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The Cat Calmer

Purr soundly tonight ... your friendly neighborhood cat calmer is at hand!

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True Identity: Danielle Wilson | Owner
Base of Operations: Bath & Biscuits, Granville, OH

When cats come face to face with Danielle Wilson in her grooming salon, they see the mark. “I have a scar across my right eyebrow where a lion cub swatted me,” she says, recalling her days working at the Columbus Zoo while studying veterinary technology.

It gives them pause. After all, Wilson has worked with much larger and much fiercer animals. That combines with a calm manner and expert handling skills to create her superpower: the ability to groom even the angriest of felines.

She starts by speaking softly, in what she calls her “kitty babble” voice. Wilson never drags cats out of their carrier.

“I get them into a state of calm where they feel confident enough to come out on their own. Once that’s accomplished, I let the cat smell me, and I start stroking the head or neck.”

After trimming nails, cleaning ears and doing a pre-shave, if needed, she adds water.
“I use a tub that can be filled so they can soak. It’s usually in the tub where a cat will freak out. Boy can they jump! I can usually see a monster leap coming — kind of like a squirrel monkey coming at you — and I snag the cat mid-flight.”

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Once bathed, Wilson wraps them up like a burrito to bring back the calm before hand drying.

“After that, I take them back to my grooming table and either shave the pattern again to neaten or gently comb out their now fluffy coat. By that time, most of my cat clients are head butting me or flopping over on their side in contentment.”

Pamela Mitchell is the Editor-in-Chief of PETS+. She works from her home office in Houston, TX, with Ty the Boston Terrier as her assistant.

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