What are hairballs and how do they form?
Anyone who has spent any length of time around cats knows that one of their distinguishing qualities is self-grooming. Self-grooming is what distinguishes a cat. In order to keep themselves clean, they will lick themselves all day. Cats may have OCD because they are continually pausing what they are doing to get those licks in.
But have you ever considered that if they lick themselves, they would surely suck up some of their own loose fur? Yes, the answer is yes. It is possible. And it may go absolutely unnoticed by anybody – not even the cats themselves. It may seem benign for cats to ingest individual strands of hair. After all, it can always poo out the other end, couldn’t it?
However, the hair may not always find its way through the cat’s digestive tract. It might become lodged in the cat’s stomach instead. What will happen if your cat repeatedly licks itself over the period of many days?
As a result, each of these individual fur follicles may get interwoven and increase tremendously in size… This is comparable to what occurs when hair progressively clogs a shower drain over time. This develops into a “hairball” or “furball,” which becomes lodged in your cat’s stomach.
Are hairballs harmful?
There are several do-it-yourself treatments available to ease your cat’s hairball problems.
Hairballs are not harmful in and of themselves. It is, after all, only fur. Under normal conditions, fur would be expected to travel through the digestive system and be pooped out (pun intended). After all, it isn’t like it can be absorbed by the body.
The cumulative impact of too much fur merging to produce a hairball, on the other hand, may be hazardous. Even yet, the mammalian self-regulation system would normally induce a gag response and force your cat to vomit up the hairball. In general, as long as cats can regurgitate and eliminate hairballs, they are not harmful. They must be ejected, one way or another (pun intended)!
What are some of the problems that hairballs can potentially develop if left unchecked?
Hairballs are usually eliminated from the cat’s body via vomiting. In rare situations, the hairball may become too large and tight to be vomited up. So what happens is that the hairball simply “sits there” and grows into a major clog in your cat’s digestive track.
This has the potential to become an issue. Logically, it may obstruct the digestive process since it has physically built a barrier inside the boundaries of the digestive system.
This may lead to a slew of issues, including:
- loss of appetite
- weight loss
- weakened immune system
- increased fur loss
- difficulty with excretion
If this situation arises, it may be prudent to seek the assistance of a competent veterinarian.
Having said that, you may want to attempt do-it-yourself home care treatments on your cat first to save a trip to the veterinarian. Continue reading for more helpful hints!
What are some easy DIY ways to cure your cat’s bout with hairballs?
There are many things you may do to help your cat’s hairball problem:
Reduce its nutritional intake temporarily.
Giving your cat less food, less regularly, allows its digestive system to relax and process whatever food it can. Too much food at once might fill the gap in the stomach where the hairball is causing the blockage. This may cause extreme pain, tummy bloat, and vomiting.
Feed your cat special hairball control cat food and cat treats.
You may either add specially designed hairball control cat treats to your cat’s existing diet. Alternatively, you might replace your cat’s whole diet with specially made hairball management cat food.
What steps can you take to avoid the formation of hairballs in the future?
You can assist your cat overcome hairball issues with a little patience and discipline.
Brushing and washing your cat may be preventative actions to help prevent additional occurrences of hairball vomiting.
Being proactive while brushing your cat is essential. Your cat will lick its fur no matter what. So, as a pet owner, you may as well be proactive and remove any bothersome stray hair before your cat does! This way, when your cat licks itself, less loose hair is sucked up in the process.
Bathing your cat is another excellent strategy to combat the condition. It might also assist to remove any loose cat hair that your cat might have eaten. Bathing your cat may be an excellent idea in combination with brushing your cat. After brushing it, give it a bath for good measure.
What are some things you wish to avoid because they won’t work?
This may seem obvious, but I feel compelled to state it: the last thing you want to do is punish your cat. You don’t want to get your frustrations out on your cat.
As inconvenient as it is to have to clean up after your cat’s vomit, it is something you must learn to live with. And what better method to deal with the situation than with patience and a rational action plan to deal with it?
Finally, what is the best hairball treatment for cats?
Overall, the nutritional strategy outlined above is the greatest hairball cure for cats. It all boils down to your cat’s intestinal health. It all comes down to avoiding hair from entering your cat’s body in the first place. You won’t be able to stop it from licking itself. (And you definitely don’t want to deprive your cat of that natural impulse.) Some people may put socks on their cats’ feet, although this is a terrible method to interfere with their natural nature.)