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Persian Grooming

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Help! No matter how carefully I wash my kitties they still come out looking clumpy and greasey. I can't seem to get the fluffy look I see in the photos. The cats look sweaty on the chest area. What can I do to make it pretty? I want to show the cats but they won't go far looking like this!
post #2 of 7
DL, here's an article I found on Persian-cats.com

Grooming Your Show Cat
(Thanks to Mary B.)
There are as many techniques to grooming for a show, as there are breeders. Much depends on the age of the cat, the sex, time of year, color, and coat texture. Sometimes, daily brushing can cause more damage to a show coat than good. Check the coat several times daily, just by petting the cat, and if you feel the start of a small snarl, then comb it out using a wide-tooth metal comb. Never use a slicker brush for any type of daily, deep combing. The wire teeth of the slicker brush will tear out all the undercoat and leave only the hard, long guard hairs from the outer coat. This will leave the coat feeling harsh and wirey.

Most show Persian owners, bathe the cat at least the night before the show, though some can be done even a day or two before the show. Some people even bathe the morning of the show, both days. The most important part of the bath is the rinse. Be sure to rinse all the soap out. The biggest mistake many people make in grooming is leaving some soap in the coat. After the bath, push as much water off the coat in the sink as you can. Next put the cat on a pile of absorbant towels. Then using good quality, paper towels, soak up as much water as you can from all over the cat. Pay special attention to the face, head, front and back legs, belly, and tail. These are the hardest parts to get dry and the areas the cat is most likly to object to grooming. They are also the first areas to get crumpled and greasy. After the coat is almost dry to the touch, use a regular bath towel to "fluff dry" the cat. This will separate the coat and make it easier for air to get in and make the coat fluffy.

Powder is a very important grooming tool. It can help you in the drying proccess and in the show hall, help absorb grease as the day wears on. There is a process called powder packing: you can sprinkle small amounts of cornstarch baby powder into the damp coat, behind the ears, into the legs, and belly after bathing (then blow it out with the hair dryer). This will make a mess when you turn the dryer on...so you may want to practice this with dry coat first until you are comfortable working with powder.

If you are serious about showing, then invest in a professional grooming dryer, such as the Oster brand table top/cage dryer. Dryers run about $160 and should last forever. They are more powerful and do not get as hot as a regular "people" hair dryer. They also make a lower pitch sound, which does not seem to bother the cats as much. Best of all, it leaves both of your hands free to groom the cat while he/she is being dried.

Turn on the dryer. There are a couple ways to start. One way is to put the cat in a carrier. Turn the dryer on into the carrier and fluff the coat with your fingers every few minutes. If you do this, be very careful that the dryer does not get too hot (especially if you are using a regular "people" hair dryer). Another way is to put the cat on dry towels or a rack. Just set the dryer, cat, and all your grooming tools up on a table, and get comfortable. Start off by just having the dryer do the work, while you fluff the coat all over with your fingers. As the coat dries, you can start using either a wide-tooth metal comb or a pin brush (without any balls on the end of the pins). Do not use a fine-tooth comb, slicker brush, or any type of plastic brush. This will only make static or pull the hair out. From start to finish, a well-coated Persian (depending on size/age) will take anywhere from 2 to 4 hours to groom. The secret to growing a beautiful show coat is a bath and grooming every single week.
post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 
I will post photos of the kittens next week after their bath! Hopefully the article will help! Thanks again!!!
post #4 of 7
If someone can help... our wonderful Persian Ziggy has developed really bad matting on his back. I went away for a week and a friend watched him and when I returned he was a bundle of knots. I tried to brush them out, but it didn't work and he was hating it..., so I tried bathing. WRONG!

He now has large mats on his back and I really don't know what to do, short of cutting them off! I am wondering if conditioner might help?? Or anything else that someone might suggest for the poor guy...

Thanks so much!!
post #5 of 7
What we used to do for our long haired cat is to cut them but instead of cutting it off (horizontal snip) do a couple vertical snips then try brushing again. I don't know if I explained it very well. But cutting it this way doesn't leave your animal with as obvious of a short patch.
post #6 of 7
Hi there...

Thank you so much for getting back to me. I still haven't shaved him and I'm glad to have your input about making some vertical cuts and trying to straighten it out that way. I'll give it a try and write you back about how it came out!!

Thanks again,

post #7 of 7
Some persians mat worse than others.It seems to depend on how much like cotton the fur is. The only way to keep these coats free of mats is to brush them daily. At this point, you have a few options. One is to shave him down and start again, you can go to the pet store and buy the dematting comb (it has razors), or spend a long time working each one out and cutting some. Sometimes baby powder helps to free up the mats while you are getting them out. Between your fingers, dematting comb, comb, and slicker brush you should be able to work them out.
Going back to the bathing issue. I learned some neat stuff from an awsome persian breeder. First use a small amount of dawn dish detergent mixed with water, rinse till squeeky. Then use a high quality shampoo of your choice. Mix about a third of a cup of vinigar with a 2 cups of water and pour it over them and rinse well. Then use a conditioner for cats and rinse well. The most important thing is to use a blow dryer. If you don't the coat doesn't look fluffy.
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