Why go to a CFMG?

Let’s talk about certification, what is a CFMG is and what it means for you and your kitty! So the grooming industry has a little secret; it's not regulated. I know, it's pretty crazy! Now I'm not saying that non-certified groomers are bad but I am saying we have no clue what their experience level is. If they have any. Unlike the hairdressing industry where you have to go through courses, a set amount of hours, and testing before you are allowed to sell your services.

Anyone can decide to become a groomer and open up a shop without any training. When it comes to the safety and health of our kitties I find it's important to find someone who went through training and understands the potential dangers to cats during grooming. So many things can go wrong if the groomer isn't trained to see warning signs from kitties and doesn't know how to correctly handle them.

To become a CFMG, Certified Feline Master Groomer, you must go through a course and take 4 written exams including, health and anatomy, breed and colors, temperament and handling, and business. With 5 practical exams to make sure all of the students know to safely demonstrate all of the grooming elements and understand which grooms are appropriate for each cat. Now the question is, how do you find someone who has gone through the training? You can go to nationalcatgroomers.com they have a list of NCGI members (CFMG in training) and CFMG’s. If you have any further questions on this topic please don’t hesitate to reach out to me at (864) 520 -1545 or upstatemeow@gmail.com

What Should I Use To Brush My Cat?

So you have a kitty and you don’t know what to use at home to maintain their coat. No worries! We got you covered. I’m going to go over what you can use to help maintain your kitties coat at home!

My favorite comb to use is the safari, you can purchase it on amazon. It’s a cheaper version of my professional comb I use on my salon kitties. Super comfortable to use with it’s a wooden handle to keep from hurting your wrists. The tight teeth help pull out dead coat without damaging their good fur. You can use this on a short or long hair kitty.

Zoom groom is a great option for short hair kitties. The only downside it is messy when you use it; it doesn’t have teeth so the hair comes off instantly unlike combs where you have to remove the hair from the teeth. Most cats love the zoom groom because it feels like a nice massage. You can use this for long hair cats but it will not remove or prevent mats from forming since it doesn’t go all the way down to the skin.

Now you are probably wondering why there isn’t a brush on my list of tools to use to brush my cat. I don’t use brushes on my salon cats for a few reasons. I find most cats get aggravated when using a brush because they don’t remove mats as swiftly like combs do. Most brushes don’t go down to the skin which is where the mats start, so they are not good for prevention either. If you do happen to find a brush long enough to go down to the skin, too much brushing can cause kitties sensitive skin to go raw (brush burn).

I would also caution against the furminator type combs. The teeth have blades at the end pulling and cutting the healthy hair. I have seen many cats come in with damaged hair and skin from a furminator type brush. If you are having problems with shedding I would instead recommend getting a de-shed treatment at our salon.

At my home I like to keep my comb next to my couch so when my kitty like to jump on my lap to cuddle, I can whip out my comb real quick to and she doesn’t mind. You may ask, what happens if you find a little tangle? If its small, smaller than a dime, no worries! Take your comb underneath the mat and in now swift motion, like ripping off a band-aid! Pull the mat out. If you pick it at it will cause the kitty pain and skin irritation. If you are having trouble removing mats please don’t hesitate to reach out. It it was I do for a living!

Stay Purrdy!


How to bring home a new cat

Have you had your heart set on bringing home a feline friend? Do you think your home is ready for anew addition? Cats are a fun addition to your home, and there are plenty of felines in need of love. June is adopt a cat month, so let’s spread the news! Head over to your local animal hospital or humane society and pick up your new best friend.

You may be asking yourself, “Am I ready to bring home a cat? Is my home cat friendly?” Bringing home a new pet may seem daunting, but never fear. Here are a few pointers to guide you in the right direction.

When first bringing home a kitten/adult cat, the overall experience for them can be a little scary. Thereare new sounds, smells, and places to roam. If you have other pets, this can take some time to get used to as well. It’s best to set up a room for your new kitty to adjust before letting them romp around the rest of the house. Consider a guest room or even a bathroom set up with their food, water, and litter box. Let them roam around the enclosed space by themselves before letting them out to meet other pets or explore the rest of your home.

If there are other animals in the home, keep them in their own separate living areas. It’ll take time to adjust animals to one another so it’s best not to rush the process. A good option for them to get used to one another is letting them smell each other’s bedding, toys, etc. When you decide it’s time for them to meet, watch them closely and stay in the room. Place them in an area where there are adequate hiding spots so they feel like they have places to get away from one another. Encourage meeting one another and playing, and make sure to use positive tones of voice.

Again, the adjusting process takes time and patience, and it’s best to take things one step at a time. Your new family friend will definitely want to explore and make your home their home. All in all, have fun getting to know you cat’s personality and how they adjust to their new and loving home!

How important are vet visits?

Healthy Kitty = Happy Kitty! 

Just like humans, it’s so important for your favorite feline to head to the vet once a year for an annual checkup! During their wellness visit, a vet will be able to determine their overall health as well as if they’re needing shots of any sort. Cats, unlike dogs, won’t show you if they’re sick or in pain, so a wellness visit is crucial to maintaining a long and happy life for your kitty.

During a visit, vets will go over a cat’s oral health, weight, lung and heart health, and more to determine if all is well. Bringing your cat to the vet on a regular basis will also help make it a less stressful situation in the future.

If you’re new to the Upstate area, or if you’re looking around for a good vet, here are a few I recommend you check out.

Cat Clinic of Greenville:As a vet dedicated to solely serving feline friends, the staff at the Cat Clinic is determined to provide the best experience for you and your kitty. Their overarching goal is to provide a safe haven for felines that feels comfortable and “at home” as they strive to make each patient a part of their ever growing family.

West Spartan County Animal Hospital:Described by clients as compassionate, caring, and professional, the West Spartan County Animal Hospital is doing great things for their four-legged friends. With a staff that’s in tune with their fur patients, you’re sure to find a good fit with them.

Rocky Creek Veterinary Hospital:Since 2010, Rocky Creek has been providing a comprehensive, locally owned veterinary practice. Their staff is a group of experienced veterinarians who are devoted to the treatment of their patients by providing individual care and keeping animals fear free in a calm environment. 

Cleveland Park Animal Hospital:With three locations, Cleveland Park Animal Hospital desires to protect and celebrate the bond between humans and animals by using their highly trained team. They are the oldest established veterinary hospital in Greenville, and they take the health and care of each animal seriously. Additionally, they are AAHA (American Animal Hospital Association) accredited. 

Blue Ridge Animal Hospital:Located in the beautiful city of Greer, Blue Ridge Animal Hospital is dedicated to working with their patients to keep pets happy and healthy for years to come. They have worked diligently to provide an effective system of care for pet’s needs from birth until their senior years.  

I hope you enjoyed this information!

How to find the right cat groomer for you

Furballs, Tangles, and How to Choose a Cat Groomer

Happy New Year, Everybody! 2018 flew right on by, so now it’s time to get started with 2019. A new year bring new experience, adventures, and choices. One such choice may be: how do you choose a good cat groomer? Here are some practical tips to pick someone who is a cut above the rest (pun DEFINITELY intended).

Has the groomer in your consideration been trained or is currently in training to groom cats? Although this may sound like a “duh” answer, someone who is specialized in grooming cats should be high up on your list of qualifications. I recommend groomers who were trained underneath National Cat Groomers.

Is the salon feline exclusive? If not, do they have a separate area away from dogs? Grooming can be a stressful time for some cats, and having them more stressed with dogs around them is a bit of chaos! Finding a cat groomer that is either feline exclusive, has a separate area for dogs, or grooms cats and dogs on different days is ideal for less stress and more sanity! 

When checking through the social media of the groomer in question, do they have a lot of before and after pictures? Unfortunately, I’ve seen groomers who only groom cats because it’s a job and not because it’s a passion, and these places tend to lack in before and after pictures. You want to see plenty of photos!

Lastly, and most importantly, does the groomer understand the grooming needs of you and your cat? Having someone who is in tune with your needs and your questions is crucial when choosing a groomer. Every cat is unique, and their needs are distinct to them. Open communication helps build a trusting relationship between you and your groomer. 

No matter where you live or if you move to a new location, these tips can guide you to a great cat groomer. After all, your furbaby deserves the best! 


How To Keep Your Kitty Safe During The Holidays!


“No, Don’t Chew the Tinsel!” Keeping Your Cat Safe during Christmas

The Holidays are a time of joy, wonder, and time spent with family and friends. We can get so wrapped up (no pun intended!) in the events and parties that we may forget to be on the lookout for things that can harm our pets. Here are a few practical ways to make sure your feline friend is safe during the Holidays!

Strung up with lights and ornaments, your Christmas tree may look harmless enough. But did you know that real Christmas trees actually have oils that can cause irritation in the skin, stomach, and mouth if chewed on? Additionally, Christmas lights can be a danger if cats begin to chew on them (hello, electrical wires). Using battery operated lights is a great idea when it comes to which kind to use for your tree. And make sure to turn them off when you’re not around!

Give them a shake or a swirl, and watch the snow in a globe spin all around the glass. Magical! But what may not be as magical is when they break. Did you know that snow globes are filled with ethylene glycol? You may know it better as anti-freeze which animals are often attracted to due to its sweet smell and taste. Avoid accidents with snow globes can keeping them in places your cat can’t get to, and if one breaks clean it up thoroughly. 

Plants such as poinsettias, holly, and mistletoe can be beautiful but also dangerous. If ingested, symptoms include vomiting, irritation in the mouth, and abdominal pain. It’s best to avoid these kind of plants in your home if you own a cat, or make sure they’re in a separate room that kitty can’t get into.

And lastly, the holidays can be very stressful for cats who aren’t used to so many people coming in and out of the home. If you find your cat acting a little antsier, skittish, annoyed, or stressed, consider having a room just for your feline friend to have as their own. This way, they can easily escape and get some much needed rest. 

No matter how you choose to spend this time of year, be mindful of the pets who depend on us to keep them safe. Wishing you all a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from Upstate Meow!