Hairballs In Cats: Are They Normal?

A cat stares at his human cleaning up a hairball.

That dreaded hack is something most cat owners don’t want to hear from their furry friends, because they know the end result is almost always a mess. At one point or another, though, the majority of cats will experience this loud and yucky ritual. The hacking cough we are describing is most notably associated with gagging or vomiting up a wad of undigested fur, also known as a hairball. Some cats may suffer from these, dare we say, disgusting oddities more than others, especially if they have long hair.

Hairballs in cats are something we often get asked about here at Animal Family Veterinary Care Center. Cat owners who are new to the hairball want to know if they’re normal or a cause for concern. Don’t worry, we have you covered (and not in undigested hair). Let’s explore this phenomenon in cats and what you can do to prevent future hairballs:

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