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Fluffy’s Hairball Issue

April 15, 2022
There’s a rather unsavory kitty holiday coming up: April 23rd is Hairball Awareness Day. Don’t worry; this doesn’t mean that hairballs are becoming self-aware. It’s actually to help spread information about hairballs, which are more dangerous than many people realize. In this article, a Burlington, ON veterinarian lists some things everyone with a cat should know about hairballs.

Basics

Hairballs are definitely not one of Fluffy’s cuter tricks. However, it isn’t her fault that she gets them. Cats, as you probably know, are very dedicated to keeping up with their beauty regiments. As they clean themselves, they will inevitably swallow some of their own fur. Kitties can’t digest hair, so it can’t go through the usual process. Instead, your furry friend will expel it in hairball form.

Prevention

There are a few things you can do to reduce or prevent hairballs. One of the big ones would simply be to keep your cat inside. Kitties that go outdoors are more exposed to the seasonal weather changes that cause hair growth and shedding cycles.

Nutrition

A proper diet is crucial to Fluffy’s health and well-being. It’s also very important to her coat! If your kitty isn’t getting proper nourishment, her fur will start to look dull and dry, and she’ll have more dead hair overall. Make sure Fluffy is eating a high-quality cat food. Supplements may also be helpful. Ask your vet for specific advice.

Brushing Fluffy

Regularly brushing Fluffy can reduce the number of hairballs she gets. You’re capturing that dead hair with a brush before your furry pal can swallow it. (Bonus: you’ll also have less fur all over your clothing and belongings.) This also gives you a chance to spend time with your kitty, and make her feel pampered.

Hairball Remedies

Is your feline buddy highly prone to getting hairballs? Ask your vet about giving her a hairball preventative. Every little bit helps!

Warning Signs

Hairballs are just as unpleasant for Fluffy as they are for you. However, sometimes they are much more than an unsightly mess. Occasionally, hairballs get lodged in kitties’ intestinal tracts. That can be extremely dangerous! Watch for warning signs, such as frequent or violent vomiting, excessive hairballs, or dry heaving. Contact your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss. Do you have questions or concerns about your pet’s health or care? Contact us, your local Burlington, ON animal clinic, today!
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