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    Choosing a Professional Cat Groomer

    Choosing a Professional Cat Groomer

    For a cat, a pet spa or a grooming salon can be a noisy and very stressful environment. Therefore, it's important to do your homework to find out what exactly your cat is going to be exposed to in the grooming area, out of sight of the front desk. It is important to be able to speak to the grooming professional personally. You need to make sure the groomer is someone who will listen to your requests, who will make recommendations that will improve the health and well-being of your pet, and, most importantly, will talk to and reassure your pet during the grooming process. Don't be shy about asking to see the grooming area. Inquire about what services are included and what are considered extras. Ask about what type of products are used and inquire about dryers. If your cat is scared of handheld dryers, only consider a salon that uses cage dryers.

    Avoid salons that require all pets to be checked in early in the morning and then left to wait their turn in the noisy holding area. Instead, seek out a salon that works by appointment only. The best way to find a groomer who specializes in cats, or, if possible, a cats-only groomer, is to ask your veterinarian or inquire at your local pet boutique. Cat shows are another great source of local information. And, as with human stylists, personal recommendations are often the best. During a typical professional grooming session, the groomer will trim your cat's nails and dewclaws, clean her ears with an antiseptic cleaner, and clean her teeth using a brush or a dental cleaning tip that fits over the groomer's finger. After these basics, the groomer will thoroughly brush the coat and remove any mats using a deshedding tool. A typical bath is from the neck down, and the face is usually wiped with a warm cloth or special pet wipe. Massage services are an extra. Some groomers are trained in basic massage techniques, while others work in conjunction with a pet massage therapist.

    Cat-Friendly Mobile Groomers

    If you are unable to take care of your cat's grooming needs and are not comfortable about sending her to a grooming salon, consider using a mobile grooming service that comes to your front door. Such a service may cost more, but the higher charge will be offset by the fact that you are saving gas and parking costs for two trips (there and back). The biggest saving is the fact that your cat will not be stressed out by the travel ordeal or the salon environment. Once again, look for a personal recommendation or ask for names at your veterinary office. Some services have a feline-only clientele.

    Collars

    Always remove your cat's collar before a proper bath. But remember to replace it afterward. Even if your cat is microchipped, a collar and tag can be a lost cat's fast ticket home when a Good Samaritan finds her and can contact you directly.

    From The Cat Bible, Copyright by Sandy Robins, licensed through ContentOro, Inc and used by arrangement with I-5 Press

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