Thursday, November 10, 2011

CURSE OF THE CAT HAIR

Each year I marvel why my cats don't go bald. If I lost that much hair daily, I could wash my head with a wash cloth. 

Do cats stress and spend hours perfecting a comb over??  Never.  No matter how much  they lose, it all comes back without even temporary thin spots.  It is an endless cycle.

My tools of war  are vacuum cleaner bags, Swiffer cloths and sticky pet hair removal rollers. I sail through these items.  

Loose cat hair is an on going, daily battle that has no season and there is little hope of winning.   The stray hairs that find my clothes have static cling---those that hit the floor have life and intelligence.

One of the marvels to me is how the single hairs can drop off the cat as they walk, then magically and secretly  gather together to form sizable tumble weeds that amble across my carpet less floors, usually when I have company. 

It is a conspiracy. A flash mob of hair.  Just once I'd like to see the actual process of the forming  of the hair tumbleweed. How can it possibly happen without some form of hair intelligence and engineering?

If I had a better science background, I would work on isolating the gene in cats that makes their hair constantly grow back and remain  fluffy.  If I could modify that gene and implant it into the scalps of millions of desperate men , I could enjoy extravagance during my twilight years.  Baseball caps would become extinct.

 Anyone who wants to run with this idea, feel free. Just make sure you remove the shedding gene before implant.

As for the hair decorated clothing I sometimes wear, perhaps I need cats whose hair would match the cyclical clothing colors and not stand out so starkly. On those days that I find I am out of sticky rollers and want to go out in public, I would not look so obviously trailer trashish.
 

Very light colored cats  for the summer months, dark for Winter and neutral for the Spring  and maybe a calico for Fall might make the hair decorations less obvious.  Seasonal cats????

Now you see why the shedding gene would have to be removed from the human implants.  Otherwise, the wives of these genetically altered men might be looking for seasonal hubbies.  Not a good thing.

I know you have seen the flaw in my system. What do we do with the wrong colored cat in the wrong season?   Put the offending one on Craig's list to swap?? Dye them??


Of course there would be the  shipping costs  and wear and tear on the cats by swapping or dyeing.  I believe there is an even easier solution. The Sphynx, hairless cat. 

Not my picture but from Google pictures.
Now one look at this beauty and you know immediately why God intended cats to have hair.  Cats sadly have strikingly homely bodies with an excess of wrinkles.  Hair does a marvelous job of hiding that fact.  I can kind of relate which is why I wear clothes.      

However, I  am stuck with seasonally inappropriate Mickey and Minnie and don't have the Sphynx option.   So it is back to the renewed hair wars, armed with vacuum cleaner bags, Swiffer mops and roll on hair removal tools.

Do you have a better solution---other than no cats? That will only be an option when these two cross the Rainbow Bridge. Also do you know of a good function for used cat hair?

49 comments :

  1. Cats are bad, all right. Especially the long haired ones. The hair basically ruins everythingover time---refridgerator motors, clothes, intake ducts, etc....

    Long haired dogs are just as bad, maybe worse if they are large breeds. I had a long-haired German Shepherd that caused great clouds of the stuff to wreak havok on our vacuum cleaners and brooms.

    And, now that I have let my hair grow out a little, I find that I'M also a problem. I tried cleaning out my shower drain yesterday and was amazed at how much one human being can clog a sweage system.

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  2. I proposed we get a dog. A German Shepard or GSD. Turns out the GSD stands for German Shedding Dog. :)

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  3. I have one friend with two dogs and three cats who wear's a lot of plaid......says hair doesn't show up on it.

    Breezy died over a month ago and we are still finding dog hair. The most embarrassing thing is visiting friends who have cat allergies react to you. Still, I would rather put up with the inconveniences of fur and furballs than not have our four legged buddies. ;)

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  4. Patti: if you will email me at I will send you a copy of the 18 warm-up Tai Chi exercises. It's been a lifesaver for me.

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  5. We here at sightings know all about shedding -- not from a feline, but from our canine. I got the one word answer: Swiffer. Works pretty well.

    P.S. This very morning I awoke at 6:20 ... and said to myself, well, time to get up, it's really 7:20!

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  6. There is a use for cat hair: take it out and put it inside those little square boxes used for suet to feed the birds. The chickadees and squirrels will immediately come and take it to line their nests! I've seen it done and it works. Although that is just a tiny bit for the fall months. They aren't interested in the springtime. :-)

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  7. Hair, Hair everywhere. I do understand. I deal with it too, except my tumbleweeds come from an excessively hairy Sheltie. My philosophy - Love Me, Love My Dog...and his hair. Gotta love em' - hair and all.

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  8. Well, the birds used to use my dog's hair for their nests...You would think cat hairs would be frowned upon by the birds, though they may take advantage of them and think of it as payback. Loved your train of thought and how you worked in hair(higher) intelligence!

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  9. No solutions here. Years after our cat crossed the Rainbow Bridge I pulled out my winter coat and it was coated in her fur. It does not disintegrate quickly.

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  10. Oh my goodness, someone is feeling better....
    I am so glad that you got your funny on. I marvel at your wit, knowledge and how you roll it all up with humor and deliver the best laugh burrito around.
    Congrats on the "curse of the cat hair". Funny and oh so thought provoking. I'm still trying to wrap my head around seasonal cats....

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  11. Sophie, my cairn terror (oops, terrier)is non shedding. LD,my old chihuahua that died last year, he shed more than any dog I've ever had. Much more than any of my Labs. I never saw anything like it. Hey...Is there any way I could get a copy of those Tai Chi instructions that Ginnie mentioned. I was just thinking about looking for a beginner class, yesterday.

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  12. Found a hair ball under the bed yesterday about the size of a beach ball...!!
    Wonder if we could save the hair...spin it into yarn and make "hair" shirts...??

    Enjoy

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  13. Clint,
    It really does wreck havoc on anything with a motor.
    You have great hair so you must have the regrow gene.

    troutbirder,
    Oh yes, dogs are charter members of the hair polluters. They have nice looong ones.

    smartcat,
    Oh--I never thought of plaid. Great idea. I agree with the alternative not being an option.

    Ginnie,
    Will do, thank you.

    Sightings,
    I do use Swiffer and it is a lifesaver. Ha, I see you and I are still doing the time math.

    Djan
    Now that is a smart idea and one I will do. Thanks.

    Islandwonder
    Yikes, I guess there is no shelf life. Sigh.

    Linda in NM
    So glad you enjoyed the burrito though it may give you a hairball.

    turquoisemoon,
    I guess the only saving grace with the Chi was its size.
    I don't have your email address so either contact Ginnie or I can maybe post a link. I'll do what I can.

    Blue Ridge Boomer,
    Ha ,I think you might have the world record. My personal best has been softball sized.
    Why not. People have been known to weave dog hair, just would have to be careful about getting it wet.

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  14. Rae,
    That is so true for I would never get rid of one just to be hair free.

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  15. Wanda,
    Maybe they don't have a sense of smell. I will try this though and see what happens. Great use of an annoying product.

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  16. Ha! Great post, Patti; I can tell that you are feeling much better. Yay!

    We only have one outside cat (her choice), but it is the white dog hair that gets me. She doesn't even get on the couch, which was professionally cleaned recently, and when ever I sit down I get back up covered in long white hair. Oh well.

    The idea of seasonal cats is quite clever, but I think that the hairless option is more practical. Even if it they ugly. Do they enjoy being petted? Didn't Dr. Evil pet his on Austin Powers?

    I'll leave the science to you; I'll just stick with the vacuum cleaner and washing machine.

    Have a great Thursday!

    Kathy M.

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  17. I love cats. I prefer hairy cats for how cute the hairless cat might be,it doesn't look very pretty.
    Believe me or not, my neighbour got once a beautiful Persian cat, because the previous owners had bought new furniture and the cats colour didn't go well with the colour of the chairs and settee, so the cat had to leave.
    About the quiz: if you wrote a quiz about the USA I wouldn't know anything and google everything!!

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  18. With three cats, I know those hair wars well! We actually chose our living room set a few years back based on a color that wouldn't show the hair of our blondish-ginger cats -- we had two brothers at that time. Of course, now we have only one of the brothers plus a black cat and a white/grey Siamese mix. So our furniture sports an array of colors -- and vacuuming is a daily event.

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  19. Ha Ha.... You made my day. How about........ Bubble Cats? Keep them in a huge plastic bubble like the way those those uber-allergic people live.

    Dogs are as bad. In the summer, I have Cody shaved (at least it's shorter hair flying around) and people are always asking what kind of dog THAT IS.

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  20. We don't do cats here. We just have a dog and she has short hair, but she still sheds. That sphynx cat is pretty scary-looking. We just let my sweetie lose the hair around here.
    Sandy

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  21. I googled "cat hair yarn" & found an amazing number of listings. You can even buy cat hair online--in case your cat doesn't shed enough, I guess.

    I can't stop thinking about cats with a combover.

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  22. Another though provoking post ...but you think you have problems ...hair is everywhere here ...no matter how hard we try to keep it at bay. Well with 19 cats of every shade of molting hair, the tumble weed is commom. I had never thought of that discription ...its perfect. Hair does get on everything but certain materials are worse then others. With bedding ...the higher the thread count, the less it sticks...no idea why.
    I have just found that someone has brokem into my Sweatshirt drawer and used it as a bed ....how is there so much hair deposited on them? ....The only way to remove it will be a wet hand moving in a circular motion. As for sofas ...leather last better and hair doesnt cling.xx

    I know some dog hair can be spun and knitted with so I think the same applies to cats ...Maine Coons fill atleast two brushes a day ...and if we forget to brush Toto he looks as though he has deadlocks ...especially round his derriere. xx

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  23. Our Poms shed almost as much hair. I don't want to think about the air ducts.

    That naked cat is pathetic. Humans are pathetic for making a cat look like that. Dianne

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  24. Believe me just one black cat and one white dog are enough here at our house. Hope your shingles are all gone by now. Abe had them once and I was amazed, he didn't complain as much as I thought he might.

    Thanks for your visits, don't know where the time seems to go. By the time I get up around 5:30 to 6, fold up my sheets, I sleep in the recliner, make up Abe's bed, get myself dressed and ready to take Granddaughter to school by 7:30, come home fix a bite of breakfast for Abe and myself, Granddaughter eats before she goes to school, do up the few dishes, then start laundry, run sweeper, fold clean clothes, change bed sheets, sweep out the garage, mow the grass, get the trash all gather up for trash day on Thursday's, do my grocery shopping on Thursday mornings, of course I don't do all of this everyday, fix lunch, do up dishes again, I hate seeing dirty dishes sitting around and I don't have a dishwasher, doctor appointments, running errands to pick up prescriptions, it's time to go back and pick up Granddaughter at 2, you have to be there half an hour early to find a place to park, then I read, work a seek and find puzzle, or take a little nap until she gets out at around 2:25, then back home, think about what I'll be starting for supper, then do up dishes from supper, it's almost bed time. I don't know why it just seems I don't have as much time as I use to have to be on the computer and I miss that. I do play around with the iPad in the evenings while watching TV with daughter and Granddaughter. Abe watches TV in the other room. Abe go the iPad but he doesn't like it that well, isn't what he thought it would be, and he's too stubborn to play around with it and see how it works. Hope you've been well. High it got up to today was 43, I think this is probably the coldest day we've had so far this Fall. Take care. Love, Patty

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  25. Good function for cat hair? I don't even know a good function for cats! (Just kidding.) My problem with cats is I am so allergic to their dander, I can't even take books out of the library, because they are invariably full of cat dander from people letting cats lounge all over the books while they read. You don't do that, do you? lol

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  26. Very funny post Patti, I think cat hair is part of our staple diet in this household (Warms you from the inside!! Tee Hee!).

    Ginger has the ability to lose his hair in huge clumps if he is in a fight with another cat, or frightened. There was a terrible sounding fight outside our back gate one evening, Ginger was one of the offended parties. In the morning there was a huge heap of cat fur by the gate, and I worried, on first glimpse that there might still be a cat under it... I think most of it was from Ginger.

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  27. well our cats are outside cats, so that is alittle bit of a solution... for me and the hair problem anyway... hehe

    But i do agree with you, i like them better with LOT'S of hair! haha

    Thanks and a big hug
    Leontien

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  28. Oh, this is good! I am so happy to have a dog who does not shed. But I still long for a cat. After reading this post, perhaps not for a while yet. I don't miss the hair.

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  29. I share your pain, since we have two Golden Retrievers. Seems that immediately after I vacuum they both shake in the sun and the dog hairs fly swirling into the sunbeams. I met a woman who spins dog and long cat hair into "wool." She knits with the hair and felts it, making artwork to be framed.

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  30. Oregon gifts,
    I understand they are like little hot water bottles. Their temp is normally around 102 so with no hair, they feel very warm. Pretty sure they have a problem keeping warm however.

    Reader Wil,
    Now that is awful. I would change my furniture before getting rid of the animal.
    Thanks, that makes me feel better.

    Dr. Kathy McCoy,
    It is an on going battle isn't it. Had I thought about it, I would have gone for lighter colored flooring. What we do to adjust to our animals.

    Manzanita,
    Ha, maybe I should live in the bubble and let the cats have the house.
    I'll bet Cody does look interesting shaved.

    Mom of 12,
    Dogs can do just as good a job as a cat but they do seem to not shed all year like cats do. We love them anyway don't we?

    Fishducky,
    You mean there is a market for cat hair?? I am housing a pair of gold mines.

    Angie,
    I am giggling about butt dreadlocks. What a sight. Nineteen?? You are so brave.

    Dianne,
    That cat is a product of selective breeding. Man made that cat, not God and I agree.

    Patty,
    Good grief, what a schedule. I am glad to see that there is some Patty time in there.
    Sorry Abe doesn't like his Ipad. I thought about one but changed my mind. Glad now I did.

    Betty,
    Wow, I never thought about that and what a problem that could be. I use a Kindle so I am not guilty. Sure hope you have one. They are allergy free.

    Peter,
    Those tom cats are notorious for swapping chunks of fur. They can keep you on a first name basis with your veterinarian.
    I am sure I have swallowed a bit of hair myself.

    Leontien,
    That really is the ideal place since you don't have to deal with hair and sand boxes. Still they are nice and warm to snuggle with in the house when it is cold. The indoor/outdoor cat is the best of all worlds.

    alwaysinthebackrow,
    I guess cat hair is like a loaded baby diaper. Once you get used to it, isn't so bad and both babies and cats are really cute.

    NC Mountainwoman,
    "hairs fly swirling into the sunbeams" perfectly describes is.
    I can possibly see cat hair art, not sure I would want to wear anything woven from cat hair.

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  31. You need to buy a loom, Patti and start making shawls and wall hangings. Good Luck with that. (Hope you're feeling better.)

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  32. I discovered "Shaving"! Sweetie is a Very Long Haired BEAUTIFUL White Cat....The disturbing part was the "matting" that got worse and worse each year ....It was VERY hard on him....Constant washing trying to loosen up these Matts.....Me cutting away what I could....A Nightmare.
    I had a Groomer come and shave him....! Problem Solved!!!! And HE loves it! He is as happy as a Pig In S**T!!
    I now have the groomer every five to six months....It makes a huge difference for Sweetie and for me, too.....And...no wrinkles are visible, by the way.....! He actually looks adorable!

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  33. Hi Patti, I don't have experience with cat hair ---but I did have a long-haired cocker spaniel for about 15 years... No matter how much we brushed her, those black hairs were always all over our home...

    Even after she died, I found that black hair in our home for months and months.... No idea what one can do!!!

    George's daughter and hubby have 2 white cats. Their home is filled with cat hairs everywhere... Unbelievable....

    Hugs,
    Betsy

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  34. I spend lots of time with the Swiffer mop in hand around here. Speaking of motors I need to check the fridge and see how many tumble weeds have collected under there since I pulled it out from the wall last.

    If you find a good use for the hair and need more give me a holler I have plenty to share with you.

    Hope you are feeling better and those shingles are fading quickly. Hugs

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  35. Oh that hairless cat is freaky, I have three cats so I know what you mean. and I wear black pants and they are never cat hair free. But I do love my cats.

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  36. Hi Patti, I'll have to come back and read all the comments when I have more time. I'm hoping someone has a solution to the cat hair problem because I need one desperately! My kitty isn't a long hair, I call her a medium hair. She sheds so bad and I'm always vacuuming and using lint rollers and turn around and it's all back! Oh well, we love her anyway.

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  37. My brain does not get your reference to the RAINBOW bridge. How can that bridge between our two nations have anything to so with the cat hair issue?
    But the rest of the post has me smiling.. Seasonal cats ?
    haha

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  38. Who knew that one could reunite with a beloved pet at the Rainbow Bridge. You do know it's also a famous border crossing at Niagara Falls?? Sweet

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  39. Am I the only one that finds the hairless cat beautiful? Before we had our burmese cats we wanted Devon Rex, which are kind of baldish too.

    And no no no baseball caps will never become extinct!! Hair or no hair!

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  40. Well? you can make a pillow but ya gotta wash it first ;)

    Right now? the vacuum picks up MY hair... unbelievable this getting old business.... always something.

    Didn't I read somewhere at some time that there was a woman who gathered lint and cat hair and dog hair and made art with this PLUS weaving ... I dunno... sure would take a LOT of patience!

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  41. It took a long time to scroll down to the bottom of the comments, Patti!!

    My black cats shed, but since I wear a lot of black clothing, I seldom noticed their hair anywhere other than the chairs in the living room.
    I kind of miss it now.

    Since my hair turned white, I am appalled at how many I find on my clothes now, and I hardly noticed it when my hair was brown.

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  42. I'm afraid I'll have to agree that cats should have fur. They must get awfully cold without it.

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  43. Barb,
    Not a bad idea. How about little sweaters to sell to Sphynx owners?? I see a cottage industry.

    OOLOH,
    I have seen your pictures of Sweetie's do and he really does look marvelous shaved. I was surprised and it does seem like a viable solution.

    Betsy,
    Oh dear, I had hopes it would biodegrade in time once the animal was gone. Guess not.

    Mumsy,
    I know. It is those heavy things that the hair likes to gather under. My refrigerator is built in, sure hope I don't have to replace it in my lifetime.
    Thank you, I am not 100% but am MUCH better.

    Linda Starr,
    I too love black and should have thought of a black cat when I was looking. Oh well, they are worth it.

    Cheryl,
    I am afraid the only absolute solution is "no cat." Guess we must adjust and keep the lint roller market going strong.

    KleinsteMotte
    I left you the explanation on your blog. I did not know about that bridge to Canada and can see your confusion.
    I can only hope it is real.

    LLCool Joe,
    Well the Rex cats do have a bit of hair but it is just the downy sort. I would love to touch one.
    Ha,ha I thought of you the minute I typed that sentence about ball hats. You would find a way.

    Carolyn,
    I know, the hairs are so short but I guess if they can get together for tumbleweeds, they could bind enough to weave.

    Judy,
    Ah, that it takes a while to scroll down,makes me very happy. Sorry about that.
    You were smart to color co-ordinate your cat. That is what I mean.
    Know what you mean, I recently noticed some Patti hair on my favorite black scarf. Sigh.

    Kay,
    I understand they are fragile and must be kept warm. Weaving cat hair sweaters for them might be an answer for all.
    Thank you, it really feels wonderful to be with out pain.

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  44. You are sooo funny! I like the idea of matching the decor. I have no cats, but with a Samoyed dog....oh, no, white would not work. Soldier is losing a lot of hair, I think from being sick and staying indoors. Fortunately, his color matches my carpets really well.

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  45. I've often wondered the same thing...please let us know if you figure out how to stop the cat hair madness. I spend too many hours of a week trying to "gather" the cat wool.

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  46. Inger,
    I think you are in luck with the Samoyed. I understand you can sell their hair. I think they use it for toys. Sammys really know how to shed.

    Southwest Arkie,
    It is an endless process isn't it. What we don't do for our creatures.

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  47. When our dog died we decided to not get another, because cats are so much more able to cope for a day or so if we were able to get out of town. Also, I really wanted to have some flowers in the flower beds, and Charlie usually rolled on them or slept on them. The earth was coolest where the flowers were, because they got watered. So, we didn't get another dog.

    After our cat took that trip over the rainbow bridge we decided not to have any animals for a while. It was our thought to have a few years of peace from the ins and outs (when the cat wants in or out and needs the door opened at all times of the night and day) and the chore of trying to read the cat's mind about what it wants for dinner tonight. Having furniture without strings hanging from it after having been shredded when the cat was feeling a little moody is a plus. My Mickey cat shredded all my album covers when he just needed to scratch something or bust. Hair was a constant problem and we had several strategies including the ones you mentioned.

    But, when I'm feeling a little under the weather and there is no little ball of fur to snuggle with me, well, that is the downside of not having a pet friend.

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  48. That observation about hairless men. Just so you know the hair I do have on my head resembles arm pit hair more than nice head hair. and in my opinion CAT hair would not be an improvement.

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  49. Amber Star,
    With all those problems, you need to just rent a pet for those times you want to snuggle.

    Grayquill,
    Really?? Arm pit hair?? Goodness:))

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