I've recently started letting my cat outside, which she really enjoys. However, one of her favorite things to do out there is to roll around in the dirt, which of course leaves her filthy. She's visibly brown and you can draw in the dirt on her with a finger. There's a cloud of dust when she shakes herself or you pet her.
It doesn't seem to bother her at all, and she is somehow clean again by the next day, but I wonder if licking all that dirt off herself every day is an issue. There are no pesticides or fertilizer or anything in the dirt, it's just dirt. (She only goes in my fenced backyard, so I know this for a fact.)
Like most cats, she doesn't like to be wet, and I imagine bathing her would be traumatic for everyone involved. I did try rubbing her with a damp paper towel, and she seemed to tolerate it, but it'd be a lot of effort to get her to even resemble being clean, so I don't know if I should bother. Should I take any action here or let her handle it?
And before someone comes in with a comment about how cats destroy ecosystems and shouldn't be let outside: she's older, doesn't jump or climb, and is horribly inept at hunting anything more sentient than a leaf. She stays in my yard and is not bothering anyone, I promise.