When it comes to grooming, having a cat that enjoys it is a bit hit or miss. Some cats love being brushed and groomed. Others aren’t the biggest fans. Whether they like it or not, cats need grooming. This is especially true for long-haired cats. If you’re new to grooming, we’re here to help. Below, we take a look at 10 tips and tricks that can help you groom your long-haired kitty and make the experience more manageable. Take a look so you can help your kitty’s fur look its best.
The 10 Tips & Tricks to Groom Long-Haired Cats
1. Get to Know Your Cat’s Hair
Just like us, not every long-haired cat is the same. Perhaps your cat’s fur is prone to matting. Then again, your cat could have dry skin. Maybe your cat is a clean freak or they may struggle when it comes to bathing. Either way, you must understand your cat’s individual needs before you start your grooming regimen.
2. Understand Shedding
Once you get to know your cat’s fur type, then you’ll be able to understand their shedding routines better. Long-haired cats have two coat types. One is a thinner coat they sport in the summer. The other is a fluffy, thick coat that comes in when the weather begins to change for the cooler months. When this thicker coat sheds for summer wear is when you’ll find that your cat sheds the most. This allows them to get rid of the thick coat so they aren’t so hot in the winter. When this happens, you may need to up your grooming game.
3. Create a Grooming Schedule
Cats like a routine. This applies to feeding schedules, nap times, and even grooming. If you plan on brushing your cat daily, do it at the same time. If once or twice a week is your plan, then choose the days and times that work best for you and your cat. Try not to let grooming interfere with your cat’s normal feeding or nap time. The last thing you want is to disrupt your cat’s life.
4. Try to Make Things Stress Free
Cats aren’t fans of change or new situations. If you’re creating a grooming schedule, and your cat is new to it, they may stress a bit. It’s important to do everything you can to reduce their stress. Try to make grooming a bonding experience. Talk softly to them while you do it to offer them comfort. You can also take care of grooming in an area of the house where your kitty feels the most comfortable. Afterward, offer them a treat to show them they’ve done a great job.
5. Gather the Right Tools
There are several different grooming tools you’ll need for a long-haired cat. Some they will like. Others not so much. Soft bristle brushes are ideal for kitties. They aren’t damaging to the skin and can remove the loose hair needed. You will also need a comb or de-matting brush according to how prone your kitty is for mats and tangles. Grooming gloves are also a tool your cat may enjoy as it gets the job done while mimicking good petting from you.
6. Always be Gentle
Keep in mind that your cat is smaller than you in size. You may think you aren’t applying a lot of pressure, but it could be enough to hurt them. Always be gentle when brushing or combing your kitty, especially if their hair feels a bit matted and needs special attention. The last thing you want is to make your cat hate grooming sessions.
7. Baths Can be Tricky
Most people try to avoid giving cats baths due to their dislike of water. Not every cat feels this way, however. While your cat may be great at bathing themselves, from time to time, you may want to step in and help them. If you decide to bathe your kitty, make sure the water temperature is comfortable. You also want to use a shampoo specifically designed for cats. For good grooming afterward, ensure the shampoo and any conditioners you may use are completely rinsed away.
8. Stay Mindful of Your Cat’s Diet
You may not realize it but your cat’s diet plays a huge role in their overall health, including their fur. Proper nutrients can keep your cat’s fur shiny and healthy. Stick to cat food that offers complete nutrition, is right for your cat’s age level, and potentially includes omega fatty acids as they are great for coat and skin maintenance.
9. Be Prepared for Mats
Unfortunately, matted hair is a part of life with a long-haired kitty. If you groom your kitty daily, or several times a week you may potentially avoid these. Still, if your kitty gets into something or you’re unable to groom for a few days, you may find they are a bit tangled. Yes, there are de-matting tools but you must be extremely careful when using them. If the tangle or mat is bad enough, it may require being cut out or shaved. If you don’t feel comfortable with this task, reach out to a professional groomer or veterinarian for assistance.
10. Keep Everything Clean
You may not expect it, but when you groom your kitty, quite a bit of hair is going to be left behind. You and your family don’t want to deal with large tufts of hair on your clothes. Each time you groom your cat make sure to thoroughly clean up after yourselves. Vacuum or sweep up all hair and clean all your tools properly. This will keep all members of the house clean and healthy.
If you’re the loving pet parent of a long-haired cat, these 10 tips and tricks can help you prepare for the task of grooming. In no time, you’ll feel like a grooming expert. Your cat, and everyone in your home, will be thankful that you have the know-how to keep cat hair well-kept and at bay. Always remember, when it comes to grooming your long-haired kitty, being gentle and keeping them calm are the most important things. If you do that, your cat will learn to love grooming and appreciate the connection you’ll share.
Featured Image Credit: ANURAK PONGPATIMET, Shutterstock
- The 10 Tips & Tricks to Groom Long-Haired Cats