Effective vs. Ineffective Cat Grooming
June 4th, 2018
We all know how naturally clean cats are and how they spend hours grooming themselves. For the most part, cats can take care of themselves well, but there are times they’ll need a little help!
The Importance of Grooming
Grooming can be a special bonding time, and when done right, can be enjoyable for both you and your feline friend. With regular grooming, you’ll be able to recognize what’s normal and when something isn’t right. It is an excellent opportunity to check for any parasites or abnormalities, such as lumps, bumps, bald patches, or sores. If you find anything of concern, call your veterinarian to determine if your cat needs a check-up.
Trimming Your Cat’s Claws
It’s always a good idea to get your cat used to having their paws touched and massaged as a part of your time together.
What to do: Make sure your furry friend is relaxed and happy before starting. Apply gentle pressure to paw to expose the claws. Using cat nail clippers, snip the top white tip of the nail, just before the point where it begins to curl. After each nail trim, reward your cat with a tasty treat.
What not to do: Avoid clipping the pink part of the nail which may bleed if cut. Don’t lose your temper or yell at your cat to stay in place. Instead, calm your kitty down before proceeding, or stop the process altogether and continue at a later time.
Brushing Your Cat
Regular brushing sessions will remove dirt, spread natural oils throughout the coat, and prevent tangles. Long haired cat breeds will typically need more brushing.
What to do: Use a metal comb to work through the fur from head to tail. Use a bristle or a rubber brush to remove dead or loose hair. Be very gentle around the chest and belly. End your brushing with a rub or treat. If you find mats you cannot remove, call your veterinarian for advice.
What not to do: Avoid brushing against the direction of your cat’s coat. Never rip off mats or tangles with the brush. It will hurt, and your kitty will come to mistrust both you and the brushing process. Never snip mats of with scissors – you can easily you’re your cat’s delicate skin.
Bathing Your Cat
Cats will usually clean themselves. However, there are the rare occasions when your furry friend could become dirty; in some cases, pet parents are allergic to their furry friends, and need to bathe their cats to minimize their allergies. Most cats hate bathing and may find the process stressful.
What to do: Fill a sink or bathtub with 3 to 4 inches of lukewarm water. Pour water to wet the hair and use a cat-safe shampoo to lather from head to tail gently. Rinse thoroughly to avoid irritating the skin with residue. Conclude the bath time with gently wiping your kitty’s face with a damp cloth. Dry your cat using a big, warm towel and stay away from drafts. Reward good behavior with praise, affection, and treats.
What not to do: Do not apply shampoo to your cat’s face – a damp cloth should do. Never use human shampoos on your kitty. Make sure to avoid dunking or getting water in the eyes, ears, or nose.
We Are All About Cats!
Our experienced and caring team at All About Cats Veterinary Hospital is here to provide you with information and advice about giving your pet the best possible care. We love our feline friends because after all, we are all about cats!
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