How to Groom An American Curl Cat

Reviewed by Grooming Expert: Clarissa Stevenson, CFMG

Table of Contents

Body Type: Semi-foreign

Coat type and length: Semi-long

Coat Texture: The American Curl has a soft, silky coat that is medium to long in length. It is known for its unique curled ears, but its coat is just as noteworthy.

american curl cat

If you’re a proud owner of an American Curl cat, you know how important it is to keep them looking their best. Grooming your cat not only helps them maintain a healthy coat, but it also strengthens the bond between you and your pet. In this guide, we’ll walk you through the steps to groom your American Curl cat like a pro. From brushing to bathing, we’ve got you covered. So, let’s get started!

American Curl Cat Characteristic

The American Curl cat is known for its unique curled ears, which give it a distinctive appearance. This breed is medium-sized and has a muscular build, with a soft and silky coat that comes in a variety of colors and patterns.

American Curls are known for their friendly and affectionate personalities, making them great family pets. They are also intelligent and playful, and enjoy interactive toys and games. Regular grooming is important for this breed, as their long hair can become tangled and matted if not properly cared for.

Overall, the American Curl is a charming and lovable cat that makes a great addition to any household.

Essential Grooming Tools for American Curl Cats

In order to groom American Curl Cats properly, you’ll need to have the following tools:

Grooming ToolDescriptionPrice
Slicker brushHelps detangle matted hair and remove excess fur$10 – $20
Grooming glovesGets rid of excess fur while giving a comforting massage$10 – $25
Nail clippersCuts your cat’s nails in a safe manner to keep overgrowth in check and prevent accidents$5 – $15
Ear cleanerReduces Wax and Debris Accumulation$8 – $15
Cotton ballsMade from soft fibers that won’t irritate or scratch the delicate skin inside a cat’s ears, ensuring a comfortable and safe cleaning experience$1 – $5
ToothbrushReduces Plaque and Tartar Buildup$3 – $10
ToothpasteRegular use of cat toothpaste can help prevent periodontal disease, gingivitis, and tooth decay, contributing to your cat’s overall health and well-being$5 – $10
ShampooCat shampoos are made with mild and non-toxic ingredients that are specifically chosen to be gentle on your cat’s skin and fur, reducing the risk of adverse reactions and irritation compared to using human shampoos$3 – $12

Now that we have our tools, we can begin the grooming process!

Step-by-Step Guide to Grooming Your American Curl Cat

grooming tools

Brushing Your Cat

Brushing Frequency: Brush your American Curl once or twice a week

Technique: Use the slicker brush or grooming mitt and brush in the direction of hair growth.

Regular brushing helps to remove loose hair and prevent matting.

Bathing your American Curl Cat

bathing an american curl cat

When it comes to bathing your American Curl, it’s important to keep in mind their unique curled ears. You’ll want to be extra gentle and avoid getting water in their ears.

  1. Start by brushing out any tangles or mats in their fur.
  2. Wet them down with warm water and apply a cat-specific shampoo, being careful to avoid their face and ears.
  3. Rinse thoroughly and wrap them in a towel to dry.

Don’t forget to give them plenty of love and treats afterwards!

How Often Should I Bathe My American Curl Cat?

You should bathe your American Curl cat every 4-6 weeks to maintain their coat’s health and cleanliness.

How to Trim the Nails of an American Curl

trimming an american curl cat's nails

  1. Gather your supplies: cat nail clippers, styptic powder (in case of bleeding), and treats.
  2. Find a comfortable spot for your American Curl, such as a table or your lap.
  3. Hold your cat’s paw gently but firmly, and use the clippers to trim the tip of the nail, being careful not to cut the quick (the pink part inside the nail).
  4. If you accidentally cut the quick and your cat’s nail starts bleeding, apply styptic powder to stop the bleeding.
  5. Repeat with each nail, giving your cat a treat after each successful trim.
  6. Aim to trim your American Curl’s nails every 2-3 weeks to keep them at a healthy length.

Remember, trimming your American Curl’s nails regularly can help prevent painful ingrown nails and damage to furniture and carpets. 

How to Clean the Ears of an American Curl

cleaning american curl cat's ears

  1. Gather your supplies: cotton balls or pads, ear cleaning solution (make sure it’s safe for cats), and a towel.
  2. Hold your American Curl gently but firmly, making sure they are comfortable and not struggling.
  3. Lift the ear flap and inspect the ear for any signs of redness, swelling, or discharge. If you notice anything unusual, contact your veterinarian.
  4. Saturate a cotton ball or pad with the ear cleaning solution and gently wipe the inside of the ear flap and the ear canal. Be careful not to insert the cotton ball too far into the ear canal.
  5. Use a fresh cotton ball or pad to wipe away any excess solution and debris.
  6. Repeat on the other ear.
  7. Reward your American Curl with a treat or some playtime to make the experience positive.

Things to Watch Out For:

  1. Be careful while using Q-tips to clean your cat’s ears. Being rough can damage the ear canal and cause pain or infection.
  2. If your American Curl shows signs of discomfort or pain during the ear cleaning process, stop immediately and contact your veterinarian.
  3. If you notice any unusual discharge, odor, or redness in your cat’s ears, contact your veterinarian as this could be a sign of an ear infection or other health issue.

How to Brush the Teeth of an American Curl

brushing an american curl cat's teeth

  1. Start by getting your American Curl comfortable with having their mouth touched. Gently lift their lip and touch their teeth and gums with your finger.
  2. Once they are comfortable with this, introduce them to a toothbrush specifically designed for cats. You can find these at most pet stores.
  3. Use a toothpaste made for cats. Do not use human toothpaste as it can be harmful to your cat.
  4. Apply a small amount of toothpaste to the toothbrush and gently brush your cat’s teeth in a circular motion. Focus on the outside of the teeth as this is where plaque and tartar build-up occurs.
  5. Be sure to brush the back molars as well as these are often neglected.
  6. Brush for about 30 seconds to a minute, gradually increasing the time as your cat becomes more comfortable with the process.
  7. Reward your American Curl with a treat or praise after each brushing session to reinforce positive behavior.
  8. Aim to brush your American Curl’s teeth at least once a week to maintain good oral hygiene.

Remember, regular brushing can help prevent dental problems and keep your American Curl healthy and happy.

Preventing and Addressing Common Coat Issues

Grooming your cat is 90% done. However, it’s important to keep an eye on the following “potential” issues:

Fleas and Ticks

As an American Curl owner, it’s important to keep an eye out for fleas and ticks.

Regularly combing your cat’s coat with a flea comb and using a flea preventative medication recommended by your veterinarian can help prevent infestations. If you do find fleas or ticks, consult with your vet for the best treatment options.

Matted Fur

American Curls have a unique ear shape that can lead to matting around the ears. Use a metal comb to gently detangle any mats and trim any excess fur around the ears to prevent future matting.

Allergies and Skin Irritations

American Curls are prone to developing ear infections due to their unique ear shape. To prevent irritation, clean their ears regularly with a vet-approved solution and avoid using cotton swabs.

Frequently Asked Questions About Grooming American Curl Cats

How Often Should I Brush My American Curl Cat?

You should brush your American Curl cat at least once a week to prevent matting and tangles in their unique curly coat. However, if your cat has longer hair, you may need to brush them more frequently to keep their coat healthy and shiny.

Can I Use Human Shampoo on My American Curl Cat?

You should not use human shampoo on your American Curl cat. Human shampoo is formulated for human hair and can be too harsh for your cat’s delicate skin and coat. It can strip away natural oils and cause dryness, itching, and irritation. Instead, use a cat-specific shampoo that is gentle and pH-balanced for your cat’s skin.