The contents of this newsletter are inspired by the visitors of PERSIAN-CATS.COM. The following tips and information come primarily from bulletin board postings and particularly useful discussions in the chat room.
This Month's Features: Scratching Around in the Plants, Make Your Persian's Coat Fuller and Thicker, and New Year's Resolutions for Persian Owners
Scratching Around in the Plants?
(This information came from April K., Kim M., Carolyn K., Monica D., Georgia H., & Melissa S.)
There's nothing worse than coming home from a long day at work only to discover that your cat has dug up your favorite potted plant and left a trail of dirt on the carpet. This month, there was a discussion in one of the bulletin boards about keeping the kitties out of your plants. Here are some interesting suggestions.
- Get a water pistol and give the cat a squirt if you catch him/her digging. They will soon get the message that the plants are out of bounds. They usually don't associate a quick splash of water with you, so you won't find them shying away from you.
- Put seashells, pine cones, or rocks in the pot. You can still water your plant as normal, and the kitties don't like the feel of the shells on their feet.
- Use tape - sticky side up - on the tops of your plants. Most cats hate the feel of it on their paws.
- Take the peels from a lemon or lime and put them into the pot around the plants.
Make Your Persian's Coat Fuller and Thicker
(This information came from Mary B., Christine W., & Victoria S.)
Lots of exercise and a balanced diet is the first step to a healthy coat. Of course, it doesn't stop there. A complete show bath and drying/grooming session every week is essential to getting the coat into its best possible shape. Also, daily brushing and combing is surprisingly often counter-productive. While it may keep the coat free of matting, you may remove too much to grow a show coat.
A Persian's coat can build up quite a bit of oil. Goop hand cleaner is mild, non-toxic and does a great job of removing only the extra oils on the coat without drying the skin. In really oily cat's, Dawn dishwashing liquid (or in less greasy hair, Ivory dish soap) works well. There are also commercial pet products made especially for degreasing the coat. A superb texturizing shampoo is House of An-Ju Texturizing Shampoo (their Texturizing Spray is also good).
First put the degreasing cleanser, such as Goop, on the dry coat and work it into the most oily areas - behind the ears, legs, belly, chest, and tail. Rinse this out and use your soap, either a color-specific shampoo or whatever does well on his/her coat. Then rinse this. Rinsing is the most important part of the bath. You must get all the soap out of the coat or it will just become limp and oily even faster.
Wring the coat out in the sink and use paper towels to soak up as much water as you can. Avoid combing the hair while wet - use your fingers until there is enough dry hair to comb or brush without pulling it out. Don't use a plastic or wire slicker brush. Instead, use a heavy, wide-tooth metal comb and a narrow-tooth comb at the end. Also try a pin brush, preferably without the little balls on the end of each pin.
It might be a good idea to invest in a professional grooming dryer. The oster table/cage dryer is excellent and can usually be found for around $170. They cut drying time sometimes in half, are more powerful, and put out less heat, so you are less likely to burn the cat. Plus, they are heavy duty and won't break down as much as a "people" hand dryer.
Powder can be used to finish but is not really needed for the maintenance bath. Remember, genetics will play a huge part in how much coat your kitty will have.
New Year's Resolutions for Persian Owners
(This information came from Cara B. & Lindsay.)
The New Year is almost here! Have you thought of any good New Year's resolutions? Here are some ideas that your kitty will appreciate.
- Volunteer at the local animal shelter.
- Spend more time with my kitty everyday.
- Brush my Persian as often as necessary.
- Help my cat get more exercise through daily play sessions.
- Make a donation to a pet rescue organization.
- Buy new combs and brushes for my Persian.
- Join a cat club to make new kitty friends.
- Clean my cat's litter box every single day.