The lion cut is a type of haircut given to cats by many pet groomers, and can serve an important grooming purpose, particularly for long-haired cats. All cats should be brushed on a regular basis but long-haired cats need it more frequently than their short- and medium-haired friends because the long fur tangles and mats very easily. In general, a long-haired cat needs to be brushed every day.
However, many people don’t have this kind of time even though it’s only a few minutes a day. They work full-time and have a house and family to take care of. They have other obligations as well. Because of this, their beautiful long-haired kitty’s coat isn’t kept the way it should be. Mats and tangles often form around the cat’s neck and on the belly area first, and if it’s just a few, they can be brushed out with a little work and a lot of care, or if need be, they can be cut out gently with a pair of blunt-tipped scissors.
Sometimes, though, the cat’s fur gets so tangled and matted that it’s better to get it cut very short. Trying to comb out a coat that’s mostly mats can be very uncomfortable and painful for the cat and difficult for the owner as well. Cutting out so many mats puts the cat at risk for nasty cuts that can get infected and can leave the cat with a very uneven coat. The lion cut is so named because it mimics the mane of a lion, and the tufts of fur on its paws and tail. The groomer cuts the cat’s fur very close to the skin all over except for the head and neck, the lower parts of the paws, and the tip of the tail. This cut does look strange but is ultimately better than hurting it by trying to comb out all those mats.
The lion cut can also be useful in areas where air conditioning isn’t standard. Long-haired cats get very warm and can get overheated during the hotter days of the summer when there’s no air conditioning. Cutting off so much fur helps to keep the cat cool and makes it far more comfortable than leaving the heavy coat on, even though a good deal of the winter coat has already been shed.
It isn’t wise for an owner to try and cut a cat’s fur this way alone. It’s always better to go to a professional groomer, particularly if this is the first time the cat’s fur is being cut this way. For owners who want to learn to cut their own cats’ fur safely, talk to groomers, watch them give lion cuts, and ask if they’ll teach the proper way to do it. In the long run, it’ll be better for both owner and cat alike.
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