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Long hair tips - matting - (plus gravol question...)

Good grooming practices are essential for maintaining health and happiness for you and your cat. This is a forum to exchange tips and advice for proper care of your cat's hygiene needs.

  
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Simon & Tony

Clinic Cats
 
 
Purred: Fri Mar 2, '12 1:34am PST 
Ok, I am looking for some tips for cats that easily mat!! This is for a family friend of mine. Every time I go to their place their cat has so many matts, the owner knows they are there and seems to know that they are uncomfortable but isn't able/willing to keep up with it. So first of all I am looking for tips, brushes, detangling sprays? anything that might help them.

They do a lion cut for their cat approximately twice a year (now - after i convinced for them to do it the first time). I don't like that they have to do that because it is an outdoor cat (i didn't know this when i recommended it). Every time they bring him in to the groomer, the groomer says how bad it is and how bad of an owner they are, so they didn't want to have to go through that again.
They asked me to do it this time, and I accepted.

Lets just say this cat is thoroughly matted... I have half shaved him but it takes so long because he is in pain and hissing/scratching because of it. I will be continuing tomorrow. Which comes to my second question, they are wanting to use gravol to calm him down, I have never used gravol before and I was wondering details of it. I read that it is 12.5mg is the cat recommendation dose. but does it matter what kind of tablet we use? Also we tried to give a bit today and he was foaming at the mouth for a few minutes afterward, is that normal? I know some medications do that. it was childrens 15mg (not the full tablet) and cherry flavour.

Any alternative recommendations?

first pic

second pic


thanks

Edited by author Fri Mar 2, '12 1:41am PST

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Flossie!

40% fur 60%- attitude
 
 
Purred: Fri Mar 2, '12 7:32pm PST 
He's so fluffy and cute! Do they give him any kind of regular grooming aside from the trip to the groomers? Is he an old fellow? That coat is definitely more than 1 cat can handle solo! A dematting brush could help. It consists of flat curved pieces of metal that are about the same shape as a cats claws. The thick part at the top has a blade on the inside edge that is protected from cutting kitty's skin by the lower pointier part that also pulls the mat away from their skin. These brushes rule! The only problem is they are a long term fix, You would have to work away at them daily (preferably during a lap nap, and with a special grooming treat at hand ready for when he gets fed up smile )

Edited by author Fri Mar 2, '12 7:48pm PST

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Simon & Tony

Clinic Cats
 
 
Purred: Sat Mar 3, '12 2:26am PST 
Thanks so much for the suggestion Flossie! Do you mind posting a link of one that you are talking about? She may have one to a similar description but I an not positive.

We finished up his lion cut tonight, we took our time and let him take a little break every time he got mad. Gave him food while we were shaving which helped a lot! I am definitely not an expert at this and since this is my first time ever shaving a cat I'd say it went pretty well. He wouldn't let me get between his back legs unfortunately, I did most of my shaving just with him standing there to make it less stressful for him.

Lion cut (please excuse the hairy chair, mol)

The owner definitely is more understanding now that she has been there for the process, that it is important to help dematt him since it is so painful, and also so stressful to shave off! I don't believe she has been grooming him very much, maybe once in a blue moon but its hard to say. She is going to 'try' groom him 1-3 times a week from now on... (I know daily is best though...) I don't see them very often otherwise I'd help them out too.

Definitely open to any recommendations I can pass along to them, anything that I can suggest to them to help keep this kitty from painful matts.
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Simon & Tony

Clinic Cats
 
 
Purred: Sat Mar 3, '12 2:28am PST 
Oh and he is 4 years old.
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Bumpurr

RESPECT The- Star!
 
 
Purred: Sat Mar 3, '12 3:34pm PST 
I never heard of gravol, unless its know, by another name. One should really not be giving any over the counter anything, without checking with their vet, unless, they know what they are doing. When was the last time, the kitty was at the vets? If not recently, he could possibly have heart issues. Meds given to a normal kitty, could kill a heart kitty. My overly pickey opinion, mol. laugh out loud

The kitty looks like he is ragdoll, or has alot of ragdoll in him. Their coats are very long, and very thick. The owner is going to have, to commit, to combing him out, daily. If she isn't, he is just going to suffer, with mats. She needs to either do this, or find him a home, that will comb him out.

Walk up to her, pull her hair hard. When she says ow, tell her, thats exactly what it feels like to him, when he has mats, only its constant.

Its not up to you, to shave him all the time, its her cat, its her responsibility, to take care of him, and being that he is long haired, he needs to be combed out, not brushed.

Glad you are trying to help her, hope she listens, irks the heckola out of me, mol, when people get long haired kitties, then don't want to comb them out, to prevent matts. Mine don't have mats, they cannot have them, they are show kitties, they get combed out every day, they can't show up, at a show, with a lion cut, or huge chunks cut out of their fur, mol, mol, mol. waveway to gohug
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Simon & Tony

Clinic Cats
 
 
Purred: Sun Mar 4, '12 2:07am PST 
Bumpurr, I know just what you mean (drives me nuts too). Every time I go to her place I sit there petting the cat, and inwardly crying for him knowing how much pain he is in... Unfortunately in my situation I can't be rude to her and say that she doesn't deserve to have this cat if she doesn't spend time brushing him everyday. She loves him very much and I can see that... But under the circumstances I don't feel right telling her off.

I have pushed her to brush and comb more, to cut the fur before it gets to the point where it mats a lot, to cut the fur short more often so that it does not need a lion cut every time and since it is so painful just to shave off the mats.

Although I do not have experience with long haired cats so I don't know if there is any other tricks to the trade out there.

About the gravol (the medical ingredient is the same as one in the veterinary world of medicine, some vets recommend it occasionally). I was not a big fan of giving it, and I let them know that I didn't recommend it and that I was against it. I am a vet assistant so I made sure the dose was right, but I know that cats react to these medications different sometimes and the fact that there is a big selection of different types/flavors of gravol out there I was not confident in picking one out... We used it, he did not have any adverse reactions to it (except hating it, trying to spit it out and frothing at the mouth for 5 minutes confused - I know some meds do that though), but we didn't notice it taking much effect either. Anyways its done now... so next time I hope to find a safer alternative.

.......

That's awesome that you guys are show cats!! I admire people who are able to keep their pets perfectly groomed. I admit that it must be hard to keep up with the long haired grooming...

Thanks for posting your advice smile
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Bumpurr

RESPECT The- Star!
 
 
Purred: Mon Mar 5, '12 4:03am PST 
Been thinking about your friends cat. What does she feed, and do you consider, the kitty is over weight?

Diet can contribute to kitties having poor coat, dry skin and matting. I have one, that never really took to showing, she more like tolerated it, did what she was supposed to do, but she wasn't really happy about it. She used to matt bad all the time, even with constant combing. At that time, I fed a grocery store food, that was full of grains, glutens and by products. Bump's issues, dictated switching to a grain free, gluten free, by product free foodie. She no longer matts up like she used to.

With long haired kitties, the problem areas are under their little underarms, and their britches. If the kitty is matting on his back and sides , which is what she used to do, its the diet, and if the kitty is overweight, they can't groom theirselfs properly, hence, they get matts.

Bump and the kittens love to show, and for grooming, we make it a game, they get treaties before and after they are combed out, I make it a positive experience. waveway to gohug
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Simon & Tony

Clinic Cats
 
 
Purred: Mon Mar 5, '12 9:54am PST 
Now that you mention it, I think she might be feeding a grocery store brand. I've mentioned to her that she should get grain free before, but I'm not sure she trusts my opinion on that... (Maybe you know the type?!).

I wouldn't say he is too overweight, he does have a bit of a mouse pouch hanging down though, mol. I wouldn't say that he is overweight that it would effect how he cleans himself.

And, Wow, I have never thought of that! I know that a good diet can help make the fur strong and healthy but I never thought about how that could help prevent mats?! That is definitely an interesting concept.

Maybe I'll try bring it up diet options with them again.
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Smokey

I\\\'m A Dallas- Cowboy Fan Too!
 
 
Purred: Mon Mar 5, '12 2:38pm PST 
I highly highly recommend Blue Wilderness, its grain free, gluten free, by product free, and for Bump, low in salt. Their fur is soft and shiney, they are bright and alert, even the judges comment on it, that they look very healthy. They run thru the house, at warp speed like crazy boys, mol.

I haunt the Blue Buffalo board, long story, alot alot of people, both cat people and dog people, say the same thing, about Blue Wilderness. Took me a long time, but got one of my show friends, to stop feeding the "Roy Rogers" food, from Walmart. She even says the same thing, about her cats and dogs.

Smokey no longer matts, and she is real happy, she don;t have to go to shows anymore, mol, she would "tell" the judges, hurry up and judge me, so I can go back in my cage, and take my nappys. In her bench cage, she didn't want to be bothered, in between classes. She would "tell" me, can we go home now, ma?

This is her.

Yes mam, I know the type, ask me at work all the time, I am the resident go to cat person, I tell them, and its always too much trouble, then they will ask me the exact same thing, months later. I stopped getting upset about it, I give them the information, and its up to them. My father used to tell me, ya can't fix every situation, and ya can't take them all in, just be glad you have yours, and know they are well cared for.

waveway to gohug
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Simon & Tony

Clinic Cats
 
 
Purred: Tue Mar 6, '12 9:49am PST 
Yes, I used to feed my dogs and cats blue wilderness, acana, orijen, I gave taste of the wild for Stewie for a bit too. I have now switched over to raw and all of my pets are doing awesome. I will definitely recommend to her to try out a grain free diet.

That reminds me of someone else I know, lol. Her dog has serious food allergies, he'd get hot spots all the time, he itched and bit himself till he was bleeding all over. As soon as I heard the first hotspot I recommended to her to switch the dog over to grainfree, she didn't want to because it was expensive. After going to the vet and trying the hypo allergenic diets they have and spending a good few thousand on food, medication, taking him to the dermatologist. The dermatologist told them to start with one meat and go meat by meat until they found a diet that worked, well I guess that was too much work for them so they did a grain free diet and he is totally fine now. lol, sometimes I wish people would listen when you recommend something. naughty

So you guys got mats before feeding grainfree (assuming there may have been a before)? and now that you've switched you don't seem to get them anymore, or as much?

Such an interesting concept!! I think it would be awesome if I could get this cat on a healthier diet as well as help prevent matting. (kill too birds with one stone - so to speak... )
I definitely should have considered this but it didn't even cross my mind.
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