Start grooming as soon as you get your cat. Start slowly to see how kitty responds. If he or she is skittish, do it frequently in short time periods until kitty responds better.
Use scissors made to trim small pet claws to clip the front nails, holding and pressing each toe gently to extend the claw and trimming only the tips. Take your time until kitty gets used to it, you may only get a toe or two at a time at first.
Using a comb or brush suited to your cat's coat, groom kitty gently in the direction of growth, talking softly and petting kitty as you go to make it a pleasant experience. Unless your cat is a huge fan of grooming, best to let kitty remain unrestrained and do as much at a time as kitty will allow, picking up where you left off later if need be.
After brushing and petting, use a folded paper towel dampened with warm water to clean any crust from eye area gently. Then, use a big cotton ball moistened with a bit of mineral oil to gently clean kitty's ears. Place the cotton ball in the outer ear and gently rotate it back and forth to remove any wax or fur you can see.
The key to all of it is to be gentle and reassuring, and have patience. I have had three alley cats from kitten age, and though each was initially fearful of grooming, they quickly came to love it. I couldn't even brush my own hair without being accosted by a cat wanting its turn! Then, finally, praise and treats for your spa kitty!
Source: My own personal experiences with felines.
By Kat from MD
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