Every cat owner has probably experienced the situation at some point or another. And if yours is an indoor cat, the last thing you want is his or her feces ending up on the couch, bed, or wherever else they like to snooze.
If there’s poop stuck in your cat’s bum or fur, and it’s becoming a regular issue, there are some easy steps you can take to remove it. You also might want to consider taking some preventative actions to stop this from happening again.
Besides keeping kitty’s hind quarters (and your quarters!) clean, it can also prevent the onset of nasty infections and irritation.
Here’s how to get rid of cat dingleberries safely and easily – and some preventative measures you can take to keep your kitty’s butt clean!
Tips for Removing Feces From Your Cat’s Bum
It’s not exactly the most pleasant task in the world, but these tips should help make the job easier for cat owners like yourself.
Gently Remove the Poop Manually
If you can see cat poop sticking out of anus, the first step is to remove it using a cotton ball or pad soaked in warm water. Be very careful when doing this as you don’t want to cause your kitty any pain or discomfort. Try to do it as gently as possible, lifting the feces away from the anus and hairs.
Your cat will probably do the rest of the work from there, licking it clean. If not, you can clean the area using a soft washcloth soaked in warm water.
Since your cat probably won’t be too thrilled about you prodding around his backend, this job may require two pairs of hands – one to hold your kitty so they don’t run away, and another to carry out the removal and cleaning.
Try Cat Wipes
Some cat owners have mentioned using baby wipes to clean their cat’s butt. Baby wipes can be effective since they have cleansers and disinfectants in them to keep the area clean. On the other hand, some wipes may be irritating to cats, which is why it’s worth investing in special cat wipes.
They’re formulated especially for cats and contain only soothing ingredients to prevent irritation in the area. You can usually use these wipes for their paws too – or anywhere else they get dirty. And because they are designed especially for cats, you don’t have to worry about them getting sick if they end up licking those freshly wiped areas – because let’s be honest, your cat’s probably not going to approve of your cleaning capabilities.
Use a cat wipe like you would a damp cloth, gently wiping around the anal region. Let the solution from the wipes sit on your feline’s bum for several seconds before cleaning away the cat dingleberries. If it’s still not completely clean, repeat the process with two or three kitty wipes until the area is clean.
Comb it Away
Another way to remove cat poop hanging by hair is to use a fine-toothed comb. Simply comb through the affected area to remove the feces. Remember the comb before and after use to prevent infections. And of course, you’ll also need to gently clean the area once you’ve combed away the feces.
Spray Butt with Water Sprayer
If your cat doesn’t clean his bottom and it all ends up building up in his anal hair, invest in a water sprayer and use it to lightly mist the area. In addition to loosening the fecal matter, it should prompt kitty to give himself a bath. Think of it as a little reminder for cats who are getting lazy in their old age.
Avoid overspraying. You don’t want any water to end up inside his anus. A few mists around the area should be sufficient for loosening the buildup and encouraging kitty to clean. And a heads up: you should only be using plain, clean water to mist the area. Nothing else!
Give Kitty a Bath
When things get really messy around your cat’s bottom, it might be time to give your kitty a bath in order to wash the area thoroughly. Fill the tub with a couple of inches of warm water (NOT HOT!), and pour in a small amount of antibacterial cat shampoo. In the meantime, set some warm clean water aside in a large plastic washing bowl.
Gently lower your cat into the tub (you’ll probably need a second pair of hands for this one!), and let the area soak for a minute or two. Use a washcloth to remove the remaining feces on his backside.
Then remove him from the tub and into the other container of water to rinse away the shampoo and any remaining residue. Dry your cat thoroughly before letting him go.
I know it sounds like a lot of work, but it’ll definitely get rid of all that buildup in your cat’s fur – and prevent it from ending up smeared on your sofa or bed!
Cut/Shave Away Fecal Matting
A fecal matt occurs when poop gets stuck in the hair around a cat’s anus. It’s a condition that most commonly affects long-haired cats. In addition to being unsanitary, fecal matting can lead to infections, skin irritation, and even maggot infestations if the condition is left untreated. Yup, it’s pretty gross!
The best way to treat it is by cutting off the affected hair. If things are really bad back there, consider shaving it all off. When you’re done, clean the area thoroughly to remove any residue that may have been left behind. If you’re struggling to manage this at home, let a trained groomer or veterinarian handle it instead.
Prevention is always better than cure. Often, poop getting stuck in your cat’s anus or hair could be the result of poor grooming, inadequate litter cleaning, or potentially even health conditions. Here are some tips for preventing poop from getting stuck in your cat’s butt or fur.
Long-haired cats are prone to getting poop stuck in their fur because the area back there is especially hairy. You can prevent this from happening by brushing your cat daily to minimize loose fur, and ensuring your cat is properly trimmed around the anal area. While fecal matting is most common in bushy cats, it can still affect short-haired cats too.
It’s always a good idea to get your kitty regularly groomed to keep things short and sweet in their hind quarters.
If you’re doing it yourself, always make sure you’re fully prepared. Ask a friend or family member to lend a pair of hands to prevent your cat from moving or running away. You’ll also need a clean comb and a pair of blunt ended scissors to get the job done safely.
While you can do it yourself, I recommend booking in with a professional groomer. They do this kind of thing every day so there’s a much smaller risk of your furry friend getting injured.
Plus, it’s inexpensive. You can usually get the job done for around $20. Since you’ll only need to visit every 2-3 months, it’s a rather cost-effective option for keeping your cat’s butt fecal-free.
Clean the Litter Box
Cats like a clean place to do their business – understandably. If you’ve noticed your cat has recently lost interest in cleaning his or her butt, you may find your answer in their litter box.
Cats will reject a dirty litter box in favor of somewhere cleaner, like your bed, sofa, floors or bathroom. Alternatively, they may use the litter tray, but they’ll be so keen to get out as fast as they can, they’ll end up skipping post-poop grooming. To prevent this, clean your cat’s litter box at least once a day so that he always has somewhere clean to poop.
Change the Litter Brand
Have you recently changed the brand or type of litter? A little investigative work should be able to tell you whether his poop matting and the change of litter are connected. If the issue happened around the same time you changed brands, it could be the new scent or texture of the litter that’s to blame.
Cats are pretty picky when it comes to where they do their business. Change back to the brand or type of litter you used before, and the issue should quickly resolve.
Upgrade the Litter Tray
According to Dr. Zay Satchu, co-founder of Bond Vet, a common reason why poop might be getting stuck in your cat’s hind fur is the wrong litter box size. As he points out, there needs to be adequate space between their bum and the litter, otherwise they may leave their litter box with residue stuck on their fur.
When selecting a litter tray, consider the height of your cat and let that determine the height of the litter tray. What’s more, pay attention to how much litter you’re putting in. It could simply be too high for your furry friend!
Teach Your Cat to Clean His Butt
There are many reasons why your cat isn’t cleaning their butt. It may be that they’re still young and haven’t learned how to do it correctly yet. Or it could be down to lack of mobility – if your cat is overweight or experiencing arthritis.
To encourage your cat to clean itself, start by brushing him two to three times a day using quick, sharp strokes to mimic the cleaning technique of cats. Doing this should help remind them of the importance of bath time while teaching young kittens the right technique.
Daily cleaning is essential for cats. Besides removing dirt and impurities that might cause infections, illnesses, and allergies, it also evenly distributes the cat’s natural skin oils, which help maintain healthy, parasite-free skin. Plus, it keeps Fluffy’s fur extra soft and shiny!
As previously mentioned, you could also try gently misting his butt with a water sprayer to encourage him to correct your cleaning work. Cats generally don’t like having stuff on their fur – even plain old water. This technique is an easy, mess-free way to remind your cat to wash! In case he missed the memo…
The problem of cat poop sticking out of anus could be down to constipation. Some of the most common causes of constipation in cats include hairballs and poor diet. If hairballs are the problem, turn to hairball gels or foods designed to prevent and remove furballs. If that’s not it, consider altering his diet.
Like humans, cats need a high-fiber diet in order to maintain good anal health. Try incorporating more fibrous foods into his daily diet to prevent constipation.
You’ll also want to cut back on his intake of dry food. While convenient and affordable, dry food can be harmful to cats when eaten regularly.
According to the pros, it can form gastrointestinal blockages – making it hard for kitty to poop. Try replacing dry food with wet food for a few days, and see if the issue improves.
Visit a Veterinarian
If poop getting stuck in your cat’s fur or anus is becoming a common problem, it may be time to visit a professional for guidance. Pay attention to what’s going on down there, and consult with a veterinarian if something doesn’t seem normal to you.
Some common health issues associated with cat poop sticking out of anus include swollen anal glands, diarrhea, allergies, and worms. If you suspect your cat may be suffering from one of these health issues, visit your veterinarian straight away. By leaving it untreated, complications may occur, leading to potentially life threatening consequences.