Sphynx Cat Grooming (Step-by-Step Guide)
A Sphynx cat is a rare hairless cat breed known for its sweet and docile personality. Despite not having any hair, these cats can be high maintenance in their grooming needs. They require regular bathing to keep their skin healthy, as well as nail trimming and ear cleaning.
Here’s your step-by-step guide to Sphynx cat grooming.
- Cat-safe shampoo
- Multiple towels
- Cotton balls or tissues
- Nail clippers
- Ear wipes (optional)
The 11 Steps of Sphynx Cat Grooming
1. Fill the Sink
Fill a sink with warm water up to your cat’s belly. Make sure the water is comfortably warm but not hot by testing it with your elbow. If you don’t have a suitable sink, a large basin or your tub may suffice. Fill the sink prior to bringing your cat into the room to avoid any added stress.
2. Avoid Distractions and Stressors
Before bath time, turn off your television and radio to keep things soothing and quiet. Tell your other family members to be quiet while bathing to avoid starting your cat. If you have other pets, try to confine them in a separate room.
3. Put a Towel at the Bottom of the Sink
Though the towel will get soaked, putting a towel at the bottom of the sink or tub will prevent your cat from slipping on the surface. It also protects your sink or tub from claw marks if your cat gets scared.
4. Place Your Cat in the Bath
This may be stressful at first. Allow your cat to feel the water with its feet first, slowly, before lowering its entire body into the bath. Work from the paws to the rear end to the chest until your cat is fully in the bath.
Your cat may struggle initially, but keep going slowly and gently. You don’t want your cat to learn that throwing a tantrum gets it out of taking a bath. Over time, your cat will get used to the bath.
5. Hold Your Cat with One Hand
Hold your cat with one hand to keep it in the water, but don’t be forceful. If your cat struggles, give it time to adjust to being in the water. It’s important that your cat isn’t allowed to jump out of the bath and stay out, as this creates bad habits.
6. Use a Washcloth
A washcloth is a handy way to wet your cat’s body. Don’t use the washcloth on your cat’s head, but wet its back from the neck down. If you prefer, you can use a sponge or exfoliating glove. Work in slow, firm strokes. Wash between any wrinkles or folds.
Once wet, add some gentle cat shampoo to your washcloth or glove and lather your cat up. Make sure to get in between wrinkles, the tail, and the paws.
Keeping your pet's skin and coat clean and healthy is very important, but finding a great shampoo can be harder than the actual grooming! We love our Hepper Colloidal Oatmeal Pet Shampoo because it makes grooming so much easier. This pH-balanced formula is made with natural ingredients like oatmeal, cucumber, and aloe. It's free of phthalates, sulfates, and soaps and very gentle on your pet's skin.
7. Wash Your Cat’s Face
Sphynx cats don’t have any hair, including eyelashes. This allows dirt and debris to get into the eye and cause irritation. You don’t want to use soap around its eyes, but you can use a wet cotton ball or tissue to clean around your cat’s eyes and face.
8. Rinse Your Cat
Drain the tub or sink and run the water gently. Make sure it’s still warm, not hot, and cup water over the cat’s body to rinse the soap away. Again, avoid the head and face—just focus on the areas that you’ve lathered.
9. Dry Your Cat
Use a soft, warm towel to dry your cat. As soon as you take your cat out of the water, wrap it in a towel and rub gently. Avoid being too vigorous when drying your cat since that can cause irritation. Your cat may want to get away at this point, so keep one hand on it and dry quickly.
10. Clean Your Cat’s Ears
If your cat is comfortable, you can use this opportunity to wipe your cat’s ears. Just wipe out the inside of the ears (not the canal) with a damp tissue or cotton ball. Avoid allowing water to go into your cat’s ears.
11. Trim Your Cat’s Nails
Trimming your cat’s nails can be done at any time, but it may be easier after the bath. The nails are soft and pliable. With cat nail trimmers, take off the sharp edge of the nail, avoiding the quick.
It may take some time for your cat to tolerate nail trimming, but there’s no rule that you have to do all the nails at once. Start slowly with one or two nails, then build up to doing all the nails each time.
How Often Should My Sphynx Cat Be Bathed?
Sphynx cats should be bathed regularly, around once a week to rid their skin of dirt, oil, and debris that can contribute to acne or other skin problems. Nails can be trimmed about every two or three weeks, depending on your cat’s activity level.
Though they may seem like low-maintenance cats, the hairless skin of a Sphynx cat has more involved grooming needs than other cat breeds. Regular bathing and grooming can keep your Sphynx cat from developing acne and other skin conditions from the buildup of dirt and oils on its skin.
Featured Image Credit: Hepper