Some cats are adventurers, exposing their coats to hazardous or messy substances on a regular basis. If your cat manages to make contact with one of the following 3 things, immediately follow the recommended actions before calling your pet groomer:
Emergency Number 1: Fiberglass insulation
If your cat gets itchy, crusty, red bumps on its skin, suspect fiberglass dermatitis. This condition is serious, and should be looked at by your veterinarian, who will prescribe special treatment for the problem.
If your cat shows up with fresh insulation on its coat, try to vacuum off what you can and make an appointment for the groomer to have the coat properly cleaned and conditioned.
Since this type of insulation is basically spun glass, it will irritate and abrade your cat's skin, and this gets worse with repeated exposure. Find out how the cat is accessing insulation and close up access points. If you suspect your cat is getting into other people's insulation, it's best to make your cat an indoor companion.
Emergency Number 2: Tree sap
Whether climbing a pine in your yard or exploring the Christmas tree, a cat may catch gooey globs of tree sap in its fur. This sap eventually hardens and is extremely difficult to remove without the proper products. It can also be toxic to cats, who ingest it trying to lick it away.
If you can't get to the groomer, who has special shampoos to dissolve the sap, try to loosen sap with a warm hairdryer, taking care not to set the heat too high. Some oils, and even peanut butter, can help work the sap free of the fur as well. Use a wide-toothed comb to coax the blobs of sap free, and follow up with a cat-safe shampoo.
Emergency Number 3: Skunk oil
If your cat decides to play chicken with a skunk and loses, your professional cat groomer will be your new best friend. If it's after hours, try countering the extremely alkaline skunk spray with an acidic rinse of tomato juice, apple cider vinegar, or a home remedy.
The good news about your cat's stinky defeat is that it should keep the cat from poking any skunks in the future. If you have several cats, or if skunks are numerous in your area, ask your cat groomer to put together an emergency kit for you to have on hand.
A professional pet groomer at Town & Country Kennel Inc. will help you solve most stupid cat tricks, and will recommend shampoos and treatments that will keep your cat's coat soft and healthy, no matter where their crazy adventures lead them.