When Cat Hairballs Become More Than an Inconvenience

You can often tell how good a cat feels by virtue of their coat’s appearance. A full, shiny, thick fur coat is certainly a sign of health, just as a dry, flaky, crusty coat signals that something is “off”. 

And while all cats self-groom (some more than others, of course), not all cats cough up those sticky, tubular balls of absolute yuckiness. Cat hairballs are widely perceived as normal, but if they happen more than 1-2 times a year it may be time to investigate what’s truly going on.

A Learned Behavior

Kittens learn the art of self-grooming from their mothers, but they don’t really excel at the behavior until well into adulthood. As a result, young cats don’t typically produce hairballs. Longer-haired cats, like Persians or Maine Coons, may have more frequent hairballs (or not, all cats are different).

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A Kitty Conundrum: Feline Hyperthyroidism

The endocrine system is an often overlooked, but very important, organ system in our bodies. Responsible for all things hormone, havoc can ensue when this organ system isn’t working properly.

In cats, the most common endocrine disease is dysfunction of the thyroid gland. Feline hyperthyroidism refers to an overactive thyroid gland, a problem that we diagnose and treat often at Ten West Bird and Animal Hospital.

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What’s the Big Secret? Overall Cat Wellness Leads to Happy Cats

Cat wellness leads to a happy cat, meow.September is Happy Cat Month! The brainchild of the Catalyst Council, this annual event seeks to raise awareness about the importance of cat health and happiness. There are many components of cat wellness, such as proper diet and disease prevention. Certainly, cats are healthier when these things are maintained, but do they make your pet happier? Absolutely!

Intentional Maintenance

For the first 7 years of a cat’s life, we recommend annual wellness exams. This allows us to stay on top of their general day-to-day health and helps key us into any age-related illnesses. We also love getting to know our patients over the years!

Vaccinations, parasite prevention, spaying/neutering, and microchipping are just a few of the early components of cat care. Continue…