You have probably heard that Bengal cats are different to many other breeds when it comes to water.
We both know how much cats hate getting wet; however the Bengal is a bit different, and is not intimidated by water in any way.
Bengal cats are extremely active pets and playing in water is one of their favorite activities. It is believed to be a direct result of their Asian Leopard Cat ancestry. Cat owners have even commented that their Bengal will often jump in the shower with them.
Only brought to the mainstream in 1975, these cats are unlike their domestic brethren. Their wild heritage makes them full of curiosity, more energetic, and less afraid of things like water.
Why Do Bengal Cats Like Water?
It is believed that this affinity for water comes from their Leopard cat roots. Asian Leopard Cats are known for swimming and using water to clean their toes.
Bengals are thought to have carried this love of water with them through their genetics.
Are Bengal Cats Afraid of Water?
No, Bengal cats generally have no fear of water in the way many other cats breeds do.
Bengals have a natural curiosity to water in general and are drawn to running water more than to a still water bowl.
You can help to stimulate this curiosity with a cat water fountain for them to drink from, and they will bat and splash the water with their paws.
Don’t be surprised if you’re doing the dishes and your Bengal comes over to investigate. They may think they’re helping by moving the water around!
Also, like many other domestic cats, they absolutely love drinking running water from a faucet.
Do Bengal Cats Grow Out of Their Love of Water?
Bengal kittens begin to show an interest in water instantly, and that interest doesn’t fade.
They may become a little less excited about water, but they will still be naturally drawn to it.
It’s safe to say that if they enjoy playing with water now, they’ll continue to like it as they grow older.
What Should You Expect from Water Loving Bengals?
Many Bengal cat owners report their cats having no fear of joining them in the shower or bath.
This may come as a surprise to owners of other domestic shorthair cats, but rest assured that a Bengal will find a way …just make sure the water isn’t too hot for them.
Also be on the lookout for your bengal getting to the water in your toilet!
Be sure to close the lid when you are finished to make sure you don’t end up with a soggy cat fresh from playing with the water in the toilet bowl!
Bengal cat owners often report seeing toys floating around in their water bowls after their cat has carried them there to play with them.
It may be a good idea not to mix a Bengal and an open fishtank …this could be a recipe for disaster!
Do Bengal Cats Like Getting Their Fur Wet?
Surprisingly Bengal cats seem to love getting their fur wet, and will actively walk under running showers, faucets, and garden water sprinklers.
Not all cats love getting soaked to the core, but they certainly don’t mind getting their fur wet to some degree, and don’t scratch their owners to death when being given a bath!
Do Bengal Cats Like to Swim?
While they still need to learn how to swim as they grow up, some Bengal cats really do enjoy swimming!
Bengals can swim quite naturally, even in deep bodies of water; but they are more likely to choose water that is shallow enough for them to remain standing in.
Some individual cats will become accustomed to swimming if they do it regularly from a young age, and you can even buy small pet life vests to make swimming safer and more enjoyable for them in deeper water.
A friend of mine had a cat for many years that loved going out boating with them on weekends, and frequently jumped in the water for a dip!
Many believe this love of swimming comes from their wild cat heritage, just as their Asian Leopard Cat ancestors, and similar wild cats.
How do you introduce Bengals to water?
You should introduce your Bengal cat to water gradually, so that your cat becomes comfortable with it.
Some Bengals will take to water right away and start paddling around; others may be more hesitant but will eventually get in if given time.
It’s important to never force a Bengal into the water or they may become fearful of it in the future.
Here is a good way to get your Bengal kitty used to water:
- For the first week place your kitten in an empty bathtub or basin and let them play with their favorite toy there, letting them become comfortable in a dry basin.
- Then add an inch of water to the bath or basin, play with them and talk softly to them, making the time in the water fun.
- Do this for several days. Use positive reinforcement and offer treats during the process.
- After they’re comfortable with a little water, gradually increase your kitty’s immersion time in the tub or sink, adding a little more water each time.
Do Bengal Cats Like Baths?
Yes, funnily enough many bengal cats like to take a bath, usually when their owner is already there.
Most Bengal’s prefer playing in shallow water instead of swimming, and you can fill a tub or wading pool with shallow water for them to paddle through – and they will love it.
Quite often if a Bengal is playing with toys in shallow water like a bathtub, they will stick their head under the water to retrieve a toy from the bottom.
They probably won’t attempt to swim underwater, but don’t mind a quick dip under.
How Often Should I Bathe My Bengal?
You can generally bathe your Bengal once a month and if they have gone roaming around outside, coming home dirty, that would be a good time for a bath.
While getting a bath every so often is helpful, it is better to brush a Bengal than to give multiple baths.
Brushing weekly will help remove dead hair and skin, while distributing the natural oils of your cat’s coat.
If you bathe your cat too often, essential oils get stripped from their coat and skin, and could lead to a dull wiry coat and dandruff.
The Watery End
Bengal cats love playing with water around the house, whether it’s in the sink, bathtub, shower …or even the toilet (yuk!).
Keep vigilant to ensure they’re safe, but also make sure you allow the opportunity for them to play with water as they love it so much.
Don’t lock them out of the bathroom when you shower, because you’ll hear about it from them.
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