Originally Posted by Nutmeg
I would love to bathe my cats, but they seem fearful, even though they do like to touch the water in my sink or tub, after I'm done. Is there anyway to acclimate them slowly so I don't scare them for life?
because I am allergic to cats I have to "bathe" mine daily. Everyday I wipe her down with a soft damp warm washcloth all over. she squirmed like heck the first time but now accepts it as daily grooming. Once a week she gets a soap and water bath. This is how I do it:
I prepare everything before hand: soap, towels, a bucket of warm water and cotton balls. and Treats treats treats. I place her in the dry sink with towels lining the bottom for traction and give her a bit of a treat, I place cotton balls in her ears to avoid water in them. then holding her with the left hand I pour cupfuls of warm water over her back. if its done slowly slow she tolerates that well . then diluted shampoo and I start to lather her up with strokes - as if I were petting her, not circles. I continue this way all over her except her head. talking to her softly but keeping a really good hold on her. The rinsing is the hardest part because it requires more water and the sound of the faucet. but I stay in alpha mode and get her fully rinsed with the sink spray. then she gets wrapped in a large warm towel and taken to the bathroom where we have a space heater because she wont tolerate a blow dryer . she gets more treats and a quiet play time while i try to dry her off to only the damp stage and then I let her air dry.
The first time I did this it was crazy wild and I got scratched. but I am much better at it now and she understands that I am going to win the battle of the bath and accepts it.
As for trauma, she still climbs in my lap and is lovey dovey. I chalk it up to mothering, if I cant tolerate her dander, I cant keep her and that's bad for the both of us. Sorry this was so long a post.