April 28th is observed as Hairball Awareness Day to raise awareness about hairballs in cats, a common but uncomfortable problem that can affect our feline friends. As a cat owner, it's important to understand the causes and symptoms of hairballs and take steps to prevent them. In this blog post, we'll discuss some tips to help reduce hairballs in your cat.
What Causes Hairballs?
Cats are known for their grooming habits, which involve licking themselves to keep their fur clean and smooth. During this process, they ingest loose hairs, which can accumulate in their stomach and form hairballs. While it's normal for cats to have some hairballs, excessive hairballs can be a sign of an underlying problem.
Tips to Reduce Hairballs in Your Cat
Brush Your Cat's Fur Regularly
Regular brushing can help remove loose hairs from your cat's coat before they're ingested. Use a soft-bristled brush and brush your cat's fur in the direction of hair growth.
Offer a Hairball Control Diet
A hairball control diet contains special ingredients that help reduce the frequency and severity of hairballs. These diets are available at most pet stores and are formulated to provide the right balance of nutrients for your cat.
2. Increase Your Cat's Water Intake
Dehydration can exacerbate hairballs, so it's important to make sure your cat has access to fresh water at all times. Consider adding a water fountain or a water bowl in different locations around your home to encourage your cat to drink more. We have water fountains at both locations!
3. Provide Fiber Supplements
Fiber supplements, such as canned pumpkin or psyllium, can help move hairballs through your cat's digestive system. Talk to your vet about the right dosage and frequency for your cat. We have pouches and cans of pumpkin that you can buy for your furry feline at both of our stores! If you buy from the grocery store, remember to buy unseasoned pumpkin.
4. Limit Your Cat's Stress
Stress can cause excessive grooming and increase the risk of hairballs. Try to limit your cat's exposure to stressors, such as loud noises or changes in routine, if your cat is sensitive to those things.
Hairballs are a common issue for cats, but they can be uncomfortable and even dangerous if left untreated. As a cat owner, it's important to understand the causes and symptoms of hairballs and take steps to prevent them. By following the tips in this blog post, you can help reduce the frequency and severity of hairballs in your feline friend.