Hairball Awareness Day

   One of the things I do to look for ideas to blog about or things to market my services with is to talk about pet holidays.  Some of these are things that are pretty normal.  There’s a National Pet Week, a Pet Safety Day and a take your cat to the vet day.  Some of these “days” or “weeks” are started by a company to get some attention to their product or service.  This week is National Pet ID WeekImage I think this is a great idea.  It’s a way to get lost pets reunited with their owners.  Pets can be IDed with a tag on a collar or a microchip.  Both of these have advantages and disadvantages, but you should do one or the other if not both.  Many adoption agencies chip their animals before they send them home with the new owners. 

    But I sometimes come across a day that seems a little funny.  Today is Hairball Awareness Day.  Now I know hairballs are not funny for cat owners and their not funny for cats.  It’s one of the top health issues for cat owning households. Image It may be a sign of a dangerous issue for your cat like a bowel disease or even intestinal cancer.  I couldn’t find out who started Hairball Awareness Day, but I found 2 companies that tied themselves to it pretty closely.  One is Furminator,  That’s the grooming tool that reduces animal hair.  Their website has this description of how hairballs occur from veterinarian Shelby Neely who is also known as the Cat Doctor.  “Because cats groom themselves with their tongues, they naturally ingest some hair in the process,” says Neely.  

According to Dr. Neely, most of the hair will pass though the intestinal tract, but some remains in the stomach. Over time, as more is added, a hairball develops as the hair becomes dampened by bile and other digestive fluids. “Fortunately, by reducing the amount of hair your cat ingests, hairballs can be prevented.”

    Furminator says that by using their product there will be less hair for the cat to ingest.  Regular brushing also reduces the hair the cat will ingest.  Some cats don’t mind a brushing, but as I’m sure some of you know, some don’t like it at all. Image

    Another company that claims it can reduce the hairballs for your cats is Hills Pet Food Company.  “Controlling this issue is as easy as feeding their cats Science Diet® Hairball Control cat food.”

     While these companies get some PR and may get some sales for their products, they also want your cats healthy.  If your cat has a lot of problems with hairballs, you should mention this to your vet.  The vet has several tools to diagnose the problem and recommend a treatment.  Vets are also a good place to ask an opinion of a product and how valid the company’s claims are. Image

     It’s doubtful your cat will ever stop having hairballs.  It is natural for cats to groom themselves and hair will get ingested.  But with some products that claim to help reduce them and a checkup from your vet, you may not have to find so many around your house. 

           Fetch! Pet Care provides pet sitting, dog walking and cat care services for Roswell, East Cobb, Marietta and Woodstock, GA.  You can see the happy pets by following us on Pinterest at http://pinterest.com/fetchnwatlanta/  

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