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Max & Min’s Spaw Treatment Routine

Xandria

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Max and Min had their big spaw treatment yesterday, so I thought to take pictures of the process for anyone who is interested. I know that we all have different routines, methods, and products that we utilize and so forth. I also know that everyone struggles differently or not at all with respect to bathing their nakeds. Hopefully this will be of interest to some. And of course, please feel free to add to this thread with your own routines and tips!

I'm numbering various items in these pictures to provide sourcing information.

PREPARATION

From start to finish it takes me approximately 2 hours for Max and Min's weekly spaw treatment (I'm thoroughly envious of those who can do this in considerably less time... how????).

However, only once a month or so do I perform a full bath – every other time I give them a wipe down (explained later). Although somehow it's still pretty much 2 hours a week.

I like to get everything ready before I start luring Max and Min into the spaw spectacle. They are reasonably well behaved but this is not their favourite pastime.

The first thing I do is throw a variety of towels into the dryer to heat them up. I use one towel for wrapping them up to clean their ears, another towel for wrapping them up while I clean their feet, and a specific final larger towel for drying them off after their bath or wipe down. That's three towels per cat.

Following the above, I fill the bathroom sink with hot water and deposit their ear cleaner (Epi-Otic), witch hazel, and a small dish for the purpose of heating up these items.

I continue to lay everything out for their ear cleaning, feet cleaning, and ultimately their bath or wipe down.

I also use this time to listen to an audiobook! It makes the time go by faster. This is not to say that I don't obtain pleasure from cleaning Max and Min (I do!), but I like to multi task.

EARS

SPAW01.jpg


(1) rinsing bowl for final steps of cleaning chins and ears [I find a small stainless bowl retains heat nicely]

(2) washable sherpa cotton makeup rounds for cleaning chins and ears and also removing my own makeup [Items similar to Six Sherpa 2 Ply Facial Poufs - Cotton Face Wipes - Makeup Removal Pads - Sherpa Disposable Pouf Alternative - Facial Wipes - Choose Colour on Etsy]

(3) ear cleaner – Epi-otic by Virbac [EPI-OTIC® Ear Cleanser]

(4) witch hazel for cleaning chins [available at any pharmacy]

(5) small bowl for holding ear cleaner [I use a soy sauce dish]

(6) a variety of cotton ear swabs for ear cleaning [Q-tips® Precision Tips™ for narrow spots and those little folds inside their ears, Q-tips® Cotton Swabs for general cleaning, and JOHNSON’S® safety swabs for further in the ear and larger surfaces]

I take the first Sphynx that makes itself available to me (usually it is Min, but yesterday it was Max). I swaddle Max fairly tightly in one of the heated blankets. Essentially he is mummified LOL. I sit on the toilet, and cradle him in my lap.

20161224_103651_resize.jpg


I soak one of the cotton makeup rounds (2) with the heated witch hazel (4) and proceed to clean with firm strokes his chin, neck, and as close to his mouth as I'm willing to go. Depending on the level of "dirt", I may flip the makeup round over soak it and wipe again. Then I set about looking for blackheads. Max hardly ever has any although Min gets a few on occasion. She has one persistent one that I keep squeezing. I then dip a clean makeup round (2) into the rinsing bowl (1), squeeze out the excess water, and wipe down Max's neck, chin, and mouth. I may even use a second makeup round.

I completely focus the process outlined below on one ear at a time. This way I'm not flipping the cats from side to side. It's best to have them leaning one way and then the other way.

Next I squirt some Epi-otic ear cleaner (3) onto a fresh makeup round (2) and use this to clean the outside, around, and inside of one ear. I flip the makeup round around and squirt some more cleaner if needed. I never put the ear cleaner directly in their ears.

I pour some of the ear cleaner into the small bowl (5). I dip each ear swab (6) into the small bowl holding the heated ear cleaner. Sometimes I squeeze out the extra ear cleaner in the swab by pressing it against the side of the bowl before setting about to clean the ears. I usually start with the large baby safe ear swabs and clean the larger area inside the ear as well as down into the ear (you won't get far, but it helps). I then use the precision tip or narrow tipped ear swabs for the narrow nooks and crannies inside the ear. And finally I use the regular ear swabs for the rest of the ears, including getting down into the ear (not too far) and that fold by the ear canal entrance. I used to use a headlamp so that I could see very clearly, but after a year and a half of doing this I feel fairly confident.

Once I'm fairly confident that the ears are clean, I soak a fresh makeup round (2) in the rinsing bowl (1) of hot water, squeeze out the excess, and wipe the ear inside and out, giving it a nice massage. The massage tends to make for a happier naked.

Then I repeat the above process for the other ear. And the other cat! Once I am finished with one of my nakeds, I discard the used ear swabs, wipe the counter down, reheat the bottles in the sink by adding more hot water to the sink, dumping the bowl of rinse water and adding more. I also set out another set of makeup rounds.

Treats at the end of every stage also help!

SPAW02.jpg


(7) used cotton ear swabs! Some weeks there are more, some less, and I'm never quite sure why.

(5) small bowl for holding ear cleaner [I use a soy sauce dish]

FEETS

SPAW03.jpg


(8) Pet D’Grease by Pure Pet for paw and claw cleaning [http://www.mcssl.com/store/purepet/shampoos/dgrease-shampoo]

(9) midsized bowl of hot water for dipping cloths into [again, I find a small stainless steel bowl retains heat quite nicely]

(10) larger bowl of hot water and cloths for rinsing paws and claws

(11) empty bowl for used cloths

(12) dry cloths for dipping into the D’Grease and hot water [https://www.aliexpress.com/item/8Pc-Soft-Baby-Infant-Newborn-Washcloth-Bath-Towel-For-Bathing-Feeding-Wipe-Cloth-Hot/32717820232.html – numerous vendors on AliExpress sell these and what I like about them is that they are reasonably thin which means I can usually press my fingernails through the cloth to assist in the cleaning process & because the quality varies, I tend to use the thicker cloths for rinsing and the thinner cloths for cleaning]

(13) metal file [Revlon Products: Makeup, Fragrances, Hair Color, Nails, Beauty Tools – I particularly like this file because it is wedged and seems to be much easier to manoeuvre around their nails]

(14) nail clipper [www.revlon.com/products/beauty-tools/pedicure/gold-series-titanium-coated-heavy-duty-nipper – I have used many clippers over the years, and these are fantastic in that they are extraordinarily sharp and very precise; the steel ones I have in the picture have been replaced by the gold series ones from Revlon which I have linked to here]

(15) baby toothbrush with extra soft bristles if needed for additional cleaning of nails or paws

I take another heated towel out of the dryer and bundle up one of my kitties. I lay them on my lap, back down, and expose one foot at a time. I start with the right rear and work counterclockwise as for some reason this seems to work the best on them and myself – I have no idea why.

20161224_110656_resize.jpg


I wrap the middle of a dry cloth (12) around my forefinger and index finger, holding on to the edges of the cloth with the rest of my fingers. I dip this into a small amount of the D’Grease (8), and then into the bowl of hot water (9) next to it. I use one hand to steady a foot, and then begin cleaning the bottom of the foot, the top, and by the time I work into the actual paw pad, they seem very relaxed and will splay them wide for me. I continue to dip the cloth into the hot water (9) for additional moisture and scrubbing. I then use one hand to gently expose each nail in turn and then use the D’Grease and hot water soaked cloth to really clean the nail and around the nail. Min’s nails are a breeze to clean whereas Max seems to develop this really thick waxy buildup on his that requires me to scrape along the side of the nail a bit with my thumbnail. Once clean, I discard the cloth into the used cloth bowl (11).

I then use the clippers (14) to carefully clip the tips of each nail in turn. After that, I file the tips with the file (13). And finally I grab one of the hot water soaking cloths (10), squeeze out the excess water, and wipe down the entire foot, paying extra attention to the paw pads and nails.

I tuck the clean foot underneath the towel, and bring out the next one. I use fresh cloths for each foot. I always have extra rinsing cloths in the bowl of hot water (10) because sometimes I need to use a little extra D’Grease on Max which requires extra rinsing.

SPAW04.jpg


(11) filling bowl of used cloths – make sure the bowl is of sufficient size to hold approximately 10 discarded cloths for each naked.

<<<continued next comment>>>
 

Xandria

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<<<continued from initial post>>>

BODY

Full Bath (once every 4-6 weeks)

SPAW05.jpg


(16) sink of hot rinse water containing a plastic cup and a few rinsing cloths [I use the thicker cloths from these 8Pc Soft Baby Infant Newborn Washcloth Bath Towel For Bathing Feeding Wipe Cloth Hot-in Towel Sets from Home & Garden on Aliexpress.com | Alibaba Group]

(17) a halved bath mat to provide traction

(18) hot water in a bowl heating up the HyLyt shampoo [HyLyt® Shampoo, Crème Rinse and Bath Spray]

(19) plastic cup of very warm water for getting the naked wet prior to adding shampoo

(20) small bowl of hot water and a couple of washing cloths for head, genitals and backside

(21) exfoliating gloves for washing and rinsing [available at pretty much any pharmacy]

After slipping on one of the pairs of exfoliating gloves (21), I place one of my nakeds into the sink on top of the bath mat (17). I dip my gloved hands into the sink of hot rinse water (16) to get the gloves wet. I then pour water from the plastic cup (19) onto my hand which is covering my naked – I do this specifically because neither Max nor Min like to have water splashed on them directly. Bottom line, get your naked wet.

I shake the bottle of heated up shampoo (18) and pour some onto my gloved hand. I then squish my hands together to spread out the shampoo and then apply to the neck and shoulders first. I very carefully and gently scrub the top of the head, neck, and then shoulders. Then I more vigourously venture into scrubbing the back, sides, legs and belly. I pay particular attention to armpits and the equivalent leg pits – where their sweat tends to gather and "brown up". Don't forget the tail!

I then use one of the soaking washing cloths (20) to work the lather on top of the head or around the face as needed without getting anything into the eyes. Then I use another cloth for the genitals, and another one for the bum. Never ever use an exfoliating glove directly on the sensitive parts! Not if you value your life.

By this time my nakeds are ready to climb the spice rack in front of us (Min often does). I quickly strip off my washing gloves, rinse my hands, and then slip on the dry exfoliating gloves (21) that will help rinse. I try to get a few rinses in with the cup from the rinse water side (16), gently dousing my naked with a hand running interference. I find that using exfoliating gloves for the rinsing process helps rinse the body thoroughly. Rinsing is extremely important, otherwise the Sphynx "browns up" fairly quickly; although this is easily remedied with a quick wipe down using a series of hot water soaked washcloths. I tend to get much better results with Max and Min if I simply use water soaked washcloths over their body for the rinsing process. Towards the end, with most of the water gone from the rinsing sink, I will place them into the sink with the rinsing water and try and get any last remnants of soap off their body.

Stripping off the rinsing gloves, I carefully grab my naked and run upstairs to the dryer and pull out this fabulous drying towel (22) that is oh so warm and dry and cuddle… Repeat. Treats are an absolute must after this process.

SPAW06.jpg


(22) the best drying towel, Microfiber Dog Drying Towel by Bone Dry™, [Bone Dry - Dog Drying Towel] – WARNING: these build up static electricity in the dryer like there's no tomorrow. But they really work.

(23) I have a couple buckets of these washcloths around the house for quick wiping down, face cleaning and so forth

Wipe Down (every week without a Full Bath)

I did not think to take pictures of this process, but may do so in the future. However, very simply:

I fill a sink with hot water and add a couple drops of HyLyt shampoo, and then deposit into the sink about 15 washcloths.

I place Max and Min on a nearby towel and proceed to use one cloth at a time, squeezing out excess water, washing from head to tail tip. It usually takes about 15 washcloths for the entire body.

As always, I wash the genitals and bum last. I use one of the drying towels that has been tumbling in the dryer to again dry and cuddle.

Don't forget the treats.

SPOT CLEAN (as needed)

Every day I tend to "spot clean" their faces, neck and chest. For this I simply use one of the washcloths soaked in hot water to wipe clean. That's it.

Thanks for listening. Hopefully this helps in some way. As always, everyone and every Sphynx is different. My way is certainly not "the way", and I am utterly envious of those who can actually place there Sphynx in a bathtub full of water! LOL. The bottom line is "whatever works". But hopefully some of these resources help you as well. Cheers! And happy cleaning.

And... just because...

Max, delighted that ear cleaning is over!
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Min is all legs akimbo during feet cleaning time.
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Treat time!
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I place towels down on the floor to soak up the water that inevitably spills during body cleaning time.
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Clean Min!
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Clean Max -- look at those feets!
20161224_121725_resize.jpg
 
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Catzzzmeow

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Holy I feel like I must just slap things together. Maybe mine are missing a royal treatment because I am the complete opposite of you @Xandria. No wonder you call it a spaw day....lol. Your routine is different than mine. Now I wonder how everyone else bathes their babies. I Have the Q-tips an exfoliating glove, shampoo, ear cleaner, a cup to rinse with fresh water. I clip nails, squirt in ear cleaner, put them in the tub wash, scrub, rinse and rinse again. Then use Q-tips to get the now wet gunk out of ears. It takes me total from start to finish 10 minutes tops per cat. Mine do not get a spaw day, they get a cleaning lol.

I think no matter how long or short bath day is, it is about being consistent and in charge. I wish I personally had a spa treatment (Massage) an hour every week.


patti
 

Xandria

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Holy I feel like I must just slap things together. Maybe mine are missing a royal treatment because I am the complete opposite of you @Xandria. No wonder you call it a spaw day....lol. Your routine is different than mine. Now I wonder how everyone else bathes their babies. I Have the Q-tips an exfoliating glove, shampoo, ear cleaner, a cup to rinse with fresh water. I clip nails, squirt in ear cleaner, put them in the tub wash, scrub, rinse and rinse again. Then use Q-tips to get the now wet gunk out of ears. It takes me total from start to finish 10 minutes tops per cat. Mine do not get a spaw day, they get a cleaning lol.

I think no matter how long or short bath day is, it is about being consistent and in charge. I wish I personally had a spa treatment (Massage) an hour every week.


patti

I want to learn this 10 minute treatment. Worships you.
 

BrittanyS

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@Xandria Thank you for sharing this! I know it will be a lot of trial and error with bath time once I finally pick up my baby, but this is a great thread to reference when that time comes.
 

Toa and Ross

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@Xandria great info! Max and Min are such lucky cas with the spaw treatment they get. All the instruments on the pic makes you look like a doctor in spaw health:).
 

Xandria

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@Catzzzmeow -- I'm still in awe. I would give almost anything to see a video of you cleaning your nakeds. They must be super cooperative. The faster I go with Max, the quicker he loses his patience. So yeah, maybe he has me wrapped around his paw for the "full deluxe treatment". LOL

@BrittanyS -- everyone seems to find their own way, adapting to what their nakeds seem to like or not. Lots of trial and error! I can't begin to tell you my early disasters. As I said above to @Catzzzmeow , the quicker and firmer I was with Max, the more he'd resist. I had to learn to go slow and gentle.

@Toa and Ross -- I should start a Sphynx spaw business. ha ha ha ha.

Also, it just dawned on me why it takes me 2 hours total -- I forgot that I spend about a half hour gathering up all the cat bedding all over the house (there's a lot), starting the washing machine for the bedding, and then putting fresh bedding on (I have duplicates of everything). And then after it's all done I clean up the kitchen, bathroom, stow implements etc.

So I guess really it's about 45 minutes per cat. STILL!!!! How do you all do it?!?!?!?
 

Xandria

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@Thunderheader -- thank you! I do have a love of tuxedos! And I'm starting to think I'm insane with the cleaning routine. Too bad they don't make auto Sphynx washes (sort of like a dishwasher) -- just kidding. Sort of.
 

Yoda mom

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@Xandria , great tutorial! Thank you for sharing
Glad you like the dog drying towels :) ( # 22 marked)
They are my fav for all paws here
No heavy soaked people towels yah!

I find them in US Marshalls store here - I swear I must have 10 of them
( I go thru a lot with Aussie spa days)


Will be looking forward to your dental spa day tutorial :)

Kisses to the models!
 
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Xandria

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@Yoda mom -- OMG, dental spa treatment. I think I'll need video for that. It's so fast and no way for pics. I'll work on that in the new year! Hai!

And yes, those bone dry towels are awesome when they don't electrocute you. hahahahaha.
 

SupplyPipe28

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Thank you so much for taking the time to take pictures and document your "Spaw Treatment" routine and to share it with all of us! Before we got Severin, I would watch this Cat Spa Day video on YouTube and hope that one day I would be able to have a similar routine for him. I don't know if we'll ever get to the same level of sophistication, but seeing how you do certain parts of your routine and what products you use is so informative. :)(y)
 

Xandria

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@SupplyPipe28 -- My pleasure. I'd love to do a video some day (cut down to show only the salient bits LOL). I think it's important for everyone to find what works for them and their nakeds. I think the more variety of techniques one can see examples of, the more options there are for finding just the trick.

I learned the hard way that fast and firm does NOT work for Max but is best for Min. That video was really interesting. Thanks for sharing!
 

SupplyPipe28

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@Xandria Absolutely. :) The more options, the better.

Severin has been with us for just over 2 months now (he's about 5.5 months) and although he is quite good with having his weekly baths, he sits just long enough for me to properly clean his ears while he's drying. Luckily, I'm able to do his nail cleanings/clippings and additional ear cleanings when the opportunity presents itself - usually when he's napping and is much too groggy to protest. I wish I could do it all in one shot, but I'll take what I can get. ;)

That being said, did you have to train Max and Min to sit patiently through their spaw treatment? I'd love to get Severin to that point where he'll sit a bit longer.
 

Xandria

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@SupplyPipe28 -- a number of people use sleeping Sphynx as the perfect time for cleaning! :) I always try to pick a calming time, but that's sometimes hard. ha ha

I never really trained Max and Min to lay on me the way they do. I just sort of bundled them up in the warm blanket and laid them on my lap as I do. They never really struggled. Min gets fussy about the time I start working on her second ear whereas Max almost falls asleep. Min gets fussy about half way through her pawdicure, but Max is good almost to the end.

I know my breeder trims their nails while they are sitting up and I have no idea how she gets them to stay!
 

Catzzzmeow

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When we picked up Myshka our breeder had bathed him the night before, but said she forgot to clip his nails. Wrapped him in blanket and snip snip snip right there in the kitchen it was done in seconds. It was sort of a relief after hearing many have issues. We have been lucky with all of our cats when it comes to nail clipping....sigh of relief and fingers crossed for when I go to do it.


Patti
 

Xandria

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@Catzzzmeow -- so awesome. I was thinking about you today while we had spaw afternoon here and I had Max cradled and almost asleep in my lap while scrubbing his toes and clipping his nails. I think Myshka will be an easy one with spaw time. I wish Max didn't require the "full treatment". LOL
 

Maddie

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@Xandria question: what does the witch hazel do and why do you use it?
I've only been through one spaw day and it was quick because it was before Astrid went to get photos done. So doing more research before her next bath :)
Very informative post though, thank you
 

Xandria

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@Maddie -- the witch hazel is used for blackheads and pimples (like with humans). Applying heated witch hazel on a cloth to the underchin loosens up the pores and then encourages elimination of blackheads.
 

Catzzzmeow

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Might bathe the mouse this weekend. So far he has been good with ear cleaning, and baby wipes a few times since we got him, so I am hoping the bathing goes as well. I can already tell he is going to be a dirty boy lol.

Patti
 
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