Shedding in Cats
Shedding is a cat’s natural process of losing dead hair. Outdoor cats
may lose more hair in the spring and fall and retain more fur in the winter,
while indoor cats can shed all year round. Regularly grooming your cat and vacuuming
hair from your house should minimize the inconvenience of shedding. However, if
you see bald patches in your cat’s fur or notice a significant loss of hair,
the underlying cause may be a health-related problem and should be investigated
by a veterinarian.
What Would Make a Cat Shed Excessively?
A variety of medical, dietary and stress-related issues can
cause your cat to lose more hair than is normal. If you notice he’s losing an
excessive amount of hair or has bald patches, please consult your veterinarian
immediately. Your cat may be suffering from one of the following health
When Is Shedding a Cause for Concern?
If your cat obsessively licks, bites or scratches, if he’s
losing patches of hair or stops to scratch or bite the same few spots
persistently, then it’s important you take him in for a veterinary exam. There
may be a medical, dietary or stress-related issue that needs immediate
How Can I Minimize My Cat's Shedding?
If your cat sheds a lot and your veterinarian has determined
that there is no underlying medical cause, there are a few things you can do to
minimize his hair loss:
- Feed him a healthy, balanced diet.
- Groom him regularly.
- Examine your cat’s skin and coat during your grooming sessions. Checking
for hair loss, redness, bumps, cuts, fleas, ticks or other parasites will be a fast way to
determine whether you need to go the vet to solve your pet’s shedding.
What Happens If Shedding goes Untended?
If your cat’s shedding is normal, the worst you may end up with
is a hairy wardrobe and home-your cat, however, may suffer from hairballs if
she isn’t groomed regularly. If her shedding is due to an underlying medical
cause, including allergies, parasites, infections or disease, her health may
continue to worsen if you don’t seek veterinary care. Additionally, cats who
are not groomed appropriately can become matted-this is especially true for
long-haired cats. Matted hair can be painful and lead to underlying skin