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How to Clean a Cat’s Butt (3 Simple Steps)

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By Nicole Cosgrove

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Cats are naturally inclined to keep their own butts clean, especially once they have been weaned from their mother’s milk. However, when cats become sick or injured, they may skip this grooming step in favor of resting and healing. Sometimes, cats become simply unwilling to clean their own butts. Whatever the case is, it is our responsibility as pet parents to clean our cat’s butts for them when they aren’t doing it. However, cleaning your cat’s butt is not all that you should be worried about. Here are the steps that you should take when it becomes apparent that you’ll have to clean your cat’s butt for them.

The 3 Steps to Clean Your Cats Butt

1. Know the Dangers of a Dirty Cat Butt

Ginger cat raising its butt
Image Credit: STGEEVES, Shutterstock

Unfortunately, your cat’s dirty butt is more than just gross — it’s dangerous. One of the biggest problems that a cat might face if they do not properly and regularly clean their butt is the development of toxoplasmosis. It rarely displays signs or symptoms, although cats with compromised immune systems may show signs of the disease in the form of lethargy, fever, or a loss of interest in food.

Cats with chronically dirty butts may develop problems such as itching and infections. Dirty butts can be a goldmine for intestinal parasites too. While nothing bad may come from a cat’s dirty butt aside from a bad odor and grossness, you can bet that nothing good will come of it either.

2. Clean Your Cat’s Dirty Butt

The best way to clean your cat’s butt is to simply rub it lightly with a clean, damp cloth until feces and dirt are no longer present. Sometimes, feces can dry up and get stuck around the butt, in which case, you might need to use something a little stronger, like baby wipes that have cleansers and disinfectants in them.

Use a baby wipe like you would a damp cloth, but allow the solution from the wipes to sit on your cat’s butt for a few seconds before attempting to rub the feces and dirt away. You may need to repeat this process with multiple baby wipes until your cat’s butt is sufficiently clean. Another option is to use your hands and a mixture of soap and water to gently clean the butt area — just make sure that you put on disposable gloves first.

If you notice that your cat has dried feces on the hairs and skin around their butt, it might be time for a bath. You can soak your kitty in a bath of warm water mixed with a small amount of soap to let the feces soften. Then, use a fine-toothed comb to remove the feces from your cat’s hair. After the bath, dry your cat off with a towel and allow their backend to air day.

3. Prevent Your Cat From Getting a Dirty Butt Again

Cat grooming self on concrete floor
Image Credit: user32212, Pixabay

The first thing that you should do to keep your cat from getting a dirty butt again is to encourage them to groom themselves. Try offering them a treat every time they show grooming attention to their backends. With any luck, they will start showing more and more attention to the area and keep their butts clean in exchange for a few treats a week.

Another thing that you can do to prevent a dirty butt is to ensure that your cat’s litter box is always clean. Sift the litter or clean the whole box out every day if you must. If your kitty is ill and simply cannot take care of their butt themselves, you can ensure that it does not become too dirty again in the future by doing a quick and light cleaning with a damp cloth at the end of each day.

You can always work with your veterinarian to come up with custom solutions that will meet the need and expectations of yourself without endangering your cat’s health, safety, or comfort. Your vet may be able to prescribe a medication that helps or offer professional guidance for home remedies based on your cat’s specific health condition and needs.

Final Thoughts

Sometimes cats cannot help their lack of grooming, which is where we human owners should step in. To keep your cat healthy and comfortable, you may have to clean their butt from time to time. If you’re lucky, the experience will be just once due to a temporary illness or injury. Hopefully, the steps that we have outlined here for your today will help ensure that your cat’s butt stays clean from here on out.

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Featured Image Credit: ANURAK PONGPATIMET, Shutterstock

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