While cats do groom themselves, it’s important to groom them yourself as well. Grooming can help prevent hairballs and improve their skin and coat. Below are some basic cat grooming tips.

Brushing: The amount of brushing your cat needs depends on your cat’s hair length. Short-haired cats are fine for once a week brushing. Long-haired cats, on the other hand, need brushing every other day, maybe even everyday in some cases. One tip is to start with the belly and back of the legs first, as these will be the most difficult areas to comb.

Bathing: While your cats might not like it, an occasional bath will benefit them. Baths help remove buildup of natural oils that can cause skin irritation. Use a mild shampoo that is specifically designed for cats. Try to get them as relaxed as possible before bathing them. If they associate bath time with something positive, they might not fight it as much.

Trimming nails: This can be an easy process with practice. First, get your cats used to having their feet handled. Once they are used to that, then attempt to trim their nails. Apply gentle pressure to the pads of their feet to get their claws to extend. Using specially designed nail scissors for cats, cut off the white tip just before the point where the nail curls. Avoid cutting the pink vein that runs through the nail.

A well-groomed cat is a healthy cat. Cats might resist some of these activities at first, but once they get used to them, the benefits are worth it.

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