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Naturally Groomed

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"Beauty is a short-lived tyranny"
Socrates

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  Disclaimer:
The material on this website is to be used at your own discretion.
 
Cat and Dog friendly grooming....
 
 This page reflects my more natural approach to grooming.  There is really no need for harsh chemical grooming supplies as they do more damage to the skin and coat and the general health of the animal.   If you keep your home and the animals clean on a daily basis, you would have no need for heavy duty cleansers in the first place. 
  I have many formulations yet to try and  I will list some of my favorites here for those of you who would like to try them. I hope you enjoy them and use them well!  I will add things periodically so check back often.

Click here to go to my " Recommended Reading " page for suggested books pertaining to natural health, pest control, natural cleaning and more!

Red Tabby

 

Black & White BiColor

 

 The basic supplies you will need for grooming your Persian :
 
  *Steel or Antistatic coated comb
( small teeth on one end -
     wide teeth on the other )
  *Nail clippers ( trim nails every two weeks )
  *Eyewash solution
  *Eye powder ( if a white faced kitty )
 

Steel comb

Nail Clippers

Feline Nail Trimmers

Eye Powder

Corn Starch/Boric Acid eye powder
In a squeeze bottle

Boric Acid Eyewash Solution

Boric Acid / Water eye wash
in a squeeze bottle

 
Grooming the Coat     
Work any knots out with your fingers and then comb with the end that has the wider spaced teeth - make sure you seperate the hair and get down to the roots with the comb gently working up and out.  Do small sections at a time and be gentle in sensitive areas like the belly.  The small end of the comb is good for the face, legs and feet.  Some people forget cats have feet and never comb the leg hair or toe hair and it gets knotted and matted.
Alot of people wonder why they don't have the full coat on their Persians like those they see shown by breeders - one of the main reasons is grooming.  If the coat is heavy and greasy, you pull alot of hair out during grooming.  Once that comb does not glide through the coat easily, it is time for a bath.  Each cat is different, I find Red colored cats need more frequent bathing ( every 2-3 weeks ) and the others I can do once a month.  When showing a cat, it can be up to 2X a week  plus butt /bib/face washes every other day if needed - especially if they are white. The coat will need extra conditioning when bathing this much also.
  I do not recommend a brush of any kind - Persians have such a thick coat that only a comb really gets through it down to the roots.  Brushes can also pull out alot of the coat and be more painful. It is very wise to always clip the claws before grooming in case they are extra sensitive one day.
 
I find giving them a catnip bag, stuffed mouse, etc. works great when grooming.  They will take their anger out on that instead of you.  Gives them something else to sink their teeth and front claws into !   This is awesome for young kittens and young adults who haven't yet learned to "Grin and bear it".  The adults are used to it and tolerate long grooming sessions much better.
 
   After some practice - you can quickly groom a kitty, eyes and all in about 10  minutes or less - provided they are always kept up on every day.   I take care of the eyes and quick belly groom in the morning ( about 6 minutes ) and do a more thorough grooming at night when they are in full coat. 
  That is it - no big deal.  You'd spend as much time sitting and petting your cat or eating ice cream, so why not use that time for a grooming session.
   A clean coat is very easy to care for so bathe them when needed or take them to a groomer.  I prefer you do the grooming yourself as there are alot of animals in and out of a groomer's and therefore alot of exposure to other possible virus, fungus, etc. There are some groomers that make house calls or have a mobile grooming van too.  
  
    If this is too much time and  effort for you -  do not adopt a Persian - look for an Exotic Persian as they are specifically bred for short hair.

Setting Up to Groom
  If you have a small room like a wash room or pantry, set up a grooming table with all your grooming supplies in that spot.  Find a card table and set it in the corner against the wall.  Hang a 4' white shop light over it and use 2 -  40 watt plant light bulbs in it.  It mimics natural light and is nice and bright.   You can hang a shelf over the table to keep your grooming supplies on and in easy reach while sitting and grooming.  Hopefully you'll have an outlet next to the table too and you can also dry your kitty in the carrier after a bath there also. 
Below is a photo of my grooming area.  You'll see my digital weighing scale  for the cats and babies to the right on the table sized shelf of drawers, which is on wheels for easy mobility.   This table on wheels I also use for birthings - as babies are born.  I have a heating pad on it which the babies are placed while I am checking vitals and cleaning them.  I can roll it right over to the birthing box along with my  tall floor lamp for controlled lighting.  I don't aim the light in the birthing box - the mothers do not want bright light in there so as the babies are born, I bring them out and do everything  on this table under the light. 
   My  grooming tools, homeopathy, medical equipment / birthing supplies, bags, herbals, towels, extra carriers, vacuum, vapor steamer, Herbal/Homeopathic medicinal & breeding books, etc. are all kept organised in the BiFold closet to the right.   There is a TV in the room as well, for me and the cats.   They also have their own AC in the summer - not only for their comfort,  but for my comfort as well.  Try gooming a few cats and blowdrying show babies in mid summer !  AC is a must. 
  Having something set up like this is very convenient for you and you will be more inclined to keep your cats groomed ( no excuses not to groom - very good idea. )   Of course a very comfortable wheeled / swivel chair is a must, I cover it with a towel to keep it clean.  You'll want a  good vinyl table cover and I have an extra thick clear piece of vinyl over that so claws don't ruin it., which they manage to do even if clipped and filed. 
  You can see the  light above - gives great light.    
  Everyone should have a grooming table/area - it just makes pet ownership so much easier and organized for you. 
 
   My cozy grooming table..........

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Caring For Those Gorgeous Eyes

terro

 Stain Preventing Eyecare
 I get so many requests on what I use to prevent eye staining.
 First of all, daily cleaning of the face prevents staining.
Nothing works better than daily hygiene.
   Persians, especially the extreme faced, have compromised tear ducts and will have watery eyes at times.  Watery eyes do not mean they are sick cats, this is a breed specific trait. Every breed has pros and cons.  If you are educated on the breed of your choice, you know what to expect and what to look for, with regards to certain characteristics, that should assure you of an animal that should fare better than the average.    Some things to look for when considering a Persian would be one that has good distance between the eyes - enough space  that it could fit another eye and a half. Also look for a cat with some noseleather - not so extreme that they barely have a nose and only tiny verticle slits for nostrils. Look for a nose with some width to it and nostrils they can breathe out of. An extreme face with no nose, tiny verticle slits for nostrils and closely set eyes, etc. is going to be one uncomfortable cat that will have alot of congestion because their sinuses and eyes can barely drain.
They can be more prone to sinus infections and eye problems.  So pay attention to the face when you look for a Persian and ask the breeder if the cat can breathe without wheezing which assures you they have a more functional nose.
 
When a Persian cat's eyes water, the tears will flow out and once the air hits it - it turns to a hard, crusty, brown matter. It is a breeding place for bacteria ( leading to eye conditions ) so keep the face clean daily!!  Clean the nostrils too or your kitty won't be able to breath - be careful though, it is stuck to the skin of the nose so wet a paper towel and hold it there a bit, keep rewetting, etc. and it will soften up and come off easily.  Don't try to pull off a hard crust it will tear the skin and hurt the cat.  I find my Red male pushes his face right into his food and his nose gets plugged up if he doesn't clean his face,
( which he barely does - too much effort for him ).
     Persians also  have very large eyes which is another reason they  produce more tears,  to keep them moist and flushed of debris.  I wipe the eyes quickly about midday as they get a grooming morning and night. 
   The beautiful, clean, flat faced Persians you see in pictures are well cared for animals who's eyes are cleaned multiple times daily and powders are used around the eyes to help absorb tears and prevent staining. 
   The following information is how many breeders clean and care for the eyes as well as the coat.   I use as natural an approach as possible for grooming - so, much of the following is not used by your average breeder except for maybe the boric acid eyewash and eye powder and a few other products such as the Groomer's Goop further down. 
      Don't worry - after a few practice runs, you'll have it memorized and it will be simple !
  If we can do it, you can too.             
 
 Great recipe for cleaning the eyes :
 1  tablespoon Boric Acid
  1  cup filtered/distilled water
 
  Bring water to a boil, remove from heat and add the Boric Acid stirring until it dissolves. Let cool and place in a squeeze bottle. Make a new batch every week.
 I use this every day, squirting on a paper towel to clean the eyes. I keep folding the towel and rewetting with the solution and cleaning until there is no discoloring from the eyes on the towel any longer. I then dry with another paper towel and discard. I could use a washcloth but for hygiene - I prefer paper towels which are disposable and biodegradeable.
  Boric Acid is most commonly found and recovered in the Tuscan region of Italy, also from Italy's hot springs and their vapors.  It occurs as the mineral " sassolite. "
  In the USA, Boric Acid is recovered from brines from the Searles Lake in California.
  Boric Acid is antiviral and antiseptic and used commonly in the form of an eyewash and controls the browning of tears.  If you clean your cats eyes every day ( takes a few minutes) you will both be happy and your kitty will look lovely.  You will prevent many eye conditions if you take a few minutes every day to clean the face.
   Boric Acid should not be used in a powdered form directly on the eyes - if you get it in the eye you will cause it to ulcer.

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  Eye Powder
 
Many breeders use a daily antibiotic with their cats, especially those they show, to help keep the tears from staining the eye area.  I do not agree with that because purebreds are immune compromised as it is, because they are purebred.  The more drugs you use on these animals, the more you contribute to deteriorating health. 
 I do have an eye powder I make up to help even more with stain control  on white faced cats which does contain boric acid powder in it but a small amount. I am very careful to keep the eye closed while I work the powder around the eye. 
 
 The powder I use is:
 
   5  parts corn starch
  1  part Boric Acid
 
  Mix very well to evenly distribute the boric acid into the corn starch. You should use a flour sifter to perfectly blend and sift together.  Pour into a puffer bottle and after washing and drying the eyes, hold them shut and apply a very small amount around the eye and rub it in so no loose powder falls into the eye. Be very careful - I suggest you just use cornstarch for a while to absorb tears until you get good at this just to be on the safe side. You really don't need to add the boric acid powder if you use it diluted in water as the eyewash recipe above.  That will suffice for bacterial control - it just helps a bit more in powder with cornstarch on a white faced kitty. Cornstarch will usually suffice by itself.
 
 You will not be able to keep a stark white eye/nose area - there may still be a tinge of yellowing, etc. But, these formulations help immensley to keep the face much cleaner and brighter. 
   A breeder who is showing a white faced cat is continually cleaning the face and eye areas - many, many times a day - the average owner will not put in the effort a breeder does so your pet Persian will not be as white or groomed.  Just do your best.
If you have a severely stained eye area, don't try to get it white or bleach it, just shave the area to the skin or close to it or use facial shears - be careful please.   Shaving more as the hair grows out,  until all discoloration is clipped off.   You can easily start over by doing it this way as the hair grows back quickly in just a few weeks.  Much easier than trying all kinds of concoctions to whiten.  You can harm the eyes with all this washing, scouring, whiteners, etc. if you are not extremely careful. Easy to make the eye area raw so if it is really stained, just shave it all off and start over.  Your cat will appreciate it more.
It also helps to keep the eye area trimmed up nicely every 2-3 weeks - as breeders do for showing, using facial shears for trimming the eyelashes down, etc. so the eye area is much easier to clean and buildup is minimised as there are no long hairs for it to adhere to.
The showcats in pictures have the face painstakingly groomed and sculpted for that perfectly round, clean cut  look. 
 It takes hours of grooming to ready for show.

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Boric Acid Powder
You can find Boric Acid at drugstores or you can go directly to Humco:
 

Saline Solution
I always keep a bottle of STERILE saline solution with me while grooming.  That is if I haven't made a new batch of my homemade saline solution.  You never know when you will need to flush the eyes in an emergency.  Better safe than sorry !

Sterile Saline Solution

   Saline Solution - Make Your Own !  
 (To help open the tear ducts and shrink tissues )
 
 1/2 cup boiling water ( I prefer distilled or filtered water )
1/8 teaspoon salt ( I prefer sea salt - not iodized )
 
 Boil water and remove from heat. Stir in salt until dissolved. Cool and place in a sqeeze bottle.  Refridgerate.
  Make a new batch every week.

Golden Seal - Healing Herbal Eye Solution

Golden Seal Extract

Golden Seal Extract

Golden Seal Root, Cut

Golden Seal Root
 Dried and Cut

Oregon Grape Root, Cut

Oregon Grape Root
Dried and Cut

Golden Seal is a root that is native to North America and has been used for centuries in herbal medicine.  Native American Indians also used it for a dye and paint.  Golden Seal contains calcium, iron, manganese, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, B-complex, and other nutrients and minerals. It is an herb with is broad-spectrum and very much in demand.  Golden Seal is antibiotic, anti-inflammatory and astringent.  It soothes irritated mucus membranes aiding the eyes, ears, nose and throat.  Is has been used for colds, flu and respiratory problems and  may be used to help reduce fevers, relieve congestion and excess mucous.

Golden Seal cleanses and promotes healthy glandular functions by increasing bile flow and digestive enzymes, therefore, regulating healthy liver and spleen functions.  It  eases inflamed peptic ulcers, aids digestion and relieves constipation.  Golden Seal may also  be used to treat infections of the bladder and intestines as well.

 In excessive doses,  it can be poisonous.

To disinfect the eyes naturally and help shrink swollen tissue:

  I use this for treating conjunctivitis in conjunction with Cod Liver Oil and nothing else.  I could use a homeopathic remedy but this works like a charm.  I rarely have a case of  conjunctivitis - If I do it is only in a very young kitten.  I  find this solution to clear it up quickly if I have a little one with it - usually in about 4 days if I use it about 5 times per day.  Of course the natural diet and use of only natural medicines gives these cats a far superior immune system so they get over minor ailments more quickly - keep that in mind.  It may take a bit longer to cure if you do not raise this way. 

   It is an excellent disinfecting eye wash and leaves the eyes bright and healthy.  I use it on all my cats a few times per month.
 
**If you cannot find Golden Seal Root or Extract you can also use Oregon Grape Root.  It has very similar medicinal qualities and is an excellent substitute, especially since Golden Seal is expensive and endangered.
 
To Make :
   Add 1 drop of Golden Seal or Oregon Grape Root extract to 1 Tablespoon of Saline  solution. 
Put into a clean dropper bottle
 
OR
 
Make a Medicinal Tea of either Golden Seal Root or Oregon Grape Root, to use in the same manner.
 
To Make a Tea :
In a stainless, glass or enameled tea pot,
add 1/2 cup of water ( Spring or distilled ) and 1/2 teaspoon of dried, cut Golden Seal Root or Oregon Grape Root.
Boil about 6 minutes and let sit till cool.
Strain and pour into a clean squirt bottle or dropper bottle and REFRIDGERATE.
Make a new batch every week.
** Using aluminum or copper pots and utensils will ruin the medicinal property of the herbs.
 
  I usually save and sterilise the amber extract bottles that have dropper tops. They come in handy for making small herbal solutions for eyes or wounds. Make sure you clean them very well to remove residue from the extract that came in it or buy new empty dropper bottles.

 
 
Bathing

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Groomers Goop

Groomer's Goop
Excellent for Stud Tail and degreasing the coat
Fortified with wonderful ingredients like Aloe Vera and Vitamin E.

Castile Soap

Castile Soap
One of the gentlest and mildest soaps that is excellent for bathing regularly.
Made of lye, water, vegetable oil ( usually Olive )and sometimes with beneficial  ingredients like Cocoa Butter or Aloe.
Not a degreasing shampoo.

Tearless Shampoo

Earthbath Hypo Allergenic Tearless Shampoo
 Ultra mild for skin sensitivity / Allergy
  All ingredients are 100% natural and biodegradeable
  My choice for washing the head and face.

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Bio Groom So-Gentle
Hypoallergenic Shampoo
 
Biodegradeable, no perfumes, no soaps, no dyes. 

 

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     I bathe my cats on an "as needed" basis.   Usually every 2-3 weeks.  Of course when showing, more frequently.  I find red cats ( usually whole males ) have an oilier coat and need baths at least every 1-1/2 weeks.   In between bathing I will work in some cornstarch at the base of and along the tail line where they get greasy - this helps absorb the oils and prevent the skin becoming raw from oil buildup/pore suffocation.
  This is mostly a basic bath I use every 2 weeks - show baths are a bit more involved.  I also wear dishgloves or I'd have raw, dried out hands.
 
  If the cat is oily anywhere ( armpit, belly, bib, base of tail, etc. ) I use GOOP hand cleaner in those areas.  It is biodegradable and an excellent degreaser.  It is a creamy white gel.  You can find it at Walmart for about a buck.  I use Groomer's Goop which is specially formulated for the haircoat. 
   I work it into a dry coat in the areas that need it most.  Then, put the GOOPY kitty in a carrier in a warm spot for about 5-10 minutes or near a dryer on low heat to keep the kitty from catching a chill.  It will work on stains as well as grease - do not use on the face.  Then I put the kitty in the sink - add a drop of mineral oil to the eyes to protect them from soap.  I fill the sink halfway with warm water, and pour the water by cupfuls over the cat to rinse out the GOOP.  The water will be white as it is full of GOOP now and I continue pouring it over the cat's coat to make sure all areas are degreased.  I do this for about 6 minutes. 
  I then use a small child's toothbrush and clean the nail beds of the cat's feet.  I scrub any dirt, etc. away which is fairly easy to do once the cat has been standing in the water for about 5-10 minutes.  It is important to do this - you can inspect the nail areas for any injury as well as preventing infection shoudl any debris be lodged between the folds of skin along the nail. Don't forget the Nail on the inside fo the front leg a bit farther up from the foot.
 
Pay particular area to the anal area and scrotum of the male cats.  Ideally, clip claws first. 
 Usually before  even "Gooping" the males up, I flip them over, use two fingers on each side of the penile area to push down gently and express the penis and check for any hair that may be wrapped around it as they do have little "spines" on their penis that distend when the penis is distended and can easily grab and hold hair.  They hate this and it is not a pleasant experience but alot of damage can be done to a breeding tom or male cat in general,  if they have hair wrapped around and strangling the penis.  Make it a habit to check the penis on all long haired males - especially after a breeding.
 When bathing,  I gently keep rubbing the male's scrotal area under water to be sure any dirt and grime is removed.  Soap it up a little to help and use a very soft brush to agitate the area a little if there is stubborn buildup.
  Drain the sink and rinse the cat well. 
 Then I use a tearless baby shampoo on the head, rinsing continually using a washcloth protecting the eyes, nose and ears.  Just work carefully and patiently with the head.  I wring the cloth out and wipe the inside of the ears clean.
  Continue by using a good shampoo ( preferably of natural ingredients ) made for the type of haircoat the cat has. I usually use  Crisp Coat which you can find online - it is a good degreasing shampoo. I only use this maybe every other bath as it can be drying and I will cut it with a little Castile soap for that reason.   Follow that with a 2nd washing of Pure Castile Soap ( NO ESSENTIAL OILS - be cautious as the bottles may just  
say " Oil of " which is relating to an essential oil ) in liquid form.
  I may make a specific Castile shampoo of my own with a bit of brewed herbal tea added to it for beneficial properties to the skin and haircoat.  I blend about 1 part tea to 4 parts Castile Soap.  White cats you have to be careful about the herbs you use for the tea - you can stain the coat if not careful and you use a dark tea. But, if you have skin issues, the healing properties of the shampoo you make using beneficial herbal tea should be priority - not the whiteness of the coat - Most breeders shave their cats down anyway which is a great opportunity to grow out new coat after  your skin issues are gone. Some things are just more important. 
   Your animals should be beautiful from the inside out - not the opposite.  If they are healthy inside, they will have nice skin and coat- hence another reason for a species appropriate diet.
   I usually dilute the shampoo in 1/4 cup  of water and pour it over the cat and work it in well.  I get it down to the skin and use my fingers to seperate the hair pulling outwards.  This helps minimize matting the coat.  Add a bit more soap where needed such as the feet, anal area and belly.
 Then you rinse and rinse well.  Rinse until you see absolutely no soap residue in the coat - double check the belly and legs. 
 To lightly condition the coat and help prevent alot of matting - I use a small spray bottle with aobut 1/4 conditioner and 1/4 warm water in it.
 Lightly spray all over the coat and sort of squeeze it into the hairs.  Pay particular attention to areas that are usually dryest or more cottony - add a few more sprays of conditioner here.
 Let the kitty sit for a few minutes, wrap in a hot towel for deep conditioning penetration if you can for about 10 minutes, and then  rinse very well.
 
  When done, wrap him in a towel, blot a bit to soak up water. 
  If your shampoo and conditioner were not scented ( preferable ), you can use a Floral Water / Hydrosol in a small spray bottle of say Lemon or Rose, spritz the damp coat then put him in a carrier or small cage with a small pet blowdryer 2-3 feet in front of it on low heat (or use a space heater set on low if your cat is afraid of dryers, etc.) 
 This will leave a devine, natural fragrance in the coat.  Check every few minutes to make sure the kitty is not overheated or distressed.  The belly and legs may not really dry well like this but the majority of the cat will be dry. Comb the dry areas and if they are just slightly damp, let the kitty finish drying on his own.  Alot of blowdrying can damage coat.  When fully dry,  give a complete grooming to remove any tangles and loose hair.  Spritz some Hydrosol over them if you wish.
   Drying a kitty like this frees up some time for you to clean up and  even bathe another kitty,  keeps the kitty enclosed in a small space to make good use of the warm air to dry him and keeps the flying hair down and contained more.
 It is preferable to dry your kitty in an enclosed area to contain any hair and make cleanup much easier.

Floral Waters

 Floral Waters or "Hydrosols"
  They are created during the steam distillation extraction process of Essential Oils. The steam builds up and creates a "floral water" which is collected and bottled.   They are very safe for animals being a wonderful alternative to essential oils that cannot be used with cats.
  Floral Waters are used as bases in body misters, facial toners, air and fabric fresheners, after shave, insect repellents, bath bombs and so much more.
 
 Examples of the use of specific Floral Waters:
            Rose - Balances and restores the skin's PH, balances sebum production and useful for dry and oily skin.  Helps tighten pores, is antibacterial and wonderful for troubled skin.  Internally - wonderful for women.
             Yarrow - Sooths and heals hot spots
             Neroli - used for calming animals
             Lavender - Soothes Sunburn, freshens linen, etc.
            Melissa - Wonderful as a "blotter" for oily skin
            Lemon Myrtle - Great antibacterial and very fragrant
 
  They are perishable and need to be refridgerated.
  You'll know when they are no longer good - they will "Bloom" so to speak.  You'll see white, stringy stuff in the bottle so if you buy them - use them !
 
  A great site for information and using Floral Waters / Hydrosols is : 
Nature's Gift
 

Crazy Dog Pet Hairdryer    

Crazy Dog Ionizing Dryer

  The Crazy Dog  Pet Blow Dryer  is a MUST HAVE for pet owners or very small breeders.  I have the Original  and the Diffuse It ( pictured above) models. 
 Breeders with large programs use large dryers that can accomodate large banks of cages.
 I love both of  my hand models - very low noise.
The Diffuse It dryer  uses Ionic technology for fast, efficient drying which breaks down water molecules, drying coats with less heat which in turn does not damage the coat. Hair is softer, shinier and static free.
Has 2 speeds and a Cool Shot button.
  All models come with a stand that is adjustable front to back.   I have never had mine overheat and shut off - even if using for extended periods of time.  It is made to withstand extensive use.  They are very affordable and worth every penny - I keep one in my show bag to take to the shows with me - accidents do happen - better safe than sorry ! 
 Visit Crazy Dog's new website ( may still be under construction so just contact them ).   They may not still produce either of these models anymore - likely they've improved designs, etc.   Mine are still going strong so they are definitely a quality dryer.
You can get the Twin Turbo here:
 
I do urge you to check Ebay first - I have gotten so much off of Ebay - usually brand new overstocked items dirt cheap.   
 
 
 Grooming Powders
  I will very lightly powder the coat in between baths to help absorb oils and keep the coat a bit more manageable.  Don't use alot as it is drying to the hair.
   My powders of choice are plain Cornstarch or Arrowroot.  For Red, Dilutes, Cream colors, etc.  I would use Fullers Earth as it has a pale earthtone that blends with the paler coated cats without whitening. 
   Cornstarch is not as loose flowing as Arrowroot and may be harder to shake out.  Arrowroot is like powdered silk and a preferred choice for my own body powders. Corn starch is more readily available from any grocery store. I typically cut them half and half - sifting together very well.   I use them because they are natural  and I can "flavor" them.  I'll pass on a little secret of mine..................
  I use a small coffee grinder to powder herbs and make my own scented powders for my cats and myself. 
 I use certain herbs for girls and others for boys for obvious reasons.  If they all smell good, you want to spend alot more time with them.  We are drawn to fragrance.
An herb such as  Slippery Elm, which has a "maple syrup" smell, makes you want to eat your kitty ;-).

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Cornstarch
 Great for above mentioned eye powder recipe and making a coat powder/whitener and it is natural.
 Get it at your grocery store.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Arrowroot Powder
  Makes a great, natural body and coat powder.  Also excellent for cooking - making sauces and as a thickener for gravies and pie recipes instead of flour.  It has a clear appearance when cooked and won't turn sauces white or pale in color or change the taste.  Hard to find - look in health food stores and herbal apothecaries.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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Fullers Earth
  This is commonly used for absorbing oils in the haircoat or cleaning "poopy butts".  Pack it in, let dry and then carefully comb out. It is a sort of clay, mined from the earth and is used quite widely to clarify oils such as mineral oil and vegetable oils and waters.  Clays are excellent for clarifying small home ponds.   Although, clay is pretty much pure Aluminum - a heavy metal and contributes to health issues. I strongly advise either you use corn starch instead or get into the habit of removing heavy metal buildup in your pets via homeopathy if you use Fuller's Earth - or even feed commercial pet foods as they are high in numerous heavy metals.
Please read my Heavy Metal Poisoning section on the Natural Notes page.

  
Herbs for the boys....................

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Cinnamon
 It is derived from the dried bark of various Laurel trees in the Cinnamomum family.  True Cinammon is native to Sri Lanka.  The Cinnamon used in North America is from the Cassia Tree grown in Vietnam, China, Indonesia and Central America.
 It's medicinal qualities - astringent, anti-infective, antifungal and it is also a digestive aid.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Nutmeg
  It is derived from the very inner brown seed of Myristica Fragrans, an evergreen tree native to the Molucca Islands.  The tree grows about 60 feet tall and starts producing seeds at 7 years of age.
  It's medicinal qualities - bad breath, fever, gas, headaches and stomach troubles.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
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Cloves
Cloves are the rich, brown, dried, unopened flower buds of Syzygium aromaticum, an evergreen tree in the Myrtle family. The name comes from the French "clou" meaning nail.
Cloves come from Madagascar, Brazil, Panang, and Ceylon.
  Medicinal qualities - Cloves are a mild anesthetic and a powerful antiseptic. They have long been used in dentistry to relieve pain and disinfect.   5-6 Cloves simmered in spiced cider will totally numb your throat.   Cloves are  also good for indigestion, nausea, and as an expectorant.
 
 
 
 
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  Slippery Elm
Slippery Elm (Ulmus rubra) is a tree native to North America.  Also known as Red Elm, Moose Elm and Indian Elm.  Derived from the inner portion of the bark,  Native Americans and american settlers used slippery elm as a survival food.  George Washington and his troops survived for several days on slippery elm gruel during the bitter winter at Valley Forge.
  Medicinal qualities - Used in  traditional herbal medicine for over 100 years.   Soothing to irritated tissues, used topically in poultices,
supports health of the adrenal glands, gastrointestinal tract, and respiratory system, hleps expell mucous.

For the girls,  I use...........

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Lavender
 First cultivated in England in 1568, it is a bushy, woody plant that can be found all over the world.  It has been used in everything from bath and laundry waters to ointments.
  Medicinal qualities - Usually the essential oil is used which is  powerfully antiseptic, antispasmodic, aromatic, carminative, diuretic, sedating and stimulating.  It can kill off Typhoid, Diptheria, Streptococcus, and Pneumococcus and is also a powerful antidote to snake venom.
 
 
 
 
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Rose
 A shrub or climber found in the temperate regions of both hemispheres.  They were first cultivated in Persia and are most widely known and used for their scent in perfumes, lotions and waters.
  The first preparation of Rose Water was in the 10th century.  Between 1582 and 1612, the oil of the rose was discovered.
Medicinal qualities - Used for hemorrhage of the lungs and for coughs.  Also used for it's astringent effects in treating Stomatitis, Pharyngitis and for nightsweats caused by depression.
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Chamomile
A low growing, creeping, trailing plant that spread very easily.  It has been used since the Middle Ages and is considered to be a very powerful medicinal herb.  There are a number of varieties but the German Chamomile is the preferred choice.
Medicinal qualities - Anti-allergic, Anti-flatulent, Antispasmodic, Mild Sedative, Anti-Inflammatory, Antiseptic, Antibacterial, and has  Anti-Ulcer Properties.
 
 
 
 
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Lemon Verbena
 A woody shrub with long leaves that exude a powerful lemon scent.  It is native to South America and is treated as an annual in other climates.  During the 17th Century it was brought to Europe by Spanish Explorers.
  It is used mostly for culinary purposes being added to marinades, fish, poultry, beverages, etc.
 Medicinal qualities - Antispasmodic, antipyretic, sedative and for stomach troubles.
 
 
 
 
 

This is not a show grooming - type powder - it will contain minute particles of herbs in it and you do not want that in a show kitty's coat !!
 This is just a lazy day at home powder to freshen up and absorb oils on an "as needed" basis.
 
 To make a powder you will need:
 
        6 parts ( Cornstarch or Arrowroot)
1 part herb
 
  Grind the herb into a powder in your coffee grinder ( unless you can buy it powdered). Blend it very well into the Cornstarch/Arrowroot ( a sifter works great ) and let sit for a few days so the aroma permeates the powders.  Place in a shaker bottle and use to lightly powder the coat during grooming. Corn starch has more of a "cling" than other powders whichmakes it hard to shake out of a botle but helps it stay in the coat better.   If you are not careful shaking it out - you'll end up with a big glob and it is harder to comb out. It is a nice whitener for a last minute touchup too. If you find you have more of it in the coat than you like - use a blow dryer to blow it out a bit. You do not want a heavy smell either so go easy on the aromatic herbs - it should be very mild. You have to remember a cat's sense of smell is 10X what ours is and you do not want it to be strong so keep the scents very light and don't overdo it. They cannot exactly run away from a smell that is rubbed into their coats.
   I love the mild fragrance of my herbal powders on the cats and you will love it too and hug your kitty more often because they smell so good.
  Do not use Essential Oils - they are toxic to cats !

          Dry Shampoo

  Usually, after eating, the bib areas and front paws are a bit soiled and greasy ( or alot if you have a piggy ! ) Or, you may have a kitty with a cow patty on his butt ! 

  Using a large Coffee filter with an X cut into the bottom so you can slip it over the kitty's head usually helps alot to keep thebib area clean.  Or, you can use natural dry shampoo in between baths to keep these areas fairly clean and stain free.  It is not really meant for dark colored cats  as the powders will really lighten the coat color - of course only temporarily but you can still use it and blowdry out ( low or no heat setting ) as much as possible what the comb doesn't remove.  I use it daily if needed until the next bath.  Sometimes - an immediate bath or buttwash is necessary but for the most part - a dry shampoo will suffice. 

To make a dry shampoo powder for greasy and mildly soiled areas :

     1 Part Cornstarch

    1 part Arrowroot

 Pour into a puffer bottle or saved powder bottle.  Powder the soiled areas well and work in a bit and leave on for 10 - 20  minutes ( put the kitty in a carrier ) .  When fairly dry,  comb out.  Repeat as needed.

This is good when you have to put off a bath for a day or two.

For Poopy Butts: 

Preferably Cornstarch - or Fullers Earth

***Please keep in mind the above warning on Fuller's Earth.

First gently comb out as much solid matter as you can.  It is best to comb a few hairs at a time all around the poop to seperate it from the hair best you can at which point it may fall mostly off by itself.  Don't ever try to use a paper towel or washcloth as this will just smear it into the coat.

Then, pack the area well with Cornstarch or Fullers Earth powder and either put the kitty in a cage or carrier for a while to let them dry and then carefully comb out using the wide spaced teeth at one end of the comb followed by a final combing with the finer end of the comb.  This should work fairly well for you.

  Fuller's Earth is not for a white coat obviously but when pressed for time or in a jam and it is all you have - it will suffice until you can give a butt wash.  I so suggest a butt wash instead of Fuller's Earth if you have no cornstarch.

 **You may also use the body powder instead of  Fuller's Earth.

Arrowroot and Fullers Earth, Castile Soap, are  found at Herbal Apothecaries or places that sell bulk herbs, soap supplies,  or at health food stores.  

 

 2 sources I can recommend ....
 

My favorite place for Bio-Groom products and toys and some grooming supplies.

Great place for grooming tools, etc.

You can purchase my Grooming Powders
  I also "make to order" my herbal grooming powders for those of you who don't have the time to make them yourselves, or would just rather buy them, freshly made.  I've had alot of requests for that by my kitten adopters so I'll offer it to everyone.
Just Contact Me  for more information.
 
This page will be updated with purchasing information a little later.