I love long haired cats, and have a Persian, a Himalayan and a Ragdoll.
LOTS of grooming, but I have more time available to tend to this that a lot of others would.
As Lucky mentions.. Persians/Himmies are VERY high maintenance cats.
They not only require vigrous attention to the coat, many need daily eye-wiping, and their back-end fur usually needs to be kept clipped short to prevent feces from sticking to the fur.
The key for the coat of course is keeping on top of it.. not letting it "get away" from you. If it does... you have big problems. :sad:
For some persians - reaching this point might take a week or two..others can become quite matted in just a matter of days.
I agree with Sugarpaws - while diet is obviously important to the coat and general condition .. the right grooming tools and technique are all- important in keeping the persian coat matt free.
So .. as mentioned.. it could be that these cat owners are using the wrong method, and getting poor results.
Brushes are useless, in my experience, as this doesnt reach their undercoat - where the matts generally form. I use a steel comb, and pay special attention to the areas most likely to form matts.. the chest, the tummy and the armpits.
A lot of Persian owners reccomend a greyhound comb.
Gently seperating and pulling apart a matt when first noticed is generally easy...but if they are allowed to become large and tight... some carefully use a seamripper on these.
A tummy shave at the groomers will often solves a localized problem...and a lion cut the only answer if the whole coat is past the point of no return.
As with people's hair.. the coats differ in texture.
My himmy has a massive thick and long coat, but a thorough combing every day or two keeps him looking great. He rarely matts.. although watching him try to groom himself sometimes bothers me. There's just too much fur to contend with.:sad:
My persian girl has a cottony coat that matts in the blink of an eye. Unfortunately, she despises grooming, and so its on ongoing problem.
I do get her a lion cut every so often. This is not from laziness, but to allow us both to have a break from the stress of the daily battle, and to ensure that she doesnt have to suffer the awful discomfort that matting brings.
When you judge another, you do not define them, you define yourself - Wayne Dyer