Friday, April 29, 2011

National Hairball Awareness Day

Today we celebrate Hairballs!

Pictured is the largest hairball we have ever seen, we had to remove this surgically. At first we thought there was a mass in the stomach. The kitty could not keep food down. Turns out just an impacted hairball. Along with hairball is a picture of a hairball remedy.

It is normal for your cat to have hairballs occasionally.

Hairballs are caused due to the cats’ good grooming habits. They swallow their hair that has come loose while grooming. This is due to the tiny projections on the surface of the rough tongue. While most of this hair eventually passes through the animal's digestive tract and comes out in the stool, some of it remains in the stomach and gradually accumulates into a wet clump - the hairball. Causing the cat to vomit up the hair.

The Hairballs take on the shape of the esophagus, appearing like a sausage, many times people confuse them with bowel movements. As they have the same shape. They can vary in size.

It is normal for your cat to have hairballs occasionally. However, if your cat is lethargic and refuses to eat for more than a day or so, or has had repeated episodes of unproductive retching, you should consult The Cat Practice without delay. As it could be a sign of another condition, not hairballs.

How you can prevent hairballs:

Combing, it is amazing how much hair you can comb out of your kitty.

I love the FURminator. It works so well, especially on your short hair cats. I never realized how much hair a cat has until I started using this product.

Over the counter Hairballs remedy like cat lax a few times per week can help move the hair through the intestinal tract.

Also you can offer a hairball diet along with canned food.

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