My Cat is Matted and Gaining Weight!

By | January 3, 2012


My cat is 10 years old. This is the 2nd or 3rd year of cat matting, which is a couple of years since my daughter left the home.  I believe there has been less environmental stress but I do work long hours, and I would guess that lack of mental stimulation/companionship during the day is the worst she has to deal with. The cat has – also due to lack of activity – gained weight.


Dr. Nichol:

Unless your kitty has chosen dread locks as a fashion statement it is likely that her hair is matted because she has stopped grooming. This occurs in cats who are behaviorally stressed and in those who are sick.


Feline obesity has become, well, a huge problem. Fatty liver disease and diabetes are expanding in lock step with the growing corpulence of indoor cats. Some are so fat they can’t turn around to clean themselves. Add your kitty’s enforced boredom to the stew and you have a rather unkempt couch potato. It isn’t pretty.


There may be more. Mouth pain from chronic dental or gum disease can make it uncomfortable for a cat to groom. At age 10 your kitty may be at risk of kidney failure, which often results in painful oral ulcers. Before making any assumptions about why your girl missed the homecoming dance I urge you to ask your veterinarian to search hard for a physical diagnosis.

By Dr. Nichol at

Medical Ways to Break Down Cat Hairballs

By | January 2, 2012

MISSISSIPPI STATE UNIVERSITY–Dirty litter boxes and hairballs probably top most cat owners’ lists as the most distasteful parts of having a cat.

Most cat owners know to watch their step when they hear the hacking of their cat, but many don’t know that hairballs can be life-threatening, not just a nuisance.

Many cats groom most of their waking hours, careful to keep their coats spotless and every hair in place. When the cat is long-haired, this can be trouble. Although constant grooming makes them beautiful to look at, it often leads to stomach problems and they respond by leaving little “presents” on the floor.

Dr. Cory Langston, service chief of community practice at Mississippi State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine, said hairballs are a frequent hair matting. problem for cats, especially long-haired breeds.

“Signs of hairballs in cats are usually those associated with intestinal disturbances, particularly vomiting,” Langston said. “Sometimes they have a hack or wretch that many owners mistake for a cough.”

This episode can be short-lived and productive, but sometimes the hairball can block the cat’s breathing.

Cat’s tongues are designed to brush hair out of their coats. This hair is swallowed, but once in the stomach, it cannot be digested. Hair stays in the cat’s stomach where it accumulates, mixes with stomach contents and becomes a nasty mass. The only natural way for a cat to get rid of a hairball is by vomiting.

“Hairballs that don’t pass out of a cat’s system can block the intestines. There is also the possibility that a hairball being coughed up can block airways,” Langston said.

There are medical ways to break down hairballs so they can safely pass through the cat’s digestive system. The veterinarian said most cats with hairball problems respond to a daily dose of hairball remedy, a mild laxative, such as a commercial blend of flavored mineral oil.

“I recommend all long-haired cats be given the mineral oil laxative once a week to prevent hairballs,” Langston said. “Another preventative measure is to feed the cat the brands of cat food or treats that offers a special formula to prevent hairball accumulation.”

“By removing excess hair, you are preventing it from ending up in your cat’s stomach,” the site stated.

Rabbits are another pet susceptible to hairballs. They also spend quite a bit of time grooming themselves and ingest much of their shed hair. Consult a veterinarian for specific treatment for rabbits with hairball problems.

By Bonnie Coblentz 4/17/2000

What is the Best Cat Shampoo or Conditioner to Reduce Cat Hair Matting?

By | December 31, 2011

Every now and then I will post a simple Q&A on cat hair matting concerns. Not only will you be able to view the answers, but also add your own as well.


This question is asked by Lisa G from in November of 2011. She adds: I have not found many reviews online for different cat shampoo and conditioner products. My cat has long hair, and I need something that will help with cat hair matting, and prevent it in the future.

Answers: There ISN’T one. You prevent mats by GROOMING the cat regularly. Your cat should only need to be bathed if it’s gets into something dirty or you’re competing in a cat show. Other than that – don’t bathe it. Cats are “self-cleaning”.

You should be combing the coat – not brushing it. Brushes do very little to remove the loose hairs of the undercoat – the hairs that cause mats – and pull out and break the topcoat hairs. Get a good quality steel-toothed comb and comb the coat thoroughly. If this cat has a light, cottony undercoat then a weekly combing should be all that’s needed. If it has a thick undercoat you’ll have to comb the coat at least every other day all year long.

And keep the cat INDOORS. Cats with long-haired coats are not be subject to the dirt and plant matter outdoors and their coats quickly become a filthy tangled mess. Commented by Café Mocha Valencia

Shampoos and conditioner are not going to really help with matting. Your feline friend just needs for you to spend more time combing and brushing her/his mane. Some breeds of long haired cats are more prone to hair matting than others. Long hair cats need frequent (sometimes daily) brushing from their pet owners. You can also take your feline in for grooming at local stores like Petco and such.

I would also recommend grooming tools like the Furminator. It cuts back on the amount of shedding, helps decrease the frequency of grooming needed, and reduces hairballs.

A good diet will also improve your feline friend’s coat. Look for cat food that lists meat as the first ingredient, not meat by-products. A silky, shiny, healthy coat not only looks better but also doesn’t mat as often. I’ve seen this first-hand time and time again.

Good luck. Commented by Gym Junkie

If you are lucky and your cat enjoys water (I barely saw one in my entire life) then you are lucky and you could use shampoo and/or conditioner on her.
It also does not de-tangle her fur, plus it’s not an excuse for not having to groom her thoroughly.

I would recommend to get her to a professional groomer to get the mats off and to get her groomed.
If you stay, you probably could also get some advise on how to prevent mats until the next appointment.
Plus you should invest in some good grooming tools.
Either professional sets or a special comb/brush for long hair cats.

I personally use the furminator, a shedding tool for long haired cats.

Hope that helps. Commented by neferibi

Long-haired cats, especially if they are of the Persian/Himmy persuasion, absolutely must be groomed at LEAST ever other day, but better to do every single day. The best “tool” for a Persian type cat or other super long-hair or double-fur cat is called a “Greyhound” Comb. They are expensive, but very worth it. Don’t use a Furminator if you have a Persian.

I have a Himalayan and I start with the hardest parts (back of legs, arms and underarms – gently-gently), then the tail, and by then you just have the tummy and back to do (by this time if it’s a Persian you have, his/her tolerance level will have gone and he/she will start squirming). But since all you have left is the tummy and back, it will be easier.

As for shampoos, they do have special shampoos for longer haired cats. My Himalayan requires a bath once a month (my cats are indoor only) because his hair gets drab otherwise. They have special shampoos just for Persians. (Still not sure if that’s what you have, but I would ask a knowledgeable person at the Pet Store. (I actually go to a feed and supply store- they are the only ones that carry the higher quality food my cats eat.

Yeah, grooming every day and never pull hard at all; if a Persian/Himmy, they have just the most thin skin you’ll ever see. If you don’t keep the mats out every day or at least every other day, they will end up sticking to the skin and you’ll have no choice but to get your cat to the vet to have them removed. Way too dangerous for a non-vet to remove cat mats that are already stuck to the skin.

Anyways, take care of you and your cat! Commented by Soneca Com Os Gatinhos

The secret and key to bathing a cat is rinsing! I can not stress enough rinse for at least 5 minutes. If any shampoo or conditioner is left in the coat it will draw dirt and create more mats. Rinse, rinse and keep on rinsing. I show Maine Coons and have been since 1996. Commented by R P Cat


How To Remove Matted Fur From Your Pet

By | December 30, 2011

Pets with long hair often get matted fur-dogs and cats alike. These patches of hair can cause skin irritation in our pets. Dr. Lauren of teaches you a safe way to remove these matts.




How to Handle Matted Cat Hair

By | December 28, 2011

Sometimes finding the right grooming tool can make a difference. Here’s an article from that may be some help along those lines.


Cats are meticulous creatures but that doesn’t mean your pet can’t use help in keeping up its coat. Certain long haired breeds — such as the Persian, Himalayan, Maine coon, for example — are especially vulnerable to mats and need to be groomed daily. If you fall behind, your cat can develop knots in its fur that not only detract from the animal’s natural beauty but can also be painful to the cat.

The Right Grooming Tools Make a Difference
According to B.J. Fox, a prominent breeder of Persians and Himalayans in Greenbriar, Ark., “One should use a professional steel comb on long matted hair, not a brush.” Fox, who worked for many years as a pet groomer, prefers using a 7.5″ steel fine/medium comb. A different grade may be better suited to your cat’s coat.

Combing Techniques
As a pioneering breeder of chocolate and lilac Persians, Fox has seen her share of mats in her cats’ hair. She offers this tip: “The end tines of the comb will be your friend if you use them properly. Start at the end of the hair shaft at the mat and hold the base of the mat so that it does not pull the skin of the kitty. Gently use the end tine of the comb to separate the mat and dislodge it so that you can begin to work it loose, little by little, until you can get to the skin.”

Fox adds, “Don’t grab your kitty and comb from top to bottom, because it will hurt her. Begin by using a wide-tooth comb and then graduate down to the wide end of the fine/medium comb.”

For cases in which a cat’s hair is badly matted, Fox advises pet owners use a wide-tooth comb to remove as many mats as possible, paying close attention to areas behind the ears, under the front “armpits” and between the back legs. “Once you have dislodged the worst matted hair with the wide-teeth,” says Fox, “then bathe the cat. While the soapsuds are on the cat, use your comb, starting at the rump area of the body and work forward. The soap acts as a lubricant.” Whatever you do, don’t wet the cat when there are still big knots because the water will only make them worse.

When Combing Is Not Enough
If you are dealing with severe cat mats, Fox recommends using peanut butter or butter on the fur as a last resort. She says, “If your cat will not allow you to finish, that’s okay. The peanut butter or butter still tastes good to her and acts just like a hairball remedy. Even better, it is a natural conditioner to the coat and can later be shampooed away with a degreaser.”

If after trying these methods, your cat’s coat still seems hopeless, it is time to go to a professional groomer. There is a chance, that the cat will have to be shaved, but fur grows back quickly, says Fox. The full or partial shaving will give you a “fresh start at proper cat grooming.”

By Melissa Ehret

Cat Grooming part 1

By | December 26, 2011

In starting off this series on cat grooming, “Cat Grooming Tips” went over a simple overview on cat grooming ideas. Now I have combines two nice articles from for “Cat Grooming part 1.”


Whether you are a new cat owner or a long time lover of these furry little bundles of joy, a few tips on pet grooming can be very beneficial to anyone. Generally, cats are very clean animals. A cat will bathe by licking itself numerous times a day. This is helpful with the cat grooming process, not only to the cat maintaining good hygiene, but also to the owner in that they do not need to bathe the cat very often. If your cat has short hair, it will typically not need to be brushed more than one time a week. This should be done gently with a wire brush first and repeated after with a rubber brush or a mitt brush to remove dried skin and dead hairs. If your cat has longer hair, you may need to brush several times a week in order to prevent cat hair matting. So play with your cat a little to get them relaxed and then have a cuddle session with the cat and the brush.

If you have ever seen the movie Homeward Bound, you know that cats in general do not like water. Bath time can be one of the more stressful cat grooming processes, so try to be gentle and loving with the cat through this process. Gently massage the shampoo from head to tail and rinse at a good temperature.

Nails on cats need to be trimmed to keep them from getting too long which can be painful to the cat as well as your beautiful sofa or carpet. Gently grab the cat’s paw and put a little pressure on the palm with your finger to allow the nails to pop out. In the middle of the nail you will see the quick, which is the vain that runs through it. Try to avoid cutting this as doing so will cause slight bleeding. Nails grow at different rates, so this is not something that should be done every week or two, just when you see they are getting too long.

Trimming the Claws: If your cat accidentally scratches you or snags your shirt, it is time for a trim. Trimming claws is one of the easiest things you can do to your cat. It can be much faster than cutting your own nails. Use nail trimmers made especially for cats. Stainless steel, high-quality models can last many decades. Before you trim his front claws the first time, work with his front feet without any attempt to trim. Wait until he is in a mood to be touched. Hold him or leave him in his bed while you massage his body, working your way to his feet. Massage his foot. Rub between his toes. Press on the pads of his feet to make the claws extend, and then release. If he starts putting up a fuss, let go of his feet but do not give up too easily. Try again the next time you see him napping or relaxing.

After a few days of getting him used to having his feet touched, put the nail trimmer in the palm of your hand before you approach him. Hold his paw in one hand while saying, ‘Good boy.’ Gently squeeze the pad of the paw so that the claws extend. Talk sweetly to him just like you do when you massage his feet. Cut about halfway between the tip of the claw and the
‘quick’ (where pink shows through). Begin by trimming only one claw a day. Gradually add more claws.

Keep the experience positive by always ending before he gets fussy. Each time, reward him by massaging, petting, playing or taking him on an outside walk. Eventually, you will only need to tell him how good he is by petting him for a few seconds after his trim. Once the cat is used to getting trimmed, you will need to trim all claws about once a month. If you keep trimming a small portion of his claws more often, the quick will recede a little, allowing you to trim farther down.

Be very careful when trimming a claw. Cutting into the quick causes bleeding and is painful. If you hurt your cat while trimming, immediately say you are sorry and comfort him. Quickly trim one more nail then let him go. Play with him to distract him from what just happened. Try again the next day.

Do not trim his nails on or around his post or cat tree. You do not want him to make an association between the two activities. If the cat growls, stop trimming, say nothing and leave the room immediately. On the next day, cut two, or even just one nail. Leave on a friendly note before he has a chance to growl.

The Hind Claws. For hind claws, use the same steps as above. Trim hind claws when your cat is sleeping or sitting quietly on your lap. Trim one or two claws at a one sitting. As he gets used to the process, cut more claws.

When it comes to pet grooming, cats are pretty good at taking care of themselves. But because he is living indoors, he needs some help being groomed. Claws need trimming and hair needs brushing. Grooming him once in a while can help keep your home nice and your cat happy.

By Tristan Andrews of

Useful Tips of Proper Persian Cat Grooming

By | December 21, 2011

The Persian is the most popular breed of pedigree cats in the United States. Here are some useful tips from John on proper Persian Cat grooming.


Since Persian cats have long, thick dense fur that they cannot effectively keep clean, they need regular grooming to prevent cat hair matting. To keep their fur in its best condition, they must be bathed regularly, dried carefully afterwards, and brushed thoroughly every day. An alternative is to shave the coat. Their eyes may require regular cleaning to prevent crust buildup and tear staining.

Persian cat grooming is a very important factor of having Persian cat. The best tool in this regard is a greyhound comb that is made from metal and which can be used to comb your Persian cat’s coat regularly – starting from the roots and ending with the tips of the hair. In addition, it’s also necessary that you make sure combing the chest area as too the area behind the ears as well as under your pet’s armpits.

Frequency of Bathing

Another aspect of proper Persian cat grooming is to know the frequency with which to bathe your pet. Here, the deciding aspect is the cat’s fur; if the Persian has dilute coated hair then there is not so much need to bathe the Persian too often. Nevertheless, for Persians with silky hair you will need to give special attention to prevent cat hair matting and also knotting of the fur.

The good Persian cat grooming also means giving the pet a bath every fortnight; nevertheless, a few Persians are even able to go an entire month and a half without requiring to be bathed. What’s more, to an untrained eye it is difficult to decide when the Persian requires bathing because this type of cat usually appears to be clean – even if in fact it is dirty. For a Persian show cat, you might need to also degrease your pet and then bathe him so that he looks his best all the time.

Based on the color of your Persian’s coat, you will also need to purchase different cat shampoos. Therefore, Persian cat grooming for a white coated Persian would be different from that of a black coated Persian. The right shampoo will help bring out the color and a great option in this regard is to utilize Oatmeal Almond cat shampoo.

Your Persian cat could also develop mats in his hair and it is when you should take special care of him. Proper Persian cat grooming in this regard requires bathing the Persian: not cutting the matted hair – and, certainly not with a sharp tool – and, it is advisable to rip the matted hair into tiny knots and then try to comb the knots out of the coat with the help of powder than to use scissors to get rid of the matted hair.

It’s also important that you make sure choosing the most suitable cat grooming brush because only a properly chosen brush will help reduce knotted and matted hair. Occasionally, the mats in your Persian’s hair can end up being especially hard to get rid of; in case it happens to your Persian cat, you will then need to get professional assistance with the best veterinary medical equipment such as phase contrast microscope to solve your Persian cat hair matting problems; or, you can easily get rid of the knots by cutting the pet’s hair off.
By John Cardell
What are your experience with Persian Cats? Please leave a comment below.

Cat Grooming Tips

By | December 13, 2011

Hey cat lovers!

I’m starting a series of really nice articles on Cat Grooming. This first article is “Cat Grooming Tips” from i-love cats website. Feel free to leave a comment at the end of this post.


Most people that own cats don’t think too much about grooming their cats, since they know that they take care of it by themselves, by licking their chests, back or paws.

When the cat has short hair, they usually have no problems grooming themselves, without any help from their human owners. The same can’t be said about Persian cats or other species with long hair.

Grooming and Health. Besides keeping the cat clean, grooming will also help with the removal of hair which is loose. If you don’t use the comb on the cat’s fur, all that loose hair will go the stomach of the cat. Because digesting hair doesn’t happen with ease, it will usually form hairballs inside the stomach, which the cat will cough up. Sometimes though, they can have health issues because of these hairballs-a common cat hair matting issue.

You might believe that cats don’t like being groomed by someone else, but they might actually enjoy being brushed. Getting a cat used with grooming is easier if you start doing it when it’s still a kitten.

Cat Grooming. To groom a cat, comb or lightly brush through the coat of the cat, going from the neck to the tail, by following the fur’s lie. Don’t do it against the lie, since the cat will not enjoy that at all. He might get irritated, and if this happens stop the brushing and help him relax by playing with him for a bit. His paws and face shouldn’t be groomed with the comb or the brush, as he will probably not enjoy that.

If your cat doesn’t enjoy brushing, a grooming glove might be a better fit for her. You simply stroke the cat while wearing this glove, so the bits and dirt from the fur will be removed, just like a brush would do it.

Other Tips. The “how to grooming” process should also include checking the ears and the eyes. You should see clean ears and bright eyes, with no discharges. Ear mites are a definite possibility if the cat’s ears are very dirty. If she has ear mites, she might suffer permanent damage to the ears, so take the cat do a vet, to make sure she’s OK.

Long Hair Cats. When the hair is long, grooming the cat can be difficult, especially if the fur becomes matted. In this case, you should just cut the parts that are matted, but do this with care. Read up on articles that will help you with cat hair matting.

Most people think that cats should take care of their own fur, but a little bit of grooming from their owners can help the cat to avoid potential health problems.


For more information on ear mites visit EarMitesInCats.Org.

Grooming Tips for Preventing Matted Cat Hair

By | December 8, 2011

Matted cat hair is entangled hair that ends up in tight knots. Long haired breeds are more susceptible to the condition than other pets. Cat hair is divided into three categories as each type of hair performs a certain role. The types of cat hair include awn hair, down hair and guard hair. The various function of cat hair involves protection from environmental contaminants, heat and cold. The uppermost layer of cat hair also determines the color of individual pets.

Cat Hair Conditions
Cats shed their fur during specific periods. However, fur loss that’s caused due to skin conditions such as alopecia, dermatitis or skin allergy needs medical treatment. Although cats routinely groom themselves to maintain their fur coats, pets also develop conditions such as cat hairball due to the ingestion of hair during routine grooming. Pet owners should thus groom the cat with a brush to avoid excessive self-grooming and cat hairballs. Cats that appear sick or lethargic may avoid their routine grooming which in turn leads to matted hair. Thick knots are difficult to detangle with a comb and may cause the pet pain, if the mats are located towards sensitive areas of the body.

Tips to Separate Matted Cat Hair
Cats should be groomed for matted hair when they’re relaxed and in a happy state of mind. It’s best to talk to the pet with affection and gently stroke the cat before grooming her. A scissors works effectively to cut a little of the fur mat if it’s too thick. Pet owners may also apply cornstarch to the matted fur to loosen hair with the fingers. Brushes don’t work well to separate matted hair as they may tug hard at the mat and cause pain. A wide toothed comb is handy, particularly for long haired cats. Pet owners should exert caution when cutting out parts of matted hair as the cats skin could get accidentally cut due to sudden movement. If the pet appears restless or aggressive it’s best to stop the grooming process and return to it at a later time.

Other Tips
Cats should be rewarded both during and after the process of good pet grooming. It’s important to reassure the pet during the process and avoid separation of more than one tangled mass at a time. Large areas of matted hair should be gently shaved to avoid discomfort. However, pet owners unsure of shaving the cat should seek professional grooming services to avoid accidental injury to the pet.

Techniques to Separate Matted Fur:
•Shorten the hair before separating it, if the mat is too thick.
•Don’t pull the hair with a comb. Instead pick at the matted hair gently.
•Use pet friendly sprays to soften and detangle thick mats.
•Always point the scissors away from the pet’s skin and cut up through the mat.
In order to prevent cat hair matting, pet owners should bathe cats occasionally and routinely brush or comb the hair to remove excess fur. It may also be necessary to trim longer haired cats at least once a year to keep the skin and coat healthy.


How to Treat and Remove Matted Fur Clump From Your Cat or Dog

By | December 8, 2011

Shaggy – it happens to most dogs or cats from time to time. If you notice matted fur on your pet-it is very important to as quick as possible  remove  the disheveled hairs. It is not only ugly, but it can be very uncomfortable for your pet causes pinching and pulling on it. Of course this can only make it worse.

So what are the common causes for cat hair matting or clumpy furs on a dog?

There are several things that can cause matting, but the most common cause is the lack of care. If you do not your cat or dong for a sin, brushed, while on you. Your pet can not own it. He is totally dependent on care for him. If you can not do it regularly, please take your pet to a groomer regularly.

Fleas can also cause  hair mat. You can create a maze in your pets fur. Check and treat your pet regularly for fleas.

Some dogs and cats have two layers of fur which shed and need brushed off. This is a natural process, and it is important to the undercoat, if your pet is shedding brush.

The most important thing to remember when d-matting your pet is: patience. Wet your pet before you try to remove the mats can often make the mats worse. Removing mats from your dog or cat is not usually a quick process, so be patient. My youngest Yorkie matted up over 2 weeks after that I relaxed on care, and it took 3 weeks to remove the mats.

Here are the tools you need to remove mats from your dog or cat:

* A steel comb

* A waterproof brush

* A matt splitter

First, let your pet in a comfortable position to get … Kneel on the floor, sofa or wherever he is comfortable. If your pet is matted in several places, start  in the areas where  he or she likes to lay. Then do your best in the areas around the head. head.

Next start work on the mats with the steel comb. Be careful with the grain of the fur brush. Do not pull so hard that it hurts your pet. Just for an experiment, take a small piece of hair on the back of the head. Pull down, then pull it up. What hurts the most? Right? Remember, when you brush your pet, use the steel comb slowly to break up the lumps.

Try to pull the matted places apart in small sections with your hands. The mats can be removed easily if they are smaller, and this will reduce the amount of fur your pet loses. You may need to carefully cut into the mat with a pair of scissors to divide it. Apparently not too close to the skin. Cutting a pet is a pet miserable. An unfortunate pet is difficult to maintain.

If your pet will require care for many sessions to remove the mats, that’s okay. The end result will be rewarding for you and your pet. Take your time. Be patient. Help your dog or cat to remain calm and comfortable. If you are sitting watching TV or a movie, it would be a good time to work on the mats.

After all the mats are removed, then you can apply regular periods of care for your cat or dog. Keep the comb or brush in a visible place to remind you as a recommendation to brush your pet a few minutes per day, instead of fighting for hours to remove matted hairs. You will find these to be helpful tips on good pet grooming techniques.

Good luck!

By Christa McCourt from

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