Hairball Awareness Day

April 29th is Hairball Awareness Day! We know, hairballs aren’t exactly something to celebrate. They’re no fun for Fluffy, and they’re certainly no fun for her owners. However, it is important for people who have cats to understand hairballs, and to be able to tell whether a kitty’s hairballs are normal or not. Read on as a local Georgian Bay, ON veterinarian discusses hairballs.

What Are Hairballs?

As you probably know, kitties are very diligent about keeping themselves clean. Fluffy will spend time each day carefully grooming herself and making sure that her pretty coat stays soft and shiny. Your furry little diva will inevitably swallow some of her own hair during these beauty rituals. Cats can’t really digest fur very well, so most of this comes back up in the form of a hairball. (Some of our feline friends have a knack for leaving hairballs in the most inconvenient spots possible, but that’s beside the point.)

Preventing Hairballs

While there is no way to completely eliminate the chances of your pet getting hairballs, there are some things you can do to reduce the number of hairballs Fluffy gets. First, take time to brush your feline pal regularly. This will trap her dead fur in a brush, so she doesn’t swallow it. Grooming is particularly important for long-haired kitties, as they are highly prone to getting hairballs. Keeping your furry friend indoors can also help, because outdoor cats tend to shed more than indoor ones. It’s also important to make sure your four-legged buddy is eating a nourishing, high-quality diet. Proper nutrition will keep Fluffy’s hair healthy and shiny, and can reduce the amount of dead fur she sheds. Last but not least, hairball remedies can also help. Ask your vet for specific recommendations.

Warning Signs

While hairballs are, unfortunately, not uncommon in our feline friends, occasionally they can cause serious medical issues. Once in a while, a cat will not be able to expel the fur she swallowed. This can cause major problems with a kitty’s digestive system, and can make your beloved pet very sick! If Fluffy is dry-heaving or vomiting excessively, or shows any other signs of illness, contact your vet right away.

Do you have any questions or concerns about your cat’s health or care? Please reach out to us anytime! As your Georgian Bay, ON animal hospital, we are here to help!

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