Cat grooming tips
Ever wonder why some cats always look sleek and beautiful and others look like…well, like something the cat dragged in? While it’s true that some cats (like some people) are just born with “good hair,” a lot of it has to do with grooming. Now, cats are fastidious critters. They tend to take care of themselves pretty well, always licking their fur to keep it clean and in its proper place. But any cat can go from Fluffy to Scruffy without a little help from her human pals.
Cats are fastidious and hygienic animals; they keep themselves clean. At times, however, they need some help particularly the long-haired types. . Grooming makes the animal feel better as it stimulates the circulation and removes any debris and loose hair.
Grooming can be pleasurable for the cat if it is done on a regular basis and the cat’s hair kept in reasonable condition, but it can easily turn into a fight if it is left until long hair becomes matted and knotted.
Matting can become so severe on the sides and belly if grooming is not kept up that the cat needs a general anaesthetic before the thick wads of hair are removed. Us humans always feel great after a haircut or even a trim, so why wouldn’t your feline feel the same?
Regular sessions with a brush or comb will help keep your pet’s hair in good condition by removing dirt, spreading natural oils throughout her coat, preventing tangles and keeping her skin clean and irritant-free.
- If your cat has short hair, you only need to brush once a week:
- If your cat has long hair, you will need to brush every day:
Longhair vs. Shorthair Cats
The magnificent coat of a champion Persian is truly a work of art. But you’d better believe that it took hours of regular grooming to get it — and keep it — that way. It’s common sense that the more hair there is to take care of, the more work that goes into it. The fluffier the cat’s hair, the more likely it is to form mats, too. These thick tangles of hair can be painful and even tear a cat’s skin if the mats get bad enough. Mats get embarrassing for a cat, too, since the only way to get rid of really bad ones is to shave them off.
It’s not that shorthair cats don’t need regular grooming or never get mats — they do. It’s just that their shorter, coarser outer coat requires lower maintenance than a long, silky coat. A shorthair cat who’s diligent about her own grooming routine can do a lot to make up for an owner who’s a little lazy with the brush and comb. But regular grooming is still a must for both longhair and shorthair cats.
Cats use their tongue and teeth for grooming. Every time Tabby goes into her contortionist bathing routine, she’s swallowing hair. The more hair she has (and the more grooming she does), the more hair she swallows. Hair doesn’t digest and can clump up in a cat’s stomach and intestines to form hairballs. The least dangerous, but still rather unpleasant, side effect of hairballs is your cat coughing them up — quite often at times or in places you’d much rather she didn’t. On a more serious note, a lot of swallowed hair can actually block your cat’s intestines, calling for an operation to save her life. The bottom line, as they say in the city, is to invest a few dollars in a brush and comb — and use them.
Most people really don’t handle their cats’ feet until they are about to clip the nails and then…watch out!
No cat enjoys having her nails trimmed, but if you start them as kittens it will be easier when they’re adults. A nail-trimming every ten days to two weeks is a nice routine to settle into.