Hepper is reader-supported. When you buy via links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission at no cost to you. Learn more.

Should You Shave a Cat? Considerations & Fur Importance

Hallie Roddy

By Hallie Roddy

Cat grooming in pet beauty salon

Unless your cat is a hairless breed, they probably have a decently thick coat of fur. Every year we see pictures of shaved cats, whether it be for health or design purposes. But do cats really need their fur shaved? Shaving a cat’s fur isn’t recommended unless absolutely necessary. There are times where shaving them is needed to fix their health. Unless recommended by your vet, we advise you to refrain from shaving your furry friends.

When Is It Okay to Shave a Cat?

There are some instances where shaving a cat is for their own good. For example, cats with skin diseases or wounds often benefit from clearing the area of hair to make it easier to apply medications. It also helps keep the site dry and clean to prevent infections. Cats are known for their meticulous grooming habits. Many cats are great at keeping themselves clean, but there are also others that need a bit of help. Cats unable to groom themselves are sometimes shaven to keep from matting, especially if they don’t tolerate being brushed by their humans.

domestic gray British Shorthair cat lies on its back and shows a bald shaved tummy
Image Credit: Lilia Solonari Shutterstock

What Function Does Cat Fur Serve?

There are good reasons why your cat’s fur is the way that it is. Thick coats help protect cats by keeping them warm, protecting against skin injuries, and communicating with other cats and animals. But don’t they get hot? And how else do you stop the shedding? Let’s uncover some common myths about cat fur.

1. Cats don’t get hot in the summer.

A cat’s hair works as a natural insulator that not only keeps them warm but helps to cool themselves, too. This self-regulating system makes shaving your cat unnecessary. Cats are smart enough to move from a sunny area in the house to a shaded one if their temperatures go up or down. It is even more dangerous for outdoor cats because shaving them exposes their sensitive skin to the elements.

2. There are better ways to combat shedding.

Taking the time to shave a cat takes a lot longer than sticking to a regular brushing routine. If you spend a couple of minutes per day brushing your cats, you will drastically reduce the amount of fur you find floating around the house. You can also support a healthy coat by feeding them a protein-rich diet that helps keep hair strong and soft.

persian cat eating dry food
Image Credit: Patrick Foto, Shutterstock

3. It’s possible to remove matting without shaving cats.

You know what a challenge matted fur can be if you’ve ever had a long-haired cat. Mats are a result of infrequent grooming, usually by both the cat and the human. Brushing cats regularly helps keep mats from developing to begin with. Brushing also helps you bond with your kitties and gives them a shinier coat.

4. There is no good reason to shave your cat to make it look like a Lion.

It wasn’t long ago that a picture of a shaved cat with a lion’s mane went viral. We admit that it was cute, but it’s better to give them style by buying a fun new collar rather than shaving them to look cute.

Don’t Shave Cats Unless Necessary

We must have some respect for why cat coats have evolved the way they have. Fur serves a purpose to all animals. Their bodies can regulate themselves. They know when they’re too hot or cold, and keeping their coat the way it was meant to be is the best way to pamper them. Spend some time grooming your cat to watch how strong your bond becomes and how healthy their coats can be.

Featured Image Credit: Studio Peace, Shutterstock

Related Articles

Further Reading

Vet Articles

Latest Vet Answers

The latest veterinarians' answers to questions from our database