You are sitting comfortably with your cat on the lap and every stroke across its body, no matter how gentle, releases tons of hair into the air, on your clothes, everywhere. Your bellowed angel is shedding so much that you can recreate an entire cat out of its hair. Sounds familiar? Well, ‘tis the season when you realize the true meaning behind the common nickname for cats: furball. As well as wonder as to why you didn’t get a Sphynx instead.
But have no fear, there are things you can do to help Mr. Munchkin and yourself survive this ordeal.
Grooming your cat
Grooming your domesticated tiger is best suited as a proactive measurement so that you keep the situation under control as much as possible at all times. It’s essential to know whether its fur is single-, double- or triple-coated, and the math in that regard is simple – multiple coats require more grooming. As for the choice of brush, the one to judge is your cat. If it bolts at the sight of the brush, you might want to consider a grooming glove. A glove feels more like cuddling than brushing and most importantly, it manages to take off a considerate amount of hair before it ends up all over your house.
Now, is your furry friend eligible for a haircut? Sadly no, since it will not solve the problem. The cat will continue to shed, but now purr-haps even more so, after the stress of visiting the groomer. And if your kitty is one of the rare ones that like baths, you are in luck because baths minimize shedding. On the other hand, if it despises baths, then you can clean it with a wet cloth every 4 to 6 weeks and you will notice less hair in the air.
Keeping your home clean
If you are prone to allergies but you still wish to keep your cuddly Paw McCartney, air purr-ifiers are the solution you have been looking for. However, not all have the same effect, so, in this case, the best air purifiers would be those with pre-filters. This means they take care of pet dander, hair, and litter box particles so that your air purifier will not clog easily and that it will help with keeping the allergies at bay and your home spotless. And as for your clothes and furniture, there are numerous lint rollers that help get rid of the hair.
When it comes to pet-friendly cleaning aids, make sure you read the label carefully and don’t hesitate to ask for the vet’s advice. If an ingredient irritates your cat’s skin, it will not only shed more, but you will also have a medical problem on your hands. If you want to be extra safe, or if you are on a budget, the combination of baking soda and white vinegar is the best option. It can be used to thoroughly scrub surfaces, or just lightly wipe them, and there is no fear of it harming either your four-legged friend or your family.
Visiting the vet
Although it is perfectly normal for your cat to shed hair, if grooming doesn’t help with reducing the heavy shedding, it’s time to re-examine the food your JK Meowling is eating. It may have a sensitivity to certain types of food, so make sure you monitor its behavior after a meal. Any patches of skin without hair are also an alarm indicating that some allergy might be what is troubling your cat. A nutritionally balanced diet is crucial for the health of their skin and the quality of their hair.
However, if none of the above helps and if it still sheds at an a-paw-ling rate, it is advisable you go for a medical check-up. In order to suggest therapy, the vet will first need to determine whether the cause is nutrient deficiency, health condition, or something else entirely. Don’t postpone going to the vet and ignore the signs since you are responsible for the health and well-being of your pet, it being unable to speak for itself.
Shedding can be quite nerve-wracking for cat owners, but it is a natural part of a cat’s life. The wisest thing is to accept it and do all in our power to help ourselves and our cats during that period. Start with a balanced diet, then move on to gentle fur brushing and detailed house cleaning, all the while sprinkling your furball with lots of love and cuddles. The love our cats have for us knows not the season, so why should our love for them be any less?
Lauren Laporte is a health and wellness writer passionate about nature, animals and plant-based living. She is a mother to a Croatian Shepherd and an adopted wild kitty that get along surprisingly well. She believes it’s her feral spirit she tries hard to cultivate.