Grooming your cat offers lots of benefits that are also detrimental to their health, grooming provides a whole lot more than just standard brushing for style or providing a clean-smelling coat; there are a number of health benefits including features and functions that are so important such as those tools and pet shampoos and conditioners that reduce redness and itching and others that combat Fleas and Ticks among other Pesticides and others that remove knots, mats and entanglements in their hair. Let's start off by providing a synopsis on the various types of Grooming Tools before we start talking about Shampoos and Conditioners.
Grooming Tools range from Scissors to Brushes, De-Shedding Combs and combs that vary in bristle tone from hard to soft - and Nail-Clippers and even Nail-filers that are both electronic and those that are manual. Cats are known to have very sensitive skin that is very thin and delicate and without having the right tools grooming time can turn into excruciating time and in-turn become harder and tougher to groom due to their experience during grooms. The same applies to when we're forced to brush their teeth during dog dental care time, they'll make it harder for owners if this isn't a time they look forward to therefore it's essential to always head caution and make sure we're taking the right procedures and taking their comfort into consideration during care. Let's go through the various types of Grooming Tools so we can see what best works and does the job properly.
Cat and Dog Slicker Brushes are very thin flexible-like needles that are engineered to get in-between their fur to remove any and all loose hairs and yucky dirt that are located between their coats, they range in bristle length depending on the length of their hair and their hair cut styles. Most Slicker Brushes feature a release button mechanism above the bristle ares and below the handle, this automatically releases hair and makes it convenient to dispose of in a matter of seconds (When we say Coats we're referring to their fur coats and not actual dog coats duh).
Rubber Brushes and those made of Silicone Material are extremely popular and are used on dry coats and wet coats during bathing. They're softer and easier which means they're easier on their sensitive cat skin and are actually comfortable and provide a nice massage making it really enjoyable. Rubber brushes are available in many molds and types and they offer flexible little points that are usually not as deep and meant to remove any shedded hairs at the top of their fur coating.
Bristle Brushes are very soft and most of use own one on our homes, they're softer and easier on cats as opposed to rakes and metal de-shedding combs with pointy edges that if not used right can puncture their skin. Bristle brushes are known to be safer alternative to many other brushes and they're great for styling and great when used either before or after bathing.
Bristles found on hair brushes and similar to those on toothbrushes, they're more effective when used on dry hairs that are softer than hair that is wet and since bristles are very flexible and softer than pin or slicker brushes they're not so long in bristle length therefore they're meant to tackle the top portion of their exterior coats and provide moderate capabilities in removing hairs that shed but as mentioned above they're great when styling.
Cat and Dog De-matting brushes or Rakes:
De-matting combs are very similar to rakes and provide the same benefits however are a clear matter of preference. Some say rake combs work better than those wider de-shedding combs. Both options are harder in structure and are usually composed of metal blades, rakes are less rigid than de-matting combs which vary in width.
Now it's important to note that there are two different types of de-matting combs, there are stripping combs that are very short in length and are meant to remove hairs trapped on the surface of their coats very effectively and then there are elongated metal undercoat rakes which are different then curves rakes. Quite frankly Rakes that are curved in shape should be different than those that are under-coat rakes that are totally different in design although similar in function. Undercoat rates are elongated non-flexible bristles that aren't pointy but are still considered to be sharp and can effectively hurt your cat such as curved rakes when applied to their coats.
As the name implies undercoat rakes are designed to get close to their skin, they remove all the loose hairs embedded deep and closest to their skin. The problem that many encounter when using these rakes are how tough and durable they are and in-effect damaging they can be when coming in contact with the cats sensitive skin. Cat's and Kittens find it unpleasant when not used correctly and require a separation between their skin and their hair such as making sure to place your hand between the hair and skin when brushing. Puncturing or bruising of their skin can turn into itchiness, redness and bleeding which can cause so many issues and turn this time into something they fear going through. The idea is to make grooming a pleasant activity.
Nail Clippers and Scissors:
Nail Clippers are designed to clip nails through standard clipping mechanisms and there are also clippers designed as scissors that clip nails just as well and many provide barriers or methods or ways of making sure not to cut too close to their nail beds which can be painful and cause bleeding especially with dogs. Cats claws are typically sharp and they also need to be sanded down or filed properly to eliminate edges due to clipping and some can completely replace their nail clippers with nail sanding devices as they're typically safer than clippers without any sharp edges, the drawback is that it just takes a bit more time but definitely worth it. There are nail filers that are mechanical and those that are automatic, automatic nail filers are more expensive however file nails faster and easier and some even feature built-in flashlights and magnifying glasses so you can see their little claws clearer especially important with those cats that shake or are nervous.
Cat and Dog Shampoos and Conditioners:
Cat Shampoos and Conditioners are developed with ingredients that are sometimes different than those used in puppy and dog shampoos while most are great for all breed types and life stages among both creeds. Dog Shampoos are available in a mixture of health benefits, fragrances and textures that are designed for all types of hairs. Pet Shampoos and Conditioners and even De-tangle sprays are meant to correct problems and issues that grooming tools and Flea and Tick collars and sprays can't tackle properly and in many cases shampoos are required to speed up recovery from bruises and help remove bacteria and pesticides entrapped in hairs.
Shampoos for dogs and cats are also very important to help relax and smooth out hairs in preparation for brushing or cutting which is very important as cats have knots and mats in their hair when cut is very painful and that's where Pet Conditioners come into play, conditioners are known to make hair silkier and smoother or softer and thinner so it's easier to get out those knots and mats.
Now lets talk about that various types of Shampoos that exist.
Fragrance Pet Shampoos:
Fragrant Shampoos or those that smell delicious are available in a wide-spectrum of fragrances. Some shampoos even provide calming properties such as those with Chamomile, Lavender, Eucalyptus and Rosemary and even menthol however they're also available in many more fun fragrances such as Cherry, Apple, Blueberry - you name it and it's available.
Natural Pet Shampoos:
Natural Shampoos for Dogs and Cats are always an exceptional choice and a holistic approach as fragrances that aren't natural are known to use chemicals that aren't the best of choices especially when ingested. Natural Pet Shampoos that are derived and extracted directly from plants without anything added to enhance smell and some natural fragrances are more than sufficient. Not only are Natural Shampoos great because they smell great however they also provide natural healing and bacterial fighting benefits as well such as Oatmeal and Aloe Vera shampoos. Natural Shampoos like most pet shampoos are Non-Toxic and some natural ingredients help boost calming and make bathing more enjoyable.
Aloe Vera gel is mostly used among humans as a topical ointment to help alleviate symptoms and mostly in a gel form, itching and pain for scratches and skin burns due to sun or heat, Aloe Vera is rich in vitamin E and when in liquid over gel form is quite effective on both cats and dogs in providing cooling relief and assist with removing and healing skin bacterial issues that can cause infections especially with cats that have very sensitive and thin layers of skin. Sometimes its difficult to visually see those scratches and burns therefore allowing them to lather in this good stuff can always help if you see any display of discomfort due to irritation. Aloe Vera is also great for repelling bugs and insects off their coats. Oatmeal Dog Shampoos are also great when used for cats as they naturally assist with alleviation of symptoms that have to do with scratching - they're like all-natural remedies and miracle workers and are completely safe and some are further Human-Grade, Grain and GMO-Free (Yes it's a thing) among so many added benefits and that is why Oatmeal is time and time again the most popular option around. Oatmeal is also known to help alleviate dandruff naturally and so are some menthol based shampoos.
Due to cats surroundings, living conditions and foods they eat, many cats and kittens are known to develop allergies to booth certain foods and their skin and in severe cases pets can develop allergies simply by breathing in chemicals or natural ingredients that their receptors in their brains pick up, sometimes allergies are emotional and sometimes allergies cause natural internal and external skin reactions. Hypo-Allergenic shampoos are free from any and all allergies such as preventing any adverse skin reactions due to the lack of chemicals or chemicals that are safer. There are no perfect Hypo-allergenic shampoos that exist since the FDA doesn't regulate shampoos for dogs as they do for those that are produced cosmetically therefore it's important to always read the ingredients first and establish which skin reactions your dog or cat has with your licensed veterinarian. Try to find those that are vet approved at the least and see what others have to say first. Skin reactions can be anywhere from moderate to deadly.
Medicated Dog and Cat Shampoos and Conditioners:
Medicated Shampoos and Conditioners are known to be quicker acting since they're Medically created with added chemicals and some features larger portions of all-natural ingredients. Medicated pet shampoos get to the source for those animals and pets with more severe and emergency cases of Fleas and Ticks including those with severe burns, allergies and hair loss and related dandruff issues.
Cat and Dog De-tangling Sprays:
De-tangling sprays for dogs and cats are meant to tackle one issue and that is alleviation of hairs associated with entanglements such as knots and mats. They're highly effective and popular among many pet owners and not just cats and that's simply because most of us don't have the time to completely bathe or shower their pets in order to break up those divides in their hair therefore it's a useful need and something good to keep handy.
In addition to the above Cat Detangler sprays are also very important for certain cats and even dogs that have curly hair since it's harder to brush. Detangler sprays for cats straighten out their hairs and making brushing a breeze and especially when using a pin-brush or a harder brush such as a rake that is devised to get deep into their roots a few sprays and that's all that's usually needed.
Waterless Grooming Sprays and Wipes (Including Pet Colognes)
Waterless Grooming Sprays and dog and cat wipes are highly effective in that they provide a need without the hassle of showering and bathing their pets constantly. They're also great for those that need to extend their bathing schedules due to their work regimen or hectic and busy schedules especially those that have their hands full bathing their kids and grand kids or for those that just need a damn break every once in a while. Waterless grooming sprays are great in that they provide a nice fragrance and in many cases are considered to even function as a Pet colognes. Waterless grooming sprays like shampoos and conditioners offer a variety of selling features and benefits such as those that are all natural and hypo-allergenic.
Last but not least lets briefly talk about pet wipes, there are countless of cat and dog wipes that are available that range from Hypo-allergenic to Tearless Wipes designed to be alcohol free and great for rubbing around the eye areas in removing tear stains, to fragrance wipes for a quick wipe down and cleaning while providing fresh bursts of delicious smells to unscented wipes that are free of all chemicals such as those that are all natural. There are even calming wipes made with calming fragrances that are also all-natural. The options available are countless and most wipes are universal among all animals and many are also human grade especially those that are all-natural.