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First day of grooming!

Dear Diary,
Today was the big day, the first day of student grooms! Of course, can’t have fun without doing something boring first. Nah, that’s not true, it hasn’t been boring. It just seems like it should. This morning started with the usual. Walking into the school, getting a big “good morning!” from Dana, admiring Monica and getting snubbed by C2. She’s the other school kitty. A little shy.
So after all that, it was First Aid time. While that never really interested me before, today’s lecture really got me thinking. Cats are fragile. There’s so much that can go wrong just by being alive! And then add in the stress of grooming? Yikes.
I was a little miffed we wouldn’t be grooming from Day One. Not anymore. I finally understand just how much knowledge, training and forethought it takes to groom a cat. Any idiot can run some clippers over a cat, or soap it up with shampoo, but to truly create a groom worthy of a cat, you have to have a little bit more. Let’s face it, you wouldn’t go to Mt Olympus with some Prell and an old rag. And we all know cats rate right up there with gods!
That little epiphany encourages me to pay close attention in class and to study late into the night. And become more interested in what I thought would be kinda boring.
Off my soapbox? Sure! I’ll get off it and get to the good stuff.
Grooming.
Was hard.

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I know! I was hoping I was so amazingly gifted I’d be perfect from the get-go. We got to watch Danelle and Juli do a demo groom. Then, it was our turn. I think I lucked out with a shy little Domestic Long Hair. We started out by figuring out the breed and color of our kitties. Mine was a brown patched mackerel tabby and white. And she was greasy! Yuck. She’d also never been groomed before and I was relieved to practice applying Soft Paws. Just in case. I needn’t have worried, she was a sweet kitty, just scared. So I took my shy, nail trimmed, Soft Pawed, Brown Patched Mackerel Tabby and White Domestic Long Hair grease ball and gave her a bath. I gave her a good scrub with the Les Pooch F&T degreaser. And another. And a little more for luck. Finished up the hypo allergenic texturizing shampoo. After squeezing her dry, she got wrapped in a towel like a kitty burrito (purrito? Purrrrito?) and I wiped her eyes and cleaned her ears. Then it was off to the Catty Shack Vac!
It was weird. I couldn’t quite figure out how to get the dryer nozzle pointed in the right direction. The right direction being at the cat. I had a hard time sitting close enough to it without squishing right up against it. While I was blundering about, my poor little kitty tried to hide under the towel. A few minutes later, I wanted to, too. See, she was getting dry, but she still looked, and felt, greasy. Danelle was walking by and noticed it in an instant.
Back in the tub!
The one good thing to come out of it was that the second time sitting at the CSV was easier. The other good thing was that my kitty was nice and in relatively good condition. One of the other cats…was not. He was big. And he was angry. And he was matted. I did not envy the girl that got to groom him! I don’t know if I’m ready to tackle that kind of cat. Anywhere else he’d be a sedate to groom, no questions asked. But he got done. And no one died. Or lost an arm. And he looked great! I was more than a little surprised.
And my cat? Prettiest princess! The second bath did the trick and by the time she was fully dried and combed out she looked like a whole different cat. She felt so soft. Her coat shone in the afternoon sun. It was like a shampoo commercial. But it wasn’t! Just a house cat that come in greasy and bedraggled. And she left looking like a show cat. And I did it! Me!

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