I am often asked why I choose the things I choose when it comes to products, tools, and equipment for cat grooming. Here I will explain a few of those personal choices, underlined below.
Get the entire list of 12 PLUS why I love each one here in PDF format:
- Slick table top vs. rubber (or non-slick) table top
Whenever a cat can remain in its “comfort position” things will go better for cat and groomer.
The less you mess the better. This has become one of my rules to live by since first working with cats in the late 90s. The less you mess the better it is for all involved. Let the cat remain in its comfort position by spinning it around on the table to the angle that works best for whatever work needs to be done at any given moment. Slick table tops allow for this. Rubber or grip-y tops do not.
In addition, there’s the pee factor. Cats will pee while being groomed. It’s a fact. Not every cat will do this every time, but I guarantee a week of cat grooming will not go by without at least one cat peeing on the table. If the table has a rubber or plastic rim of any kind or rubber grooves, pee collects in the crevices and is impossible to get out completely. Cat pee has a way of lingering about for way longer than anyone would like.
My first grooming table was a rubber-topped dog grooming table. Because of the grip factor and the pee factor, I quickly had that table top replaced with melamine material that my handy husband got at Home Depot and cut down to size before bolting to the table legs. This worked like a charm. Later, my table tops became stainless steel, offering a better esthetic experience in addition to good slide factor and easy cleaning.
Places to look: restaurant supply companies
Ideal size for cat grooming: 36”w x 24”d
- Metal hose vs. rubber hose
Unless you like indoor sprinkler systems, get a metal hose to connect the spray nozzle to the faucet. One angry cat will destroy a rubber hose in less than 2 seconds. Duct tape does not generally work well to plug up the teeth holes made in a wet, rubber hose. Trust me on this.
Places to look: Kitchen supply stores or pet grooming supply companies
- Single-hand control nozzle vs. commonly used dog bathing nozzle with separate on/off control.
I’ll never forget the live cat bath performance I did in Sydney years ago, whereby I soaked myself, the sound system, and audience members sitting in the first two rows from the stage. If I had three hands this would not have happened. Or if the spray nozzle I was using had an on/off control on the actual nozzle this would not have happened. And since I’m probably never going to grow a third arm, I think getting the single-hand operation nozzle is the best bet.
Imagine this: one hand is holding onto the scruff of a wiggly kitty that has never had a bath before. The groomer cannot let go of the cat. The other (and only remaining) hand is holding onto the nozzle attached to a hose attached to a faucet. The groomer cannot let go of the nozzle while it is being turned on or it will turn into a wild snake-like firehose, whipping back and forth with complete abandon.
The on/off valve or switch is located somewhere else on the tub. Which hand should be used to turn on the water and adjust the flow and temperature?
It is wise to invest in a spray nozzle with a nifty squeeze control mechanism built right in so that the hand holding the nozzle can also turn the water on, control the pressure flow, and turn the water off as needed.
By the way, I’ve literally been in hundreds of grooming environments to teach and train. Those that have nozzles without a single-hand control ALWAYS create awkward, difficult, and sometimes out of control cat grooming situations for the students. Always.
Where to look: any home improvement supply store or gardening supply store
These are the first 3 items on my list. There are a total of 12 items on my list, each with an explanation of why I find them to work the best for cat grooming. Get the rest of the list here:
I know you’ll find my list helpful. It really does take the guesswork out of the equation, saving you time, money, and maybe even some pain and suffering. Be sure to get the rest of the article by clicking on the blue button above.
Happy cat grooming,