Cat Show people, what do you think about this? :-)

Good grooming practices are essential for maintaining health and happiness for you and your cat. This is a forum to exchange tips and advice for proper care of your cat's hygiene needs.

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RESPECT The- Star!
Purred: Fri Jan 2, '09 4:37pm PST 
Altho, the "formula" I use for Bumpurr, which was
developed thru alot of trial and error, and which takes
a good 3 hrs, start to finish, and which he has done very
well with, we are always looking for that "edge".

Have started to hear more and more, of people rinsing
their cats, with diluted vinegar. Its supposed to really get
the soap residue out, and not make their coats so fly away.

I do rinse, rinse, rinse, and rinse some more, and for the
most part, his coat is great. But this time of year, it tends
to be more fly away.

Any more conditioner, or putting any more finishing
products on it, just gunks it up.

Was at a show a few weeks ago, and a new person, was
telling me, this is what they were told to do, and their
cats coat, was not fly away, and was softer and looked
better than Bumpurr's. Of the LH cats, his is usually
the best, and I have always been told by judges, that he
is very well groomed and very well presented.

So is this true? What is the dilute ratio? Regular vinegar?
Do you mix it up, and pour it over him, or fill the sink
with it, and put him in it?

The person also told me, ya gotta really rinse afterwards,
or he will smell like vinegar.

I know this prob belongs in the grooming section, but this
section gets more traffic, lol, and my purpose in asking, and
putting it in this section, is I want to make sure it will
not harm him.

I don't use the goop, don't use the dawn, his coat being
greasy has never been an issue.

If ya don't want to put it up here, please paw mail me, or
let me know of any sites I can read about cat show

Appreciate your help. smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile smile


Has been COTD!
Purred: Fri Jan 2, '09 5:58pm PST 
I show Maine Coons, who tend to get rather greasy, so I go through a whole series of products when giving them a show shampoo, from Groomer's Goop to dish detergent to various shampoos (one to get out the grease, one for texture, one to make the white areas whiter). I do use a texturizing conditioner, but only sparingly, and wash with the texturizing shampoo afterwards. And yes, I usually do give them a vinegar rinse as the last step. I'm not sure if it really works, but it seems to. I put undiluted white vinegar in a pump bottle, and just pump a medium amount of it over their backs, work it into the fur, and rinse until I can't smell it anymore. I can't imagine that this would be harmful to the cat.

Regarding static electricity and fly-away fur, I've been told that, aside from cat grooming products designed to get rid of static electricity, rubbing the fur with dryer sheets like Bounce will work. I've never done it myself (don't have a dryer), but it's worth a try. Also, if cat shows in the U.S. are like those in Japan, they should have lots of booths selling grooming products, including those designed to get rid of static electricity and give that "finished" look to a cat's coat. I try almost every product I see (it helps if they have a sample size, as those products are expensive!), and some seem to work, some don't.

I was told something very interesting by a Norwegian Forest Cat breeder at my last show. I told him that another NFC exhibitor had told me that it takes her three hours to groom her cat (it takes me around one and a half hours for Harvey), and he said that it takes less time to dry the cat if the first step, getting rid of the grease and dirt (even if it's not apparent to the eye), is done thoroughly. (He can shampoo and dry his cats in 90 minutes.) He would probably advise you to use Goop or a similar product, as well as a grease-removing shampoo; even if your cat doesn't seem to "need" them, invisible grease and dirt can just trap the soap residue and make it more difficult to rinse out the shampoo. Anyway, that's his opinion.

Recently, I was sort of bullied into buying a liquid oil that you're supposed to use in place of Goop; I hesitated, because the idea of oil removing oil struck me as counterintuitive, but then one of my friends swooped down on me and said, "If you really want your cat to look good, you MUST use this." Since her cat was the Third Best Maine Coon internationally with the CFA in last year's season, she should know what she's talking about. I bought it (it was ridiculously expensive, but hey, so are cat shows, and you want your cat to win, right?), but I'm not convinced that it's suited to Harvey's coat. (Chibi and Leila are blessed with coats that look good even without regular grooming; Harvey is the one who has to be duded up so that he looks good enough to be up there with the other Grand Premiers, and not like some alley cat who wandered into the show hall.)

I often ask other exhibitors what kind of shampoo and other products they use, and I've never had anyone be reluctant to tell me. Also, you can watch other exhibitors to see what finishing products they use during the show, ranging from Bay Rum to powder shampoo or cornstarch to fluff out a tail.

As an OT side note, I just washed my 3-month-old kittens for the first time--usually kittens don't need shampoos, but I'm taking their publicity shots so I can advertise them on the Internet and find them good homes, and I wanted them to look their best. I first tried a generic pet shop cat shampoo with conditioner, which just made them greasy-looking. Then I washed them with Dawn, finishing with a vingegar rinse. Now they're nice and fluffy, and the fur of their ruffs isn't all clumped together.

Every cat has different fur and different needs, and the climate and season also influence the way the fur behaves (just like human hair). I myself continue to experiment with new products; if the results don't please me, I do something else for the next cat show.


RESPECT The- Star!
Purred: Sat Jan 3, '09 7:17am PST 
Harvey, thank you, very much for that info. smile

Altho we have very supportive, friendly and helpful people on the CFA
circuit, sharing grooming secrets, is not one of them. Was at one show
last year and hurt my back. Being that Bumpurr is 20 lbs, just could not
lift him up. I was on my 3rd and final call, and they came looking for me.

Bumpurr always makes the finals, and usually places high, and it would
have been an easy way, to get rid of a competator that day. But they
carried him back and forth all day Sun, to his rings, to his finals. In one
ring, each thought the other was going to get him. I struggled to get him
out of his ring, and sat with him on my lap, waiting for the final, in the
back row. Nobody ever said a word. CFA rule, your not supposed to do
that. When they called the final, I struggled to get up, could not do it
with him on my lap, even the judge asked if I needed help, another
competator put him in the final. He missed highpoint that day by 1 point.

CFA is not like TICA as far as finals. In TICA, if your not there, they still
award the placing to an empy cage with your # on it. In CFA, if you miss
your final, they will call another cat.

When I first started showing, no one, would tell me what to use, and they
still won't, so hence, alot of trial and error of many products and the
"formula". What works for Bumpurr, does not work for Prowler or Smokey.
3 different fur types and lengths, I have a different formual for each cat.

If I knew, or knew how to find out, if horse products were safe for cats, my
main concern, the safety of the cat, I would not have this problem.

I excelled at showing halter and showmanship. At the wash rack at shows,
people had done 3 horses, and I was still on the same horse, they teased me
all the time, but, which ever horse I had, he was the very best groomed,
and just shined. I knew all the tricks, and had more steps and equipment
than the Persian people. Showed a dark gold palomino, and her white
mane, tail and 4 white socks, were so brite, ya had to wear shades.

My main concern is the safety of the cat, as far as all these products.

At horse shows, people used to use Wisk, a laundry soap, on their horses
white bodies, Pinto/Paint. Ya, it did a great job, but the horses developed
skin probs from it. I refused to use it, for the safety of the horse.

Altho, ya can't see it in the picture, Bumpurr has the Rag Doll fur, long
and thick, which is why it takes so long to rinse rinse rinse and blow dry.
I also only have a regular hair dryer, and put it on low, so as to now burn
him or his fur. I know I should have a pet hair dryer, but have no idea,
what kind or type to get, maybe you could tell me what to look for, or
reccommend one.

I had tried the Dawn, but it dried out his fur and skin, and actually made
his fur look dull. I am hesitant to use Goop, as I worry about the safety of
the cat, using a product, mechanics use to get grease off their hands.
What is this oil product? Where would you get it? Is it safe for the cat?

Is the bounce dryer sheet safe for the cat?

I want him to look good, and I want him to win, but I don't want to make
him sick or kill him in the process.

With horses, you can take more liberties, per say, because a horse is not
going to lick them selves, and ingest something, like a cat would.

If you have a way of finding out, I can tell you what horse product to use
that will make Harvey's white so brite, ya gotta wear shades, if its safe for
a cat. If I knew how to use the scanner, I would send you a picture of my
horse, and you could see for yourself.

I think your right, I think there is invisible dirt or grease, that I am not
seeing, and could be done better. So let me know about the oil and the
pet dryer, and what products you use that work, paw mail me, if ya
don't want to put it up here.

Ever tried I think its called Jerob products?

If ya had a way of finding out, if horse products were safe for cats, I could
tell you exactly what shampoos to use, and a spray shine product, that
does not equal any cat product I ever saw or tried. Harvey would be so
shiney and soft, you would blow away your competition.

I only wash Bumpurr when he is going to a show, just comb him out every
day, he still looks like you could take him to a show like that. My kittens
have had 2 "training" baths, as I like to call them, they are pretty good
about their baths, we are still working on being good boys for the blow
drying, I know its the noise that scares them. But Bumpurr was the same
way when he was a kitten, now he just sits there, for his bath and blow dry.

I have asked the Maine Coon people, no go, I guess I could try the Persian
people. They have no interest in helping Bumpurr, gee, I wonder why, and
I don't even want to tell you, what one lady, who said she had the top MC
in the country, did to me at one show.

When I was a kid, my trainer always told me, ya want to go against the
very best. You don't want to beat someone because they are poorly turned
out or their horse is poorly groomed, no reward in that.

Harvey, I greatly appreciate all your help, thats what I was always taught,
help others. Wish you were in the US, would love to see Harvey in person,
he is such a beautiful cat, reminds me of Bumpurr.

smilesmilesmilesmilesmilesmilebig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinsmilesmilesmilesmilesmileway to goway to goway to goway to goway to goway to go

♠- KILLER- ♠

DIVA with a- heart of gold!
Purred: Sat Jan 3, '09 8:30am PST 
actually i'm quite curious myself. i have no interest in showing (mine are only qualified for HHP and not a very gregarious pride) but killer is an MC mix. she definitely is getting the typical MC coat. as of late, the longest fur on her ruff is trying to dreadlock together. she is brushed and combed regularly, bathed monthly to no avail. she also has no patience for a showcat bath. any amateur quick tips would be appreciatedbig grin . a diva needs to look her best you knowwink .


RESPECT The- Star!
Purred: Sat Jan 3, '09 11:58am PST 
What are you washing her in now? Do you rinse rinse rinse and rinse
some more? Or do you just rinse her, like you rinse when you wash your
own hair? Do you blow her dry, or just let her air dry? And what do you

Grooming is important, but good nutrition is the key. Grooming, what
we are discusing, accents a healthy coat, but cannot cover up a poor coat.

Bumpurr is a big built boy, with long thick fur, have to put his front end,
in the other sink, to wash his back end, and I have many steps I go thru,
so takes me almost 3 hrs, start to finish, but this is for shows.

My issue is with the fly away fur, at this time of year, and had heard about
rinsing them in vinegar, but wanted to make sure it was safe for the cat.

If your washing Killer monthly, and he still has issues, I got a pretty good
idea what the prob is, but need to know what your doing first.

smilesmilesmilesmilesmilebig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinsmilesmilesmilesmilesmilesmilewink

♠- KILLER- ♠

DIVA with a- heart of gold!
Purred: Sat Jan 3, '09 1:22pm PST 
i feed the high end purina both wet and dry. i also only give fresh treats (like cut up chicken or turkey) on occasion. i receive compliments about how well kept she is and how shiny her coat is. i use pet studio for longhaired cats or baby shampoo if i'm out of cat shampoo. and i rinse longer than i suds. if i don't shampoo her i use the leave in conditioning spray. she just gets real dry and fly away in winter. but her coat still feels really soft and silky. i towel her dry and blowdry for a couple of minutes and then i brush her with a pin brush, small tooth comb and a finishing brush. she has never had a matt but as she gets older her coat looks shaggier. i've heard MC's take up to 5 years for their coat and full weight to come in. she is not purbred but except for her being petite you can't tell on looks or personality. my shorthairs get staticky, but they are fine. all have shiny coats clean breath and almost nonexistant stench in their poo. sooo they're all in great shape, just killer looks like she met mr. electric socket in winter.


Has been COTD!
Purred: Sat Jan 3, '09 9:14pm PST 
Maybe it's just the Japanese, or maybe it's because I'm in a cat club and everyone helps out everyone else (because someday they might need help, too), but I've never had trouble getting information about grooming and food from the other exhibitors (sometimes they sort of ram it down my throat), and we all watch out for each other if a cat's number is being called and the owner is nowhere to be seen, often because he/she is showing multiple cats in different categories. I have two artificial hips and can't walk as fast as other people can, so people take that into consideration, too. The only complaint I have is that people, being people, like to talk behind other people's backs. There was a rumor going around that I hadn't been able to get a breeder's license on my first try, which was totally unfounded. However, almost all the people in my cat club have Maine Coons, and I don't ask Persian owners or other people about grooming (at least not very often) because all breeds have different grooming needs. It sounds like the people in the American CFA are pretty "catty."

Anyway, as for horse products, I've heard of people using Mane 'n Tail, but when I looked on their website, I found that they have a people line and a horse line, with a few dog products thrown in. Nothing for cats. I assume that cat people are using the human version products. I would assume that their human shampoo is as safe as any human shampoo. I'm not sure about the horse products, however. The main question is whether it is safe for the animal to lick or not. In fact, that's one reason I use dish detergent rather than human shampoo--I'm not convinced that human shampoo is meant to be ingested. However, since Bumpurr has no problems, I probably shouldn't worry.

As for getting white areas white, I find Jerob's (House of Anju) Snowy Blue Shampoo to work wonders. I also always use their texturizer spray--it doesn't dull the fur or make it greasy, and it does seem to fluff up his ruff and tail. F1R2, which is also made in the U.S., is the preferred shampoo for many breeders/exhibitors--there are various kinds of shampoo, depending on whether you want a grease-cutter, a texturizer, etc. Their shampoos are odorless, which I find that cats tend to prefer. Jerob products smell lovely and come in pretty colors, but the fragrance tends to linger, and the cat will spend the whole show trying to lick the smell off his fur.

Goop is not the same stuff that mechanics use. It's called "Groomer's Goop," and is made in the U.S. As it's made for dogs and cats, it's safe. I usually use Goop on the area behind the ears and the ruff, the area behind the front legs, and the upper base of the tail--which are the areas that get the greasiest. Harvey is neutered, but he still does get greasier than his sisters. Goop is also good for getting the soles of his feet clean before I use the whitening shampoo.

The oil I referred to is made by the Picnic Line of products, which I believe are a Japanese company. I like their shampoo and especially their texturizing rinse, which really works in fluffy up Harvey's tail. Their products are also odorless. I assume that if they're made for cats, they must be safe.

Harvey has very silky, shiny fur, so I don't feel the need to use any products (like Bay Rum) that would give an extra sheen. Rather, since his fur is relatively fine, and he's pretty skinny for a Maine Coon, I try to maximize his apparent size by intense blow drying. I have a high-power human hair dryer that I set on low heat but high speed. He doesn't like it much, but puts up with it. I blow dry opposite the direction that the fur grows, in order to fluff it up. The hair dryer cost around $30 (average in Japan); pet hair dryers can be $100 or more, and I'm not sure they're worth it. What might be useful is a hair dryer holder that will leave your two hands free for fluffing out the fur and holding the cat as you dry him.

As for whether a bounce dryer sheet is safe for the cat--I think you just rub it lightly over the cat a few times, and I would guess that it's no more harmful than having a cat chew on a towel that has been dried using Bounce sheets.

When I first started showing, I was terrible at grooming--when Harvey made Grand Premier, I had to put a picture in the Online Almanac, and although I'd had a photo sitting with Chanan, even Chanan couldn't make Harvey look well-groomed: I had to pick the picture that showed only his head! Now that I've learned what works for Harvey (although I'm always experimenting), I've been complimented many times by judges for Harvey's grooming--I'm sure that he gets some extra points for that. He's usually the best-groomed Maine Coon in the ring; if he didn't have such a nasty temper (only at cat shows!), he'd probably still have a higher ranking (right now he's #9 in the Premiership in Japan, and the #13 Maine Coon Premier internationally).

If I have any more ideas, I'll let you know. Happy grooming!
happy dance


Has been COTD!
Purred: Sat Jan 3, '09 9:30pm PST 
Killer--it sounds like you need a grease remover (like Goop or dish detergent) more than a conditioner.

Bumpurr--I've never heard of cats "blowing their coat"--but I talk to all my cat show acquaintances in Japanese, so there are English terms I don't know. What I do know is that MCs tend to lose fur in the summer (duh), and also after giving birth. Their fur is at its peak, I think, during the first few years of life, which is why people concentrate on making their cat a Grand Champion before it's two or so. Certainly Chibi, who is now a year and three months, has developed an absolutely stunning coat, complete with an "Elizabethan ruff," which she didn't have as a kitten. I've heard stories of Maine Coon breeders/exhibitors who keep their cats in a room with no heat in the winter and freezing-temperature air-conditioning in the summer, in order to maintain their coats.

My question is, what's good for bathing kittens? I just took PR photos for Leila's kittens, to be posted on the Internet, and I know that a good photo can attract prospective owners. The kittens were looking sort of grungy after Leila stopped grooming them intensely while nursing, and I washed them with a generic cat shampoo that only made them greasy-looking. Then I tried Dawn, which was better, but their fur still separates. I didn't want to use any of my show shampoos because they're so expensive...Anyone have a good idea of how to make kittens look their fluffiest? By the time they reach 4 months and can be shown at cat shows, their adult fur has begun to grow in, and they can be shampooed like adults, but right now they're still fuzz balls. Any advice would be appreciated.

♠- KILLER- ♠

DIVA with a- heart of gold!
Purred: Sun Jan 4, '09 5:12am PST 
maybe baby shampoo? it's ph-balanced and has no conditioners in it. added bonus is it's tear free so it shouldn't cause eye problems for squirmy little kittens. i used it on killer when i first got her (honestly it was what i had on hand since i have a little boy) and it did make her coat fluffy. i don't think it has enough surfactant for an adult though. worth a shot right? johnson & johnson is $4 for 16 oz american. so if it doesn't work, you can always use it on you, mol.

as an aside i never trusted using dryer sheets since the full blown chemical is more ptent than what's left on clothes. however i used an old 1 an so far so goodway to go


RESPECT The- Star!
Purred: Sun Jan 4, '09 9:06am PST 
Harvey, first the kittens, I use Suave baby shampoo, it also has conditioner
in it. You have to dilute it, about 1/4 shampoo, 3/4 water, I mix it in a
plastic cup and pour it over the kitten, not the head, and it makes them
real soft, the fur just poofs up when you blow dry, and I know you know to
rinse rinse rinse that too, mol. big grin

When I started showing, had not a clue either, so used the baby shampoo,
the judge even asked me what I used on Bumpurr, he was 4 months old. big grin

Yup, understand about the catty-ness, lol, I got hit real hard when I
brought Bumpurr out. Bumpurr is 1/2 MC, 1/2 RD, so show in the
HHP division, which I love, and which he does real well in. Finished in the
Top 10, 6th place, in his Region, and the Nation last season.

Took him to a TICA show, wanted to try one, he was 1 day short of being
8 months old, an adult, so for that show, he was technically a kitten, so
had to show him in the kitten class. I got cruse....a......fied by the judges
and other exhibitors. He is a big boy now, he was a big boy then, just
towered over the other kittens, exhibitors yelling at me that he wasn't a
kitten, judges telling me he is a MC and accused me of lying about it. It was
just horrible. And, on top of that, was benched by the door, in a pretty big
city, and not the greatest section of town. A spectator showed way to much
interest in Bumpurr. Flat out told me he was going to steal him and eat
him as it was a Ty something. You know how I am, I was about crying
by then, went to management, they threw him out, had my neighbors
keeping an eye on him too.

In CFA, started him at 4 months. At his first show, one lady said to me,
well, how does it feel to try and show a breed cat in HHP!! And she was
not nice about it. People coming up to me all the time, and even MC
people, thats a MC!! Ah, not he is not.

Got him from a breeder, had his paperwork, and his ad in the paper, I got
so sick of having to pull it all out, and "prove" to these people, he is not
a MC. Even had one lady offer me $1,000. for him, even after I told her
he is not MC, he is neutered, and he is not for sale.

It finally stopped, all of, exhibitors and judges, when he was about 6 months
old, judge said, this is a MC, I stood up and kinda went off. Knew I was
shooting myself in the foot as far as that ring, mol, but I knew I had nip it
in the bud, now, or it would never stop. big grin

All was quiet until late in the season, when a lady came up to me, who was
benched across from me, and said kinda nasty, I have the top MC in the
country and that...... is a MC!! Then, she went to one of the judges, who
she said she was going to, and said was a friend of hers, and told the judge,
he was a MC. This judge who always finals Bumpurr, and always places
him high, did not even final him that day, and has not since. cry

So, ya, mol, I know all about it.

Thanks for the info about the goop and the hair dryer, and I found the
Jerob site, and was reading about that.

Forgot to tell you, and you may already know this, mol, but to teach my
kittens to get blowed dry the first few times, I wrap them in a towel, so
they can't get away, obviously not their head. That way they get used to
the noise, but aren't going to get away, bite or claw you, and I do clip
their nails first, then I slowly take the towel away, only takes a few lessons
and works every time.

Hope I didn't forget anything you mentioned, if I did, ask me again. wave

Killer, thank you very very much. There is this horse finishing spray,
called Show Sheen. It puts a shine on the horse like you wouldn't believe!
Never seen anything like it for cat products, its makes them so shiney,
ya gotta wear shades, and soft, just unbelieveable. Will look up the site
and send you a link. Thanks again. smilesmilesmilesmilebig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinbig grinway to goway to goway to goway to goway to go

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