When we take animals into our homes, we “sign” an unseen contract that ethically requires us to take care of their basic needs. Cats are not children, but like children, they depend on us 100%. If we don’t do our part, they pay a price. Feeling guilty is unnecessary, as it doesn’t help the cat or us. It’s counter-productive. Just spend 15 minutes a week on your cat and all will be well. It’s really that simple:)
Claw trims when claws grow long enough to snag on furniture.
For elderly or obese cats, check claws to make sure they’re not growing into the paw pad. This happens when cats don’t scratch away the clear sheath covering the claw.
Check the ears. Lots of brown gunk? Wipe with a cotton ball or paper towel. If the ears are red, itchy or they smell, take the cat to a vet for a check up.
For long-haired cats, check under the tail to make sure they’re clean there. If not, your cat may be having digestion problems or may be too obese or arthritic to clean themselves. Long-haired cats can get sanitary trims so that messes don’t get caught in their rear fur.
Clear away gunk around the eyes by gently using your fingers or a slightly moist piece of paper towel. Keep that area dry if you have a flat-faced cat. Don’t use anything harsh or rub energetically. This is a sensitive area.
Brush cats so that shed fur doesn’t turn into a mat. Air should be able to penetrate the fur and each the skin. If the coat feels firm instead of fluffy, brush and comb more often and/or give a bath.
Comb long-haired cats using a metal comb that reaches all the way down to the skin. Mats can start at surface level, so by they time you see them, they may be large. Furminators are fine for de-shedding, but I find they don’t help much with matting.