What Causes Shedding?
As annoying as it may be, shedding is a natural process that is affected by seasonal and temperature changes, your cat’s age and diet. There are two things you can do to help prevent and manage your cat's hair loss which will go a long way to helping both you and your pet.
The first consideration is diet. Always feed your pet a high quality, balanced diet rich in nutrients and minerals. Poor quality or inappropriate diets can affect your cat’s digestive system. This in turn contributes to unhealthy skin and coat and results in excessive shedding.
The next important consideration is grooming. While most cats are good self-groomers, many need additional brushing and bathing. Long-haired cats should be brushed everyday and bathed from time to time to stop excessive shedding and prevent fur-balls and matted hair.
Regular baths will help to loosen and get rid of excess hair and can help with shedding. When you do bath your cat, make sure you use natural ingredients. There are many natural ingredients that can help improve the quality of your pet’s coat and reduce hair loss in cats.
One beneficial cleansing herb is catnip. While catnip is widely known as a cat’s favorite, this herb is also known for its sedative and calmative effects and its ability to repel insects and kill insect larvae.
Chamomile is another beneficial bath-time herb and its soothing and relaxing properties help to reduce the stress of bathing. Another excellent cleansing herb is Cleavers which helps to reduce dandruff, and promote healthy skin and coat. Lastly, nettle can be used to encourage healthy skin and hair and when your cat’s coat is in good condition, shedding is likely to be reduced
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Tips for shedding cats
* Many pet foods advertise as being the best for your pet, but are actually not suited to their digestive systems or nutritional needs. Explore dietary options and choose a food that best suits your pet.
* Seasonal changes mean more shedding and during this time it may be necessary to increase grooming sessions.
* Stress is a common cause of shedding so be sure to take measures to keep you cat calm and free of anxiety. This won’t always be possible, so be sure to brush your cat well after a particularly stressful day or event.
* During times of excessive shedding, it may help to invest in a few throws to protect the furniture. These can be taken off when guests arrive, and thrown in the wash when they become too full of hair.
* A wet rubber or latex glove is a wonderful tool for removing loose fur from a shedding cat
* Address any allergies that your cat may have. A cat with skin allergies is more likely to scratch and as a result lose hair.
* Control fleas and other skin parasites. Skin parasites irritate the skin and can cause hair to fall out, not to mention all the scratching involved!
* Take your cat for regular check-ups at the vet. Many diseases can cause poor skin and coat condition and hair loss. If your cat’s shedding is excessive, unrelated to seasonal changes and accompanied by any other symptoms, a visit to the vet may be necessary.