How to Groom An American Wirehair Cat

Reviewed by Grooming Expert: Clarissa Stevenson, CFMG

Table of Contents

Body Type: Norma

Coat Type and Length: Rex

Coat Texture: The American Wirehair has a unique coat texture that is wiry and springy to the touch. It is also dense and crimped, giving it a rough appearance.

american wirehair cat

If you’re lucky enough to have an American Wirehair cat in your life, you know how special they are. These unique cats have a distinctive coat that requires a bit of extra attention when it comes to grooming. But don’t worry, with a few simple tips and tricks, you can keep your Wirehair looking and feeling their best. In this guide, we’ll walk you through everything you need to know to groom your American Wirehair cat like a pro.


American Wirehair Cat Characteristics

The American Wirehair cat is a unique breed known for its distinctive wiry coat. This breed is medium-sized with a muscular build and a round head. Their coat is dense and springy, with a texture similar to that of steel wool.

American Wirehairs come in a variety of colors and patterns, including tabby, solid, and bicolor. They are known for their friendly and affectionate personalities, making them great family pets. However, their wiry coat requires regular grooming to prevent matting and tangling.

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


Essential Grooming Tools for American Wirehair Cats

best cat grooming tools

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

Grooming ToolDescriptionPrice
Slicker brushGets rid of stray hairs, detangles minor knots, and preserves a glossy coat$10 – $20
Grooming glovesGently removes loose hair while providing a relaxing massage$10 – $25
Nail clippersTrims your cat’s nails carefully to hinder overgrowth and reduce the risk of injuries$5 – $15
Ear cleanerRemoves debris and cleans the ear to ward off infections$8 – $15
Cotton ballsEffectively absorb and remove dirt, debris, and excess earwax from the cat’s ears, contributing to better overall ear health and reducing the risk of infections$1 – $5
ToothbrushKeeps your cat’s teeth clean to avoid dental problems and promote good oral hygiene$3 – $10
ToothpasteCat toothpaste contains ingredients that combat bad breath, leaving your cat with a fresher, more pleasant mouth odor$5 – $10
ShampooCat shampoos effectively eliminate dirt, grime, and oils from your cat’s coat, while also neutralizing any unpleasant odors, leaving your cat’s fur clean, soft, and fresh-smelling$3 – $12

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


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

Brushing Your Cat

american wirehair care

  • Brush your American Wirehair once or twice a week
  • Use the slicker brush or grooming mitt and brush in the direction of hair growth.
  • Bathe your American Wirehair occasionally to help control shedding.

Bathing your American Wirehair Cat

The American Wirehair is a low-maintenance cat breed when it comes to grooming. They have a unique coat that is wiry and dense, which helps to repel dirt and water. However, they still need a bath every once in a while.

  1. When bathing your American Wirehair, use a gentle cat shampoo and warm water.
  2. Wet their coat thoroughly and lather the shampoo into their fur, being careful not to get any in their eyes or ears.
  3. Rinse thoroughly and towel dry.
  4. Avoid using a blow dryer as it can damage their coat.

Overall, bathing an American Wirehair is a simple process that doesn’t require much effort.

How Often Should I Bathe My American Wirehair Cat?

You should bathe your American Wirehair cat every 4-6 weeks to maintain their coat’s natural oils and prevent skin irritation.

How to Trim the Nails of an American Wirehair

  • Gather your supplies: cat nail clippers, styptic powder (in case of bleeding), and treats.
  • Find a comfortable spot for your cat, such as a table or your lap.
  • Hold your cat’s paw gently but firmly and press on the pad to extend the nail.
  • Use the clippers to trim the tip of the nail, being careful not to cut the quick (the pink part inside the nail).
  • If you accidentally cut the quick and your cat starts bleeding, apply styptic powder to stop the bleeding.
  • Repeat with the other paws, giving your cat a treat after each paw is done.
  • Recommended frequency of clipping: once every 2-3 weeks.

Remember, trimming your American Wirehair’s nails regularly will help prevent them from getting too long and causing discomfort or even injury. Happy grooming!

Ear Cleaning

  • Gather your supplies: cotton balls or pads, ear cleaning solution (make sure it’s safe for cats), and a towel.
  • Hold your American Wirehair securely in your lap or on a table.
  • Gently lift one ear flap and inspect the ear for any signs of redness, swelling, or discharge. If you notice anything unusual, contact your veterinarian.
  • 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.
  • Use a fresh cotton ball or pad to wipe away any excess solution and debris.
  • Repeat on the other ear.
  • Reward your American Wirehair with a treat or playtime for being a good sport during the ear cleaning process.

Things to Watch Out For:

  • Never use any sharp object to clean your cat’s ears, as this can cause injury or push debris further into the ear canal.
  • If your American Wirehair shows signs of discomfort or pain during the ear cleaning process, stop immediately and contact your veterinarian.
  • 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 infection or other underlying health issue.

How to Brush the Teeth of an American Wirehair

american wirehair dental care

  • Start by getting your American Wirehair comfortable with having their mouth touched. Gently lift their lip and give them a treat or praise.
  • Once they are comfortable with this, introduce a toothbrush specifically designed for cats. You can find these at your local pet store.
  • Apply a small amount of cat toothpaste to the toothbrush and gently brush your cat’s teeth in a circular motion. Be sure to focus on the back teeth where plaque and tartar tend to build up.
  • Brush for about 30 seconds to a minute, or until your cat becomes restless.
  • Reward your American Wirehair with a treat or praise after each brushing session to reinforce positive behavior.
  • Aim to brush your cat’s teeth at least once a week to maintain good oral hygiene.

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

Preventing and Addressing Common Coat Issues

Pat yourself on the back for grooming your cat properly! That said, look out for the following:

Fleas and Ticks

Check your cat regularly for fleas and ticks, especially during the warmer months.

Use a flea comb to remove any fleas or ticks you find, and dispose of them properly. Consider using a flea preventative medication recommended by your veterinarian.

Matted Fur

American Wirehairs have a dense, wiry coat that can easily become matted if not brushed regularly. Use a slicker brush to gently remove any tangles and mats, and consider trimming the fur around the ears and paws to prevent future matting.

Allergies and Skin Irritations

American Wirehairs have a dense, wiry coat that can lead to matting and skin irritation if not properly groomed. Regular brushing and occasional bathing can help prevent these issues.

How Often Should I Brush My American Wirehair Cat?

You should brush your American Wirehair cat at least once a week to prevent matting and remove loose hair. They have a dense, wiry coat that requires regular grooming to keep it healthy and shiny.

Can I Use Human Shampoo on My American Wirehair Cat?

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