For a cat owner, finding cat hairs on your carpets, furniture and even clothes is a very common occurrence. However, it is important to be able to distinguish between normal moulting (shedding) and a cause for concern...
Your pet's fur renews and regrows the whole year round but particularly in the autumn and the spring. It is an important indicator of their health. If you wish to have answers to everything you ever wondered about your cat's moulting, look no further than here!
Moulting - a natural phenomenon in cats
The simple truth is, cats moult. And as long as the quantity of hairs lost is not extreme, this is perfectly normal. The hair growth cycle allows new hair to grow in place of dead hairs that have fallen out. In addition, the length of the different phases of hair growth is genetically determined, but varies also according to the age, breed, sex and state of health of your pet.
However, there are two times of year where more hair falls out than usual: spring and autumn. Autumn moulting allows your cat to grow denser and thicker to protect against the cold temperatures, while that of the spring allows your cat to grow finer fur for the hotter days.
What causes hair loss
A more significant loss of fur than usual can be linked to itches that your cat is scratching. These itches can themselves be caused by the presence of numerous parasites such as lice, fleas, fungi or even scabies that are bothering your cat.
Food can also be the cause of significant moulting. If the quantity or quality of food is not high, your cat can develop nutrient deficiencies and the loss of hair will be an indicator of this.
Stress can also cause heavy moulting. For example, it is not rare to observe loss of hair when your pet is taken to a consultation at the vet. A change in your habits, such as moving house, can lead to moulting in large quantities as well. Hormonal illnesses can also cause this.
As such, if you have any doubts, don't hesitate to consult your vet. They'll be able to help guide you appropriately.
It is important to brush your cat regularly, about two or three times a week or even once a day if your cat has long hair. This will get rid of most of the dead hair, and help to avoid the hairs tangling, whilst stimulating regrowth. Your cat will therefore ingest less fur when they are licking themselves, which will diminish the risk of hairballs in the stomach. If possible, get your cat used to this ritual from as young an age as possible.
Don't forget to treat your cat with anti-parasitic medicine to eliminate all potential causes linked to different parasites. Also offer your cat an adapted diet that will cover their nutritional needs. Regular intake of protein, vitamin A and polyunsaturated fats is essential for your cat. There are also nutritional complements rich in omega 3 and 6, and in vitamins, for a shiny and healthy coat. Talk to your vet to get the best advice on how best to nurture and nourish your precious feline.
Have you ever noticed heavy moulting in your cat?