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Fur And Tail Care








All that fur means grooming will be needed. These readers ask about the FURminator, shedding, bathing, and caring for those huge tails.

Here are our archived questions and answers regariding fur, shedding, and tail care. Just scroll down to read more about:

  • "Is The FURminator Safe?"
  • "Give Your Coon A Bath?"
  • "Care Of Maine Coon Tails"
  • "Do They Shed Much?"
  • "Fur Care"
  • "Warm Weather"
  • "Do Maine Coon Cats Shed?"

Is The FURminator Safe?

by: Judy - UK
(South England)

Hi Carrie


I've heard how effecient the Furminator is, the thing is, I've seen a photo on the net where the Maine Coon's owner seemed to have stripped off the poor Maine Coon's guard hairs. I've hesitated buying one because of the photo and also, I assumed only owners of breeds like chinchillas would use them. P'raps I'm wrong?

Do you use one Carrie?

Reply:

Hi Judy,
Yes, we got our FURminator this past summer. It is like nothing I've ever used. I love it.

It is very effective, and I would have to guess that the owner of the cat you saw in the picture must have 'overdone it.'

I've used it on a Sheltie, a Golden Retriever, my sister-in-law has used it on her short haired cats, and of course Alice and Leo.

It works by removing the hair that has already been shed but is just waiting to fall out. It doesn't pull the cats fur out at all! They are quite comfortable when I use it.

In fact, Leo purrs and enjoys the attention. I use it in little spurts in the evenings. The amount of fur that came out on the first use was amazing!

I have no hestitation in recommending it. Used properly, the FURminator is safe, very effective on the Maine Coon fur, and not damaging at all!

Enjoy,
Carrie






Give Your Coon A Bath?

Hey! Is it OK to give your Coon a bath? I don't think she enjoys it...


Reply:


Yes, it's OK to bathe a Maine Coon. You're right, none of them like it! And, there is no need to do it if she's an indoor kitty who looks and smells just fine. Many cats rarely or never get an official bath.

Then again, most cats get into things or just need a bath for one reason or another. When the time comes, giving a quick bath with pet shampoo will make her feel and smell better.

Check out our page on how to bathe a cat for a head start when giving a bath. We recently bathed Alice and Leo, and I'll be adding lots more photos to that page next week.

One tip, this time of year it's very important to make sure she gets fully dry before too long. You'll want to turn up the heat or fire up the woodstove/fireplace to make sure she doesn't get chilled.

Also, between baths, you could try some waterless cat shampoo to get by without giving an actual bath.

All The Best,
Carrie



Care Of Maine Coon Tails

Hi we have two Maine Coons. The 3.5 year old's tail just seemed to get thinner and thinner. This week we groomed the 18 month old and included combing his tail.

It was really thick and fluffy but after combing all the fluff came out and he too has now only a thin tail.

Were we wrong to comb it? Will it grow back? The older coon has never needed his combing so don't know why his is so thin?

They are fed on a really good diet - exactly as recommended by breeder - very varied and carefully mixed and measured.

Looking forward to some advice -thank you

Reply:

Hi,
This can happen. It sounds like a combination of the combing and the time of the year. I'm not sure where you are, but if the weather is getting warmer, your cats probably had a lot of fluff that had been shed but was still being held in place by all the other fur.

And, combing out that tail, especially if there were some tangles, will leave it thinner.

I think as time goes by, and cooler weather comes you'll see it thicken back up. For the future, try to comb the tail sparingly, just where and when it's needed.

As for your older boy, perhaps it's just his makeup. Our Alice's tail is not particularly full. She has a different, silkier texture fur than her brother. Her tail doesn't look super full, but it flows and is thick enough and beautiful.

If you are concerned that it may be a health issue, ask your vet at the next check-up, or even give your breeder a call. It may just be a variation.

Hope This Helps!
~Carrie




PAWSitive Passages!


PAWSitive Passages!

Do They Shed Much?

Do they shed much? our last cat, a Siberian, hardly shed at all. Are they related to Siberians?

Reply:

Hi,
Well, I must be honest, They do shed. How much depends on the cat. My girl has a silky coat and hardly seems to shed at all.

My boy has a soft and fluffy coat that seems to mat more easily and leaves little "fur-balls" here and there.

Using a good brush that's made to combat shedding, like the FURminator can make all the difference in household shedding.

Some owners hardly notice it, others are combating shedding all the time.

Maine Coon cats are not actually known to be related to Siberians, though they look somewhat alike. They could have common ancestors way, way back, but we'll never know for sure as the history of Maine Coons is somewhat of a mystery to begin with!

I would be surprised if a Maine Coon would shed more than a Siberian, though! They are similar in coat type.

All The Best,
Carrie


Fur Care

by: Catherine Cote
(Montreal)

Hi,
I am the happy mom of the White & black Maine coon.He has all the characteristics of a Maine Coon.

How do we care for his fur? I try to brush his fur as often as possible. It is a very hard process. He hates it...then he wants to bite my hands.

I cannot do more than 20 sec per time.

When his hair is long he is gorgeous except when he start to have knots- I usually cut them - his fur becomes uneven.

Also I had him shaved - put what is the purpose of having a Maine Coon (long hair) if he is always shaved to avoid knots.

Please give me a trick, I want to care better.

Coco is very much alive - very entertaining cat! Best cat!

Thanks
Catherine

Reply:

Hi Catherine,
It sounds like you are at your wits end! You are clearly doing your best to care for Coco's fur.

You're right, it does get frustrating at times. I've often had to cut the mats. Sometimes they show up no matter how well you try to brush him. And if he doesn't like it, that doesn't help. But, if you are getting 20 minutes of brushing in from time to time, that is very good! More than many do.

Perhaps try a different brush? At our house, we have a FURminator Deshedding tool.

I tried everything else first, but this really is my favorite.

It takes a bit of getting used to, but it removes so much dead fur! At first, Coco will probably resist. I would only do 1 or 2 strokes on the first day. Then build up. When you use it, you'll be amazed by how much fur comes away.

Also, make sure you do his neck ruff, britches, and belly well. This is where the mats usually develop. And maybe a bath? If his fur gets dirty, it's more prone to mat.

Here's a grooming page you might find helpful: How To Groom A Cat, 9 Steps To A Beautiful Cat

There's no magic trick, unfortunately! Just do the best you can...
Carrie


Warm weather

by: Brett T
(Irvine CA)

Because of their long fur, do Maine coons get hot in warm weather?

Do they need to be trimmed in the summer?

Reply:

Hi Brett,
Well, they do get hot. But, there are many longhaired cats and dogs; they all get hot in summer. Shorthaired pets also need to be looked after.

Some owners do like to give their Maine Coon cat a 'lion cut' in the summer. But generally speaking, owners just use their common sense to keep their cat comfortable. Your own comfort is a good guideline. If you would feel better with the air conditioner on, so would the cat!

Maine Coon cats should be kept as indoor cats, so just by keeping your home comfortable, you're cat will be all set.

For more info on keeping cats cool and being alert to heat stroke dangers, visit our related page on avoiding Heat Stroke In Cats.

All The Best,
Carrie

Comments:

Re: Warm Weather
by: Jessy

I have a Samoyed dog, a breed that herds reindeer in its native Siberia and has a lot more hair than a Maine Coon. I just never take him out during the hotter hours of the day in summer. My longest-haired cat has access through a cat door to an enclosed patio, but she is too sensible to go out in the hottest hours of the day.


Do Maine Coon Cats Shed?

by: Dixie
(Salida, CO)

Do Maine Coon Cats shed? And what about allergies?

Reply:

Hi Dixie, Yes, they do shed. It's not as bad as it sounds, though. All cats shed. So, if your cat has a favorite sleeping spot, it will have some fur on it before too long. A Maine Coon will leave a little more behind.

They shed more in the spring, when they shed their thick winter coat. Their coat is thinner (but still quite magnificent) in the summer.

They require regular brushing. Without it they become quite matted. So, since they are so affectionate, just pull out a brush at give a Maine Coon a once-over during snuggle-time.

And, they are not hypo-allergenic cats. Some breeds are popular for folks with allergies, such as the Sphynx, Siberian, and Abyssinian. Even those are not non-allergenic. Many cat end up in shelters and rescue every year because their owner couldn't keep them due to allergies. So that's a decision not to be taken lightly.

Some people have claimed to be able to tolerate Maine Coons even though they are allergic. If you are hoping this is the case, I'd recommend spending some time with one (preferably the one you might adopt) and seeing how you react.

I hope this answers your questions!
~Carrie










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