Although cats like to groom themselves, they still need some extra grooming from their owners. As a cat owner, part of your cat’s grooming regime will involve brushing her coat. Brushing your cat should be an enjoyable experience. As a cat owner, one of the things you will want to know is how often to brush a cat.
How Often Should Cats be Brushed?
Brushing a Shorthaired Cat
A shorthaired cat requires to be brushed twice or thrice in a month. If you brush your cat too many times, you may end up causing injuries to her skin. Your cat may end up developing a dislike for brushing. She may even end up hating you.
Make sure that you have the right brush. You should then brush through your cat’s coat from her head to tail. This will remove any loose hair on her coat. It will also remove any dirt and debris and eliminate any tangles. Brush in the direction of growth of the fair. Brushing in the opposite direction may result in discomfort to your cat since it will pull the hair up and back.
Ensure that you brush all over your cat’s body, including areas like the abdomen and the chest. To effectively remove tangles and dead hair, ensure that you concentrate on one section at a time. If your cat is shorthaired, then you should use a rubber brush.
Brushing a Longhaired Cat
Longhaired cats shed their coats throughout the year. As a result, your cat may need to be brushed once or twice every week with the right brush tool. This will remove any dead hair from the coat and prevent the long furs from tangling. You should start with your cat’s legs and abdomen before working your way up towards her neck and head.
If you come across tough knots, you can gently tease them apart using your fingers. If you can’t loosen the knots with your fingers, you can use a mat-splitter. If the knots are too stubborn, then you should take your cat to a professional groomer.
Benefits of Brushing Your Cat
Besides keeping your cat looking her best, there are several other benefits of brushing your cat regularly. Brushing your cat’s coat is an integral part of grooming and will contribute to your pet’s health and well-being. Here are some of the benefits of brushing your cat’s coat.
Stimulates Blood Circulation
This is one of the most important benefits of brushing your cat. When you brush your cat, you will remove all the skin flakes underneath the coat. This will stimulate the skin and increase the amount if blood flowing to the skin. Brushing also improves the overall condition of your cat’s skin.
Whether your cat has a thick coat or short hair, they will always shed. If you don’t brush your cat’s coat, the excess hair will build up on their coats resulting into too much shedding. These pet hairs will stick on your furniture and carpet. This may cause discomfort to your family, especially if a family member is allergic to pet hair.
You can solve this problem by brushing your cat. The brush will remove any loose hair from your cat’s coat, saving your family from sneezing as a result.
Distributes Natural Oil on the Skin
Whenever you brush your cat, you will be spreading the natural oil on the skin evenly. By spreading the oil on your cat’s skin, it will give your cat a healthy and shiny look. The natural oils will also protect the skin from any irritation.
Failing to brush your cat’s coat regularly leads to tangles and hairballs. Since cats like to self-groom, they may end up swallowing the hairballs from their coats. This may pose a health risk since your cat may end up getting chocked. You can save your feline the trouble by brushing her coat. Brushing detangles hair and removes any hairballs from the coat.
If your feline is suffering from hairballs, you will definitely know. She will cough them up or expel them in her feces after ingesting them. If your cat continues to suffer from hairballs even after regular brushing, then you can visit your vet for solutions.
It is Soothing
Stroking your cat’s skin gently using brush will not only remove any tangles but will also sooth your cat. While brushing your cat’s coat, you should ensure that you don’t overbrush a particular area since this may irritate the skin. Brushing towards the hair growth will be much gentle as compared to brushing against it.
It’s a Pain Free Grooming Technique
We all need our cats to stay clean, presentable and free from any disease. One way to remove any dirt, grease or dead hair from your cat’s coat is by brushing your cat’s coat.
Besides preventing hairballs and reducing shedding, brushing your cat gives you the opportunity to bond with your cat. Since cats are social animals, they always groom each other as a way of bonding. The same occurs when you brush your cat.
Flea Checking Opportunities
By brushing your cat, you will be at a better position to check for anything unusual on your cat’s skin. If your cat has any skin problems or fleas, you will be able to notice it. This will ensure that your cat stays healthy.
Common Mistakes People Make When Brushing their Cat
Even though brushing a cat may sound simple enough, it may pose some risk to your cat if you don’t do it properly. Here are some of the mistakes that you should avoid when brushing your cat.
Using the Wrong Equipment
Most people may use a wrong type of brush on their cats without knowing the implications. You should know that there are brushes that are specifically made to be used in brushing cats. They have different shapes and are designed to follow the different characteristics of different types of cats.
When picking the right brush, the thickness or length of your cat’s coat should guide you on what brush to go for. Using a brush with long teeth on a shorthaired cat may injure your cat’s skin. On the contrary, using a brush with short teeth on a cat with thick and long hair will not yield the desired results.
Brushing Against the Direction of Hair Growth
Most cat owners are not aware of this, but you must always know in what direction to move the brush. The best way to brush your cat is brushing in the direction of hair growth. Brushing against the hair growth gives more force which may pull out the hair from the skin causing injuries to your cat.
This is a common mistake that most people make when grooming their cat. Many cat owners always skip some areas when brushing their cats. Sensitive areas like the back of legs and ears are always left untouched. These places may end up developing tangles and mats which may significantly affect your cat.
Brushing After Bathing Your Cat
Cat owners may wonder whether to do the brushing after a bath or before. While some of them make the right decision of brushing their cat before bathing them, there are some cat owners who always make the wrong choice. Whenever a cat’s fur gets into contact with water, the mats on the coat tends to get worse. As a result, it is better to remove the mats before bathing your cat. Brushing before bath also helps to remove much of the loose hair so that the shampoo can easily get into contact with your cat’s skin.
Having an Irregular Schedule
This is a mistake that most cat owners make. You need to know how to tell when your cat is in need of a brush. How often your cat needs a brush will depend on a number of factors. One of the factors is the type of coat your cat has. If your cat is longhaired, she will need to be brushed more often as compared to a shorthaired cat.
Just like you brush your hair regularly to untangle any knots and remove dead hair, your cat also depends on you to help out with the task for them. It is recommended that longhaired cats are brushed twice or thrice in a week to prevent the formation of hairballs.
Shorthaired cats on the other hand can do with having their coats brushed twice or thrice every month. There you have it on how often to brush a cat. You can now ensure that your cat is in a perfect condition by brushing her coat and grooming her well. While brushing your cat, should you notice any skin problems, contact your vet.
The conditions that you need to be keen on are; bald patches as a result of increased shedding, excessive licking, lumps under the skin and persistent scratching.