How to Harness a Cat for Grooming?

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It’s paramount to know how to harness a cat for grooming. Most cats enjoy being on the grooming table and love the attention they get. But sometimes, there are cats that are not always cooperative. Either due to fear or a bad previous experience, cats might hiss or try to escape the situation.


The grooming process doesn’t have to be stressful, nor for the cat or the person doing the grooming. That’s when using a harness can help you and your cat.

How to Harness a Cat for Grooming? A Few Useful Options

A big part of the grooming process entails combing your cat’s fur and on occasions shaving around some matts. For this reason, if your cat normally uses a vest or a jacket, then a traditional harness will not work. They cover a big part of your cat’s body, hindering the combing process.

The best options would be a H – harness or a slip lead. The H – Harness are three straps attached together. One strap goes around your cat’s neck and the other around its chest. This kind of harness has a close buckle and a leash attached.

If your cat tries to run away during grooming, the harness will hold your cat in the points of contact, but it will not get tighter.

The second option is a slip lead. It works as a collar but it doesn’t have a traditional close buckle. Instead, they are designed as a loop.

You have to slip it over your cat’s head, around its chest, and behind its legs. Trainers usually use this kind of collar for behavior training.

The closing loop of the slip lead gets tighter if the cat tries to run away. But do not worry, this will not harm your cat.

What does a grooming process entail?

There are several steps when grooming a cat that could be dangerous if it doesn’t stay still. For that reason, it’s important to know how to harness a cat for grooming and do it the right way.

Cat grooming occasionally starts with a bath, nails clipping, and your cat’s fur thoroughly combed. If there are matts of hair that are impossible to comb, then they must be shaved.

This process does not have to be stressful for cats, but some of them are not as cooperative, and they must stay still.

Why does my cat misbehave during the grooming process?

Even though most cats enjoy it when someone combs their fur, some parts of the grooming might not be as pleasant, like nail clipping.

Some cats can misbehave during the process, hiss and grumble and even try to run away if they don’t feel comfortable with what’s going on.

You have to understand that this kind of behavior stems from fear, the unknown feelings, or maybe because of a bad experience during previous grooming.

Like with everything you want to teach your cat, you have to introduce new things slowly and gradually. It will also help if you start grooming your cat since it’s a kitten.

Grooming at home vs at grooming services

There isn’t a rule that states that you have to take your cat to a specialized place for grooming. You can do it at home if you have the right equipment like a dryer, a brush, and a nail clipper.

When grooming your cat at home, a vest or a jacket harness won’t work for combing its fur. However, you could use those kinds of harnesses for nail clipping, which is probably the most uncomfortable part of grooming your cat.

There are, however, specialized places where you can take your cat for grooming.

These places have several advantages:


  • Experienced staff that will probably groom your cat in a short period of time.
  • They have all the equipment necessary to complete the tasks.
  • They are used to dealing with all kinds of pets, which provides useful techniques for dealing with cats that don’t enjoy the process of grooming that much.


No matter where the grooming takes place or who is in charge of it, it’s important you know how to harness a cat for grooming and understand the importance of doing so correctly.


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James Ruby

James Ruby

Most cats are either indoor or outdoor, but if you want your indoor cat to be able to enjoy the outside world - the best way I discovered is to use a body cat harness, that feels like a tucked hug for your pet.

About Me

Most cats are either indoor or outdoor, but if you want your indoor cat to be able to enjoy the outside world – the best way I discovered is to use a body cat harness, that feels like a tucked hug for your pet.

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