Thursday, January 19, 2012

Just One More

I've been on a short hair grooming kick recently. Let me do just one more post and then we'll see some long haired kitties. Promise! In fact, originally I planned today's post to be a cute story about a very fluffy Maine Coon mix, but I forgot to take pictures that day and the pictures from her previous groom didn't do her justice. Hard to tell a cute story about a sweet, cuddly cat when the only pictures I have are from a day when she was cranky!

Anyway, this is the story about a middle aged domestic shorthair that came in for his first grooming a couple of months ago. His owner had stopped by for our Open House and we got to talking. She told me her cat had never been groomed, she'd never really thought about it. But, come to think of it, he did seem to shed a lot, and she didn't really like that, but it's part of having a cat, right?

so very worried!

Again, I can't recall this cat's name, but he was very sweet and very nervous about new things. Everything that we did was scary. On the table for a nail trim? ::worry:: Walk over to the tub? ::worry:: Turn on the water and lather up? ::worry:: It was really cute, mainly because of how expressive he was. Just look at his face! 

kinda icky and needing a bath

What I loved most about this cat is that no matter how worried he was, once things happened, he relaxed and accepted them. Sure, he was concerned about me touching his feet, but once he realized it was just a nail trim and nothing bad was happening, he calmed right down and even offered me his paws, one at a time. Turning on the water and getting wet seemed scary at first, but after a minute he started to enjoy being shampooed. A very rational cat! I love it.

hair removed with my hands prior to bathing

The above picture is the amount of hair I removed from him before grooming him. I just ran my hands over his coat - no combing or brushing. Yep! I'd say he has a shedding problem! That's a lot of hair to be sitting on the surface of a cat - and that's the hair that's getting all over the house. Yuck. I was impressed, and took a picture to show his mom.

so handsome!

Now, despite how very worried this cat was for each step of the grooming process, there was one thing that he loved. Loved from the minute I started and never had any conern over. And that was the deshedding tool. It's hooked to my vac system, and though it's fairly quiet, I figured he'd worry over it at first, like he had everything else. I was wrong.

things that are hard to do:
taking a picture of a cat headbutting
a Rake 'n Vac
While using said tool

I <3 you!

It was really hard to get a picture of him doing it, but he adored the Rake 'n Vac. He headbutted it, rubbed up against it, flopped on his side and purred. It was so cute! Since it was the final part of his groom, we got to end on a good note. He got to go home to his owner, who was thrilled at how well her worried little cat had done and was surprised to hear how much he loved his shedding treatment! 

I was never *really* worried!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

"Just" a Shorthair Cat

One of things I hear all the time is, "I have just a shorthair cat. What grooming could they need!" Now, I could tell you all day long about why short haired cats need to have a little help taking care of their skin and hair. And of course, recently there was this post about common problems people have with their shorthaired kitties. But then I found a series of pictures of a very pretty little Snowshoe that came to me for some much needed help.

beginnings of a 'turtle shell'
(matted hair on the back that resembles - you guess it - a hard shell)

look at those clumps!
not an attractive look - or feel

Now, this looks pretty ugly. She has clumps of dead hair tangled into her coat and cemented in place with naturally occurring body oils and saliva, plus everyday dust and debris to really hold it all together. When she licks herself, she pushes loose, shedding hair along her body, adding fresh material to the clumps, making them larger. 

No matter how often she licks at herself, this cat will never be able to remove those clumps - she'll only be able to make them larger, tighter and harder. At some point, many cats will scratch or bite at themselves and can sometimes rip the mats out of their skin. This is painful and leaves angry red patches of hairless skin. Not pleasant for kitty! Although some cats will just suffer quietly, unable or unwilling to pull their hair out. 

45 minutes later...

Happily for this cat, the clumps were rather loosely attached to the living coat, which made removal much, much easier. In fact, she didn't mind having them removed at all. After they were off she twitched her back a bit, as if luxuriating in the sudden freedom she had. 

sleek and smooth,
all the clumps, dead hair and excess oils removed
leaving a plush, healthy coat 

one last look
I wish you could feel the difference!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

New Year's Day

Ok, I missed a Christmas post. I'm sorry! The combination of some personal loss plus the fact that I couldn't get anyone to pose with my little Christmas tree, rounded out with being really super tired...well, not a great combo for doing anything extra, ya know?

Anyway, I have a little story for you. New Year's Day. My house hasn't been cleaned in weeks. My husband calls me downstairs. Apparently I have to neaten up the living room. Especially the sofa. Like, right now.

It's untidy, sure, but it can wait, right?

do you see it???

How about now?

Kitty paws!

Yup, little Crack paws! She was snuggled up under the blanket and sleeping it off. Obviously she had a wild New Year's Eve! Love my little cat. I hope you all are lovin' your little cats, too! I'm looking forward to a new year of grooming - and loving - your cats too!