This week, I will share with you the steps that my humans undertake when they give me my weekly bath.
First of all, my mom clips my claws, front and back. My nails grow quickly, due to my fast Sphynx metabolism, and so my front nails need to be clipped about twice a week, and my back ones once a week.
Then my mom cleans my ears. She puts some ear cleaner especially designed for cats in my ears, gently massages the base of the ear to loosen the wax, then carefully wipes out the inside of my ears with a cotton ball. She sometimes uses a q-tip as well, but only on the outer, visible portions of my ears. She never sticks it into the ear canal.
If my eyes are "goopy" and in need of being cleaned, my mom then cleans them. Since I have no eyebrows or eyelashes, my eyes tend to accumulate more "gunk" than normal cats' eyes. My mom dampens a cotton ball with a gentle eye cleanser, or with distilled water, and gently wipes around my eyes.
Next, I get brought up to the bathroom. There, my mom dampens a washcloth with warm water, and gently cleans the rest of my face. Dirt and oil tends to accumulate in my wrinkles, so she really concentrates on cleaning out the wrinkles very well.
Next, I am wrapped in a warm towel, and one paw at a time is exposed. My mom applies some cat shampoo to a washcloth, and cleans each of my paws, toes, claws, and claw sheaths in turn. Sometimes I try to escape at this point, but normally I sit quietly until at least two or three paws are clean.
Then, my mom unwraps me, and places me in the sink. The sink has been pre-filled with about 5-10 centimetres of warm water (2 to 4 inches) and there is a towel in the bottom for my feet to hold onto, so I don't slip. My dad holds me gently while my mom makes sure her washcloth is nice and warm. She then places some more shampoo on the washcloth and begins to wash me.
My mom starts by washing my back and tail, then cleans my hind legs and between my hind legs, while my dad holds my front legs and chest. Dirt tends to accumulate in the creases where my hind legs meet my body, so she focuses on that area a lot. Then she washes the rest of my belly.
She then moves on to wash my chest, my front legs, and my "armpits". The "armpits", where my front legs join my body, is another area where dirt and oil tends to accumulate, so she gently, but firmly and thoroughly, scrubs that area.
After I've been washed all over (rinsing the washcloth as necessary and adding more shampoo when required), my mom fills a plastic cup with warm water and proceeds to rinse me. It takes several repeats with the full cup of water to ensure all the soap has been rinsed off of me. This is the point where I usually try to escape, having stood quietly throughout the washing procedure, and so my dad keeps a good hold of me while I'm being rinsed.
Once I'm rinsed off, my mom grabs another warm towel, sits on the floor of the bathroom, and dad places me in her lap in the warm towel. My mom then dries me off. At this point in the procedure, I am always squirming. The bath is over, and I just want to escape and get my extra serving of stinky goodness! But my mom insists on thoroughly drying me off.
Finally, after I'm dry, the bathroom door is opened! I head downstairs, straight for my food bowl, because I know I will get an extra serving of stinky goodness for having been bathed. Normally I am fed Almo Nature wet food, either chicken and shrimps or tuna and shrimps, as a treat for getting a bath.
After I've eaten my stinky goodness, I normally sit down and finish my bath with a good grooming session. As good and thorough as the humans are, nothing can compare with my tongue. So I finish things off with a good tongue grooming.
The end result: a nice, clean Dragonheart, as can be seen in my photos.
All in all, getting a bath isn't all that bad. Although I don't enjoy it, I do tolerate it, since I need to be bathed weekly to stay healthy. If I'm not bathed regularly, the oil that my skin secretes can build up and cause all kinds of skin problems. Besides, I get extra stinky goodness after a bath.