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Grooming a Cat

Taking care of your cat's hair, teeth, nails, and face will keep your pet happy and healthy. Here's how.

The Martha Stewart Show, March 2006

Proper grooming of your cat provides benefits to both your pet and your home. Although there are numerous varieties of felines, the rules for caring for them are very much the same: brushing hair and teeth, clipping nails, and washing your pet's face. Following these simple routines will ensure your cat is at its happiest and healthiest.

To have your pet enjoy being brushed, make sure you use a comb or brush with rotating, wide Teflon-coated teeth. To groom sensitive areas, such as the face, ears, and throat, use a fine-tooth comb. These tools will allow you to glide through the cat's hair without any painful tugging.

If your cat has knots or mats, gently work them out with your fingers. If that doesn't work, take your cat to a professional groomer who will shave the matted or knotty area. The fine hair behind the ears and under the throat is very prone to matting.

Brush your cat to remove all loose hair before bathing it. To maximize glossiness after brushing, use a fine-bristle brush to do one last pass through your cat's coat (you can go against the fur and with the nap of it). Once a week, sprinkle some grooming powder on the body of long-haired cats to create a fluffy look and help prevent matting. You could also use a rubber massaging tool called the Zoom Groom that gently massages your cat while removing loose hairs.

Long-haired cats like Persians benefit from daily brushing or combing, which prevents hair from matting. Brush short-haired cats less often. Routine brushing benefits the cat's coat and will keep cat hair from collecting in the corners of your home.

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