Long-haired cats are extremely gorgeous to have as pets, but they require quite some effort to maintain their fur and keep it healthy. While there’s nothing you can do to stop your cat from shedding its fur completely, there are easy ways to limit and manage it.
A beautiful coat is a sign of a healthy cat, so if your pet’s fur is coarser than usual, or if it falls out in massive amounts, you might want to keep an eye on your cat’s health, diet, and grooming routine.
Here’s what you need to know about maintaining your cat’s long coat in simple steps.
Prevention is easier than cure, and there are countless preventive measures you can take to protect your cat from excess hair fall and swallowing hairballs. Cats consume hairballs when they lick themselves vigorously until a ball of fur forms in their intestines and is eventually puked out. While this is normal if it happens every once in a while, it can be dangerous in some severe cases.
The easiest way to prevent your cat from swallowing massive amounts of its fur is to brush it frequently throughout the day when you can. Grooming your cat with the right tool will also keep the coat looking neat, and can help you detect fleas in early stages. Make sure that you regularly deflea your cat to prevent it from harming its skin and fur by scratching itself excessively.
Depending on the breed of cat you look after, some cats may shed profusely until their coats are knotted and matted. In order to prevent this, you have to brush your cat with a tool that is designed specifically for its breed. Narrower combs might be painful for your cat to use right away, so make sure you use wide-toothed grooming tools before using smaller ones to get that final touch.
This way, you can brush away all the loose hair that your cat would otherwise lick off. It’s best to keep a wire brush handy because it’s best at reaching the stubborn knots that are deep in the coat, especially if you have a Persian or a Maine Coon as these breeds need some extra coat care. If it’s already matted, you’ll need to be patient and gentle when brushing your pet. It may take a few days to a few weeks to fix the matting issue, or you may be compelled to shave off some of the coat.
No matter how expensive your grooming tools are, and how often you brush your cat’s coat, a healthy diet is essential to a beautiful coat. If you notice that your cat’s fur has gotten thinner, you may need to feed your cat supplements or change the brand of pet food that you normally go for. This especially goes for senior cats that may need a more refined diet plan. However, if your cat has bald spots, you need to take your cat to the vet immediately because this may be a sign of a more serious medical condition.
If your cat’s fur is already quite healthy, and you’d simply like to maintain it, make sure that your cat consumes food that is rich in vitamin E and omega fats from a trusted medical-grade brand. This will prevent the coat from becoming unruly or easily matted, and will also reduce hair fall in the long run. A healthy coat is a sign of a healthy cat, so make sure that you talk to your vet about the right diet for your feline friend.
Type of Cat Litter
Choosing the right cat litter for the breed in question is crucial to maintaining a long coat. Using litter that doesn’t clump is more likely to get some particles of litter stuck to your cat’s coat, which can exacerbate matting and knots. You’ll want to opt for longer pellet litter, seeing as it’s less likely to get stuck to the coat.
On the other hand, you’ll also want to keep your cat’s fur nice and trimmed, specifically around the back legs and paws, and especially if your cat has a light-colored coat. You may want to pay extra attention to the areas that get exposed to the litter box.
Depending on what breed you look after, you’re going to want to groom your cat as frequently as you can to avoid the formation of knots and to keep the coat looking kempt and shiny. On the other hand, if you notice any bald spots, it’s best you take your cat to the vet for a check-up to be sure that it’s not a more serious problem. Most of the time, hair fall is a sign of a poor diet, so make sure that you’re feeding your cat all the needed nutrients and that you deflea your pet regularly.