Did You Know: Hairballs

Did You Know Himalayan Cat Everyone who lives with a cat knows what it’s like to step on a hairball…gross! It’s not fun for the cat either. But did you know that you can minimize or stop hairballs naturally with a couple of easy changes to your kitty’s diet & grooming?

Hairballs are wads of fur that accumulate in your cat’s digestive tract. Why does this happen? Cats’ tongues have a rough surface that’s perfectly designed for catching excess fur as they groom. Most cats are fed a dry commercial grain-based diet; grains are not easy for cats to digest, and are associated with digestive trouble, constipation, & allergies as well as more serious ailments. Because cats aren’t big water drinkers, dried grains help also set the stage for dehydration, which makes it harder to pass hairballs.

So what can you do? Change to a grain-free diet that’s at least 50% wet, or raw. Come in & see Kathy to discuss which diets might be best for your cat. Add pure omega 3 EFAs (Essential Fatty Acid, salmon oil for instance) to minimizing shedding and promote hydration (& shine), or extra virgin coconut oil, which is very easy to digest (especially for pancreatic animals), has the same hydration & shine benefits as fish oil; & also has medicinal antiviral, antifungal, antibacterial properties. Add soluble fiber like canned pumpkin to the food or as a treat. If you aren’t feeding a raw diet, add a digestive enzyme/probiotic mix to the food to build a more robust GI tract. And brush your cat everyday. Our customers swear by the Furminator ™, a tool that strips off masses of loose fur.

Give your cat a teaspoon of canned pumpkin every day as a treat & to help digestion. Add coconut oil or pure omega 3 fish oil to lubricate internally (and soften the coat); add digestive enzymes/probiotics to the food to support digestion, and brush regularly with a tool like the Furminator ™. Within days we promise that you’ll notice a softer, glossier coat, and no more landmines!  Mention this post at either store (Portland or Boston), and buy a Furminator ™  for 20% off through 5/31/13.


About Kathy Palmer

I grew up in NJ and Belgium and eventually settled in Portland, ME. Until missing the big city, which inspired a return to Boston in 2010, and the opening of Fish & Bone on Newbury Street. Fish & Bone and its original sibling store Fetch (est. 2000) bring together some of the things I love the most: animals, real food, great design, having an impact, the natural world, urban life, creative solutions, good community, and a good laugh. Zip is all pug, but I'm a cultural mutt.