Dry Shampoos for cats: Should you bother?

Let me start by explaining that dry shampoos made for pets are nothing like the dry shampoos that are all the rage for human hair right now. You know, that powdery white spray that covers your greasy roots? Dry shampoos for pets are meant for targeting specific areas of concern. If your cat ever has feces or urine stains, then a dry shampoo could prove useful in removing the grime without a full-on bath. It can also help clean greasy fur where ear meds have been used frequently, or remove dried up food from around the face of older cats who don’t groom themselves frequently. What I’m saying is there ARE uses for it. Does dry shampoo take the place of soap and water? It does not. It can buy you time, or target small areas. You cannot cover your whole cat in waterless shampoo and expect this to help prevent matting, remove any undercoat, or address any real coat challenges. Only a groomer or an experienced and confident cat owner can do that. Don’t worry, we’ll get to that later!

So you’ve decided that your cat doesn’t need to go to the groomer yet, and just needs a quick tune-up? I keep 2 products on hand at my cat salon for quick little clean-ups. The first is a Wahl product: “No-Rinse” waterless shampoo in coconut lime verbena scent. It’s a pump-able foam that is great for spot-cleaning. Just pump a tad in your hand, rub into the cat’s coat, as far down to the skin as possible, and let air dry. You can use a small towel to really work it into the hair. The towel will also help pull some of that dirt off as you go.

The second product that I recommend is “Nootie” brand- Daily Spritz. I like the Japanese Cherry blossom scent. I use this product to cover up stinky smells, i.e. ANAL GLANDS! But you could use it for anything… if your cat’s behind leaves something to be desired, this product can at least make it tolerable for you to sit next to them, although letting them in your bed with a less than clean tush isn’t really my thing!

So should you bother with a dry shampoo for your cats? Not unless you have one of the specific issues I mentioned above! Otherwise, you should save your money and get your cat bathed by the groomer! They will use real soap and water AND force blow-dry- which will blow all that old undercoat out. This will make a huge difference in how much your cat sheds, and will result in a much cleaner cat!

Here’s a shot of cat withg a real bath on the left, and dry shampoo on the right. I actually bathed half of him with each! It’s really difficult to tell in these photos, but the soap and water side came out soooo much softer and smoother. The difference was very dramatic in person but not so much in the pics. I decided to publish them anyway because I think you can still get an idea of the difference in them.

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