Manx Show Grooming:
Grooming and Bathing Your Manx - Is it Unique?

Arrow Cattery

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In 1996, Author Linda Osburn of Arrow Manx & Exotics, campaigned an eleven and a half year old Manx named GC, GP, NW Tra-Mar Mosaic of Arrow to become CFA's 15th Best Cat in Premiership for 1996.

Mosiac became the oldest National Winner in CFA history.

Her National Win proved that some cats just keep getting better.


Grooming or bathing a Manx cat is not much different than any other breed of cat or dog, but everyone has his or hers own methods.

The following show grooming routine is the one I prefer:

Shampoo Choice

I bathe my Manx in Dawn or Prell or Agree shampoo. Before I put the shampoo on the cat, I dilute it to insure that it rinses out easily and quickly, leaving the coat "squeaky clean".

There are many shampoos to use on the Manx coat but I prefer a shampoo without a conditioner as it "weighs" down the coat and sometimes makes it look greasy.

I was told years ago by a groomer that clean cats don't mat. I have always remembered that advice and pass it along.

The Bath

  1. Start bathing your kittens as soon as you can to get them used to the water and the dryer. Make the bath short and pleasant. Sometimes I just wet the kitten and use a small amount of shampoo to get them used to the unfamiliar odor.
  2. Start trimming toe nails and ear tips as soon as you can, as most kittens tolerate it but some hate it.
  3. Combing and weekly bathing of the kitten or adult, makes it much easier to keep your show cat in condition and results in a plusher coat, even if the shows are a month apart, weekly bathing is essential.

If your Pet Manx is a good groomer and takes care of the daily cleaning, then there is not much you have to do but bathe now and then to keep the coat from matting.

In the Spring when the coat starts to shed, I bathe them. This takes care of a normal situation but not the show cat.

The Manx has a double coat, similar to the Exotics coat in density but not in texture.

I feel that it is important to take your time bathing and make it as pleasant as possible. I learned how to bathe dogs for a professional groomer in Bellevue, Washington in the late 50's and started with the combing out coats and bathing... rinsing and bathing again and rinsing.

In my opinion, it is important to get down to the skin with the shampoo, much the same as when we wash our own hair. Then I rinse and shampoo a second time to make sure the coat is clean.

But the most important thing to remember is to rinse... rinse... and then rinse again.

Do not be in a hurry to bathe your Manx.


I use a quiet hair dryer with the kittens but try to towel dry them as much as possible when they are young.

I feel that both long and short coat types need to be blown dry for that edge in the show ring.

A cage dryer is a good investment if your Manx won't tolerate anything else.

Trimming or Sculpting

Here again, I do very little to the coat but trim the ear tufts and that is as simple as it gets folks... They are to look as though they just got off the boat from the Isle of Man - as natural as possible.

I have seen Manx in the show ring with sculpted behinds that makes the cat look like it got caught in a weed wacker. There is no reason to cut or clip or sculpt the coat of the Manx before going to a show... EVER.

The only time I take clippers or scissors to my Manx is in the summer and I shave the long hairs much the same as the Persians. It is like a cocker clip... trimmed back partially on the legs and neck and chest... they love it and think they are naked.

I may be different then most breeders because I love to take a cat down to the sink and give them a bath, taking my time... to trim the toe nails and check ears and teeth and look over the entire cat.

This is personal time that I think they enjoy... one on one.


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