Pixie-Bob News Room

Tips For Preventing Annoying Furrballs


By Petplace.com

How to treat cat hair balls is a common question. It always makes me uncomfortable seeing a cat trying to vomit up a furball. They look so miserable and they make me (and most cat lovers) feel so helpless.

In addition, it can be annoying finding furballs on the rug, or on your favorite comforter or sofa. Many times furballs also accompany some liquid that causes stains on carpeting or fabric.

What causes hairballs?

When a cat grooms, backward pointing spikes on her tongue function much like the teeth on a comb. These spikes rake debris from the cat’s coat and pull out loose fur, which prevents mats.  Hair balls arise from cats licking their fur as their hair becomes dead, it becomes loose and they swallow it as they groom.

Most of the time the hair works its way through the stomach and intestines without a problem. However, sometimes hair will accumulate in the esophagus (the tube that takes food from the mouth to the stomach) or in the stomach causing a blockage or an upset stomach. Many times cats will regurgitate or vomit up the hair ball.

How to prevent and treat cat hair balls is rather simple and much easier than cleaning up the mess afterward and for your cat too.

First, keep your cat groomed. Brush him daily if possible. If possible, make it “fun”. Comb or brush out the dead loose hair so he or she can’t ingest it.

Second, you can give hair ball lubricant products to your cat. These products are petroleum-based and act as a lubricant and laxative to help move the hair through the gastrointestinal tract. Most products are made to have a pleasing taste and should be offered as a reward or treat. There are several that come in different flavors including malt, liver or chicken. Choose a flavor that your cat might like and try offering it as a “reward”. If he likes it, praise him. If he doesn’t, you can apply a dab on each paw and allow him to lick it off. There are also some cat treats that have mineral oil that can also help hairballs.

Last but not least, is a product that was created to proactively prevent hairballs. Some pet owners swear by a product called FurBall Dr .  It is a natural formula of herbs that helps aid with digestion and promotes a natural cleansing process. FurBall Dr. helps prevent furballs in cats by promoting healthy digestive processes. For more information on the FurBall Dr. go to PetAlive.com.

Also, make sure you cat has ready access to fresh clean water.  This is important for digestion and bodily function.

Until next time,

Dr. Jon


May 12, 2008 - Posted by | Feline Health

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