well being

What Happens After My Cat is Shaved?

Educating cat owners on the importance of grooming is a crucial aspect of ensuring their pets’ wellbeing. This article aims to provide cat groomers with a resource to help convey essential grooming information to cat owners, focusing on mat removal, post-grooming care, hair regrowth and the benefits of regular grooming sessions.

Understanding the Impact of Mat Removal on Cats

Removing mats from a cat’s coat is often more than just a cosmetic procedure; it can reveal underlying skin issues such as redness, irritation, bruising and even severe wounds. These issues arise because mats pull and tug on the skin with every movement your cat makes. After these mats are removed, your cat may experience increased sensitivity and, in some cases, wounds may develop days later due to restored sensation.
Post-Grooming Care: Addressing Licking and Behavior Changes

Some cats will excessively lick their skin after mat removal, which can lead to redness and irritation. To prevent this, consider using a cone, E-collar or a small kitty t-shirt to stop them from licking sensitive areas. This behavior should decrease within a few days, once the new sensation has subsided.Additionally, cats may temporarily act aloof or irritable post grooming; however, they typically return to their normal selves within a day. If you notice any concerning symptoms like lethargy or refusal to eat, consult your veterinarian.

Hair Regrowth After Mat Removal

Several factors influence how quickly a cat’s hair will regrow, including:

  • Age and health status
  • Hair type
  • Diet
  • Coat condition
  • Skin condition
  • Season/time of year
  • Method of mat removal

Older cats and those with health issues may experience slower or uneven hair growth. And depending on the hair type, guard hairs will sometimes grow faster than the undercoat. Healthy cats with clean skin and coat tend to regrow hair more quickly, although seasonal changes can affect this process. For some cats, particularly long-haired breeds, full regrowth of both length and density can take up to 18-24 months.

Preventing Future Matting

Preventing mats from forming is key to maintaining your cat’s comfort and health. Regular grooming appointments can address your cat’s specific needs, keeping their coat in optimal condition. The frequency of these appointments varies depending on several factors, including, but not limited to, your cat’s coat type, their behavior during grooming and your grooming goals.

A basic grooming session every four to eight weeks should include:

  • Nail trimming
  • Ear and eye cleaning
  • A warm bath and blow-dry
  • Thorough combing

Additional services such as haircuts, sanitary trims (particularly for long-haired or obese cats), deshedding treatments or nail caps may be recommended based on your cat’s needs and your grooming objectives. These services can influence the grooming schedule, ensuring your cat remains in excellent condition without requiring extensive at-home grooming.

Discussing your cat’s grooming schedule with a professional cat groomer will help you understand the best approach to maintaining their coat’s health and appearance. Regular grooming not only keeps your cat looking their best but also contributes significantly to their overall wellbeing.

As cat groomers, our role extends beyond the grooming table; it involves educating cat owners on the nuances of their pet’s grooming needs and the importance of regular care. By sharing this knowledge, we empower owners to make informed decisions that enhance their cat’s health, comfort and quality of life. Encouraging an open dialogue about grooming practices, health signs to watch for post grooming and the benefits of a consistent grooming schedule can greatly improve the grooming experience for cats and their owners alike.

This article originally appeared on https://digital.groomertogroomer.com/issue/may-2024/what-happens-after-my-cat-is-shaved-a-guide-to-owner-education/ written by Lynn Paolillo.

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