Hair­ball and cat health

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Pets -

THERE are a few things you can do to help pre­vent hair­balls.

1. Brush daily. A nice soft brush that goes over the back, across the chest and down the flanks, can re­move a lot of loose hair. If your pet isn’t tick­lish, fin­ish with a belly brush.

2. Pat them of­ten. Not all cats like to be brushed but you can still get rid of a lot of loose fur by stroking. Slightly damp fingers work well to cre­ate easy-to-dump fur clumps.

3. Keep your pet hy­drated. Cats are some­times not huge water drinkers, and de­hy­dra­tion af­fects di­ges­tion. In­vest in a water foun­tain or have sev­eral at­trac­tive bowls that are “kitty” drink­ing glasses around the house. Water must be fresh!

4. Pile of wet food. The jelly in wet food helps keep your pet hy­drated. So paw it over and watch them en­joy their best treat food.

If you see these symp­toms, you should con­sult your vet:

> A dis­tended tummy. This can be all kinds of things, but as ob­struc­tions can kill, go and get it checked, pronto.

> Trou­ble in the lit­ter­box. Any signs of con­sti­pa­tion sig­nal there may be a big hair­ball prob­lem that re­quires med­i­cal at­ten­tion.

> Lethargy. If your pet is an out­door cat and you don’t see the lit­ter­box, an­other sign of trou­ble is low or no en­ergy.

> A cough that just won’t go away. It could be any­thing from a bit of grass gone the wrong way to asthma or lung can­cer. So go get it checked out to be safe.

> Sud­den bad tem­per. Acatin pain will act out. Take it as a sign some­thing is wrong.

— 123rf.com

Brush your cat’s fur reg­u­larly, es­pe­cially if it’s long-haired, rather than leave it to groom it­self too much, which can cause it to in­gest fur.

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