Cats usually shed more when the days become longer or shorter. If they lick shed fur, they can wind up vomiting hairballs. Vomiting is uncomfortable for kitty. Remember the last time you vomited? It felt bad, didn’t it? If the hairball is deep in the intestine, it can even become lodged there.
Brush your cat gently but throughly as often as you can.
If your cat has already vomited up a furball, try giving kitty Petromalt (available in fish, chicken or malt flavor) to ease the furballs out without the need for vomiting.
Poor doggie! This is the kind of damage that overly enthusiastic use of a Furminator can do to an animal. The Furminator has stiff metal ridges. If you use it carefully and for a minute or two, it’s fine for getting out undercoat. Just don’t get carried away!
Throwing up hairballs isn’t natural. If cats still lived outdoors, shedded fur would be blown off or pulled off. In the home, fur detaches, gets licked into the throat and is either vomited out, or accumulates enough to create an obstruction if it doesn’t pass through the body. Everyone has time for 15 seconds of brushing a day. For a short-haired cat, 15 seconds can mean the difference between hairballs and no hairballs. The volume of shedding fur usually increases dramatically in spring and fall.
I groom these two sweet-natured beauties once a month. (Jump to the middle of this post for links to grooming tools.) Even if your long-haired cat is another breed or a mix, you can use similar tools. If you are going to be grooming your cat monthly, it’s worth buying the tools and products. Grooming is a recurring part of the life of a long-haired cat. (If it’s not, it should be, because ungroomed cats lug around a lot of shedded fur and are coated with too much body oil.)
Chirp & Bambi’s owner is a responsible person who makes sure that her cats get the care they need to stay healthy, comfortable and happy. She combs them frequently, so that when I visit, I don’t have to subject them to intense de-matting. Lucky cats!
Some short-haired cats release a large amount of hair in the spring.
I removed this fur using the soft Love Glove. The cat purred during the grooming. This same cat is brushed four times a week, but look how much fur comes off! Now she won’t have to cough up hair balls or walk around with a coat that is twice as heavy as it needs to be in the warm weather.
Longer days and less sunlight mean it’s time to change fur coats. Your cat does not need to have a winter fur coat delivered from the fur vault. Their coat change is “do-it-yourself.”
Telltale signs that the feline coat change is underway . . .
Tufts of dull-looking fur poking out here and there.
More strands of fur decorating your sofa.
Increased puffiness of coat.
Increased licking and grooming, followed by increased fur balls on the carpet.
If your cat is shedding more, a grooming session will keep that fur under control. In nature, your cat would frolic and scamper through bushes and grass. Excess fur would be snagged on branches. Since cats now live indoors, we have to help them get rid of extra fur.
Cat groomers wash, shave or trim, and blow-dry cats. Our goal is comfort and cleanliness. We improve the lives of cats. Short-term, the cat may not appreciate the attention, to say the least. Cat grooming is physical labor. Groomers can be injured on the job, while slipping on wet floors, lifting a fat pet, being bitten or scratched.
Reiki is faith healing. Some groomers are drawn to reiki. I can see why. Reiki is clean and peaceful. No scratches or bites. No shampoo. No wet towels.
Owners can gain a sense of peace from watching their pet receive faith healing, aka reiki. That’s a gift to the owner. I’m guessing the cat appreciates the attention and affection.
The problem is that the actions that do help an animal aren’t so pretty and peaceful. Combing and brushing take time and effort.
I say, “Reiki is so flakey. Grab a comb and brush.”
If you are scared to trim your cat’s claws, that’s okay. Claws are pointy, so your fear is understandable.
If you are afraid to irritate your cat by combing through her fur, that’s okay. Some cats aren’t easy to comb.
YOU don’t have to do these things, but if you want to take good care of your cat, SOMEONE has to do them.
Those claws need to be trimmed. That fur needs to be brushed.
There’s no shame in calling a cat groomer. After all, most of us don’t sew our own dresses or make our own shoes. Most of us don’t bake our own bread. If it’s easier for you, and easier for the cat, go for it.