Caring for Persian cats is a topic that seems to be known to everyone. However, in fact, this “fame” mostly consists of delusions, rumors and legends, and for the Persian breed it is a real anti-advertising. When visitors to cat shows come to the cages with Persians, these luxurious animals delight everyone. And then you hear: “But this is a pile of wool all over the apartment! How much time do you need to spend on caring for such a cat ?!”
In this article we will share some “secrets”, knowledge of which will help all fans of long-haired cats to get rid of false fears and allow themselves to calmly “follow the lead” of their desires – to be happy owners of beautiful and healthy Persian cats. We will make a reservation right away – we will talk about caring for the “domestic” Persians.
For owners of show-class cats, my recommendations may be useful only as a basic knowledge, since show grooming is a topic for a separate conversation. Preparation of a Persian cat for an exhibition is very specific, largely depends on the colors (and there are a great many of them in the Persian breed), and experience and a professional approach are needed to achieve good results. But most of the Persian kittens are destined for the fate of “pets”. The advice that you find on this page of our site is intended for the owners of such Persians (they are also absolutely acceptable for caring for exotics). And don’t be intimidated by the seemingly large amount of information offered. It’s actually pretty easy to follow all of our tips. And believe me, the results of your efforts will not disappoint you.
1. How to comb?
The deepest delusion (intensively supported by incompetent pet sellers) is that you need to comb the Persians with a “slicker”. In no case!! “Slicker” (or, correctly, sleeker) are very selectively and limitedly used by professional groomers only for exhibition preparation of wool on the face and paws of the Persians. The main tool of the bird is a steel comb with long, not sharp teeth.
If you are unable to find a Jimpet comb with teeth in two frequency options (or a professional comb from the “No.1 All System” company), buy two combs: long and thick + long and sparse teeth. Do not save too much and look for such combs in the Bird market. It is better to buy them in a good pet store, because this purchase is for the whole life of your cat. To the comb described above, you can add another one – with teeth of different lengths (to deal with random tangles).
It is necessary to accustom the cat to the brushing procedure as early as possible, gradually, gently, but persistently. It is very useful to combine learning with play so that this procedure is perceived by the kitten as part of an enjoyable activity.
Place the cat in your lap on its back. Carefully and gently comb the hair first on the neck, then between the front legs, in the armpits, on the belly and on the hind legs. The wool should be combed first against, and then in the direction of its growth. Then, placing the cat on its paws, comb the fur on its back and tail. This procedure requires frequent (daily) repetition only during the training period of the kitten.
Try not to overload your pet with “science”, but do not indulge his desire to arbitrarily stop the procedure. If you haven’t finished brushing, let the cat know that it can only leave if you want to. Consistency and tolerance in the beginning will allow you to eventually make brushing a pleasant experience for both you and your cat. And besides, you will always know what condition your pet’s skin is in and will be able to react in time to possible diseases or find an accidental wound. And if you follow my next advice, then you will need to comb your Persian no more than 1 time in 2-3 days, and this procedure will take no more than 5 minutes. So, let’s move on to “water procedures”.
In all fairness, keeping the coat clean is the cornerstone of the “science” of grooming Persian cats. An experienced breeder knows that by bathing a Persian every 2-3 weeks, he may not worry too much about brushing. Bathing is especially helpful during seasonal molting. This is the only way to quickly rid the cat of dead hairs and stimulate the growth of new beautiful and healthy hair.
The optimal frequency of bathing is once every 3-4 weeks. If you are the owner of an adult, uncastrated cat, you may need to bathe him more often, since the secretions of the sebaceous gland located at the base of the tail not only contaminate the tail, but also smell unpleasant.
Before bathing, the coat must be thoroughly combed. If tangles are formed, be sure to disassemble them with your hands or with a comb with teeth of different lengths.
Choosing a bathing shampoo is certainly important and not difficult at all. You can use regular “human” shampoos for normal hair with neutral pH (do not use “2 in 1” or “3 in 1” brands) or a good baby shampoo. But it is better to use special shampoos for animals (not protivoprositelny!
For the fight against skin parasites, there is nothing better than “Advantage” from Bayer or “Frontlaine” from Merial). There is also a choice here: expensive professional cosmetics from well-known American companies (Ring 5, Biogroom, No. 1 All System, Cardinal) or domestic products (Lux brand shampoos for long-haired cats have proved to be the best). The relative high cost of professional cosmetics is compensated for by its high quality and economy in use (as a rule, these are concentrated products in a 1: 4 ratios; one 400-gram bottle of such shampoo will be enough for you for a year for 1-2 cats).
The biggest secret in bathing is rinsing thoroughly after each soaping (which can be 2-3, depending on the degree of pollution of the cat). Rinsing under the shower will not be enough – it is very convenient to use a deep basin or baby bath for bathing. After soaking the coat well with water, apply a small amount of shampoo to the cat’s back and belly, and rub it into the coat.
On a small sponge, apply a little more shampoo, beat it into lather and use this foamy sponge to gently wipe the coat in the direction of growth (wash your face especially carefully to avoid getting water into your ears). At the same time, the cat should stand in a basin. After adding water (not too hot, but not too cool, since the normal body temperature of a cat is 380C), wash off some of the shampoo from the cat’s body and once again treat its coat with soapy water.
You need to rinse the cat until the shampoo is completely washed out after each soaping. After placing it in a basin, rinse off the shampoo with a shower, while filling the basin with water. Rinse the cat’s fur with the same water. There should be at least 3 such rinses between each soaping. It is useful to acidify the latter water a little by adding a little vinegar or lemon juice.
REMEMBER! Having badly rinsed the cat’s fur, after bathing, you run the risk of finding it in a much untidier condition than before the start of “water procedures”!
After bathing, wrap the cat in a towel and gently blot the coat, try to remove as much moisture as possible.
Getting your cat to swim is not as difficult as it sounds. The main thing is not to scare her at the very beginning. Talk to the cat, in a quiet and calm voice, help her relieve stress, feel your care. Some difficulties can be caused by the next stage – drying with a hairdryer. This may require “four hands” and even more tolerance at the learning stage. If you turn on the hairdryer in the presence of the kitten even before the first bath, the sound of this “terrible” device will gradually cease to irritate him, and the first “Rubicon” will thus be overcome. Over time, bathing will be perceived by your cat, if not as a pleasure, then at least as a completely tolerable duty.
Before drying, the wet hair of the cat must be combed carefully, ALWAYS in the direction of hair growth. During drying, it is also advisable to comb the wool, achieving complete drying. Considering that even after thorough drying a certain percentage of moisture remains in the abundant undercoat of a Persian cat, try to keep the cat in a warm, draft-free room for 8-10 hours after bathing.
We would like to give one more piece of advice. If you use it, your Persian coat will always be shiny, fluffy and healthy. Now on sale there are special antistatic agents for long-haired animals (the best is from the firms “Biogroom” and “No. 1 All System”). These products help relieve static stress from the fur of cats. And how much static is in our apartments (especially during the heating season), there is no need to tell. Females with long, thin hair must have experienced negative feelings from an electrified hairstyle. The same happens with the thick, thin and light hair of the Persians, which under the influence of static not only “sticks” to the body, but also intensively rolls into mats. Antistatic agents help to overcome these troubles. Spraying this product with a light cloud from a distance of 15-20 cm on the cat’s coat before combing, you will incredibly facilitate this procedure for yourself and for the cat and will never see tangles (even if you do not comb it too often).
With the “problem” of Persian hair care, we, We hope, figured out. But do not forget that cat’s eyes and ears also need care.
With regard to ear care, the general recommendation for owners of all cats (not only Persian) is to advise weekly with a soft cotton swab moistened with warm boiled water (hydrogen peroxide or a special agent for cosmetic care for animal ears) to gently wipe the inside of the ear and auricle … Make sure that the tampon is wrung out thoroughly and that excess moisture does not penetrate into the ear canal. This procedure is no different from caring for our own ears.
The shortened face and deep feet of the Persians cause additional pressure on the lacrimal canals and a certain increase in lacrimation. In the absence of infectious diseases, such “tears” are transparent with a slight brownish tint. You can get rid of excess moisture in the eyes of a Persian by blotting them with a regular soft cosmetic napkin. Do this daily, repeat the procedure several times a day (if you have time) – and you will not need any additional funds. If a dry secret has accumulated in the corners of the eyes, moisten a napkin with boiled water with the addition of a few drops of eucalyptus tincture (at the rate of 3-4 drops per half a glass of water). And, of course, if you wish, in pet stores you can purchase special products for cosmetic eye care of cats.
We can give you one more piece of advice. If you use good scissors with rounded tips (not manicure scissors!) To periodically cut the long hair along the edge of the cat’s upper eyelid, the eye care procedure will become much easier. Proceed with caution and you will succeed. Well, if you’re scared – it doesn’t matter, you can do without such a haircut.
However, there is another type of “haircut” that we want to recommend to all cat owners. This haircut is a common procedure for participants in cat shows, but in “ordinary” life it is perceived by people very skeptically. And in vain! It’s about clipping the claws.
Believe me, if you regularly (on the front legs – once every 2 weeks, on the hind legs – once a month) you trim your cat’s nails, you will protect not only the skin of the hands and feet, but also upholstered furniture, carpets, tights, etc. etc., etc. For such a procedure, you will need a special “nail clipper” of a small size, which is very easy to purchase at any pet store. Place the cat on your lap, on its back. Press gently on the pad of the foot to spread the toes and release the claws. Holding the cat’s finger with one hand, cut off the sharp end of the claw, not reaching a few millimeters to the blood vessel located inside the claw (it is visible to the lumen even in dark-colored cats). All this is not difficult at all and does not require seeking help from a veterinarian.
For optimal results, train your pet for all grooming procedures as soon as it arrives in your home. Of course, if you are lucky and you bought an already grown-up kitten (after 3-4 months) from a good cattery, you will have much less worries, since all the basic habits of the “perry” have already been brought up by his breeder. Although you still have to spend some time on establishing “personal contacts”.
We have told you about the basic techniques of caring for a Persian cat. We would like to once again draw your attention to the fact that the abundance of words spent on the description of all procedures is not at all identical to the amount of time required to complete them:
Bathing together with drying takes no more than 1.5 hours (once every 3-4 weeks);
- combing – 5-10 minutes (every 2-3 days);
- ear care – 5 minutes (once a week);
- eye care – very quick but daily;
- claw cutting – 5-10 minutes.
And finally, one more piece of advice. Perhaps this is the most important of all of the above: the most important condition for the beauty, health and longevity of a Persian cat is proper feeding. If you opt for ready-made food of the professional category (Royal Canin, Hill’s, Eagle Pack, Jams, 1st Choice, Acana), then you will provide your pet with the only correct, complete and balanced diet. But the beauty of its fur, well-being and a long happy life in the company with its beloved owner depends on the general state of the cat’s health.