Savannah's Paw Tracks

Autobiography of a Former Shelter Cat

Cheers for National Hairball Awareness Day! #spons


I don’t think we have ever posted on National Hairball Awareness Day, mostly because Savannah and The Kid Sage seldom have hairballs worth mentioning. As readers know, Savannah has had a long time battle with vomiting, but it was hardly ever related to the passing of hairballs. We have the vomiting under control now that both Savannah and TKS are on a raw diet.

However, last week, Savannah hacked up big time right after eating a snack of her prescription dry food. I thought it was due to stress and she had just given TKS a smacky paw for getting in her way to go upstairs. YIKES! Was I ever surprised and horrified. I saw something dark in the middle of the hack-up, which came out almost in the shape of a sausage. I looked closer and I found the biggest, literally THE BIGGEST hairball I have ever seen a cat hack up. It was dark gray fur, about one half an inch thick and about four to five inches long!!

Sorry for the mess Mom L

Sorry for the mess Mom L

“Savvy, don’t you worry. I’m just sorry I have not been brushing you the RIGHT way.”

Savannah must have been saving that up for months! And I brush her every morning with a soft brush and every night using a slicker brush. I thought I was doing a good job. Apparently not good enough.

That night I used the Furminator and I must have pulled enough fur to fully cloth TWO kittens! I have been doing this every night for a week and it is really paying off. Hairballs are REAL! And after reading blog post from 2010 by Ingrid King, I realized she is right, “there is no such thing as Just A Hairball“.

The very next day I received an offer from Wellness Pet Foods to use an infographic they have created to promote National Hairball Awareness Day.  I said heck yes, I’ll post about all the things we cat guardians can do to help our cats’ control hairballs!

Given my experience with Savannah, I agree with five of the tips in the graphic below. Brushing consistently, being sure to give special attention to our long haired feline companions, making time to play to keep our cats focused on something other than grooming, giving them lots of hands on attention to reassure them they are safe and have no need to be anxious and providing water, water everywhere! Hydrate, hydrate!

The tip I am not sure I agree with is the need to add fiber to their diet. While I absolutely appreciate the quality Wellness has put into their Natural Hairball Control dry food, my experience with Savannah is that after four years with me, and eating wet food and now raw, this is the first real hairball she has ever hacked up. We do not find a need for fiber in her diet. I have included a link to Ingrid King’s post from 2010 at the end of this blog post. Please be sure to read it. I found it very informative and useful. (click to be able to read the fine print, and even bigified, it is not easy)

wellness-hairball-infographic-rgb_FINAL PNG

My thanks to Wellness for allowing me use their infographic and for giving me a tool to be able to step up and eagerly promote National Hairball Awareness Day!

Some Startling New Thoughts on Cats and Hairballs, published 2010

FCC Disclaimer: We were compensated for the time it took to tell you about this infographic created by Wellness Pet Foods. However, all our opinions are our own. We will not share information or products unless we believe they can be of benefit to our readers. 

Have you brushed your cat today?


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22 thoughts on “Cheers for National Hairball Awareness Day! #spons

  1. Spring is what has caused the extra hairballs at my house. All that extra light and stuff does it to us every time. MOUSES!


  2. LadyMum triess to brush mee butt mee wriggless an doess not sit still at all…..
    Fankfully shee doess stroke mee a lot an mee has reelly short furs!
    An Savannah mee hopess yur ok after hackin up that furryball…
    **nose kissesss** Dharth Henry xxxx

  3. Pooh will hack up a little hair (not very often) but it is not balled up. She is good to drink water and eats wet food along with dry kibble. This info would have been good to know in the past with some other cats. Thanks for sharing this.

  4. Now this IS a thought provoking post! I have learened that ia good pet parent keeps an eye on their cats, always and brushes and hydrates. With regard to the fibre – htis may be one thing each pet owner has to assess one by one.

  5. We only give out hairballs ( along with sticky paws) but luckily we don’t get them.
    Have a super weekend…

    Noodle and crew

  6. pilch92 on said:

    Great post and infographic. I pinned the Infographic.

  7. In honor of Hairball Awareness Day, I yakked up a nice juicy one. On the carpet, of course. ~Wally

  8. That’s some mother of a hairball!!!! I rarely cough them up either. Pop FURminates me a couple of times a week. Brushing gets rid of the top coat but the FURminator gets rid of the undercoat.

  9. Two French Bulldogs on said:

    That hairball thing is quite interesting
    Lily & Edward

  10. That was good sweet Savvy! We’re aware of hairballs lots of days around here!

  11. The Swiss Cats on said:

    We’re lucky, we almost never have a hairball. Purrs

  12. Wow, that sounds like quite the hairball, indeed! Only one of my kitties has hairballs and she rarely has issues anymore. I do want to look into getting a Furnimator, though.

  13. hannahandlucy on said:

    Neither Hannah or Lucy throw hairballs up which surprises me as Hannah has a very thick coat – maybe she compensates by eating her favourite chicken for lunch!

  14. Hairballs away!!! No day is complete without one!!! MOL

  15. Marty the Manx on said:

    So glad Savvy is ok first of all. Thanks for the reminder secondly. Our brushing routine has been more lax since Bree has joined the Gang and I need to get back on track! Thank you for the kick in the backside 🙂 Happy Hairball Friday!
    Marty’s Mom

  16. Happy (?) Hairball Awareness Day to all those who celebrate…. I guess. I’m just a doggie, so I just leave my hair around the house.

    Love and licks,

  17. I don’t get hairballs but once in a while there’s a bit of fur in what I throw up. Mostly I throw up the grass I eat when I’m outside (!). I’m glad the brushing helps Savvy…..Mom brushes me a lot and maybe that’s why I’ve never upchucked an actual hairball.

    Hugs, Sammy

  18. When I have a hairball, you can’t miss it…MOL…probably the same size as yours, Savvy. I don’t like to get brushed, but when I am more outside in the garden, my furr changes, so I don’t have them in that size anymore. Pawkisses for a Happy Weekend 🙂 ❤

  19. Sparkle would occasionally toss hairballs that size… and she was tiny!

  20. Seems rather extraordinary that Miss S could have accumulated a hairball that big when you were brushing her morning and evening! We had a bit of an episode with our oldest cat who was very ill. He had a stay overnight at the vet where he promptly threw up the biggest hairball the vet had ever seen. One suggestion the vet made was to feed them slightly cooked leek as it bound round any hair and made it slip through the gut. We laughed our heads off about trying to get our cats to eat leek… 😉

  21. I would never have believed that a ball could be that big! We have a furminator too, and a great device…. Thanks for the great post.

  22. Ann Cluck on said:

    I remember the hairballs my kitties used to hack up. I always just put a dab of Vaseline in their noses. I am sure the product you use is much better. Uh, thanks for the visual, LOL!!!

    BTW, do dogs get hairballs? My puppy is coughing alot. We have a big flea infestation this year and he is constantly licking. It could be a flea allergy. I have bought every product from natural killing, itching relief, etc. They are even taking a vet med to kill heartworms, ticks, fleas and internal parasites. Any ideas. It is breaking my heart.

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