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… and the lovely leaves on Mont-Royal are falling in the cold and wet chills of October’s arriving.
Hello and happy autumn, Montreal Dog Blog readers! Hope everyone’s keeping warm and bundling-up! For our furry companions, changing seasons bring a changing to their own furs in order to keep warm. And I think a blog on cats would highlight this best.
So, it’s October and you realize that your plush feline has matting. Don’t fret, it happens to the best of us. Another reason not to stress? I’ve found a fantastic investment. The FURminator.
An animal’s coat helps insulate against cold and heat, providing a barrier against physical and chemical trauma to the skin, and offers protection from damaging sunlight. Since our pets can’t simply remove a jacket when hot or put on a sweater when cold, their coats must be able to adapt to changing environmental conditions. The list of influencing factors on an animal’s coat includes: environmental temperature, nutrition, hormones and body chemicals, health status, and genetics. It’s been remarked though, that photoperiod (the daily amount of sunlight to which an animal is exposed) plays the most important role in determining the rate of hair replacement.
Outdoor cats tend to shed more extensively for several weeks during major seasonal changes, particularly in the spring and fall, as the body modifies its hair coat in preparation for different climate conditions – cats grow more short, fluffy “secondary” hairs in the fall for added warmth, and subsequently shed this “undercoat” in the spring and replace it with longer, coarse “primary” hairs to help stay cool during warmer weather. Indoor cats are exposed to less natural sunlight and more “artificial” light, their bodies lose track of seasonal changes. As a result, they tend to shed in a relatively continuous fashion (much to the distress of owners) and do not experience the same fall and spring sheds which outdoor animals do. It is important to realize, however, that regardless of whether an animal lives indoors or outdoors, shedding is a normal part of the hair life cycle and all cats continually shed dead hair from follicles and replace it with new hair. By providing your cat with proper nutrition, plenty of exercise, frequent grooming, and annual veterinary visits, you can help keep his or her hair coat healthy and may be able to minimize excessive shedding.
Animal furs 101 now done, I’d like to introduce you to Bob Wiley. Bobby is my sixteen year old Maine Coon. He enjoys sun spots on carpets, the occasional cat nip toy, and long walks around the house. He really has a beautiful coat that rarely gets knots, and it’s not because I maintain his grooming (I’m horrible, I know!), but because he’s been graced with the silkiest coat of any cat I’ve encountered. Lately though, in his aging, I’ve noticed little knots developing. Sometimes into bigger ones.
In order to combat my guilt from being lazy I needed to find the perfect brush for removing Bob’s knotting, one that did the job without causing any discomfort. So I went adventuring on a sunny day about a week past. Things were going well that day, easy walking with my Starby in hand, but I soon became HORRIFIED. Walking-up Greene Avenue I stopped dead in my tracks. Warm sun casting down on my sunglasses but shivers went down my spine as my mouth dropped… LITTLE BEAR WAS GONE.
Why was I heartbroken? All the kids, even the badass ones, in the Montreal know how freakin’ fantastic Little Bear is. Here’s why: Little Bear doesn’t sell for the sake of selling. Ever. They’re straight-up. This means that your dollar means what it does to you as it does to them. In case you needed another reason why to adore? They’re incredibly friendly, helpful, and knowledgable.
So, with my blood pressure returning to normal after a few sips of coffee, I started to walk down Greene. In dismay, unsure of where to go, I walked uneasy. A barking and out of control Golden-Doodle across the street caught my attention. Then I saw it – Little Bear. A new location! A new store. What did this mean? Did Little Bear remain as I knew it? A warm and friendly environment, personalized to their clients? I crossed the street, and opened the front door. A bell chimed. That remained the same. Looking around, the store was much brighter and open. Products organized in an easy and welcoming manner, what’s more: discussions with clients were honest and kind. Little Bear, I love you.
A little stroll around the sweet smelling store and I was soon greeted by the incredibly sweet Suzanne Leveille. Explaining my situation about Bobby to her, and being a fellow Maine Coon owner herself, she completely sympathized and implored the FURminator, “without this, we’d have to shave mine during the winter. And who want’s to do that during the winter?” There are two things I can say for certainty about Suzanne: she love’s her Maine Coon and she ain’t no liar.
Product: The FURminator. My actual review of this product took a total of five minutes. Removing Bobby’s mat took less than a minute. The remaining four minutes (give or take), was my using it on the rest of his coat to remove any undercoat. The whole process was effortless and Bobby didn’t even realize the removing of his bothersome tail mat.
Pros: IT WORKS. As a cat owner, and, as I assume, many of you are, you know the absolute plight of what brushing a cat can consist of. The FURminator does this comfortably for the pet while keeping it’s promise of “enabling you to share your home with your pet but not their hair.” So, three points of awesome worth noting:
The Edge: Yes, when working with cats in any type of grooming situation, the speed at which you work is really important. The FURminator makes for safe and quick brushing. It’s like a superhero in your hands! The stainless steel edge reaches deep beneath the topcoat of your pet to remove undercoat and loose hair faster and easier than any brush I’ve seen.
The Handle: Sleek and ergonomic, wrapped with rubber, making for an easy and comfortable hold.
The Muscle: Muscle doesn’t necessarily weigh more, this brush is lightweight and the push button for the removal of hair is easy to press and designed with the comfort of your thumb in mind.
Overall: I’m in love with the FURminator. But, more importantly, Bobby loves the FURminator. It’s a product that does what it’s supposed to do, and, as a destitute student, I couldn’t be happier with knowing I spent my money wisely, even more, I spent it at the best little pet supply store in Montreal. Thank you, Little Bear.