A longhaired cat in a bookshelf

Ways of Dealing with Shedding Cats

Having a cat at home is a delight. No matter what species you have, the antics and company of a cat or two can enliven the atmosphere of any home. Even if the cat mostly lazes around and doesn’t respond much, the comfort and calm of this animal is unmatched.

However, there are several issues that a cat owner has to deal with. Think of it as the price you pay for having a feline in your life. You have to deal with any possible allergies, take care of their litter boxes, and–perhaps the most annoying part–live with their shedding hair.

The shedding problem is probably a universal one with cat owners who keep their pets indoors. Since indoor cats don’t have to keep their coats in our climate-controlled spaces, they shed their hair all year round. It’s actually a sign of good health, so don’t’ worry too much about those hair unless it gets really out of hand.

Some cat species might shed less than others, but some extra hair floating around is a fact of life for any cat owner. Wondering how you could deal with the shedding issues from your furry friend? Let’s have a look at the options we have:

Regular Brushing

A cat getting groomed

One of the most effective ways of reducing the amount of hair your cat sheds is to brush their coat regularly. This practice will not only become a way of bonding with your pet cat, but also do away with any loose hair before it sheds on its own.

In fact, the brushing method works well for both longhaired and short-haired cats. You might have to get a different brush depending on the kind of hair your cat has. If your cat is longhaired, choose a wide-toothed comb and switch to a fine-tooth comb once all the tangles are smoothed out. If the coat is severely matted in place, you may have to get a professional on boards. If the cat has a short-haired coat, a monthly brushing session with a regular pet comb might be enough.

Start slow with the brushing. Keep the initial sessions very short and keep praising the cat while you’re brushing. You can try to make noises that calm them down, sing a lullaby, or whatever is the most soothing practice. You can give them a treat once the brushing is finished.

Make sure to stop before your pet can protest. See if the next brushing session can be a bit longer, and gradually work your way up. Eventually, the session should last for as long as it takes to comb all the loose hair and dead skin out.

Another great thing about brushing your cat is that it means less of those allergens floating around your home. Visitors who are allergic to cats might then find it easier to drop by!

Finally, make your brushing sessions count. Examine the cat’s skin underneath and see if it seems dry or not. This is also a good time to check for any rashes, bruises, broken skin, parasites, etc. Spotting these issues early on will help in getting timely treatment. In the long run, this is more cost-effective and better for the cat’s overall health.

Regular Bathing

Regular Bathing

Yes, cats do manage to groom themselves quite effectively. They’re also usually scared of water, so giving your pet a bath might be a tall order. Still, it’s probably necessary if the cat is shedding a lot.

Get together some supplies and give that feline a good bath at least once a month. This will help to remove any excess hair, especially the loose strands from the undercoat. You’d be able to enjoy having cleaner carpets and upholstery as a result.

There are now cat shampoos available on the market; these are suited to their delicate skin. If your cat really wouldn’t tolerate water, search around for waterless shampoos or grooming wipes for cats.

Again, it might be a good idea to bath the cat only for a short time at first. If they make too much fuss, make sure you stop and calm them down first. Once the cat gets used to the baths, they might even enjoy the experience! Afterwards, you can rub them down with a little apple cider vinegar if possible. Reward them with a treat so they’d know that the bath wasn’t a punishment.

Making Changes In Their Diet

Making Changes In Their Diet

Shedding too much hair might be a warning sign, so take some dietary changes into consideration. If the shedding seems really excessive, pay a visit to the vet. In the meantime, you can think about adding some extra vitamins and minerals to your pet’s food.

When you’re buying or making cat food, keep an eye out for ingredients that have omega 3 and omega 6 fatty acids. Cats need these just as much as humans do. They will help to make your feline’s coat healthier, shinier, and stronger. All of this will also prevent shedding, so it’s a win for everyone.

Give More Water

Give More Water

Cats need to keep hydrated, so keep an eye on your pet’s water intake if they’re shedding a lot. If they don’t get enough water, this will result in dry hair and dry skin, both of which directly contribute towards more molting.

Make sure to keep the cat’s bowl clean and full of fresh, clear, and slightly cool water. This precaution is especially important when the warm weather comes around.

Make a Cat Zone

Make a Cat Zone

If you’re not able to prevent the shedding as much as you’d like, try eking out a place in your home that belongs solely to the cat. This could be the place where they go for comfort, safety, and shedding without judgment. You may have to train them a bit to stay out of your bed and the couch, but it’s possible for most domestic animals.

Once you’ve decided on the designated cat space, put a soft, comfy bed inside and make sure the cat sleeps there. This practice will hopefully help to keep all the fallen hair in mostly one place.

See the Vet

See the Vet

We’ve already mentioned that excessive shedding might be a sign of some underlying issues. This could be a dust allergy, food sensitivity, or some form of stress. If you see your cat becoming sick from large and frequent hairballs, it’s probably time to take action. In such cases, some vets might even recommend shaving the cat a few times a year.

If there is some health issue that’s causing the shedding, just shaving or cutting the coat wouldn’t help much. Make sure you get your cat thoroughly checked out and put on medications if possible. There’s also a spray that might help to make the coat stronger and healthier, so ask your vet about those as well.

Conclusion

If you’re seeing cat hair on the couch, your clothes, or all around you in the air, it’s time to take action. If you have a feline friend in your home, some shedding will always take place. However, this doesn’t mean that you have to live with all that hair. Start by trying out one tip from the discussion above, and let fellow cat lovers know what worked for you.