Should You Shave Your Cat?

A black and white cat being shaved by a veterinarian

Your cat’s coat is her crowning glory, and you love nothing more than sinking your fingers into all that floof. But you might occasionally wonder, Won’t all that fur make her hot this summer? Or, what if she gets herself into a “sticky” situation? Should I shave my cat’s fur?

In a word: no. Shaving a cat is rarely necessary, and it should be handled only by a professional. Shaved cats may feel vulnerable, and the experience of being shaved can be traumatizing. Plus, their fur plays an important role in regulating body temperature, so shaved cats are susceptible to either being too hot or too cold.

However, there are a few circumstances where shaving (or spot shaving) may be helpful or necessary for your cat’s health. Read on for insights from our team at Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates

Reasons Why a Cat May Need to be Shaved

Always consult with your veterinarian if you think your cat could benefit from being shaved, and be sure to discuss any concerns you have about ongoing care for your cat’s coat at your next wellness visit. Here are the most common reasons why we might recommend shaving your cat: 

  • Mats can be carefully combed out with a lot of patience and gentle handling if there are just a few of them. But sometimes, shaving matted cat fur is necessary if severe matting is present. 
  • Frequent hairballs or excessive shedding can be tamed with a lion cut or other partially shaved style.
  • Cats with physical challenges, such as senior or obese cats, may not be able to groom themselves properly, which can result in severely matted or soiled fur. A hygiene (or sanitary) trim can help keep a cat’s backside clean. 

Protect Your Cat’s Coat

Brushing your cat’s fur on a regular basis should be part of your home pet grooming routine. Daily brushing will reduce shedding, keep your cat’s coat breathable, and help prevent mats. 

Seek Professional Grooming

If your cat has a buildup of mats or other condition that you think may require shaving, seek help from a professional groomer or your veterinarian.

We don’t recommend shaving your cat at home for several reasons:

  • Cats rarely remain still and calm, especially when a noisy pair of clippers is coming toward them.
  • Cats have thin skin, and you wouldn’t want to nick it.
  • Clipper blades heat up and can burn the cat’s skin when not used properly.

The team at Beverly Hills Veterinary Associates is here to help you with every aspect of your cat’s health. To learn more about our services or to schedule your next appointment, give us a call at (248) 646-5655.