Hairballs and Cats – Here’s What Every Cat Owner Should Know

Cats are adorable creatures and amazing companions. That being said, they have some strange habits. One of these habits is throwing up hairballs. Hairballs are common in cats, and they are a result of the animal's grooming habits. Cats are known for grooming themselves several times a day, and while it is essential to their well-being, it comes with this weird and annoying side effect. In this blog post, we will take a closer look at hairballs and tell you everything you need to know about them. 

What Are Hairballs?

Hairballs are balls of hair that cats throw up after they swallow hair when grooming themselves. The hair collects in their stomach, and over time, the hair collects into one large ball that the cat vomits up. Hairballs are not harmful to cats in small amounts. However, if the cat does not throw them up, they can cause blockages in the digestive tract, which can be painful, and in some cases, life-threatening.

Why Do Cats Get Hairballs?

Cats get hairballs because when they groom themselves, loose fur from their coats lodge in their stomachs. Their digestive system is not designed to break down hair, and their stomachs cannot digest it like food. So, when they try to expel it, they throw it up. Long-haired cats are more prone to hairballs than short-haired cats because they shed more hair.

Symptoms of Hairballs in Cats

Symptoms of hairballs in cats include hacking, coughing, and vomiting. Some cats feel lethargic and lose their appetite when they are trying to throw up a hairball. In some cases, hairballs can create problems such as constipation, choking, and gastrointestinal blockages. If your cat frequently throws up hairballs or if you notice any signs of distress, you should see a vet.

How Can I Prevent Hairballs in Cats?

While cats cannot entirely avoid getting hairballs, there are a few things you can do to minimize their frequency. Brushing your cat's coat regularly is necessary to remove loose hair that might cause hairballs. You can also give your cat hairball prevention cat food that contains some of the essential nutrients needed to dissolve hair in the stomach. Consult your vet for advice on the best food for your cat.

What To Do If My Cat Has a Hairball?

If your cat has a hairball and can’t cough it up, you may need to take them to the veterinarian. Your vet may recommend an over-the-counter hairball remedy or prescribe medication if your cat is experiencing severe symptoms. In rare cases, a hairball can cause a bowel obstruction, which requires immediate medical attention.

How Fetch A Vet Mobile Can Help Your Cat

Hairballs are a common occurrence among cats, but they can cause discomfort and health issues for your feline friend. Regular grooming, a specialized diet, and providing plenty of water are some ways to prevent hairballs in cats. If you suspect your cat has a hairball or is experiencing any symptoms, it’s essential to take them to the veterinarian. Fetch A Vet Mobile offers mobile veterinary services so that your cat can get the care they need in the comfort of their own home. Our experienced staff will diagnose and treat hairball conditions to help you get your cat back to feeling great. Schedule an appointment with Fetch A Vet Mobile today to keep your cat happy and healthy.