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There’s a belief among pet owners and cat lovers that cats are easy. And, for the most part, it holds true. After all, they go to the bathroom by themselves, they can use a cat flap to let themselves outside and they self-regulate their eating patterns. However, most people also believe that cats groom themselves effectively, and while that might be the case for most cats, some may not be able to groom themselves properly due to old age, fur type or medical conditions. In these cases, having one of the best cat brushes is an absolute necessity.
Why Is It Important to Groom Your Cat?
Is brushing a cat really necessary? The short answer is yes. While cats do lick themselves clean, giving them a good brushing session is also vital to their health and happiness.
Providing grooming to your cat can help the two of you bond, and it can give them a shinier, healthier coat as well as supple skin. The process removes grease, dirt and dead hair from the coast while simultaneously stimulating circulation and ridding your cat’s skin of flakes.
Furthermore, a brushing session once or twice a week can help to remove tangles from your cat’s coat. This, in turn, prevents your cat from developing a belly full of hair, which would need to be extracted in the form of a hairball. Plus, grooming sessions also give you the opportunity to check your cat’s skin for any irregularities, wounds or bumps, allowing you to catch any minor issues before they become major.
To brush your cat, simply:
1. Give your cat’s coat a visual check to ensure he or she doesn’t have any bald patches or visible parasites.
2. Decide if your cat needs a bath. Usually, cats tend to clean themselves, but excessively dirty cats may need a dip in the tub.
3. Gently work your cat brush through your cat’s coat, pulling out any tangles as you go. For short-haired cats, you’ll generally want to brush in the direction the hair is growing, whereas long-haired cats should be brushed in the opposite direction.
4. When you’ve finished, use your hands to inspect your cat’s coat for any hidden tangles.
Now that you know the whys and the hows of cat grooming, take a look at our top 10 picks for the best cat brushes, including the best cat brush for long hair, the best cat brush for short hair, the best cat brush for shedding and the best cat brush for dandruff. Find the right brush for your furry friend and help them to look and feel healthy and happy in your care.
1. Hertzko Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush
Every once in a while, we come across a product that’s a no-brainer as to the top pick on a list, and that’s the case with the Hertzko Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush. Not only does this brush have amazing reviews, but it also does its job effectively without discomfort for your cat. The Hertzko claims to be the original slicker brush, which means it sports tightly packed metal bristles with slightly curved ends. This means the brush can get deep into mats and undercoats without scratching the skin. Plus, the brush has a self-cleaning function, which gives it a leg up on many other slicker brush models.
2. Four Paws Magic Coat Mat & Tangle Remover
BEST FOR DEEP TANGLES
Getting rid of mats and tangles from a cat’s fur can be tricky, but it’s necessary, especially if your cat is older and can no longer groom as efficiently. Many cat brushes are designed to groom their entire coat, but the Four Paws Magic Coat Mat & Tangle Remover sports sturdy, longer bristles in a V-shape to take on the tough task of smoothing out clumps. Keep in mind that you may have to pull a bit, but this brush should help you accomplish this tough task.
3. JW Pet Gripsoft Cat Comb
Once you’ve removed all the mats from your cat’s coast using the Four Paws Mat & Tangle Remover, ensure that the mat-prone hair doesn’t tangle again with a kitty comb. Using such a brush on your cat regularly means that they’ll suffer from far fewer hairballs. Plus, they’ll love the gentle scratching provided by the thicker metal bristles, and your hands won’t get too tired thanks to the ergonomic, soft grip.
4. Frisco Cat & Dog Pin Bristle Brush
BEST FOR DANDRUFF
Because cat dandruff can be caused by a variety of issues, it’s best to have a brush to tackle everything if you’re combatting the white stuff. The Frisco Cat & Dog Pin Bristle Brush sports two different sides. The first boasts plastic pins for removing tangles and dirt, while the second side features flexible bristles to help distribute your cat’s natural oils. As an added bonus, this brush is available in multiple sizes, allowing you to pick the most appropriate brush for your cat’s size.
5. Safari Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush
BEST FOR LONG HAIR CATS
If you have a long hair cat, a self-cleaning brush is an absolute must. Otherwise, you’ll spend just as long cleaning out the bristles on your grooming tool as you do actually brushing your cat. With the Safari Self-Cleaning Slicker Brush, one push of a button helps to slip the fur directly off the bristles and into your hand. Plus, the comfort-grip handle keeps your hand from becoming tired, while the gentle bristles provide a soothing massage to your pet without irritating their skin.
6. Mars Coat-King Bristle Cat Hair Brush
BEST FOR SHEDDING
Worried about how your cat will enjoy being groomed? It’s true that certain animals won’t tolerate metal brushes, which is why we recommend the Mars Coat-King Bristle Cat Hair Brush for cats that may fight back. The bristles on this brush are super soft and comfortable on the coat. They are also super thin, meaning the bristles can easily penetrate the fine coat of your cat to gather up dead and loose hair during the shedding process.
7. Solid Pet Slicker Brush
BEST FOR DETANGLING
Tangles lead to mats, which lead to hairballs. And, we all know that hairballs are to be avoided at all costs. So, get rid of tangles when they start by using the Solid Pet Slicker Brush regularly. This brush features high-quality 12-millimeter stainless steel bristles inserted at an angle. This allows you the ability to pull through tangles without hurting your pet. Plus, the retractable bristles make cleaning the brush a breeze.
8. H HANDSON Pet Grooming Gloves
As the owner of a cat that detests any sort of grooming, I know the challenge of using a brush on an animal with sharp claws and teeth. The process is uncomfortable during the best of times, and downright painful during the worst. That’s why we usually use grooming gloves in our household. These bristled gloves allow you to groom your cat while simply petting it, which is a much more natural environment for both parties. Furthermore, gloves can make grooming sessions even quicker than average.
9. FURminator Short Hair Cat Deshedding Tool
BEST FOR SHORT HAIR CATS
As one of the best-reviewed cat grooming products on the market, we couldn’t leave the FURminator Short Hair Cat Deshedding Tool off our list. This brush is unique in that it’s built for short-haired cats. (Most brushes on the market focus on medium to long-haired cats.) It also works incredibly well thanks to its stainless steel teeth, which reach beneath the short topcoat into the undercoat. The brush also features a plastic, curved guard to protect your cat’s skin and a push-button release for any hair gathered in the teeth during the grooming process.
10. LICKI Brush
The people at LICKI think cats believe their humans are just large cats. So, they want to strengthen your relationship with your cat by allowing you to groom your cat with a tongue, just like a mama cat would groom her kittens. Thankfully they don’t mean your tongue, but rather a tongue-shaped brush that you hold in your mouth. You’ve likely seen this brush by now, but if you haven’t, perhaps it’s time to try this wild new invention.