My grooming shop (Grooming Boutique in Las Vegas) is usually packed with cats. Long Hair, Short Hair and everything in between.
Most kitties are there for a haircut. Some are there once or twice a year and others are there every few months or more, some just drop in when they become matted (those knots or clumps of hair) and are getting a shave. A few cats see the groomer for a regular bath and brush (nails, ears, glands etc.).
Even the short haired cats get shaved often due to matting if they have a thicker coat or just to cut back on the fur flying around the house or not much time for regular brushing for the kitty mom's and dad's.
The only cat we ever had to take in to be groomed was a long haired stray that became a part of our family for about 13 years until his death. All of our other cats have been short haired and we've been able to handle any needed grooming, if any at all. The Tonkinese doesn't need any grooming with his super short fur. In fact, using the brush on him seems to seriously annoy him and he'll bite or lash out on it, so we leave him alone when the other two cats want their brushing. When we had the long haired stray, he would go in for that "lion cut," but he always seemed so ashamed when he'd get home amongst the other cats. I felt sorry for him, even though I couldn't help laughing at his new 'do! haha
My cat Dolores is a short haired tabby, so I don't really have to do much to groom her and I don't take her to a groomer. Maybe if I had a long haired cat I would invest in getting its hair done and baths. I have nothing against people who pamper their cats, it's just not in my budget.
Thankfully my long haired cat has no problem with me bathing and brushing her so I don't need to take her to a groomer. She'll actually sit in the bathtub and let me wash her without trying to maim me. She thinks it's a game when I try to brush her however and makes me follow her around all over the house, brushing her a little bit at a time.
No, I don't take my cats to the groomer. I do that myself. It's really enjoyable coming the hair of the Persians. The other short-haired cats don't need much help with their grooming. As it is, they already spend a big part of their day keeping clean and sleek.
I have two cats. Tabitha is a 13 year old Manx with medium length hair. If I do not brush her, she sheds hair a lot. Most people have to clean their A/C filter once a month. Because of Tabitha, I have to clean ours twice a week because it collects Tabitha's hair. Even when I brush her, she still sheds, and cat hair is everywhere. Maybe a groomer would do a better job of brushing than I am doing.
Nope, I don't. I have no reason to. They keep themselves clean and even the long-haired one does a great job at grooming herself. We do brush them regularly to try to keep the hair under control, but don't take them to a professional for it.
My fiancee is lucky because the cats she adopted are short-haired. Max, a Tabby, and Batman, a Havana, are not taken to the groomers. We clip their nails and if they get dirty, they just clean themselves or we do it, like if their eyes get crusted.
As long as they get used to you cleaning them from a young age, you can do it forever and save a lot of money.