Shedding In Cats

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We are continuously hearing about our dog's shedding hair all over the place, but what about the many that deal with their cat's shedding their hair?

Similar to dogs, a cat shedding her fur is a normal and natural process. In their natural environment, the wild, cats shed their coats twice a year on average. In the spring, their undercoat sheds. In the fall season, preparations for more hair growth begin and may result in some fur lying around.    

According to VetWest Animal Hospital, domesticated cats have a different schedule. Since domestic cats are kept indoors (most of the time), their bodies are placed into a type of constant shedding cycle. This is completely normal, too.    

Why Cats Shed

Cats shed to remove dead fur from their body. It’s kind of like how our own dead skin falls off of our own bodies.

Dead fur can cause irritation of the skin; as to be expected. So, the cat's dead fur falls off and is replaced by healthy fur. If the dead fur is not removed by your grooming process, the cat’s body will shed the fur naturally.   

If your cat isn’t shedding, there is a possibility that she has some underlying health conditions. Don’t panic, though. The shedding may not be enough to sweep up into piles. Each cat is different and some shed more than others.   

Cats That Do Not Shed   

There are two breeds of cat that have minimal shedding; the Cornish Rex and the Devon Rex. Both of these breeds have a sort of short, curly fur that lies close to the body.    

There is one breed that doesn’t really shed at all; the Sphinx. This cat isn’t completely hairless as legend has it. The Sphinx does have fur, but rather than extensive fur, the Sphinx has hair down across her body.   

Grooming Tips   

If you’re noticing your cat’s fur all over your house or see she is having a hard time shedding herself, it may be time to establish a grooming routine.   
Start off by brushing your cat slowly in short sessions. Trying to brush her a little at a time without irritating her is the goal here.    

Using treats can help make the experience more positive for both you and your cat. Your cat may actually learn to enjoy grooming if there is a positive association with being brushed.   

As your cat becomes more accustomed, you can make the grooming sessions a bit longer ensuring your cat gets the right amount of brushing. Make sure you brush in the direction of her hair growth to smooth her coat and remove any knots. If you do notice knots, these may have to be carefully removed with scissors or by your vet.   

If you have a long-haired cat, begin with a wide-tooth comb. Then, move to a fine-tooth comb once the wide-tooth comb flows smoothly.   

The Benefits of Grooming Your Cat 

Brushing your cat helps remove any loose hair and dead skin resulting in a healthier coat. Brushing also provides you with extra time to bond and reduces the risk of hairballs.   

If you notice your cat is shedding too much - or too little for their breed - be sure you speak with your Veterinarian to confirm your cat is healthy and comfortable. 

Here at MetLife Pet Insurance1, we know accidents and illnesses happen to all pets throughout their lives. MetLife Pet Insurance can help cover unexpected vet visits2 and can provide peace of mind. MetLife Pet Insurance has cat and dog insurance policies to fit every budget.

Consider getting cat insurance for your furry friend today. 

Need Cat Insurance?

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1 Pet Insurance offered by MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is underwritten by Independence American Insurance Company (“IAIC”), a Delaware insurance company, headquartered at 485 Madison Avenue, NY, NY 10022, and Metropolitan General Insurance Company (“MetGen”), a Rhode Island insurance company, headquartered at 700 Quaker Lane, Warwick, RI 02886, in those states where MetGen’s policies are available. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC is the policy administrator authorized by IAIC and MetGen to offer and administer pet insurance policies. MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC was previously known as PetFirst Healthcare, LLC and in some states continues to operate under that name pending approval of its application for a name change. The entity may operate under an alternate, assumed, and/or fictitious name in certain jurisdictions as approved, including MetLife Pet Insurance Services LLC (New York and Minnesota), MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions Agency LLC (Illinois), and such other alternate, assumed, or fictitious names approved by certain jurisdictions.

2 Provided all terms of the policy are met. Application is subject to underwriting review and approval. Like most insurance policies, insurance policies issued by IAIC and MetGen contain certain deductibles, co-insurance, exclusions, exceptions, reductions, limitations, and terms for keeping them in force. For costs, complete details of coverage and exclusions, and a listing of approved states, please contact MetLife Pet Insurance Solutions LLC.

VetWest Animal Hospital: Shedding in cats and dogs 

Fetch by WebMD: Cat Grooming