Cats are known for keeping themselves clean, and you’ve probably noticed that your feline friend spends hours grooming herself. Fortunately, this means that as a cat owner, you don’t have to worry too much about keeping your cat clean. However, there are some ways you can help ensure your cat has a clean, healthy coat and claws too.
By brushing your cat’s coat, you can help minimise the amount of fur they ingest when they are doing their own grooming. Gentle brushing also assists with detangling and even cleanses your cat’s fur. Certain cats require brushing more regularly than others, particularly those with thicker coats that tend to matt.
Most cats aren’t too fond of the idea of being brushed, so when you intend to do so, choose a time when your cat is relaxed – such as after she has eaten or played and run around. Cats are very sensitive and tactile and are more likely to tolerate very gentle brush strokes done in a very short session. By keeping these brushing sessions very short to begin with, you will get her accustomed to the brushing sensation.
When brushing your cat’s fur, make sure to brush in the direction that the cat’s fur naturally lays. For cats with short hair, starting off with a fine-toothed metal comb will help get rid of dead hair and dirt; then moving on to a softer brush will help prevent tangles, hair balls and also helps get rid of loose fur. For cats with longer hair, use a wide tooth brush, followed by a wire brush.
Cats love to use their claws – as any cat parent will tell you – often on prized pieces of furniture! Your cat will never get rid of her instinct to sharpen her claws regularly, which is why it helps to have a scratch pad in your home that she can use. If you find that your cat’s claws are very long and are hurting you or damaging furniture, it could be helpful to take her to the vet for a very minimal trim and filing. Never try to cut your cat’s claws at home!
Unlike dogs, you hardly ever have to worry about bathing your cat. This is very lucky for you – because as most people know, cats hate water! Unfortunately, there may come a time when her ingrained cleaning instincts fall short; such as when she has fallen in mud or rubbish or has gotten very dirty in some other mishap. To keep her smelling clean and looking beautiful, you may need to help her out. Rather than dumping your terrified kitty into a tub full of water, use a facecloth soaked in specially formulated cat shampoo and water and rub her down gently. If she is not too averse to the situation, you can even use a jug to gently pour warm water over her to rinse off.
Keep in mind at all times that cats are very sensitive animals and may respond aggressively to any unsolicited touch. Avoid direct physical contact with their undersides or legs and continuously speak to your cat in soothing tones when you have to help her with her grooming – remember, she thinks she knows best and probably doesn’t understand why you’re interfering!
Make sure you can take your cat to the vet for routine care and treatment for illness or accidents. Sign up for pet insurance with Oneplan Pet today.