Have you ever seen your cat cough up a hairball? It’s not exactly a pleasant sight. The question is, are hairballs harmful in any way, and can you help your cat experience fewer of them? Learn more here from an Ellicott City, MD vet.
How Do Hairballs Form?
Your cat swallows a lot of hair while grooming. Most of it moves through the digestive system and gets expelled in fecal matter, but some remains in the gut. That hair clumps together in a hairball, which eventually gets regurgitated.
Are Hairballs Harmful?
The occasional hairball is a normal part of life for your cat and shouldn’t cause harm. However, if a cat is coughing up hairballs frequently, something might be wrong. Also, rush your cat to the emergency room if they’re retching and gagging but not actually emitting a hairball—your pet might be choking.
How Can I Help My Cat Cough Up Fewer Hairballs?
Feed your cat a high-quality diet to keep shedding to a minimum, and brush her daily to get rid of loose fur. These steps reduce the amount of hair your cat swallows.
Call your animal hospital Ellicott City, MD to make an appointment for your pet.
Cats and milk just seem to go together. You may be surprised to learn that the two actually don’t mix! Learn more here from your vet in Ellicott City, MD.
Why Can’t Cats Drink Milk?
The majority of adult cats are lactose-intolerant, meaning that they don’t possess enough lactase in the digestive system to digest lactose, the primary enzyme of milk. Drinking too much milk will likely cause an upset stomach, diarrhea, or even vomiting.
What About Kittens?
Kittens drink their mother’s milk while nursing, yes. This is, however, the only time in a cat’s life cycle that milk is a nutritional necessity. As most cats age, they produce less lactase. By the time they’re fully grown, most cats are totally lactose-intolerant.
Is Other Dairy Okay?
Since other forms of dairy like yogurt or cheese generally contain less lactase than milk, they may be safer to feed to your feline friend. Still, it’s important not to go overboard. It’s safer to stick to cat treats or small bits of cooked meat instead—your cat will probably like these items more anyway!
Do you have questions about your cat’s diet or nutrition? Contact your animal hospital Ellicott City, MD for help.