1. Does my cat need to be shaved?
- Yes, if the cat is long haired with a thick coat which gets matted
- Yes, if the cat is short haired and also has a tendency of mats (often seen in older or larger cats)
- Yes, if the cat’s mats have become pelted (super mats that are thick and hard)
- Yes, if your cat suffers from ‘litter-box cling-ons”
- Yes, if your family suffers from allergies
- Yes, if you are troubled by too much hair around the house
- Yes, if the cat is panting in a summer and trying to find the coolest spot in a house
2. Does it hurt to shave a cat?
Absolutely not-physically. Cats like continuity in their lives and are not fans of change or unusual/unexpected events. Also, the average house cat is not used to the handling involving in being groomed. Many cats do not even allow their trusted humans to brush their bellies, armpits, inner thighs, etc. (cats train their humans very well!) which is often the cause of matting and pelting in these delicate areas. Some do not even allow their humans to trim their nails.
We are well aware that we are crossing many boundaries for the average house cat. We work very hard to make the process as gentle and positive as possible for all involved.
The first grooming is always the hardest for a cat as it is so different from regular routine and they don’t understand what is happening. We always behave from a position of caring and concern and do our utmost to accommodate the needs of the cat we are working with and to create a supportive environment.
3. Does a cat get used to the grooming process?
Your cat’s health and well-being is always and absolutely our first priority. No matter the cat’s attitude during our visit, we are as gentle and supportive of our feline (and human) clients as possible. We are always watching for signs of stress while grooming.
Most cats become used to the handling involved in grooming: some are in a complete peace and some will never be completely happy with the process. It totally depends on the cat’s character, upbringing, and previous experience. Most house cats are not huge fans of the process as it doesn’t happen often enough to become a regular part of their routine, but they like the results-especially if they are suffering from matting/pelting which is always painful.
We ask that an adult that the cat knows and trusts is present while we groom to help us ensure that the cat feels safe and secure. Given our experience, we prepare our human client for typical cat behaviours while being groomed and guide the cat’s human in how best support kitty while being groomed.
When we are finished, 99.8% of cats do not run away from the grooming area or behave in any unusual way. Any exceptions are typically cats that are extremely shy, that were poorly socialized, or that have been roughly treated during a previous grooming.
4. How often should my cat get shaved?
As often as you decide and definitely before mats seriously develop (and mats can grow very quickly!). You have to watch for mats developing in the fur and the amount of shedding hair around your house.
Ultimately, you are the best judge of grooming frequency as long as you understand that matting must be addressed as soon as it is noticed.
5. How should I prepare my house for grooming my cat?
We always work as a team of two for grooming appointments. One persons role is to respectfully and safely hold the cat while the other person performs the grooming. This leaves you free to help us help the cat feel safe and supported.
We come equipped with our tools and a small, portable grooming table. We require a quiet, well-lit area (especially if the cat is matted and/or senior) to work in with an electrical outlet and preferably not carpeted. Most people have us work in their kitchen/dining areas. The process is not messy and we tidy up when we are finished. We do not groom outdoors or in garages and prefer to not work in bathrooms or other confined spaces.
We ask that small children and other pets not have access to the grooming area as we are trying to reduce as much stimulation as possible for the cat. We also request your assistance to make your cat more comfortable while being groomed.
You must bring the cat to the grooming table (unless you are restricted by health conditions). As strangers, we do not chase or pick-up a cat in its own home as this would increase the cat’s stress levels, which we are working hard to avoid. Once the cat is on the grooming table, we take over and your role is to provide emotional support to the cat.
Cats are highly instinctual and will sense and internalize your stress. Do your best to behave as normally as possible prior to our arrival. Please do not send children to ‘get’ the cat as children are typically excited by this and end up chasing the cat around, which raises stress levels. It is also wise to close doors to bedrooms and basements, etc. Struggling to get a cat out from under a bed or behind a furnace does not make for a calm cat.
If you are not able to find the cat or bring your cat to the table for the grooming appointment, there is a call-out charge for our time of 50% of the booked service (per cat).
6. How long does it take?
Grooming for a non-matted/pelted cat is done in about 45 minutes from our arrival to clean-up and our departure. Matting and pelting takes longer to remove, especially for older and/or skinnier cats as cat skin is very thin and gets thinner with age, so great care must be taken.