No cat wants to be dirty, and it's up to you to ensure that your cat stays clean. Grooming is very important, as it helps your cat remain clean and healthy. Grooming starts with brushing, as brushing helps to keep the cats hair from becoming hairballs. Brushing will remove loose hair, and help prevent the risk of hairballs. A lot of cats have trouble dislodging hairballs. If the cat isn't able to get a hairball out, it could result in a blockage of the intestines. Blockages are very serious, and can quickly become life threatening for your pet.
Cats that have long hair need to be brushed and combed on a daily basis, while cats with short hair need to be groomed on a weekly basis. When you brush your cat, you should always watch for lumps in the coat and skin irritations. You should start brushing along the cat's back, going from his head to his tail. Do this a few times on one side, and then switch to the other. Each area should be brushed a few times in the direction of the way your cat's hair is growing.
When you brush your cat, you should always avoid brushing his face and paws. If a cat doesn't like to be brushed, you can still groom him using another tool. The grooming glove is an excellent alternative to the brush, as most cats don't mind it at all. Starting out young is the key to grooming, as it will get your cat used to brushing and grooming. Some cats that have started grooming when they were kittens grow to love it, many of which often look forward to their grooming time.
When brushing your cat, make sure that you check his ears, eyes, teeth, and claws. His eyes should be bright and clear with nothing residing in the corners. His ears should be clean, pink in color, and no sign of ear mites. Ear mites result from dirt built up in a cat's ears, and can result in the ears shriveling up and your cat losing his hearing. Ear mites are very annoying for the cat, and hard for you as an owner to get rid of. The best way to get rid of them - is to ensure that your cat's ears stay clean and healthy.
Each time you groom your cat, you should always aim to go a bit further with your examinations. When your cat remains still, you should always praise him and give him a treat. If your cat doesn't cooperate and starts to struggle, you shouldn't fight with him, but instead let him go and try the next day. Once your cat gets used to grooming he will look forward to it each and every day.
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