Should I groom my cat?
January 14, 2023
Whilst most cats love to groom themselves, and will spend many hours keeping their coat in tip-top condition, some felines could use a little extra help. How much help depends on their size, temperament, age and the length of their coat – long-haired varieties need grooming daily while cats with shorter coats will be fine with a weekly brush. Poorly and elderly cats in particular may struggle to take good care of themselves.
Grooming a cat can also be beneficial for the person doing the grooming. Read on to find out more on the benefits to both you and your, of a regular grooming routine.
Your cat’s health and wellbeing
Regular grooming helps maintain overall health and wellbeing. It aids the removal of loose hair and dander, which can reduce shedding and improve coat condition. Removing moulting fur also helps to reduce the risk of furballs, which can cause discomfort and in some cases intestinal problems.
Grooming helps keep the skin and coat clean and healthy too, preventing the build-up of excess oils and dirt, and a regular session can also help you to identify any potential health issues, such as unusual lumps and bumps, changes to the coat or skin and the presence of fleas or flea dirt (tiny black specs on the skin which turn a dark reddish brown if put onto wet tissue.)
If you notice anything unusual, you should call our 28 Clarendon Street surgery on 01223 359021 to book a check-up for your cat. This can help to catch any potential health issues early and get your cat the treatment they need.
Calming benefits for you
Grooming your cat can be very good for you too. The act of cat grooming can be a calming and relaxing experience in humans; lowering the blood-pressure, reducing stress and promoting feelings of wellbeing. The bonding time between you and your cat can also improve your relationship and strengthen the bond between you.
Which cats need grooming?
Most cats will benefit from some grooming, but the frequency of grooming will vary.
- Long-haired cats need daily brushing to ensure they are keeping on top of knots, dirt, and debris in their fur.
- Short-haired cats can benefit from weekly brushing.
- Older cats will benefit from some additional help with their grooming routine, but remember to be extra gentle. Older cats may be a little stiffer, and have problems reaching round to groom the fur near the base of their tail. This can also be the case in overweight cats.
Most cats will tolerate some grooming, especially if the routine begins as a kitten. If your cat tends to become agitated, keep sessions very short. Little and often is best, and try to pair a little grooming with a few tasty treats so that they develop good associations with the activity and hopefully become more tolerant with time.
If a cat that has previously tolerated grooming well seems suddenly less obliging, it would be worth bringing them in for a check-up to make sure there is nothing medically wrong. Call us to book an appointment on 01223 359021.
What should be in your grooming kit?
A flea comb is a useful part of your grooming kit, along with a soft brush and/or a grooming glove. Rubber brushes, that feel slightly sticky and draw out loose care, can be handy too.
If you are struggling to remove matted fur, the vet nurses at our practice in Cambridge can help. In some cases if may be better for you bring your cat in to have the mats clipped off.
If you have any further questions on cat grooming, or concerns about your cat please do get in touch.