Cats are skittish creatures. They don’t like excessive petting and are considered low-maintenance creatures. For the most part, they will look after themselves. But, every cat requires some form of grooming. To ensure good health, it is important for you to look out for signs and symptoms that highlight the level of your cat’s health.

We list down a few ways by which you can groom your cat and check for signs of ill health.

Checking the ears, eyes, and nose

Every now and then as your cat hops onto your lap, give its ears, eyes, and nose a quick check.  There shouldn’t be any dirt, excessive wax, or debris built up. An unpleasant odor arising from a cat’s ears is a clear sign that something has gone wrong and a visit to the vet is in order.

Check to make sure there is no redness or swelling in or around your cat’s eyes. They should be clear and bright. Any sign of infection may require medical intervention.

Your cat’s nose must be smooth and moist. Any discharge coming from your cat’s nose may be a sign of infection. Look out for any bumps, ulcers or wounds that are taking too long to heal.

Grooming your cat on a regular basis will keep your cat healthy and free from the aforementioned troubles.

Getting rid of knots

Knots can build up if you haven’t groomed your cat in a while. They can be extremely uncomfortable to get rid of. For short-haired cats, use a comb with fine teeth to remove the knots, and a rubber brush to remove loose hair. Use gentle strokes in the direction of hair growth. For long-haired cats, a steel comb will do the job. Cat grooming can be a struggle for both the cat and the owner. Tease your cat with a treat whenever it wants to get away. Or if the going is getting extremely tough, perhaps it’s time to take a break.

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Trimming cat claws

Cats, especially outdoor cats, are fond of scratching their claws against rough surfaces. They usually maintain the general wear and tear of their claws by doing this. But indoor cats may develop some problems. Check your cat’s claws every few weeks. Get your cat used to claw trimming from an early age so it doesn’t turn out to be too much of a hassle.

Make use of cat-claw trimmers available in the market. Never clip off more than the transparent tip of the claw, and do so while gently putting your finger and thumb in between the paw. If you have a kitten, do not trim. Simply file the claws as and when required.

Keeping your cat in good health requires little but necessary work. For the most part, your cat will take care of itself by licking and cleaning itself. The areas that cannot be covered by the cat alone require your attention. The coat of a cat, its eyes, nose, ears, and claws will signal you if they are in need of unclogging, trimming, or medical attention. Cat grooming will not only keep your cat from developing problems, but it will also deepen the bond between the two of you.