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Cats are renowned for keeping themselves clean to an extent that they are known for being neat freaks. In fact, it has been found that felines spend nearly half of their waking hours in cleaning themselves. So, if your kitty has suddenly stopped grooming herself it is a red signal, suggesting that something might be wrong with her. So the best thing to do in the scenario would be to take her to your veterinarian immediately. There are few signs that showcase that your kitty is not grooming herself:

  • Matted fur or a greasier, harsher-feeling coat
  • Food on her cheeks
  • Her feet may have litter struck to them as she might have stopped cleaning her paws
  • Smelling very foul, particularly if she is not keeping her bums properly cleaned

Let us now look at the apparent reasons for your feline to not groom herself:

Joint Problems

An old cat starts becoming less mobile, less active and quieter. She might even start suffering from joint stiffness, or onset of arthritis. Stiffness or joint pain is the primary culprit that makes felines less mobile and less willing to exercise. This can even lead to a situation where your cat is reluctant to groom herself. The difficult part is that it might take some time before you see these symptoms, hence; keep a close watch on your cat and take her to the veterinarian if you find any problem with her joints.

Dental Problems

Dental problems can lead to serious hazards on a cat’s grooming capability. As her jaws hurt she may not want to lick her furs to clean herself. It might even result in drooling or eating less. If you suspect a dental problem in your kitty get her teeth checked by your veterinarian impromptu.

Weight Issues

An overweight or chubby cat finds it hard to reach out to all body parts requiring grooming. If that is the case, then you will have to assist her in losing weight by giving her fat free diet along with a proper exercise regimen. If she finds it difficult to groom herself you can get special wipes tailor-made to keep her clean from certain pet stores.

Matted Bum

This scenario happens when your kitty stop grooming the fur around her bums which causes it to be gross and matted. Matted bum can be caused if your cat becomes chubbier which makes it difficult for her to reach her bums to clean. Cats with long fur are especially in danger of getting tangled and mats very easily which cannot be undone by herself. If the fur around her bums in matted, never use scissors as it may cut her skin if she reacts. So the best thing would to be to take her to your veterinarian to shave off her fur safely. But take the action quickly as a matted bum can lead to sanitary problems and health issues if not shaved quickly.


Older cats can sometimes suffer from senility causing dementia and other mental disorders resulting in kitties stopping grooming along with other cat behaviors.

Irrespective of whatever has caused your feline to stop grooming herself take her to your veterinarian at the soonest. Lack of grooming in kittens can result in graver problems so never delay. Once the exact reason has been found, your veterinarian will correct it and then ask you to commence brushing her regularly to encourage the feline to start grooming once again. The positive aspect of brushing her is that it will develop a stronger bond between you and your furry friend.

Also read: A Beginner’s Guide to Train your Tyke Get Used to Grooming


Jesse McDaniel is an animal activist that raises concerns and spreads awareness regarding pet health issues. She is also a self-proclaimed pet lover who tends to support many pet shelters, assisting them with supplies and medical aide on a regular basis.