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How To Get Cat Poop Out of Fur: 4 Vet-Reviewed Steps

Ed Malaker

By Ed Malaker

cat burying poop in the litter box

Vet approved

Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Paola Cuevas

MVZ (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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The litter box can be a source of many problems in your home. For example, it can smell terrible, and fragrance litters can bother the cat and other family members. The dust can clog your cat’s sinuses, and they can track the litter throughout your home. Another problem is that your pet can accidentally get some poop stuck on its fur, and many people wonder how to remove it.

Keep reading while we explain how to get your cat clean, whether it has short or long hair, to help you be better informed.

The 4 Steps on How To Get Poop Out of Cat Fur (Long & Short-Haired Cats)

1. Baking Soda

woman holding a jar of baking soda
Image Credit: Dragon Images, Shutterstock

Baking soda can be helpful if the poop in your cat’s fur is wet, as it can help dry it up quickly. It can also help soften dried poop making it easier to remove. It’s non-toxic to your pet, and it will also help absorb odor.

2. Damp Cloth and Dry Cat Shampoo

A warm, damp cloth and a dry cat shampoo can be a great way to remove the bulk of the poop. It can help soften dried poop, so it’s easier to remove. There are many shampoos available, and we recommend choosing one that uses natural ingredients to reduce the risk of an allergic reaction. As we mentioned, baking soda can be a good substitute for a dry cat shampoo when removing poop. Gently wipe the area until you get most of the poop off or the cat gets angry. Repeat as needed.

3. Brush or Comb

brushing cat with gloves
Image Credit: Mariia Boiko, Shutterstock

Once you get the bulk of the poop off, you can do detailed cleaning using a brush or a comb. Continue using the damp cloth and shampoo or baking soda to keep the poop soft and moist so it’s easier to remove without pulling the fur, which can upset the cat. We prefer a fine-tooth comb to a brush and found a flea comb work best.

4. Bath with Cat Shampoo

If the amount of poop in the fur is extreme, you have found the steps listed above are taking too long, or your cat will not allow it, you’ll need to bathe it. Fill the tub with an inch or two of warm water and use an antibacterial cat shampoo and a washcloth to remove the poop gently. We recommend an antibacterial shampoo because germs from the feces will be getting into the bathwater. We also recommend setting some warm, clean water aside before the bath so you can give it a good rinse when you finish cleaning it.

Safety Equipment

Even the very few cats that like water are likely to get upset when you’re trying to hold them and water to clean poop from their fur, so we recommend wearing the proper safety equipment when you do so.

  • A long-sleeve shirt or even a jacket is a must to protect your arms.
  • Rubber gloves are also extremely important as your hands will likely take the most abuse.
  • Even though safety goggles may seem over the top, we recommend them because bath time can get quite hectic, and some shampoos can be painful if you get it in the eye. This huge distraction can make effectively bathing your cat extremely difficult.


Once you finish bathing your cat, it’s important to use a disinfectant in the tub or sink and any surfaces you’ve used to remove any bacteria that remain. We also recommend putting your clothing in the laundry and washing off the gloves and safety goggles before storing them away.

Preventing Poop from Getting in The Cats Fur

Adjust Diet

One of the main reasons cats get poop in their fur is because their food causes diarrhea. Cats have sensitive digestive systems and are strict carnivores. Many popular brands use corn and other questionable ingredients to bring down the cost of the food. Cats can also develop sensitivities or allergies to specific ingredients in their food. So if you find that your cat frequently has poop in its fur, we recommend investigating if its diet might need to change.

Learning to understand cat food labels, familiarizing yourself with your cat’s nutritional needs, and getting to know the ingredients in your cat’s food are important first steps. Your veterinarian can also help you understand the diet that works best for your beloved cat.

Cat eating cat food with some water added
Image Credit: Irina Kozorog, Shutterstock

Maintain Proper Weight

Another thing to look at if your cat frequently has poop in its fur, is its weight. The butt is one of the first places your cat can’t reach to groom if it’s overweight, which means it will not be able to remove the poop like it normally would, and you will notice it more often. Obesity is a huge problem in the United States, with experts stating that more than 50% of cats over the age of 5 are overweight. We can prevent obesity by watching portion control and ensuring our cats get enough activity.

Trim the Fur

If you have a long-haired cat, you will likely be dealing with this problem all the time as the hair gets in the way, and there’s little you or the cat can do about it. Even short-haired cats may have hair growing in this area that can collect feces as the cat uses the litter pan. Trimming the fur in this area can help reduce how frequently you need to clean your cat.

Keep the Litterbox Clean

Many litters claim that you can go several days without cleaning the box, but we found that frequently cleaning the box can reduce how often they get poop in their fur and other problems. Most cats prefer a clean litter box and will usually dig around looking for a clean area which can cause them to contort their body in strange ways, possibly resulting in poop getting in the fur.

We recommend cleaning the box every day and removing the poop immediately to improve your cat’s experience, allowing it to get in and out without any problems.

Sometimes even the best litter box setup needs a helping hand. Our Hepper Advanced Bio-Enzyme Cat Litter Deodorizer naturally breaks down odors at the source. This effective litter additive can help all types of cat litter last longer, saving you money, and is safe for all life stages. Best of all, it's 100% biodegradable and fragrance-free.

hepper bioenzymatic litter additive

Professional Grooming

As we mentioned earlier, many cats especially long hair breeds have hair growing in an area that naturally picks up feces as a cat uses a litter box.  A professional groomer will know how to trim this hair without changing the cat’s appearance. The groomer will also have the tools and skills required to do it without injury, so it’s a great choice for people who want to trim the cap but are afraid of getting bit or scratched.


Unfortunately, a cat that frequently has poop stuck to its fur may be a sign of a health problem that is causing the cat to stop grooming. If your pet is not overweight but frequently has poop stuck to its fur, we recommend taking it to the vet to ensure there is no underlying issue.


Luckily getting the poop out of your cat’s fur is usually not too difficult because it softens up quickly, and it’s easy to remove with a fine-tooth comb and a damp cloth with some shampoo or baking soda on it. It’s part of being a pet parent, and you will likely need to do it a few times, but if it seems to be something common, we recommend looking at your cat’s health, including its weight, to see if it’s a symptom of something else.

We hope you have enjoyed reading over this short guide and found the answers to your questions. If we have helped you get your pet clean, please share this guide on how to get cat poop out of fur for long and short-haired cats on Facebook and Twitter.

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Featured Image Credit: Mikhail Olykainen, Shutterstock

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