Have you ever been scrolling through your social media feed, only to come upon a cute picture of a cat shaved to look like a lion or — my personal favorite — a stegosaurus?
If so, there’s a good chance you’ve contemplated shaving your own kitty to follow the trend and make her look even more adorable than she already does. But, is it okay to shave her?
|Features||Snag Free Cutting|
Cuts through thick hair
Self Sharpening Blades
Ideal for Small Animals
|5-in-1 Blade Adjust
Slim & Lightweight
5 Year Warranty
Input Power 110V
80 Min Runtime
5,500 Strokes PM
Four guide combs
|Pet clipper |
AC Power Adapter
Stainless steel scissors
|Price||The Pet-Pro is $37||The Sminiker Clipper is $25||The Wahl ARCO is $115|
Table of Contents
The Best Fur Clippers for Cats
Before getting into some background context, here are my top choices for grooming clippers for cats:
My favorite recommendation for cat clippers is the Wahl Pet Pro because it is a great balance between price and effectiveness. What I like specifically about it is that it’s a lot quieter than typical electric clippers. If your cats are anything like mine, they HATE threatening electric noises…
The Sminiker Pro is very comparable in price to the Wahl Pet Pro, but it is CORDLESS which is a great option for clipping on the go.
The Wahl ARCO Se is exactly the same as Clipper Pet Pro but a little more horsepower for longer haired cats AND a bit more quiet than the Wahl Pro.
When Should a Cat Be Shaved?
There seem to be mixed feelings when it comes to the reasons people choose to shave their cats. While some people really enjoy the aesthetic appeal of having a little lion running around the house, others believe it isn’t okay to alter a cat’s fur for vanity reasons. Veterinarians and some cat experts maintain that cats should only be shaved when it relates to concerns about their health or comfort levels.
Health concerns that would cause a need for a shave are mostly related to sanitary issues such as heavily matted fur, an excessive problem with hairballs, and cats that are overweight and unable to properly groom and clean themselves. The only other time vets agree it would be necessary to shave a cat is before a surgical procedure, which a veterinary technician will probably take care of.
What about during the hot summer months? According to veterinarians and the ASPCA, cat parents don’t have to worry about their cat overheating when it gets hot outside because a cat’s fur acts as a built-in insulator. It allows them to regulate their body temperature so they can stay cool when it is hot and warm when it is cold. Even with this neat ability, she will likely move to a shadier area if the heat gets uncomfortable for her.
Another reason cat parents might choose to shave their cat is to reduce the amount of shedding around the house. While this is definitely a by-product of being a cat parent, it might be difficult for people with allergies to deal with. However, before resorting to shaving it’s recommended to employ some good pet grooming habits first.
Frequent brushing can help reduce the amount of that your cat sheds, as well as be an enjoyable bonding experience for both of you. Try investing in a grooming glove or a brush like the FURminator, which is an extremely affordable tool to add to your grooming arsenal and is said to reduce shedding by up to 90 percent!
Is It Okay to Shave Them Yourself?
It is recommended that cat parents take their cat to a professional groomer when it comes time for a shave. As professionals, they are experienced in handling a cat while wielding a razor so cat parents will be less apt to worry about the safety of their cat.
While safety is one of the most important elements for a cat parent to consider when grooming their cat, paying for frequent trips to a professional groomer can be taxing on a cat parent’s budget. It’s understandable to want to minimize these costs as much as possible. One of the easiest ways to do that is to clip her fur in the comfort of your own home. If you decide to take over this part of her care, you must do the necessary research to ensure you know what the proper steps are. Investing in the appropriate cat grooming tools will ensure you both stay cool, calm, and collected – not to mention free of injury!
Have the Right Tools
If you choose to shave your cat at home, it is essential to have the right tools. This means investing in reliable grooming clippers. While it might be tempting to just use the same clippers you have for human hair, buying clippers specially designed with pet hair, or in our case, cat hair in mind is going to benefit you in the long run.
There are a lot of clippers on the market, and it can be hard to choose which one will work the best. Don’t be afraid to shop around to find good quality clippers that fit your budget. Amazon is always a good place to start because you can read what others have thought about the product.
One of the most highly reviewed and trusted brand of clippers is Wahl. They have several versions so cat parents can rest assured they will find a good fit. People love how easy the clippers are to use as well as how well they tackle matted fur.
The Pet-Pro Clipper from Wahl is extremely affordable whereas Wahl’s ARCO SE Professional Cordless Pet Clipper Kit is going to be more expensive. Both clippers are said to be very quiet, making it less likely that she will be startled by the noise, and both kits come with almost everything you need to get the job done. The fact that it is cordless just makes it even easier because you don’t have to worry about it getting caught up while trying to wrangle your cat with one hand and clip her fur with the other.
Sminiker also makes highly rated clippers that are just as affordable as Wahl’s Pet-Pro Clipper but unlike Wahl’s version, the Sminiker one has the added benefit of being cordless as well as inexpensive. Cat parents like it for the same reasons as Wahl’s clippers – it’s easy to use, low cost, and the makes minimal noise.
Clipping a cat’s paw and fur can be a stressful experience for some cats, so another helpful item to have on hand prior to shaving her is a pair of heavy-duty gloves that will protect your hands and arms from scratches if she gets scared.
The Proper Way to Shave a Cat
Once you have the right pet grooming tools, there are steps to help make the process as easy as possible. Knowing the steps to take before starting will be beneficial to both you and your cat because it prevents errors and you’ll likely be less nervous. Also, keep in mind that having two people take part in the task of clipping her fur can be beneficial and make the process less stressful.
Step 1: Give Her Nails a Quick Trim
Even if you’ve purchased some thick gloves for the task, there is a possibility of her still being able to leave a mark through the gloves, so the first thing to do is to trim her claws to limit the severity of any scratches that may occur while you clip her fur. Investing in a nail clipper or grinder is a must for cat parents and can save the cost of paying the groomer or veterinarian to do it for you.
Step 2: Introduce Her to the Clippers
The next step is to get her used to the sound of the clippers. This step is very important, especially if you have an anxious cat or one that is easily spooked. Regardless, you definitely don’t want to just go in with no warning whatsoever because that will scare her and cause injury to you both.
Step #3: Hold Her Skin Taut
Once she gets used to the noise of the clippers, it’s time to get to work on clipping her fur. The technique depends on the purpose of the trim, as aesthetics can be different than shaving for health reasons. No matter the reason for shaving, it is always best to start at the top, holding the skin taut to prevent injury, and work your way down her body. It’s also recommended to leave the fur on her tail as is.
Step #4: Don’t Rush Through It
Being shaved will likely be a stressful experience for her, so take your time. It’s also a good idea to take frequent breaks and reward her with treats for her good behavior. Running the grooming clippers for an extended period can cause the blade to get hot, so taking breaks also prevents the sharp blades from burning her skin.
If you’re having a hard to completing the job, celebrate the victory of getting as much of it done as you did! You can always pick up right where you left off after a few hours or even the next day. That’s one of the benefits of shaving her yourself rather than taking her to a professional groomer!
Put Her Well-Being First
No matter your reasons for choosing to shave your cat, the most important thing to keep in mind is her overall health, happiness, and well-being. If she’s an indoor cat, make sure you have a sunny area for her lounge when she gets cold sans fur. If she spends a long time outdoors, it might be best to leave her furry coat as is to prevent sunburn and other injuries.
If you’re unsure about whether or not you will be able to shave her fur yourself, don’t attempt it. As nice as it would be to save the money you pay for grooming tools and fees, it’s better to leave it to the professionals than risk an injury!