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cat grooming 350pxCat owners are all too familiar with the sound of their pet getting rid of a hairball.

However, did you know that this pesky side effect of cat grooming could be a sign of poor health?

Healthy cats should be able to digest the hair properly, so if your cat is frequently coughing up hairballs, there may be a reason for it.

Here are some reasons why your cat may be experiencing this more than usual.


Cats were biologically designed to have short hair. This means that as some members of the cat species evolved to have longer hair, the task of grooming became more than they could handle.

If your cat has long hair, there is a chance that they need more help from you when it comes to grooming. Make sure you brush your long-haired cat frequently to avoid over-grooming.

Cats who are experiencing high levels of stress or pain can also resort to over-grooming themselves as a way to cope or make themselves feel better. If your short-haired cat is over-grooming, you can determine the cause by considering recent changes in their environment and by calling their vet to schedule a wellness check.

Digestive Issues

Your cat may also be experiencing stomach issues, such as damage to the intestinal tissue or the inabilty to produce digestive enzymes and lubricants. This will make it impossible for your cat to properly break down the hair.

Inflammatory Bowel Disease and gastrointestinal cancer are two diseases that can both slow down or completely prohibit a normal digestive process.

However, these diseases are just two of the dangerous possibilities. For a complete list and more in depth description of what could be happening when your cat is coughing up hairballs, read this article Hairballs in Cats published by Veterinary Partner.

Talk to a Member of Our Team

At Bay View Veterniary Clinic, we want to make sure that your cat's hairballs aren't a sign of bigger health issues.

When you bring your cat in for a visit, we can determine the cause and suggest a solution. One potential option is putting your pet Lax'aire, a laxative and lubricant for hairball control.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, give us a call at (262) 363-9993.