When I was a little girl I had an ancient book called "Scat, Scat" by Sally R. Francis. By ancient, I mean the copywrite is 1936...and I had to convert that from Roman numerals. (Goodreads shows a different book than what I have.) I still have the book and pulled it out just to write this. Anyway, the reason I mention all that is because yesterday I groomed a cat named Scat, and I always think of this book. And there's a story. I mean, there's always a story, right?
Last week this guy calls me and leaves this message: The cat where I work needs to be groomed. It lays on my desk and sheds. It gets cat hair and cat grease and dander all over my papers. It's really gross. I need you to fix it, I'll even pay you. (emphasis mine)
Ok, so that guy was my husband, who clearly has no idea how our JOINT bank account works (it's mine, all mine, bwhahahahaha!) but obviously, the man was desperate to have his desk cat groomed. I agreed, since that's the kind of person I am.
Meet Scat! She's an older Domestic Shorthair.
I've known her since she was a stray kitten living on a small mule farm where we occasionally mule-sat.
Greasy. Shedding. Look at all that already-shed hair just sitting on her!
Yup, she needs me.
When I picked her up, I was told that "Scat doesn't need to be groomed.
If she's shedding, WE can comb her." Then I was warned that Scat wasn't a sweet little kitty that would just lie there and let me do stuff to her. She'd probably scratch me, bite me and burn down my house. Or something to that effect.
Scat was a little nervous, so I started just by combing and letting her get used to me.
She had so much come out, I could have made another cat!
So I did.
Then Scat Cat got a bath. No panic, no fuss, just bubbles and suds.
Since I wasn't at "work" where my Catty Shack Vac is, I decided to place her inside my cloth and mesh carrier to try and contain some of the hair. I got this idea from another great Canadian CFMG, Sally Staples of West Coast Sassy Cats. Thanks, Sally!
Once most of the hair had blown out and I knew Scat was comfortable being hand dried, I took her out and let her cuddle on my lap to finish drying.
Then I combed her out some more. This is about 3/4 of all coat I removed from Scat both before and after her bath. Not shown is the hair removed during bathtime or blown out during drying.
If I had more room, I would have done something with the other pile of hair. (The table shown is 30"x 32")
"Hey, this used to be ON me."
"Now it's not..."
"This is MINE"
Cats are so weird.
"Don't judge me. I saw what you did with that hair!"
She might look a little grumpy, but mostly she was just tired
of me trying to get her attention for pictures.
Look at how nice and shiny! No more loose, dead hair just floating on top.
Now she can go back to hanging out on the husband's desk. He's a cat snob and truly enjoys a well groomed cat. (I've created a monster!)
Despite all the warnings, Scat didn't once panic, scratch, bite or try to rip my face off. She wasn't scared or stressed out at all. She enjoyed snuggling with me while I worked and purred and purred. Husband tells me she was very happy to be home and purred loud, lazy happy-cat purrs.
This was the first time Scat had ever been groomed. She must be...8, 9 years old? She was wonderful and enjoyed her kitty spa day. Typically, I've found that older cats do just as well for first time grooms as younger cats. Sometimes better, since they had more experience with different situations. I know there are groomers out there (and at least one national chain) that will not take first time cats over 2 years old. Now, that might be a good idea for them, but it's simply not true for groomers that specialize in cats, like say, Certified Feline Master Groomers. If you have an older cat that's been turned away before, don't worry! Find a CFMG. Have a happy, clean cat!