Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Hair Care and My Cat

Friday has a magnificent coat. He has thick, black hair and each dusky strand is about 4 inches long. His tail is a marvel of bushy fluff that gently bounces with each step he takes. When he sheds out his winter coat, even my heinous pink carpet turns gray. The only drawback (for him, I could do without cat hair on everything) is that the fine strands of his undercoat often mat leaving huge clumps of Friday hair in tangled masses in his “armpits.”

While Friday enjoys a good brushing, he strictly limits the brush to his head and back. Anytime I’ve tried to brush between his front legs I’ve been hissed at. Friday’s hissing breath generally knocks me out but if that doesn’t work he’s got four fully loaded paws and a mouth full of teeth and he’s not afraid to use them.

To combat mats, I have surrendered any notions of preemptive strikes. Instead, I periodically feel behind his front legs. No mats, no problem but when mats have formed it takes both my husband and I to remove them. I sit in my office desk and my husband in his. Gently, I put Friday on his back against my chest. My husband darts in, grabs his back legs and holds him still. Friday begins wailing and screaming as I feel around and isolate the mat. Once the mat is located and contained, I trim it out using dull, round pointed scissors. Of course, it is never that simple.

Friday makes a production of the process. He objects loudly to being turned on his back, a position that while unfortunate is the best way I’ve found to keep him still while cutting. Of course, still is a subjective word here. Friday is an expert squirmer. He knows just how to contort his body to gain a claw hold and launch himself into the floor. I have lost many a good shirt and earned a few scars from his lethal back paws, hence the need for two people.

Once we’ve got a firm hold on him he typically quits squirming. With two of us, he can’t quite get away. But he’ll never stop arguing with me. He cries so vociferously that the dog actually is quite concerned that we’re injuring the cat. She sits close by and watches attentively worrying that she might need to bite one of us to protect Friday.

Hemmy, on the other paw, enjoys the mat removal process with a glee that only a sibling could feel for a brother’s distress. He figures that since Friday is down he might as well finish him off. It’s a bit of a problem keeping him from chasing Friday on a normal day (see Catch Him if You Can’t Help It) but when Friday is pinned down and crying it’s just too much for Hemmy. Slowly his brown, felt ears will rise from beside my chair, a wicked gleam in the yellow eyes that accompany them; his paw cocked and ready. I shoo him off but as soon as Friday is mat free and released, Hemmy jumps on him. Don’t bother putting Friday someplace where Hemmy can’t get to him like high on my computer desk. He’ll only jump down and stroll right past Hemmy. For such a smart cat, he can be strangely dumb.

***Dumb, maybe, but dumb with fabulous hair! --Friday
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Anonymous said...

Interesting story:)So maybe you are interested in hair care?;)

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