Thursday, July 31, 2008

Kitty tips: brushing your cat's hair

If you have a long haired cat then it is essential that you spend some quality time with your kitty brushing his or her hair. This is for a number of reasons, but perhaps the two most important ones are (1) that you will help to prevent uncomfortable and potentially painful matted knots and (2) this will give you special bonding time with your pet that will help form a unique and life long bond!

Here are five easy steps to successful cat-hair brushing:
(1) Get a special cat brush. It is advisable to get a special brush from a vet or pet shop rather than any old brush because you want one that will be soft enough for comfort yet fine enough to brush out dirt and potential knots. Speak to your local vet nurse or pet shop owner about your specific cat to find out which brush is best.

(2) Start slow. Introducing brushing can result in scratches, bites and bad tempers so wait until kitty is sitting with you and purring (petting and scratching works wonders!) and then brush lightly in long slow strokes down his back. If he doesn't like it, let him get up. Repeat this process whenever you get the chance.

(3) Clean your cat brush after every use. Cat hair and dirt will clog the brush bristles up and will make brushing uncomfortable or redundant. Simply pull out the hair after each brush and, if recommended for your type of brush, clean with warm soapy water. Be sure to rinse properly every time!

(4) When brushing, watch your cat's reactions. Cats are very private animals and do not like to be touched too much. They will let you know if you are upsetting them or going into a private zone. Tail flicks, halted purring and the obvious biting, scratching and kicking are good indicators.

(5) Finally, you should let your kitty get up when he wants to. Don't hold him against his will because he will resent being brushed. Eventually you'll find that he won't mind it so much and might even look forward to a little tickle and brush every now and then!