Do Russian Blue Cats Like Water? Everything You Need To Know

Russian Blue cats are known for their distinctive silvery-blue coats and green eyes. But when it comes to water, many owners wonder if these cats enjoy swimming or bathing. This article will provide a definitive answer on whether Russian Blues like water, so cat owners can make informed decisions about bath time and water play. We’ll explore this breed’s history near water, their reactions to it, and tips for making water less intimidating. Any owner curious about their Russian Blue’s affinity for H2O will find this guide useful.

Do Russian Blue Cats Like Water?

Russian Blues have a complicated history with water. Many believe the breed originated near the Archangel Isles and White Sea in northern Russia, regions surrounded by water. Additionally, sailors reportedly kept Russian Blues on ships to control rodents. Their time on the open sea exposed them to water frequently. However, these cats were likely working cats concerned with hunting duties, not frolicking in the water! So while the Russian Blue lived near waterways, they were not necessarily interested in interacting with it.

Today, most Russian Blues have an ambivalent or negative reaction to water. Their semi-long, double coat is not well-suited for getting wet. The fur can take a very long time to fully dry. Being drenched goes against the Russian Blue’s natural instinct to stay clean and neat. Exceptions exist, especially if kittens are introduced to water play gently. But in general, the Russian Blue persona is dignified, quiet, and above all, dry. Owners should not expect their Russian Blues to enjoy splashing in water or swimming. For baths, take a gentle approach and avoid forcing them into the tub or sink. With patience, some Russian Blues will tolerate water. But most would prefer to admire it from a safe, dry distance!

How To Tell If Your Russian Blue Cat Likes Water

Determining your Russian Blue’s feelings about water can take some detective work. Unlike extroverted breeds that make their preferences obvious, Russian Blues tend to be subtle communicators. Start by observing how your cat reacts when they encounter water sources around your home. Does your cat eagerly jump into the bathtub or sink for a drink? Or do they carefully lean over to sip water, avoiding contact with their body? Take note if they refuse to enter areas with standing water or quickly back away if their paws get wet.

You can also test their reaction to water playtime. Offer gentle splashing or dripping from the faucet while your cat is safely outside the tub. If they seem intrigued and excited, try lifting and slowly lowering them into shallow warm water. But be ready to stop if they show signs of distress like vocalizing, trembling, or trying to scramble out. Give lots of praise and treats for tolerant behavior. With time, some Russian Blues will even learn to enjoy baths.

The most telling sign is their energy level during and after water exposure. A cat that plays in and drinks water happily is one that likes it. One that seems exhausted, stressed, or avoids the situation likely dislikes water. But don’t force interactions in hopes of changing their mind. Work slowly and positively at their pace. Understanding their boundaries is key to a good relationship.

Russian Blue cat.

How To Introduce Your Russian Blue Cat To Water

Most Russian Blues don’t automatically enjoy water. But with time and positive reinforcement, you can help them become more comfortable around it. The key is taking things slowly and making water fun rather than scary. Be extremely patient, ready to pause or take a break if your cat seems overwhelmed. With the right approach, even a water-shy Russian Blue can learn to tolerate and maybe enjoy baths, pools, and more.

  • Start with plain water in a shallow bowl. Encourage lapping and paw dipping by placing treats in the water. Offer praise and cuddles for any interaction.
  • Drip or sprinkle water gently using your fingers, a spray bottle, or the sink. Make sure your cat has plenty of space to retreat if desired. Go slowly and watch for signs of stress.
  • Add plastic balls or floating toys to a water bowl. Cats that bat these around are becoming more comfortable.
  • Once your cat seems relaxed around shallow water play, try placing them in an inch or two of warm bath water. Keep sessions brief and reward cooperation with treats during and after.
  • If they remain willing, gradually increase water volume and time in water. But never force things – stop and dry them off if they seem unhappy.

With enough positive exposure to wet environments, your Russian Blue may eventually enjoy splashing in shallow water. But respect their boundaries, as some cats never adapt to being soaked. The goal is to make water at least tolerable during necessary activities like baths. Avoid flooding situations that cause anxiety. Your cat’s comfort level is most important.

Russian Blue Cats And Swimming

Can Russian Blues swim? With their lean, athletic build and reputation as adept hunters, it would seem they have all the physical attributes needed for swimming. But while capable of doing so, most Russian Blues have little interest in recreational water activities. Exceptions exist, especially with proper introduction as kittens. But generally, the Russian Blue disposition tends toward dignified and reserved rather than playful and adventurous.

Getting a Russian Blue to swim takes patience and positive reinforcement. Start by ensuring your cat is comfortable with shallow bathing and splashing. From there, try lowering them slowly into deeper, tepid water with you beside the tub for security. Avoid submerging their head. Encourage any slight paddling movements with treats and praise. Increase time and depth gradually while monitoring for signs of stress like meowing or clawing. Even water-friendly Russian Blues may never swim for long periods. Their coats are not intended for extended soaking. But some will eventually dip, paddle, and play if coaxed positively. Never toss a reluctant cat into the deep end – forcing swimming will likely cause lasting anxiety.

Russian Blue cat.


Bathing a Russian Blue cat takes patience, preparation, and a positive approach. While individual personalities vary, most Russian Blues dislike getting soaked. Their elegant coats don’t naturally repel water well. With strategic techniques and rewards, you can help bath time become more comfortable for both of you.

  • Keep sessions brief, 5 minutes at first. Limit frequency to when truly dirty.
  • Use lukewarm, never hot water. Check temperature on wrist first.
  • Place a rubber mat in tub for traction. Have treats ready as rewards.
  • Speak softly, move slowly, and watch for signs of stress. Praise tolerance.
  • Use a sprayer or cups to wet coat rather than fully immersing if possible.
  • Opt for cat shampoo to avoid drying skin and coat oils. Rinse thoroughly.
  • Immediately wrap cat in a warm towel after and cuddle them dry. Reward with treats.

With time and positive reinforcement, some Russian Blues grow to accept baths as a necessary routine. But others continue to dislike or fear the process. Avoid pushing limits and work within your cat’s boundaries. Develop a calming bath routine that makes your Russian Blue feel secure rather than scared.


Russian Blues are frequently misunderstood when it comes to their relationship with water. Their history indicates an ability to tolerate water out of necessity. But most modern Russian Blues prefer to avoid getting soaked. Their dignified temperament compels them to stay clean and dry whenever possible. Forcing water interactions will likely backfire.

Patience and positivity are key to making water more palatable. Start with basic exposure to wet environments, rewarding any bravery. Slowly increase contact as comfort allows. Ideal bathing involves minimal soaked time and abundant treats. While some Russian Blues can learn to swim, most will not seek it out. Respect your cat’s boundaries, and you can find the right balance for your relationship. Understand their signals, meet their needs, and water can become less of a stressor.

About The Author

Jennifer Terell, a valued author at Allpetsville, is an experienced cat owner and breeder. Her deep understanding of felines, coupled with a passion for writing, contributes to her insightful and engaging articles.

Her expertise in cat behavior, health, and breeding offers readers a comprehensive guide to feline care. Through her writings, Jennifer’s love for cats resonates, making her a reliable resource for cat owners and enthusiasts on their pet parenting journey.