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Shedding, and trimming at home

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
My new white angora mix is the first non-shorthaired cat I've owned, and the shedding is overwhelming me. I groom him every day with both a regular brush and a round shedding blade tool, but it's still like a holocaust of hair.

First off, do you think there's any chance this is just seasonal? I heard that house cats shed seasonally all year round, and I'm in a warm Southern U.S. climate, so I don't know if there's any hope of it.

I was thinking of trying to do a haircut myself, as I don't want to get into a lifetime expense of taking him to the groomers. Do any of you do it? Any recommendations in terms of techniques or what clippers to use? My cat is fairly good about things like being brushed and having his nails clipped, so I think he might let me.

Finally, do you think Shed-X actually works? (If not, does some other food additive?) I was loathe to go to ingestible remedies, but at this point I'll try anything. It'd be nice to be able to pet him without getting a handful of hair or to get into bed at night without breathing in a mouthful of hair (*he* doesn't have hairball problems, but at this rate I will).
post #2 of 11
Only recommendation i have is Shed-Ender works wonderfully on long,thick haired cats. I have a Persian/Himalayan and all I do is brush him with that. I never just cut his hair but you can do a short cut. I would learn it by looking up step by step process on the internet and pictures and stuff like that. Sometimes, if he gets a little knotty and if I have no air conditioner in the hot summer, I will have him shaved. Sometimes I just shave under his belly and armpits and under his tail myself to keep poop clumps and matting away. I am considering having him completely shaved this summer since I have no a/c.
post #3 of 11
I don't personally have experience shaving non-sedated (I've only done, sedated pre-op cats) cats and my kitty is short hair (although he sheds in the summer like you wouldnt believe)... I think one step I would take before attempting to shave him myself would be to take him to a reasonably priced, reputable groomer for his first trim down to see how he reacts to the clippers.... he may be great being brushed, etc but some cats will FREAK OUT at the sound of the clippers - so you could either watch the grooming (if they let you) or explain the situation to the groomer and he/she could tell you how your kitty reacted and if he/she thinks it'd be feasable for you to attempt it at home.... good clippers (which you'll need, dont skimp on cheap-o's if you decide to do it) aren't cheap and you dont want it to be a wasted investment if your kitty won't cooperate....

As for additives, I tried shed-x and didn't notice a huge difference, although Oliver got real picky about it and most of the time would rather not eat than eat food with the shed-x on it.... some people have successfully used fish oil as an additive too (can be found in capsule form and you'd just break open the capsule to release the oil into the food)
post #4 of 11
The only time a longhair cat needs trimmed or shaved is if they are matted to0 bad. Or you can trim around the base of the tail/back legs for keeping cleaner in the litter box.

Some persian people do a "lion cut" in the summer, but that's only cause they don't want to have to comb them every day if they are not being shown.

IMO if you have a LH cat, then you should expect a lot of grooming time; otherwise get a shorthair cat.

Angoras don't mat as easy as a persian type of coat but they do shed. I owned a purebred Turk and he really didn't like grooming. Placed him in a home that had more time then I did for grooming - I'll stick with my shorthairs and rexes (who barely shed)
post #5 of 11
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the advice. I wouldn't want to shave my cat... just trim the fur, particularly on the underbelly and possibly along the back legs and the mane. I'll have to see. When I went to the local grooming place to ask about prices, it was all giant dogs, and they seemed unfamiliar with cats. My vet is a cat-only place and does grooming also, but they're very overpriced.

Brushing him and using a shedding rake every day just doesn't seem to be enough. I'm curious -- do the Furminator or ShedEnder work better on undercoat hair than a basic round shedding rake? Because the rake took off a lot of hair at first, but it's somewhat less now, and I think I may be removing as much undercoat as it's possible to get through grooming.
post #6 of 11
I like the FURminator tool- it;s not cheap but I find it really does pull out a lot more hair then any other grooming tool I have used. You can find it online or maybe used on ebay. You do have to be careful on thin skinned older cats because the blade is metal and like rake, if used too harshly can scrape the skin painfully.
post #7 of 11
I was going to ask about shedding too but I read somewhere that it can be do to food quality and was curious about that.
post #8 of 11
It can definitely be due to food quality, but also changes in weather.... for instance, my dog is on ennova (sp? haha) food - one of the best available, yet as soon as the season changes to warmer weather, she sheds like none other - Ollie sheds pretty badly at the season change too.... both get monthly baths and lots of brushing (I have the round shed tools for both) - I got tons of hair off them at the end of last month... they both looked a million times thinner cuz I got rid of so much undercoat!
post #9 of 11
My mother lives in Alaska, and her cat Violet has a similar issue. The vet says that they just freak out because there isn't a true weather change.
post #10 of 11
I would beware of groomers who don't seem at ease with cats. Our school cat, Yoda, was traumatized by a groomer, and now he will only let a few people brush him (I'm one of them) and even then, it's only on the back. As a result, he gets horrifyingly matted on the tummy, near the rear end, and in his armpits. He has to be sedated and given a lion cut around twice a year.
post #11 of 11
Oh, also, I live in the Southern U.S. and my cats -- one is short-haired and the other is medium-haired -- are shedding like CRAZY!! I think it is better during the cooler months.
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