Do Domestic Shorthair Cats Shed A Lot?
Waking up to a mess of cat hair can be a horrifying experience. And since it means that your kitty can have serious health conditions, it's not something to take lightly.
Shedding hairs is pretty normal for all cats. Some varieties of cats naturally shed more hair, like the longhair varieties.
In this article, I'm going to dive deep into the reasons why your cat may be shedding more hair, if it's harmful for the kitty and what to do about it.
What Does Domestic Short-Hairs Mean?
Well, the domestic part just means that the cat is meant to stay at home with you and not a wild/ feral one that hasn't learnt to socialize with humans.
It's hard to tell what you're talking about just from the short-hair thing unless you're talking about a certain specific breed.
It just means that the kitty has short hair and fur and an unknown breed history.
It can mean a wide range of species with variable fur characteristics. Short-hairs can have any fur colors or patterns.
These short-hairs may be large or small and can have any temperaments. The term is often used very loosely leading to further confusion.
Do Domestic Short Hair Cats Shed A Lot?
Well, it depends. All mammals shed their hair periodically.
Some mammals even have thick hardened hair (the horn of a rhino is just hair!) and all shed hairs on a regular basis.
If you’ve had furry pets, you may know that they shed a lot. Furry dogs and cats leave many hairs if you put them on your couch or bed. Some owners sleep with their cats, so they know the struggles of having to manage loose hair strands every day.
Just like human hairs fall periodically and get replaced by new hairs over time, feline hairs also grow from hair follicles, get old and get replaced.
Hair shedding can depend on lots of things like hair density, age as well as season. If a cat has dense hair, it’s more likely to shed more hairs than one with thinner hair. Long-haired cats shed even more than short-haired cats with dense fur.
Why Your Cat May Be Shedding More?
Hair growth depends on the time of the year as well.
Cats grow thick hair in the winter and pet owners need to be pretty careful in the spring as that’s when cats lose their furs.
Cats shedding more hair may also be due to certain allergies or skin conditions.
Lack of certain nutrients in diet can also be a reason behind your cat losing more hair.
The unexpected amounts of fur loss can be due to something as simple as flea irritation or can be a serious issue. Cat flea – Ctenocephalides is responsible for pesky allergies in most cats.
The constant irritations can lead to cats scratching excessively and that can cause rashes and spots on cats where hair density is reduced.
Quality protein leads to keratin formation which is vital for healthy hair. Cats don’t need generous snacks or treats but a balanced diet is important for maintaining their fur coat.
Hair loss can also be sign of a serious medical condition called alopecia that leads to chronic hair loss. It is usually psychogenic meaning that it’s caused by stress and/ or trauma.
If your little kitty has faced a stressful childhood or has had abusive owners, it can also lead to mental scars in adulthood that can cause alopecia.
Can Cat Hair Be Harmful?
Most pet owners do not mind a little hair as they’ve gotten used to fallen cat furs around their living place.
If you’re allergic to cat fur however, it can be a serious issue and cause respiratory issues as well as rashes.
Fel D1 protein is an allergen commonly found in cats, and it can cause serious allergies and irritation in humans.
It’s a non-issue for most cat owners but if it’s a problem for you, you should try reducing cat fur that lies around. Fewer fallen hair means that you are less likely to be exposed to Fel D1 and so, won’t experience any symptoms of allergy.
How To Prevent Cat’s Fur Loss
Most of the time, your kitty’s hair loss is seasonal and perfectly natural. The fur will grow back as good as new, and so, it’s nothing to worry about.
But sometimes, your kitty may have serious health conditions triggered by stress or anxiety or some severe allergy.
The best way to care for your furry feline’s health is to make sure that their living place is free of germs. Tidying their bed and couch twice a week is a great idea to make sure that they’re free from allergy-causing fleas.
Washing your cat with anti-dandruff shampoo is also a nice idea. Just make sure that you’re not using a product that irritates your kitty’s skin.
Addressing any underlying stress and anxiety is also nice. A shy withdrawn kitty needs lots of time and attention and you should put in some effort to make sure that your kitty feels loved.
Combing your kitty thoroughly once every week or so is also a great idea as it helps get rid of the loose hair before they fall off. Some pet owners also use a portable vacuum to pull in hairs but I recommend against this.
Using a wet wipe is a quick and easy way. You can also bathe your kitty with a non-allergenic soap or just plain water.
You should always keep washing your kitty to a minimum as it strips away the natural oils on their skin. It can also cause them irritation, so you should only wash them when you feel like they’re dirty.
If the fur loss still persists, a visit to the vet is a quick way to fix it.
Does your cat seem uncomfortable? Is it incapable of finding itself around you or doesn't play around much? These problems can be solved with cat caves. Get to know more about how your adorable little friend can benefit from cat caves.
Some fur shedding is perfectly normal for cats. It may be due to seasonal changes and there’s nothing to be concerned about.
However, if you notice large amounts of hair, you should go to your vet for a thorough checkup.