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Essential Cat Grooming – Teh Basiks

If you’re not familiar with essential things you need to do as part of your cat grooming routine, read on. If you are already confident with the routines on this page, click on the right to investigate Cat Brushing, Bathing and Teeth Cleaning.

U wants to whut???

U wants to whut???

Regular checks

You can make a routine check of your cat part of you grooming routine. At very least, check your cat once a week. If you long-haired cat, you are strongly advised to have daily grooming sessions to prevent matted fur (see Brushing & Bathing Your Cat). You can use your grooming sessions to handle your cat gently, running your hands all over the body. Look for any lumps, bumps, wounds, hidden tangles or fleas. One tell-tale sign of fleas is black flecks of dried blood.

cat flea 1

cat flea flecks

Also look for tics. They look like little round balls or pear-shaped objects, probably a bit shiny, which you’ll find ‘sprouting out’ in amongst the cats’ fur. If your cat seriously hunts outdoors, or you live in a warmer climate, you may be familiar with them by now! They may look pinky-tan coloured, or darker coloured (even blackish). Ticks need special removal – NEVER take hold of a tick and just pull. Tics are little creatures which have a bulbous body, head and specially evolved set of jaws to pierce skin. Once they have attached themselves by piercing through the skin, their jaws then move into a ‘lock on’ position inside the skin. If you simply pull one of, although you might get the bulbous body away, parts of its head and/or jaws can stay embedded firmly underneath the skin. For the same reason NEVER try to burn tics off either. It probably won’t get rid of them all, plus you may traumatise your kitten or cat, or accidentally burn it.  If parts of the tic stay lodged under the skin it can cause infection, which may spread and become systemic, causing serious illness. Never leave a tic to ‘drop off on its own’ either – while its attached to the cat, its possible for it to spread bacteria causing mild to serious illness in the kitty. There are tic removal tools available on the market – ask your vet to recommend one along with a product to disinfect your cat’s skin. Follow the instructions to the letter and clean the affected skin thoroughly with the disinfectant afterwards. Vets routinely remove tics if you ask them to, and if you’re a little  squeamish about, err, nature’s smaller creatures,  this may be for you – once removed, you may witness the tic indignantly waving its legs about.Tic 1

tick 2

Look underneath your cat’s tail – if there are pieces of feces attached to the fur around the rear end, you may want to gently cut off the affected fur with scissors. It’s also a good time to check for tapeworm – a tell tale sign here is little tan nodules the size of rice grains. Cats must be given regular flea control and worming products – ask your vetinarian to recommend the right brand for your moggie.

If you notice at any time:

Ongoing Scratching

Biting at skin and hairs

Swelling under the skin

More shedding of hair than normal

Bald patches in your cats’ coat

= Take your cat to the vet for a diagnosis of what is causing these skin conditions.

IMPORTANT: This article is written for general educational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional vetinary advice on any animals’ health or living needs – if you have any concerns about these, please consult a qualified vet. Thank you.

pickle the cat by amity

No worries. Is jus small tic. Ai gets dem a lot. Why yoo maek dat noize?

Posted by Joe De Bloom (who gets to do all this)

Useful resources

ASPCA [online]. Groom Your Cat

ASPCA  [online]. Pet Grooming FAQ

ASPCA  [online]. Cat Brushing & Skin Care

Cats Protection League [online] Caring For Your Cat

Feline Advisory Bureau (FAB). [online] General Cat Care

Feline Advisory Bureau (FAB). [online] The Itchy Cat – What To Do When It’s Not Fleas.

Feline Advisory Bureau (FAB). [online] Skin Problems In Cats

Feline Advisory Bureau (FAB). [online] Tackling Fleas on Cats.

RSPCA [online]. Handle With Care – Cats

Photo Credits:

Blue eyed cat: Close up tabby cat

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412 Responses to “Essential Cat Grooming – Teh Basiks”

  1. 1
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