When owning a cat, it is normal to come across hairballs from time to time. However, what exactly are cat hairballs? Moreover, are there any methods to avoid them? We have compiled some cat-related information to enhance your understanding of why hairballs occur and reduce their occurrence.
Hairballs in cats are a natural consequence of their grooming habits. During grooming, when a cat licks itself, loose hair gets caught on its spiky tongue that is eventually swallowed. While most of the ingested fur passes through the cat’s gastrointestinal system without issue, some hair may remain in the stomach, forming a hairball.
Primarily, hairballs can cause much discomfort and irritation in the digestive system. They may block the passage of food, leading to decreased appetite, vomiting, constipation, or diarrhea. If your furball shows signs of extreme pain, agitation, and sickness, meet your vet as soon as possible to remedy your munchkin’s health issues.
At the same time, consider being prepared with pet insurance for cats so that unplanned vet costs for health reasons like this and others are more manageable. Contemplate purchasing pet health insurance so your four-pawed companion is assured basic health benefits at affordable costs during testing times of health.
In the meantime, read this article to learn why hairballs should be concerning for cat owners.
Consequences of hairball ingestion
Apart from digestive troubles, kitties can experience the below problems as well.
Cats often vomit to expel hairballs, which can be unpleasant for both the kitty and its owner. Frequent vomiting can lead to dehydration, lethargy, weakness, and weight loss.
In rare cases, larger hairballs can become lodged in the intestinal tract, causing a severe blockage. A chronic condition like this may require surgical intervention.
Compulsive grooming habits and hairball ingestion can result in hair accumulating in the respiratory tract, leading to coughing, wheezing, or breathing difficulty.
4.Poor nutrient absorption
Hairballs occupying space in the digestive system can prevent the proper absorption of essential nutrients, potentially leading to nutritional deficiencies over time.
To minimize the above problems, it is advisable to take preventive measures and regularly groom your furry companion, provide a balanced diet with fiber, and consider using hairball control products or remedies recommended by your vet specialist.
To prevent the formation of hairballs, it is recommended to incorporate regular grooming into your kitty’s routine. By regularly grooming your furry baby, you can remove a significant amount of excess hair that would otherwise be ingested during self-grooming.
Repeated grooming provides numerous benefits, including maintaining the health of your pet’s skin and coat. Plus, grooming can serve as a delightful bonding experience for you and your feline companion.
Long-haired breeds typically require more extensive grooming than others to prevent matting and tangling and ultimately reduce the occurrence of hairballs.
Special cat formula foods, grain-free diets, and mild laxative cat products can help relieve your kitty from hairball issues due to swallowing. However, it is advisable to consult your veterinarian for the right course of action based on your feline’s individual needs and health condition.
Nevertheless, consider being prepared with pet insurance for cats because illnesses are often unpredictable. Contemplate purchasing pet health insurance so unanticipated vet expenses are not as financially stressful during dire health circumstances and medical emergencies.