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Helping elderly DCat with grooming

(13 Posts)
QuantumWeatherButterfly Tue 17-Sep-19 11:35:41

QuantumCat is old - she's 16 now, and has a number of health issues that need management. This is generally going well - she takes her medication with no issue, and I can see it definitely does help. The vet says that she isn't in bad shape for her age, and her quality of life is fine, for now at least.

However - one of her health problems is neurological degeneration, and it manifests in a number of ways - she's a bit wobbly on her back legs, can't jump like she used to, and can't seem to twist herself round to groom her back properly anymore. She's clean in the sense that there's no 'leftovers' from toileting to deal with, but her fur feels a bit greasy and has quite a lot of dander. Her front half is fine, and luckily she is short haired - although on the more 'luxuriant' end of the short hair scale, if that makes sense!

I have a grooming mitt that I've been using to get rid of loose hair, but it doesn't seem to be helping with the 'clean' feeling or the dander. Yesterday, I thought that perhaps she had the start of some matting on her tummy - though nothing at all problematic for now.

Short of bathing her (which I'm not going to do, one of her health issues is an irregular heartbeat, and I think the shock of getting wet would finish her off - and the ensuing blood loss would probably do for me too!), is there anything I can do to help her more? A more effective tool or method? Or would a mobile groomer be a good idea?

OP’s posts: |
madcatladyforever Tue 17-Sep-19 11:40:16

Aww sweet little thing. My Dcat is 18 and I regularly give her a gentle bath in the kitchen sink. Its not as scary as the bath and it's on waist level so better control.
She didn't like it at first but is used to it now.
She hates being dried though and hisses so I just wrap her in a towel and put her in front of a heater if it's cold.

MashedSpud Tue 17-Sep-19 11:47:56

I Googled dry shampoo for cats. I didn’t even know it was a thing.

QuantumWeatherButterfly Wed 18-Sep-19 20:55:24

Thanks, both. When I googled dry shampoo, I found a leave in, cleaning mousse that had great reviews I'm going to try. And while I was doing that, I saw a link to a product called a Furminator, which arrived tonight and is doing a great job of removing loose hair and dander. She's already looking smarter - if only she'd let me have a go at her tummy!smile

OP’s posts: |
thethoughtfox Wed 18-Sep-19 21:09:09

A little baby powder is good to stop further matting.

stella47 Thu 19-Sep-19 13:58:10

Hi Quantum, I saw this about a woman helping her 18 year old cat with grooming using a wash cloth/flannel. My cat's only 11 but I've started doing a bit of this just to get him used to it as he's long haired. Anyway I wondered if it might help QuantumCat.

QuantumWeatherButterfly Thu 19-Sep-19 14:51:56

Ah, that video is so sweet, Stella! QuantumCat wouldn't let me do quite a lot of that (she's still a feisty tortie kitten, in her head, at least!), but some of it would be fine and I am sure would help.

OP’s posts: |
stella47 Fri 20-Sep-19 20:49:34

Yes, here helping with head, back and even tail are acceptable, but any attempts at reaching underneath bits or furry trousers result in Severe Spiky Mauling Trap being activated.

Angelik Fri 20-Sep-19 20:57:58

My elderly cat was like this last year. Same arwa of body. We thought she's been rolling in oil. Took her to vets who gave her a ruddy good comb and recommended The Furminator too - it is excellent. Grooming daily is essential as kitties don't like it for too long. Washing etc is not going to do it because it needs to be done every day to replicate normal, daily cat grooming. You can't use on underneath if you've got a girl. It would hurt nipples!

QuantumWeatherButterfly Fri 20-Sep-19 21:49:28

Well, good news and not such good news. The Furminator really is fantastic. I can't believe how much hair it's taking off. She looks and feels so much better.

The not such good news is that removing all the hair meant I was able to feel a lump on her tail, where it joins her back. I'm hoping it's just a cyst and nothing sinister. The vet is going to take a look early next week.

OP’s posts: |
Angelik Fri 20-Sep-19 21:55:33

@QuantumWeatherButterfly hope it's nothing sinister

QuantumWeatherButterfly Wed 25-Sep-19 22:19:02

I'm pleased to confirm QuantumCat's lump was just a sebaceous cyst. Nothing to worry about. And after several days of gentle grooming with the Furminator, she no longer feels obviously greasy, and has significantly less dander. The thing's a miracle, I tell you!

OP’s posts: |
TrainspottingWelsh Wed 25-Sep-19 22:35:44

Our old boy is somewhere in his late teens, and we use a top quality pure bristle body brush and sheepskin mitt purloined from the horses. Horse face brushes if you need something smaller. Furminators are great for coat changes and tangles but ime they're sometimes a bit too vigorous for daily use once their coat is back in good condition.

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