11 Safe Ways to keep your cat free of static electricity

Photo of cat with fur electrically charged

Here we look at 11 Safe Ways to keep your cat free of static electricity, stop getting shocks, and getting that electrical charge out of your cat’s fur.

Changing out bedding, grooming, and putting more moisture in the air are the safest ways to putting a barrier between you, your cat and the static.  

Photo of cat getting zapped by static elecricity as he explains 11 ways to keep your cat free of static electricity

This will make you and your cat much happier, getting fewer of those pesky electrical zaps, when you reach out for a little snuggle time.

While we understand what is happening, our cats do not. These shocks can leave your kitty a little skeptical of you when he gets a shock when you reach out to give him a pet of approval.

The cat runs for cover, and you feel bad trying to make amends.  

Cat dividing line

For more information about static electricity, check out the following blog posts:

Cat dividing line


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The more you understand about static electricity, the more you can do to prevent it. Static electricity is often caused by a static charge buildup that results from contact between materials. Shuffling your feet across the carpet is a common example of a situation that generates a static charge. Just imagine what this does to kitty’s fur as he romps across the carpet to play with his toys.

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    The zap you feel when you touch your cat occurs because you are touching a grounded object (your cat), giving the static charge a path to the ground. It can be difficult to avoid generating a static charge in some situations, especially when there’s little humidity in the air, such as in the wintertime.

    With less humidity, the strength of the zap that you and your cat feel is more intense.

    While static electricity never really goes away, it does get worse as the temperatures dip. Dry air accompanying colder temperatures is exacerbated by home heating sources that make the air even drier. Humidity curtails the transfer of static electricity.

    Moisture will help your cat get less shocks

    Sometimes, we do not get a shock with this imbalance of energy occurs. We hear or even see the crinkle of the electricity in our cat’s fur. Or we see our cat’s fur standing on end, like kitty is having a bad hair day. This is what happens when we take clothes out of the dryer. It makes clothes cling to us in not so flattering ways.

    At Paws, we get lots of shocks up here in the northeastern United States, and when it happens to the cats, they look at me as if to say, ‘What did you do to me?’

    We get them from blankets, clothing – especially when they are coming out of the dryer – our wood stove, our doorknob, our towels, and our car. It is annoying and unsettling. For cats, it is more than that, even downright scary.

    Paws writes this post in response to our article, Static Electricity in cat’s fur easily charged. Due to the large amount of response, we wanted to bring some tips, some DIY, that could help solve the problem.

    When the humidity level in your home drops to 30% or lower, static electricity can make you and your furry friend uncomfortable.  In fact, just stroking your pet’s fur could result in a little shock for both of you. 

    Measure the humidity in your home with a hygrometer, which are cheap and widely available from household stores. If the relative humidity is much below 30 percent, it is too dry. Aside from turning your dog or cat into a battery, the dryness is doing neither you nor your pets any good at all.

    11 Safe Ways to keep your cat free of static electricity

    These 11 safe ways to keep your cat free of static electricity are simple and easy changes. All you have to do is do a little shopping or if you are talented, you can probably do some DIY projects.

    Depending on your household, and your furnishings, some of these suggestions may work better than others.

    1. First, get a humidifier, and put it in your largest room where you spend a lot of time with your cat. Most often this will be your living room. for larger areas, you may want to consider a console humidifier that sits on the floor. In addition to treating a larger area, a floor unit usually needs to be filled less often. By running the humidifier every day, you will make the air more conductive to electricity. This can prevent the buildup of a static charge and minimize the severity of the zap. up.
    2. Put smaller humidifiers or vaporizers in other rooms, like your bedroom or family room, where you spend a lot of time with your cat. A small table-top humidifier can take care of a moderate-size room.
    3. Leave a little moisture in your towels, blankets, and clothing when you take them out of the dryer so when it will be less likely to transfer static electricity to your cat.
    4. Moisten a washcloth, and slowly brush your cat with it.Dip your fingers into some water or mist your hands lightly before you pet your cat. Water will discharge static electricity, so if you are carrying a charge, you will not transfer it to your cat.
    5. Give Your Pet the Spa Treatment. Give your cat a bath with a moisturizing shampoo and conditioner (ones approved for use on pets).
    6. Use metal brushes, not plastic, which conduct electricity better, meaning more static and shocks. You may want to purchase an ionic brush, which is specifically manufactured to help prevent the buildup of static electricity.
    7. Lightly spray your hands or your pet’s fur with a misting spray before you pet him but be warned: Many pets do not take too kindly to being sprayed with water, so they might just want to get away from you after the mini shower.
    8. If your pet sleeps on a blanket or wears a sweater, look for products made from natural fibers like cotton or wool as these are less likely to create static than those made with synthetic fibers.
    9. Switch out the cat beds if your cat is resting on a synthetic cat bed or blanket, such as one made of fleece. The fabric can contribute to the creation of a static charge. Look for a bed or blanket that is made of natural fibers, like wool. These natural fibers are less likely to create a static charge.
    10. Consider adding an Omega 3 fatty acid supplement to your pet’s diet. Omega 3 keeps your pet’s coat healthy and moisturized. Our cats, just like humans, can get dry skin.
    11. Use a grooming spray or some grooming wipes on your pet regularly to help keep his coat conditioned and healthy.

    Dryer sheets are not safe to reduce static electricity in cat’s fur

    Do NOT use dryer sheets or fabric softener

    You may reduce static electricity in your home by spraying the fabric on your sofas and chairs with an anti-cling fabric spray product, or a mixture with water and fabric softeners. Paws has also heard of using dryer sheets.

    Keep in mind that such products may contain chemicals which could be toxic to your pet or irritate its sensitive skin. If it appears your pet experiences an allergic reaction, discontinue using the product and consult your veterinarian.

    Dryer sheets contain cationic detergents, which are corrosive. Cationic detergents can cause serious health issues in pets, including burns to the eyes or skin, vomiting, seizures, muscular weakness, collapse, and even coma. If your cat is ever exposed to dryer sheets and displays these symptoms, consult a vet immediately.

    Paws found out dryer sheets aggravated his asthma. Once we stopped using them in the dryer, his asthma improved. While he still coughs, he has not had an asthma attack since they went packing.

    Remember your cat self -groom, and they are not just inhaling, they are ingesting these toxic products which would be highly detrimental to their health.

    Cat dividing line on 11 safe ways to reduce static electricity in cats

    Do you have some tried and true secrets on reducing static electricity in your cat’s fur? For more tips on cats, be sure to sign up for our email list so you can keep tabs on the latest Paws Cat News for Cat Lovers.

    The information on this blog is for informational/educational/entertainment purposes only.  Any advice given on Paws News for Pet Lovers should not be used in place of professional medical care, to diagnose or treat any illness or serious behavior issues. Should you need medical advise, we ask that you reach out to your veterinarian. For travel, we suggest reaching out to your destination to confirm hours of operation. You also may use the cat tourism/events posts to plan future travel. Paws News for Pet Lovers may receive compensation and/or free products in exchange for honest reviews and/or product sponsorships.

    BJ Bangs is an award-winning journalist, photographer, and communication professional who is an aspiring author. She loves everything about cats, including visiting cool cat places and events and writing about them.



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