We were nominated!

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We have kindly been nominated for the Leibster award by the Business Classroom. This virtual award is passed down to other bloggers that are highly regarded by yourself.

I need to nominate 11 bloggers- These bloggers are

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Sam’s questions for us are:

Why did you choose to start blogging? 

I saw a lot of cat groomers out there grooming cats with grooming loops around cats necks and taking 2 hours or more to groom cats and knew I had to help educate

If you could choose to work full time or blog full time what would you choose and why? 

Definitely Cat Grooming and the Business of Cat Grooming.  I love it!

If you could blog about anything for money what would it be and why? 

My dogs and cats!  I could talk about them all day!

Mac or PC

PC, haven’t had much to do with Mac’s

Favourite Blog

Jot-it-me-down – great stories!

What TV show is most like the your life?

Lol there isn’t any, A dog and cat groomer that talks pets all day?  No TV shows near that!

If a movie was being made about you – who would you want to be the actor playing you and why? 

Rachel Mcadams, only cos I’ve always wanted Ryan Gosling hahaha

If you could learn any new skill – What would it be and why?

Cat Behaviour,  I think will be my next forte’

Favourite social media platform?

Facebook, but it’s kind of boring me lately, same stuff different day

If you could live anywhere in the world where world where would you choose and what style house?

Italy, a little three story place in Venice

If the internet stopped working tomorrow – what would you decided to take up instead of blogging?

Getting a life hahaha.  I’m on it way too much!

Random Facts about me

1.  I started grooming dogs at 18

2. I started grooming cats at 19 with sedation at a vet

3. I started my grooming business and 21 and everyone asked for my mum when I answered my phone

4.  I love coffee at my favorite cafe to chill out

5. Cats actually make me itchy!

6.  So do some dogs!

7.  I have asthma

8. I have 5 cats and 2 dogs and I still manage to groom them all!

9.  I have over 600 regular clients

10. This is the most I have written about myself in years

11.  I am afraid of driving!  But I manage!

Questions for my Nominated Blogs

  1. Why did you choose to start blogging?
  2. If you could choose to work full time or blog full time what would you choose and why?
  3. If you could blog about anything for money what would it be and why?
  4. When did you start blogging?
  5. Favourite Blog
  6. How many coffees do you drink a day?
  7. Your guilty food pleasure?
  8. How many pets do you have?
  9. Do you ever get writers block?  What do you do to help move on?
  10. Favorite country to holiday?
  11. If the internet stopped working tomorrow – what would you decided to take up instead of blogging?

Congratulations to all the nominees!

Don’t forget to tag us on Facebook or share your blog link in the comment section below, we are sure everyone would love to read your answers to the questions too :)

Making the most of Christmas Time

Christmas time, and the summer in general (in Australia) is the busiest time of year and you need to make the most of it to keep your books full year round.

Re-booking this time of the year can make or break the slow season.

First you need to discuss seasonal coat changes and needs with the owner before or after the groom.  Ask why the cat came to you, every owner came for a reason, and you have a resolution for this, but it is not a permanent solution, it is temporary, so you need to discuss this with the cat owner.  Here is my basic reasons and resolutions to prove the need for re-booking.

Hairballs-  Needs clipping or bathing and de-shedding regularly, so regular grooming is needed so re-booking is required.  Too long between appointments lead to the cats becoming uncomfortable and can lead to big vet bills.

Matting- It is best to remove the mats now with clipping and go on a preventative bath and blow-dry or regular clipping schedule, as if you wait until the cat is matted, the cat will  get harder to groom every time, eventually requiring sedation in some cases. So, re-booking is required.

Allergies-  to pet and owner, regular grooming is needed to remove dander and excess coat.  Allergies to cats are not once a year, dander is year round so regular grooming is required.

As you see most reasons from grooming require a regular schedule.  The only reasons for grooming that do not require a regular schedule are seasonal such as heat and grass seeds.  The cat will still need to be groomed a minimum of twice in this season.  I do not recommend once a year grooming as most once a year cats are harder to groom and have more chance of revealing skin conditions, cutting of skin, so the price should be much more.

Remind clients that cats can be groomed in winter by bath and brush-out or full clip as they have double and triple coats so do not seem to feel the cold (and most live indoors).

Pushing that little bit to re-book this once as you recommend it for optimal cat health can lead to all year clientele, and less of a slow season for cats.  This year, in my salon, with two cat groomers, filled every cat grooming space we had even in winter.

During the Christmas season you can use added extras onto the appointment to make extra money without overbooking yourself.

Just a few ideas I do-

I get soft claws nail caps in Christmas colours (which you can paint on if you have the time)

Scented extras such as bay rum and candy cane chubbs bars or bay rum cat-a-tonic that smells very much like gingerbread make a great add on or free extra.

Temporary tattoos using blow pens are also a cute add on.

Progroom has recently brought out a foaming berry facial that can be used dry with cat grooms.

Adding an under body short clip to a bath and brush-out can be a quick add on too.

Making simple cat collars from pretty ribbons and diamante trim look great for Christmas.

Having some red and green mice, bagged cat treats or stick toys can make you a quick dollar, that will be quickly added this time of year.

The only thing I add is be wary of ingredients in any products you add this time of year that you don’t usually use on cats and remind clients any decorations you put on their pet should not be left on unattended.

Emergency grooms- Those who are extremely matted that cannot be fit in anywhere else, you can groom after dogs one day or before others and come early.  This appointment would require and emergency fee as outside your normal hours.  This time of year people get desperate, and to compensate for an extra hour at the most you can make some extra cash.

As you can see Christmas can be positive for you salon and is an important part of your whole years takings so don’t hold back on asking if they would like an extra service or re-booking to avoid disappointment.

Any questions feel free to email me  lexiethegroomer@hotmail.com   🙂

Lexie the Cat Groomer

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How to wash a cat without losing your fingers!

So you want to wash a clients (or your own) cat?  I get asked this daily at the moment so thought easier to post it!

It’s really not that hard!  Some of my kitty clients prefer bathing to clipping!  It’s the blow-dryer that scares most.

Those grumpy kitties are usually best in the bath when they are soaking wet.  Most cats when wet are quiet calm, once they are soaking they seem to think they can’t move.

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Have everything prepared BEFORE you grab your cat!  You will need 2 towels, a bucket of luke warm water or 2 or a shower hose, a pump water bottle of shampoo mixed with luke warm water (use cat friendly shampoo only, I use progroom proamber, make sure it says cat friendly on the bottle!) I like to use chubbs bars after the first wash.  A cat Shampoo bottle, Nail clippers, and an extra person if you can help it.  Washing in the laundry sink or boosted bath is best. (no hydro bath running)

1. Put a towel on your washing machine or bench,  Cut your cats nails before attempting if possible to decrease scratching!

2. Put cat in sink/bath facing away from you, put pressure on the shoulders of the cat reassuring the cat.  Use the water bottle wet the tail first slowly and make your way up to the head scrubbing as you go.  Don’t wet the face or head only with your hands or kitty will get grumpy, if needs doing, do this last.  Scrub as much as you can with one hand on shoulders.  Apply as much pressure as needed, scruff only as last resort.  Remember the cat might try and run away from the water until it is fully soaked.  If you decide to put your hands in front of its neck you will get bitten,  keep your hands behind the cat.

3.  Rinse using bucket of water and cup, as much as possible or a hose with spray close to the skin so they cannot hear it.

4.  Re-shampoo using your hands and shampoo.  Scrub as much as you can.

5.  Rinse again thoroughly. Do not use conditioner.

6.  Towel over cat and put cat on other towel and dry as much as possible.  If you are keen to blow-dry  (if cats not scared of vacuum or your hairdryer they may be fine), wrap cat up in towel and put other towel over head or happy hoodie (so they can breathe but not hear) and put pressure on whole cat drying from tail up and combing at times.   A hv dryer without the nozzle is good to use. Do not blow-dry the bum or the cat will express its glands.  To dry near head hold ears down so no air gets in.  Otherwise comb your cat as it air-dries but HV drying is best to remove loose undercoat and dandruff.  (I like the LANTUN dryer with adjustable settings, you can barely hear it on.)

I recommend bathing every 4-6 weeks for optimal cat health.

I hope this helps!

Keep on grooming!

Lexie the Groomer, Certified Master Cat Groomer

Fancy Feline Online Groomer Education

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Brush-outs and De-sheds

Brush-outs and De-sheds

I do a lot of bath, blow-dry and de-sheds. I add a de-shed fee to every cat bath that doesn’t come every 4- 8 weeks, as there will be coat and oil build up taking longer and excess brushing to do. 

To do a proper de-shed (brush-out or whatever you may call it), it all starts with the bath.  The cat must be washed thoroughly and if they have excess coat I will do extra washes until it is clean to my liking, failure to remove all oils will mean hair will stay in the coat and not move with drying, giving you more work and not lasting as long.  I prefer the Chubbs bars and Progroom Amber Cleansing Gel.  Brushing can start in the bath, depending on the amount of coat and cats behaviour I may use my gold les pooches (or your favourite slicker) to brush the coat once while sudsy and once while rinsing.

I then will towel dry the cat as much as possible and put a squeeze of Magic Tails Shine Serum on my hands, and rub all over the cat trying to get it to the roots of the hair (can also be used for de-matting).  I find this loosens up the undercoat, I was told this trick by a fellow groomer and love it!  Leaves a shine too.

I then will blow dry with a condenser nozzle for the dryer and once a patch is 80%-100% dry you can start combing with a cat comb, removing the undercoat while the dryer in on it.  In extra fluffy areas and the belly where the owner notices the cat sheds most I will use a furminator gently while the dryer in focusing on the area but do not overdo this! 

After the blow-dry I will then continue to comb the cat over and then brush with a slicker lightly and a zoom groom, so when the owner pats the cat little hair comes out, preventing complaints, as some think a de-shed will remove all undercoat (it will reduce by 70-80%)

I recommend baths for shedding reduction every 4-6 weeks.

any questions email me lexiethegroomer@hotmail.com

www.fancyfelineonlinegroomereducation.com

 

 

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My Quick Tips

Just a few quick tips that every groomer should know before grooming cats;

 

  • Do not noose a cat! (Or put a loop/collar around its neck used for restraint)  A cats bone structure is different to a dogs, one quick launch away and pull on neck can severely injure or kill a cat.  I prefer to use my hands but you may use a figure ‘8’ Harness.\

 

  • Do not catch or hold a cat by its tail- same as above.

 

  • No dogs around is best- just the simple smell of dogs groomed before a cat, noises of dogs or blow dryers if not use to, can cause a cat to stress out or act differently.

 

  • Do not use flea shampoos or sprays containing permethrin, it is toxic to cats, I prefer to use not flea shampoos

 

  • Do not be afraid to send a cat to a vet for sedation- if the cat is in danger of inuring itself or you it is not worth it.

 

  •  Remember cats are different from dogs so do not treat them the same!  Most cats will not let you get away with it, you cannot tell a cat what to do, or to sit still.  You cannot handle a cat the same or expect it to stand like a dog.

 

  • Try not to spend time grooming a cat for more than an hour, prolonged stress can KILL a cat! (sorry but I cannot stress this enough, the less time the better.)

 

  • Panting is a sign of stress, not thirst.

 

  • Got an angry cat?  Wash it first, it will completely change its mind!

 

That’s it for now 🙂

 

The Fancy Feline ‘Cat Guru’

 

 

Cat Show

So today I had another cat show. I show my companion cats at least 3 times a year, it helps me keep in touch with breeders, make new clients and show off my grooming. No I don’t have any pure breeds. Mostly rescues.
Today I received 2 rosettes which is my average.

At the show today I also made 2 clients, one a breeder and one her daughter. Breeders/cat show people find it hard to keep up with all pets too and I love that I am the go to girl for advice and products recommendation.
Of course not everyone wants my help (there are a few greasy kitty’s there!) and some cats that need a good brush! But I don’t tell them that, don’t want to get in anyone’s way.

Every judge comments on their grooming and I would hope they are the best groomed or I am in the wrong job 😉
Most judges if you listen, will explain the breed, colour, and standard of the cat they are judging. (Obviously except companions no breed standard)

It’s always good to pop in a cat show now and then to learn some breeds, colours and network.

Lexie xxx

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Time Restraints

I have read a lot of articles, studied vet nursing, watched webinars, read books, done modules and talked to a lot of groomers and they have all said the same  thing, I am going to forward this on to you for your and your clients.

I see it constantly on facebook, people grooming cats taking 2-4 hours

Cats have a time limit, some thirty minutes, some 1 hour, some 1 second, but they all get sick of grooming.  The average time limit (when they start scratching biting or getting stressed) is generally under an hour. 

I groom all cats from start to finish no matter how matted in an hour or less!  Yes that included bath, dry and two clips.  As with dogs speed comes with experience but with cats you need to set yourself a limit. 

A cat that is in a chronic state of anxiety can experience health problems as well as behavioural changes. One indication of stress is high concentrations of the corticosteroids (hormones secreted by the adrenal gland) in the blood and/or urine, particularly cortisol. If large amounts of the hormones persist in reaction to chronic stressors, the result can be illness or even death.

I stress this limit must not be passed and if the following occurs the groom must be stopped and continued another day

  • -panting that does not stop if you stop grooming
  • -panting in any cat with medical issues or over the age of 10
  • -weeing and defecating more than once
  • – a cat over 10 years old and its been an hour of grooming
  • – a cats eyes are dilated and do not return to normal when grooming stops
  • -high temperature
  • – rapid breathing
  • – you believe that cat is highly stressed

 

Even if you believe the cat is not stressed, it is not at home in its bed asleep or relaxed, being out of its comfort zone it is stressed.  Did you know cats also PURR when they are stressed?

 

This can, and has on many occasions caused death or renal failure etc leading to death.

 

I have only had this happen twice in my grooming time, and I have groomed hundreds of cats.  My unfortunate circumstances were both elderly (19-22 years old) extremely matted, and did not show signs of stress.  They were not groomed for more than 30 mins, did not have a bath, and both got very sick leading to euthanasia within days.

I have heard stories of cats literally falling over and dying, young, no signs of stress or ill health, yet they must of had heart issues not detected by a vet.

 

Now I am trying not to scare you, this is a very rare occurrence, but you must do everything to prevent it such as studying cat behaviour and health such as I have. 

I drill it into all clients that grooming cats without sedation is both a risk to me and them and they sign a form stating this.

All I am asking is that you set yourself a time limit, even if you just bath or just clip until you get a little quicker.

Please believe me when I tell you to not do more than an hour of grooming on a cat.

 

Thanks for listening

 

Lexie