Ragdoll cats have a soft, medium-length coat that consists of three types of hairs. The long guard hairs protect the outer coat, while the medium length awn hairs make up the middle part of the coat. The undercoat is made up of down hairs, which trap air and keep the cat warm. While ragdolls are not prolific shedders, they do shed their coat twice a year, like most cats. Keeping the coat clean and free of tangles is a primary concern, since dirty hair mats, and mats pull on the cat's skin.
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Keep your ragdoll cat's nails trimmed, and save your furniture and carpet from cat scratching. You can use human nail clippers, but they must be extremely sharp. If the clippers are not sharp enough, they will crush the claw instead of cutting it, which may harm your cat. It's best to use a nail clipper designed especially for cats. Press down gently on the top of the ragdoll's toe, and the claw will come out of its sheath. Trim the pointed tip, but be careful to avoid the dark coloured quick. Trimming the quick will cause the cat's nail to bleed, and may cause pain.
The finishing comb is also called a greyhound comb. It's a metal comb with teeth that are loosely anchored in sockets, instead of being all one piece. The teeth can twist in their sockets, allowing them to slide through matted and tangled hair.
Designed to remove loose hairs from the ragdoll's coat, the Zoom Groom is a hand brush with large rubber teeth. Most of the dead hair will stick to the teeth, but it's best to brush the cat in an area where you don't mind cleaning up cat hair, because some of it will fly. Once you're finished, the hair on the brush can be peeled off, and the brush can be rinsed under warm water and set aside to dry.
Bathe the ragdoll, once you've dematted the coat and removed the loose hair. Select a pet shampoo made specifically for cats. Human and dog shampoo should not be used on cats, as their skin has different pH levels. Use shampoo that does not have a strong scent, since a cat's sense of smell is much more acute than yours. If you think the shampoo smells too strong, it must reek to your cat. It's best to start bathing the ragdoll as a young cat, to get it used to the process. Wet the ragdoll down, then apply shampoo to the body. Don't get the lather past the cat's neck, or get water in its ears. Finish by drying the cat with a towel. You can use a hair dryer, but some cats freak out at the sound of the motor.
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