The Best Way to Pet Your Cat

Before Tiger Bomm found shelter in Maryjean Ballner’s home, he was a homeless stray. "He was a tough adoption," admits Ballner, who lives in Sandy, Utah. "’Mouthiness’ was part of his repertoire." It wasn’t easy to teach the scared cat to drop his guard, but after five months, Tiger finally purred softly for the first time. Ballner’s secret to pacifying Tiger? Cat massage.

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Dematting Your Cat

Longhaired cats develop mats in their fur – those clumps of dead hair that get stuck in the coat – more easily than shorthaired cats, but any cat can develop them. During humid weather the fur bunches up and mats much more readily and requires more grooming. Cats also mat more frequently in the armpits and other places where their body parts rub against one another.

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Grooming Your Cat

It is important that you get your cat accustomed to bathing and grooming early in life by starting off with small, fun sessions when your cat is still young. You must also choose a method which will be fun for you and carry it out only when you have plenty of time. If you are stressed or rushed when bathing or grooming your cat, your cat is not likely to enjoy the experience.

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Cat Massage – A Hands-On Experience

One week in spring, during a routine massage session, I discovered a small hard lump on Sappho’s belly close to a nipple. Since Sappho got a weekly massage (and a general belly rub daily if she could persuade me), I knew that the lump was had developed since her previous massage. Using my fingertips, I could feel that the lump was a hard nodule beneath the skin and was not associated with a flea-bite.

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