|Tropical Fish||Marine Fish||Pet Birds||Dogs||Cats|
|Reptiles||Amphibians||Small Pets||Insects & Spiders||Wildlife|
Cats are known to take meticulous care of their fur and groom themselves several times a day, but this doesn’t mean that you should step back and never groom you feline friend. When it comes to cat grooming most cats can need a little help, but exactly how much help that is recommended depends on your individual cat. A long-haired Persian might for instance need to have its fur combed and face and ears cleaned once a day, while a short-coated Siamese can be very low maintenance and carry out most of the grooming on its own. Regardless of which cat you keep, it is a good idea to pay regular attention to its eyes and ears since it is difficult for cats to clean these areas on their own. Also keep in mind that many feline diseases will lead to symptoms in these areas and an owner that regularly examines the eyes and ears of his or her cat is more likely to spot disease while it is still in an early stage.
As mentioned above, cats differ a lot in the coat department. Siamese and Burmese cats are for instance known for their very short, single coast and low maintenance, while cats such the semi-longhaired Maine coon needs cat grooming that involves both bathing and combing by its owner at least 1-2 times per month. The fact that a cat has a shorthaired coat doesn’t automatically mean that it is as low maintenance as the Siamese when it comes to cat grooming, since certain shorthaired breeds, such as the American and British shorthairs, have very dense coats that needs to be groomed at least once a month.
Even if you keep a shorthaired cat, it is a good idea to groom it regularly since a cat grooming session is a good way of checking the overall health condition of you friend. Pay special attention to nose, eyes, ears, teeth, paws, anus and coat during the grooming session and always keep an eye out for parasites, such as mites and tics.
By grooming your cat you will make it used to being handled and inspected, not just petted. A kitten that gets used to you cat grooming it and inspecting its ears, cleaning its face and so on from an early age will be much easier to care for throughout its entire life. Trying to administer much needed eye drops to an adult cat that isn’t even used to getting its face touched by a human will be a difficult undertaking for both you and the vet.
When you start grooming your kitten, it is important to make the experience as safe, relaxing and cosy as possible. Avoid starting out with quite scary cat grooming things like claw clipping during the first few grooming sessions; it is much better to focus on brushing and gentle cleaning before gradually introducing more intrusive experiences. You want your cat to associate your cat grooming sessions with positive feelings and not run away as soon as you take the brush out of the drawer.
If you keep a certain cat breed, it is a good idea to ask more experienced keepers for advice about cat grooming. A club for keepers of American shorthairs can for instance provide you with a wealth of information on how to keep this very dense coat shiny and healthy, while a Persian aficionado can help you with anything from how to avoid over-priced brushes to which cat shampoo that is best for sensitive skin. As always, you can also ask your veterinarian for advice on cat grooming.