Hairballs in Cats

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Every cat owner has at some time either woken to the sound of your cat bringing up a hairball or stepped on one first thing in the morning.  I know that both have happened to me since I have four cats at home.  Hairballs are fairly common in cats, especially long-haired cats, and they are quite normal!

Cats are prone to hairballs because they are such good groomers with their rough tongues.  Any loose hairs are caught with their tongue and then swallowed.

The hair either passes out in the stool or collects and builds up in the stomach.  As the hair collects and irritates the stomach, it then gets vomited out.

Hairballs can be minimized with regular grooming and brushing of your cat.  A thorough and frequent brushing will remove all the loose hair.  If your cat has matted areas, these may need to be shaved.

There are other ways to help prevent hairballs.  These include special diets that add fiber to help push the fur through the digestive tract.  There are hairball treats and supplements that can help as well.  Your cat should have access to and be encouraged to drink plenty of fresh water.

Do not give your cat any home remedies without consulting your veterinarian first.

Make some time to groom your cat regularly to help prevent hairballs.  Both you and your cat will benefit!