Monday, May 13, 2013


A pet owner at the website, where I am a Resident Expert asked:

I have 2 long haired cats of mixed breed. They shed alot during the summer. I know of people that shave their cats. Do you have any tips or ideas on how or if we should do this?
A typical "lion cut" for a long-haired cat.  The amount of fur left around the neck and on the tail is totally optional.  Usually "booties" are left on the legs, as these areas can be tricky to safely clip.

This was my response:
I have been grooming cats, mostly shaving in "lion cuts", for over 30 years. People love it, and many cats seem happier to get rid of their thick easily matted coats. I've had cat parents tell me their cat undergoes a personality change after clipping and becomes more wanting to be touched. 

I do not recommend that you clip your own cat unless you have some experience with the clippers. Feline skin is quite thin and easily knicked or cut. Once cut, the skin will sometimes tear open worse. It is VERY EASY to cut a cat. The most important tip is to always clip skin that is firm and slightly stretched out, never cut into loose or folded skin. That means having someone extend the legs so the person with the clippers can be very careful.

Try to find a local groomer who is experienced with cats, preferably one that will allow you to assist and calm the cat while they clip. See my article at Petocracy on "Caretaker Assisted Cat Grooming".

If you want to try to clip your own cat, let me know if you want a "how to" article. I can offer some guidance. I would recommend using a Laube Speed Feed or Laube Purrl trimmer (they are the same), available from me at But even these quiet trimmers can cut a cat.

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