Ways to Prevent Hairballs

Does your cat get hairballs? Chances are, the answer to that question is yes. We know, hairballs aren’t really much fun to talk about. However, it is important to know what they are, and when they are problematic. As you may know, hairballs happen when cats accidentally swallow their own fur while grooming themselves. While they aren’t uncommon, they definitely aren’t fun for either you or your feline pal. A Rochester, NY vet lists some ways to prevent hairballs below.


Brushing your cat every day will capture that dead fur and dander with a brush before she swallows it. Of course, this won’t just help prevent hairballs. This is also a great way to bond with your kitty, and send time with her. Just pick a tie when Fluffy is feeling relaxed and perhaps a bit cuddly.

Parasite Control

Keeping up with your furball’s parasite control is also very important! Fleas and ticks can make Fluffy miserably itchy. She may over-groom herself to try and find relief, which could cause her to swallow even more hair.

Keep Kitty In

Did you know that cats that go outdoors shed more than kitties who stay inside? That’s because furballs who go outside are more exposed to seasonal weather changes that trigger shedding. Plus, your feline buddy will be much safer staying in.

Good Nutrition

Proper nutrition is important for many reasons, not just for hairballs. Offer your feline pal a good, nourishing diet, with plenty of protein, vitamins, and minerals, as well as beneficial fatty acid and Omega 3 oils. This will help keep Fluffy’s coat soft and shiny. It will also reduce the amount of dead fur she sheds, which will in turn reduce the amount of hair she swallows.

Hairball Prevention

We probably don’t need to explain this one too much. As the name suggests, hairball prevention products help prevent hairballs. These are often recommended for longhaired kitties. Ask your vet for more information.


Keep in mind that hairballs can be dangerous. Sometimes kitties can’t expel them. This can lead to dangerous—and potentially life-threatening—intestinal obstructions. Keep an eye out for red flags, such as excessive, violent, or frequent vomiting; dry heaving; reduced appetite; and/or any other unusual behavior. Call your vet immediately if you notice anything amiss.

Please contact us, your local Rochester, NY vet clinic, anytime. We are here to help!

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