You’ve probably seen your cat cough up a hairball at least once in your time together. But have you ever wondered why it happens in the first place? And more importantly… are hairballs harmful to cats? Learn more below from vet in Murrieta, CA.

How Do Hairballs Form?

When a cat grooms themselves, the tongue picks up a lot of loose hair from the coat. That hair is swallowed, and most of it moves through the digestive system normally and gets expelled in the feces. But some hair remains in the gut, clumping together over time to form a hairball, which gets regurgitated eventually.

Are Hairballs Harmful?

No, hairballs don’t harm your cat in any way and are a completely normal part of life. However, if your cat is coughing up hairballs frequently, something could be causing her to shed more than usual. You should also see the vet if your cat is gagging and retching without actually producing anything—she might be choking!

Can I Prevent Hairballs?

You can’t prevent hairballs entirely, but make them less common with a quality diet and regular brushing. It’s as simple as that!

Schedule your cat’s next appointment with your veterinary clinic Murrieta, CA.