Hair Loss in Cats: Causes, Prevention, and Recommendations

It is one of the most important questions on the minds of cat owners and those considering adoption: “Why do cats lose hair?”. For those looking for solutions on how to prevent hair loss in cats, first I will share why cats leave their puffy hair on the sofa and then how we can prevent it. It is worth noting that this is a completely natural situation.

Hair loss in cats is extremely normal and a necessary condition for their health. You cannot prevent cats from shedding. Because these lovely friends change their fur twice a year, provided that they are in the spring months, and the old fur must be shed in order to grow the seasonal feathers. Although hair loss is an extremely healthy condition for cats during seasonal changes, sometimes it can be a harbinger of a health problem.

Vitamin B deficiency is often among the causes of hair loss in cats. You can supplement the required amount of B vitamins with veterinary control. Diets based on one-way and only one vitamin and protein cause hair loss in the future. In addition, poor quality food wears cat hair. They may experience stress when their homeland changes, separation from their offspring, or other reasons, and this may cause them to shed their feathers. Regular combing of your cat, especially during the shedding period, is one of the easiest ways you can apply to reduce hair shedding at home.

For this, it is necessary to choose combs that do not hurt the cats and are suitable for their hair structure. Let’s also convey the information that not every cat does not like to be crawled. It may be a great chance for you that your cat likes to be crawled. Cats’ need for water may increase, especially during shedding periods. Failure to meet this need may cause more hair loss. Remember that cats are always looking for clean water to drink. For this reason, you should clean your cat’s water bowl regularly and change the water in it every day. Do not use tap water for your cat. Take care to give the water you use.

Any problems cats have with their health can cause hair loss. For this reason, if you think that you have shed excessive amounts of hair, or if it sheds outside of spring, you should definitely take it to the veterinarian and have your cat health check-up. Hair loss can be a cause of serious diseases or a symptom of skin diseases. Early diagnosis is of great importance for the health of animals as well as human health.

It can be observed that cats normally behave differently and shed their hair during the special period of pregnancy and mating. The reason for this is the change in hormone secretions of our feline friends during these special turns. The only way to deal with such hormonal changes is to neuter our feline friend, but how ethical neutering is up to the conscience of pet owners. Unfortunately, there is no other way to prevent hair loss during periods of hormonal changes other than trimming. The hairs that are prevented from shedding by shortening should be regularly treated with cat shampoos and special combs.

Various changes can be observed in the bodies of all living things, depending on the regions they live in and the climate of that region. These changes are the changes the body makes spontaneously for the survival of living things. Hair loss is a common occurrence in our feline friends during seasonal transition periods. The reason is that their bodies have sparse, thin, and short hair to adapt to the warmer weather instead of removing the long thick, and dense hair that protects them in winter. By shaving the fur of our feline friends, which is quite common in seasonal transitions, we can minimize and even prevent hair loss. In this way, unwanted hair does not occur in your home, and your little cat friend will spend these periods more comfortably.

The Most Common Causes of Hair Loss in Cats

It’s natural to want your cat’s fur to always look healthy and shiny, so seeing them shedding can be very upsetting. While some shedding is completely natural, too much shedding could be a sign that your cat has a more serious condition.

  • Hair loss due to ringworm in cats

Ringworm is one of the most common causes of hair loss in cats. This fungal infection is highly contagious and often occurs among kittens or cats that live in groups. The main causative agent is a fungal spore called Microsporum Canis, it can be caught by a contaminated animal or environment and remains infectious for several months. The spore gets into your cat’s skin through any bite, scratch, or lesion, and the infection begins to develop in the outermost skin layer and hair follicles. If your cat has skin damage in an area such as her face that she finds difficult to reach for care, your cat is more at risk of ringworm as the grooming process helps get rid of any infectious material before it begins to develop.

Also, if your cat’s immune system is compromised due to illness or medical treatment, she is at a higher risk of contracting an infection. Symptoms of ringworm can be very different in cats, but you will likely notice hair loss in the form of irregular or round patches accompanied by reddish patches that can flake off the skin. Their hair can also easily break off or appear abnormal. Ringworm can be treated and eliminated. This treatment includes several steps, such as treating the infection itself, removing any remaining spores, and thoroughly cleansing your cat’s environment. Ringworm can also be highly contagious to people in the household, so if you notice any symptoms in your cat, it’s important to consult a veterinarian to prevent further spread.

  • Hair loss due to grooming due to the cat’s excessive licking

Cleaning by licking is very important for cats to keep themselves clean and their skin healthy. However, excessive care can cause hair loss and other side effects. As a cat lies and cleans, it uses the pulps on its tongue to remove parasites, dead hair, debris, and other sources of discomfort from its fur and skin. However, his tongue can break his feathers and cause them to shed. If your cat is excessively licking a particular spot on her fur, you will notice that the area has become bare or the hair is getting weaker over time.

Since your cat is also swallowing excess dead hair, his digestive system cannot effectively shred them and he may start having a hairball problem. Excessive licking can be a sign of behavioral problems; If your cat is particularly nervous, she may be using licking to calm down. This problem can also be caused by boredom; If your cat’s environment doesn’t provide enough stimulation, she may lick more than necessary. If you see signs of your cat licking herself excessively, it is important to consult a veterinarian for help in determining the causes of the exacerbation.

  • Hair loss due to your cat’s diet

If his food doesn’t provide him with everything he needs to keep his skin and fur healthy, your cat may suffer from shedding or fur degradation. A cat’s skin and coat require a significant amount of protein to function and grow effectively; Approximately 30% of the daily protein intake is used for skin regeneration and formation. Lack of high-quality protein in the diet or difficult to digest protein can cause thinner, brittle hair, and even shedding.

In addition, vitamins A and E are vital for keeping your cat’s coat healthy and preventing shedding; these regulate cell growth and act as natural antioxidants. Their lack can cause problems with the way keratin, the main component of your cat’s hair is produced. In general, the problem of hair loss in cats can easily be solved by medical treatment, adjustments to be made in the environment, and rearrangement of the diet. Always consult your veterinarian; It helps you determine the cause of your cat’s shedding and the best possible solution.

Recommendations for Hair Loss in Cats

Before starting our recommendations, it is necessary to give information about the coating structure of cats. We can basically divide cats’ hair into short and long hair. Of course, there are also hairless cat breeds. As you can imagine, there is no hair loss problem in these breeds. Cats with the most hair loss problems are long-haired cats. Therefore, more care should be taken than other breeds. This problem will be minimized when attention is paid to factors such as nutrition, care, and shaving in general.

There are many reasons why cats shedding problems. The most important of these is eating habits. There is a direct relationship between the diet of cats and hair quality. Therefore, choosing quality food is important. Especially in cats fed with home food, hair loss problem is very experienced. Hair loss can occur as a result of a lack of B vitamins related to diet. Vitamin supplements can be used for this.

One of the most common situations encountered in cats is stress. There are many factors that can cause stress. Stress and depression can occur when your cat has to do something she doesn’t want to do, consumes a food she doesn’t like, is afraid of something, or her hair is cut with a machine. Accordingly, hair loss may occur. There are also stress-induced cat diseases in cats.

If your cat’s nutrition, hair care, mood shows a normal course, and its hair is shed accordingly, there may be a hair loss caused by the disease. Skin diseases and external parasites are the leading diseases that cause hair loss in cats. In addition, problems originating from internal organs such as intestinal, liver, kidney diseases may cause hair loss. One of the biggest reasons why cats experience hair loss is hormonal conditions. If your cat is in heat, mating, and pregnancy and is shedding, this is quite normal. With the end of this period, your cat’s hair loss problem will decrease.

Haircare is a must for cats. You should comb the hair of long-haired cats every day, and short-haired cats twice a week. This way, the dead hairs on your body will be collected. Thanks to this process, there will be no stumps or clumps on their feathers. At the same time, bathing and shaving scissors are important for hair health. Cats shed much more than normal during the season changes. Because they start to grow different feathers for the new season. Thus, they are much less affected by seasonal conditions. Instead of thick and dense hair shed in the spring period, they grow thinner hairs. On the contrary, when they enter the final spring, they shed their summer feathers and grow long, thick, and dense feathers instead.

5 Tips for Cats with Hair Loss

  • Balanced diet

Not only for the problem of hair loss but also for cats in general, the key to a healthy life is a healthy diet. For this, you should pay attention to the choice of food and choose quality food. Foods with fish are often used to protect the fur health of cats, but this is not necessary. The important thing is that the food is high in protein and low in carbohydrates. So, as long as you choose a protein-based food, it will be suitable for your cat’s coat.

In addition to the protein source, Omega-6 and Omega-3 should be included in the content of the food. These two fatty acids are important for maintaining the health of cats’ skin and coat. It also minimizes the possibility of experiencing skin problems. In addition, the content of the formula must include the B vitamin group such as folate. Finally, pay attention to the fact that the food you choose has biotin in its content. Biotin is important for maintaining skin and hair health, keeping the skin looking vibrant, and preventing excessive oiliness.

  • Haircare

Haircare in cats is a must for cat health. Long-haired cats should be groomed daily. Otherwise, the hairball problem arises as well as excessive hair loss. Accordingly, intestinal obstruction may be seen in your cat. To groom your cats, you need to choose a suitable comb and brush. To get your cat used to crawling at first, you need to pay attention to rewarding. When brushing your cat’s fur, you must first comb in the direction of the hair growth, then in the opposite direction. Thus, you will collect most of the dead hair.

One of the methods of hair collection in cats is to use hair collecting gloves. By putting this glove in your hand, you can collect the hair on it as if you pet your cat. At the same time, thanks to the tips of this glove, your cat will feel a massage. Therefore, it is very likely that she will like it.

  • Fresh Water Consumption

Daily water consumption is important for cats as well as for humans. For this, your cat needs fresh water next to the food bowl. When watering your cat, you should use drinking water and change it twice a day. Water consumption in cats is important only for the health of their fur and for a healthy body in general. One should not neglect to refresh the water of the cats. To understand this, change your cat’s water three times a day. It is very likely that the total amount of water your cat consumes will increase. Automatic water containers can be used if there is no chance of daily replacement.

  • Vitamin – Cat Malt

Using supplements for cats will also ensure that cats are healthier and their fur is stronger. The main use of cat malt is to find a solution to the hairball problem. While performing this process, it ensures that the cats’ fur is healthier and they swallow less amount of hair while licking themselves.

Cat malt is used to increase the digestibility of food thanks to its content. In addition, thanks to the different vitamins it contains, the immune system and hair structure of cats are strengthened. Cat malt is a product that attracts the attention of cats because of its smell and taste, and they like to consume it, but if your cat does not eat cat malt, you can rub a little on the tip of the paw to lick it. It will be sufficient to give cat malt as much as 1 chickpea grain daily.

  • Parasite Medicine

One of the conditions that damage the fur and skin structure in cats is the formation of external parasites. External parasites are common in cats. For this, it is necessary to take precautions beforehand. When external parasites occur in cats, situations such as regional hair loss, matting of the hair, increased hair loss can be seen. Naturally, your cat will be more unhealthy and unhappy. Cat flea and tick drop produced to solve this problem can be used. These drops are applied to the neck of the cat, thereby allowing fleas to go away. In addition, there are flea-preventing cat collars. If your cat has a collar, these products can be preferred. While choosing these collars, we recommend you to choose the ones with herbal essence.

Serious Conditions That Can Cause Hair Loss in Cats

Cats and hair loss can be seen as an inseparable duo because it is considered normal for cats to shed a certain amount of hair throughout the year, especially during seasonal changes. However, if a cat sheds an excessive amount outside of seasonal changes, it is not possible to accept this as normal. In fact, excessive hair loss in cats may even indicate some potentially fatal diseases. If your cat is shedding heavily, it is certain that you will take it more seriously when you learn about the important diseases that may underlie this problem.

  • Cancer

One of the most serious diseases that can cause intense hair loss in cats is cancer. When people think of cancer, the first thing that comes to mind as a symptom is swelling in the body, however, in cats, cancer does not necessarily cause a visible or palpable swelling in the body. Symptoms many times overlooked by cat owners indicate cancer, and intense hair loss is one of them.

  • Hormonal irregularities

One of the reasons for the intense hair loss seen in cats is the irregularities in their hormones. In particular, elevated thyroid and steroid levels in the body can lead to excessive hair loss. Although the increase of these hormones is perceived as a simple situation, what is actually important is why these hormones rise. For example, under thyroid elevation, tumors in the thyroid gland, in other words, cancer, may lie down. Therefore, intense hair loss in cats caused by hormone irregularities should never be taken lightly.

  • Fungal infections

Most fungal infections can easily be transmitted from cats to other cats, and some are at risk of being transmitted to humans. Fungal infections are of course not fatal, but if they progress, they can cause serious problems in cats. One of the problems that should come to mind when encountering intense regional hair loss is a fungus.

  • Parasites

If it is regional and excessive hair loss, parasite infections may also be responsible for this situation. In particular, the parasites known as mites and causing scabies can cause both intense itching and hair loss and lesions in the future. If your cat is suffering from intense hair loss, the only way to find out the underlying cause and get treatment is of course to consult a veterinarian as soon as possible.

Prevention Methods for Hair Loss in Cats

We all love cats, and of course, fluffy coats play a big role in why we love them so much. However, the fur that makes cats unique and makes us love them is sometimes excessively shed, which can disturb us. In our opinion, although it is not reasonable to be uncomfortable with cat hair, hair loss in cats is an issue that should be considered not only in terms of the discomfort it gives to people but also because it can be a symptom of health problems.

Cat care is divided into several subheadings, and hair care is one of them. We all know that cats are creatures that can clean themselves perfectly, so for hair care, we need to groom them regularly, not wash them. Regular combing by choosing a comb or brush suitable for your cat’s hair structure and length allows you to collect the shed hairs and strengthen the hair follicles by accelerating the blood circulation in the skin. So the first way to reduce hair shedding is regular combing.

Cats are very cozy when it comes to drinking water. Because the water put in the water containers is considered to be stale for cats almost as soon as they are put and they do not like to drink stale water. When a cat doesn’t drink enough water, it also causes shedding. For this reason, you need to ensure that the water bowl is always filled with plenty of freshwaters to ensure your cat can drink enough water. By the way, if you have the opportunity, you can get a water dispenser for your cat to make it easier for her to reach fresh water at any time.

Cat shedding, especially excessive shedding, can also be due to some diseases. For this reason, taking your cat to veterinarian checkups regularly will ensure early diagnosis and treatment of possible diseases, so it eliminates the risk of hair loss due to diseases. These are precautions you can take to prevent hair loss in cats, but it is good to have this warning. If your cat suddenly starts to shed a lot, you should definitely consult a veterinarian and determine the underlying cause of this situation. Because hair loss in cats is one of the messengers of many serious diseases, sometimes including cancer.

Regional Hair Loss in Cats: Causes and Care

Cats, our favorite furry friends, shed all year round. However, it is observed that this hair loss increases during seasonal changes or diet changes. In addition to such physiological hair loss, which is a normal process, there may also be hair loss that sometimes reaches abnormal sizes. It is extremely important for feline parents to know how to deal with intense hair loss, which is often a symptom of a pathological condition. In this direction, it is very useful to find answers to questions such as causes of regional hair loss in cats and how to prevent it.

Regional hair loss seen in cats is an issue that should be emphasized since it may be a harbinger of a disease that may become chronic. In this sense, cat owners should observe the changes in their cats’ hair and take the necessary actions. However, sometimes it is not easy to understand regional hair loss due to the characteristics of cat breeds. For example, it may not be obvious at first glance that cats with very long hair are sparse.

But now, when the hairs are significantly shed and the skin surface appears, it may be too late to take the necessary action. So how else can cat owners diagnose the symptoms of their closest friends? In such cases, observing your cat’s behavioral characteristics can also help you get an idea of ​​whether there is a problem. In this regard, we recommend that you share your observations with your veterinarian regarding the necessary treatment and care when there is excessive itching, redness, skin swelling, and lesion formation in cats.

Regional hair loss in cats is a situation that should be taken into account. Regional hair loss, which can sometimes be caused by stress, may indicate that cats suffer from skin diseases or other chronic diseases and that their health is deteriorating. On the other hand, the main cause of this ailment may be parasites, bacterial infections, fungi, immune system disorders, and allergies. In addition, malnutrition and changes in hormone balance are among the factors that lead to hair loss.

If we need to explain the reasons for regional hair loss in cats; It is worth noting that parasites such as fleas and ticks can cause serious illnesses. In such a case, hair loss that starts in a specific area can spread to the whole body over time. In addition, hair loss may be accompanied by itching, redness, and skin infections. In the regional hair loss caused by fungi, it is very critical in terms of treatment method to know which fungus species caused this disorder. Hair loss caused by bacterial infections is often the result of another trauma. Similar to other reasons, in the case of bacterial infections, hair loss may increase if the necessary precautions are not taken.

Another reason for intense hair loss is cancerous cells. It should be foreseen that hair loss, which the cat parents sometimes do not pay attention to, may even indicate cancer, and the veterinarian should be contacted as soon as possible. On the other hand, hormonal irregularities can be seen as one of the causes of regional hair loss in cats. In order to avoid such situations, we would like to state that once you observe regional hair loss, you should never underestimate the discomfort.

It is just as important to diagnose hair loss in order to prevent your cat’s quality of life from deteriorating and to stay in your family for many years, as well as striving to prevent this problem. In this sense, showing the care your cat needs is one of the top priority steps that can be taken. In addition, feeding your cat according to its age, breed, and preferences will also be effective in preventing negative situations. However, if cats experience regional hair loss, the source of the discomfort that causes this problem should be discovered in the first place. For this, it will make your job easier to consult your veterinarian when you encounter the symptoms we mentioned earlier.

After the definitive diagnosis of your veterinarian on the subject, the necessary treatment process can be started. Veterinarians may apply to some tests as well as clinical examination in order to diagnose such diseases in a healthy way. In line with the results, the treatment method required to eliminate the discomfort that causes hair loss will also be determined. After the treatment is successfully terminated, your cat’s regional hair loss problem will also disappear. At this point, there is no doubt that the experience and knowledge of your veterinarian are of utmost critical importance. Therefore, in order for your dear friend to receive the best treatment, you should make sure that you consult the veterinarians whose equipment you are sure.

Best Products to Deal With Hair Loss in Cats

Savaş Ateş

I'm a hair loss expert. The picture was taken 10 years ago :) I have been losing my hair. So I started to learn everything about hair loss and hair transplants. I contacted a lot of hair transplant doctors. We shared our experiences. I'm writing blog posts for people who have the potential of losing their hair. I give some tips about hair transplants and medical issues too.

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