing your cat into the water will likely result in a few scratches and a cat that no longer trusts you.

Need a bath?

Sometimes, your pet gets themselves into some messy situations that require a rinse to get cleaned up. In these situations, be gentle and slowly introduce the water to your cat. The water should be warm (not hot) and you can reassure your kitty by petting them and speaking to some softly. They likely will still hate the experience, but the idea is to make it as easy for your kitty as you can.

If bath time becomes a real nightmare, you can also get formulated cat shampoo and try a sponge bath instead. That way you can clean the dirty spot on your cat reasonably well and still have a happy kitty.

Do you have some tips for bathing your cat? Tell us about it in the comments section below!



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