How to Sedate a Cat for Grooming - Sugar Pet Shop

Grooming your cat is a stressful situation to handle and sedating your cat is tougher in keeping your pet clean. Many pet parents confuse sedation with anaesthesia. Anaesthesia is the process of relieving pain and making cats conscious. While sedation is the process to de-stress the cat and making it relaxed.

To sedate and groom the cat safely, there are different ways on how to sedate a cat for grooming. Sedating your cat for grooming is a great way to groom and keep your pet groomed and well hygiene. There are various reasons why pet owners sedate their cats due to travelling or grooming.

To know how to sedate the cat for grooming is to follow the instructions carefully:

  1. Choose a medication by seeking the veterinarian’s advice.
  2. Discuss the duration of the sedation with your vet on when to take the dose and how much amount of sedative needed for your cat.
  3. Know and familiarize yourself with the types of sedative medications. To know how to sedate a cat at home, there are four types of medications which are:

    Medical sedatives: medical sedatives found in chemicals and drugs. These types of sedatives work in a short amount of time and work the best for all cats if used at the right amount. Medical sedatives come in pills or injections.

    Sedatives through injection: Using sedatives through injections are useful for   those cats who are fussy about swallowing bitter sedatives. To use the injections   is to have a word with your pet and this works depending on the cat’s weight and   the dosage.

    Oral sedatives: Oral sedatives come in the form of a pill. If you want to sedate   the cat by yourself, oral sedatives are the safest solution to make your cat   feeling relaxed. Because oral sedatives come in the right proportion, you can   determine the dosage by yourself.

    Non-medical sedatives: medical sedatives can bring unexpected side effects to   your cat but works immediately to some cats. Non-medical sedatives are much   safer and thus have fewer side effects compared to drugs and chemicals. Such   examples of non-medical sedatives are herbal plants, body wraps, towel and   synthetic pheromones.

  4. Perform the trial run by applying a little amount of sedative into your cat’s mouth and watch for any signs of adverse reactions. If your cat experiences any side effects, stay away from that sedative. If there are no signs of reactions, you can proceed to the next step.
    Such side effects are:

    Low blood pressure

    • To begin the process of how to sedate a cat for grooming is to prepare your cat’s sedation. You do this by playing with your cat, patting it and offering its favourite treats to keep it jolly and happy. Then wrap your cat with a towel leaving its head exposed.
    • Then hold your cat very firmly and put the sedative in front of its mouth. Once it opens, give the sedative quickly or squeeze the injection into the mouth.

      Note: if your cat does not want to have the sedative, you can mix the sedative with the cat food and feed it to your pet.
    • Make sure your cat swallows the medication by releasing its mouth from your hands and lift its face upward. Then rub its throat to encourage your cat to swallow. Stay in this position for a few minutes before releasing your cat. You can blow gently on its face to make it swallow.

    • Wait patiently for the sedative to kick-in. Your cat will be back to normal after a few hours and might be drowsy for the next few days. Your cat may fall asleep or lie awake feeling relaxed. Do not overdose for quicker results.

    • Then begin grooming your cat by cutting its furs, cutting its nails or have a bath. Do make sure you take this responsibility patiently. If you do it in a hurry, this will disturb your cat and will try to escape your grooming sessions.

    • Once the grooming session is over and your cat is awake. Your cat has finished grooming!

    Tips and Advice when Grooming your Cat:

    • Always, wait for your cat to calm down before you begin the process of grooming.  
    • If your cat has sedated for more than a few days, this is the alarming sign where you need to see the vet.
    • If your cat hates to take medical sedatives, look for any non-medical sedatives to make your cat feeling relaxed and calm.
    • Younger cats do not require sedation and groom your cat when it is a kitten. To handle your kitten’s paws, ears and mouth is to get used to the grooming.
    • When grooming your cat’s fur, make sure try not to cut the fur too close to the skin as cats’ skin reflects the health and its vitality.
    • Do train your cat on how to groom when they are young, as they grow older grooming might become tough. To groom your cat well is to have a bath and brush its fur.
    • Do get into the habit of trimming your cat’s toenails. Your cat should get used to you handling their feet, as nail cutting has become the importance of senior cats.
    • If your cat has eczema or other skin allergies, they require regular bathing with the use of medicated products and shampoo.
    • To manage your cat grooming, use body clips to groom your cat easily. Apart from scissors and combs, never use any sharp objects that would cause the cat to hurt.
    • Do make sure you groom your cat regularly and check your cat’s skin for any signs of ringworms or any other form of growth.
    • Do plan the routine of sedating your cat and try to groom the cat as carefully as possible. You do not want your cat to wake up while you are in the middle of the grooming session.
    • Flea-infested cats need to bath and combed often to get rid of parasites.
    • Never give your cat any human medication unless directed specifically by your veterinarian.


    Here is a useful guide on how to sedate a cat for grooming. You can see sedating your pet requires careful procedures to follow when grooming your cat. If you follow the instructions above, your cat will groom safely while sedating. Do make sure you have a word with your vet about sedating your cat and the duration to use the sedatives on time.

    So follow the procedures on how to sedate a cat at home and take good care of grooming your cat!