A young Asian girl nuzzles noses with a tabby kittenA young Asian girl nuzzles noses with a tabby kittenA young Asian girl nuzzles noses with a tabby kitten
Barks & Mewsings

The Trupanion blog

Why is My Cat Shedding So Much? Cat Owner Questions Answered

By: Kelli Rascoe

Fuzzy brown colored cat on a green couch

It may be no surprise to see your cat happily grooming themselves. In fact, cats and kittens of all breeds enjoy this activity. While you may not think twice about your cat self-grooming, you may start to notice more cat fur in your home. Your pet may shed, but at what point should it be a concern? You may even find yourself asking, “Why is my cat shedding so much?” For this reason, we sat down with Trupanion veterinarian Dr. Sarah Nold to learn more about cat shedding and grooming tips to help your furry friend in the future.

Why is my cat shedding so much?

A grey fuzzy cat staring over the counter

Dogs and cats shed. But, you may not always think of your cat as the reason for the pet hair found around the house.

Also, “the most common cause of shedding is normal seasonal shedding, which usually occurs in the spring and fall with changes in temperature,” says Nold.

Although seasons and temperature changes may play a role, it may mean something more is going on with your furry friend.

If you have any concerns, talk to your veterinarian and they can determine the next best step for your best friend.

Are certain breeds more prone to shedding?

If you’ve recently brought home a cat, you may wonder about your cat’s fur and skin. Naturally, your cat’s breed may determine what type of fur they have like long-hair, medium-hair, short-hair, and hairless. Nold points out what else to consider when it comes to your cat’s fur.

“No certain cat breed is more prone to shedding, but shedding may be more noticeable in a medium or long-haired cat. Also, a hairless cat breed like a Sphynx will probably have less shedding.”

While your cat may have long fur, that doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll have a shedding problem. Every cat is different and they react differently to changes in season, temperature, environment, or even allergies.

To learn more about your cat’s fur and skin, check out this cat grooming guide from VCA Animal Hospital.

When does cat shedding become a concern?

Your cat may shed based on a seasonal change, but when does it become something more? For example, “shedding can become a concern if you notice areas of hair thinning or hair loss, like Alopecia,” inserts Nold.

Also, your pet may not always let you know something is bothering them. In fact, there may be an underlying medical condition for hair loss.

Nold breaks down what to look for when it comes to your furry family member.

Consider the following:

  • Itching
  • Scratching
  • Chewing

If you notice your cat exhibiting any of these signs, please seek the medical care of your veterinarian. They can determine if additional medical tests are needed for your best friend.

Cat grooming

Your cat may groom themselves daily. But if your cat overly grooms, they may start to develop hairballs. Nold further explains the connection between cat shedding and hairballs.

“Shedding can also be a concern if your cat ingests large amounts of hair while self-grooming, as it can lead to the formation of hairballs. These hairballs can be large enough that they can block the GI tract and have to be surgically removed. Regular brushing of your cat, especially during seasonal shedding and with long-haired cats, can help prevent the formation of hairballs. If your cat has a tendency to form hairballs, talk to your veterinarian. They may recommend medication to help with the passage of hairballs through the GI tract."

A woman sits with her cat on her lap in the living room

Why is my cat shedding so much? It may be a medical condition, allergies, or a seasonal change

It may be helpful to brush your cat weekly to help keep your furry friend’s coat in proper condition. After all, you don’t want a cat with matted hair. But by noting your cat’s behavior and seeking the expertise and guidance of your veterinarian, your best friend will be on their way to having a healthy coat in no time at all.

To learn more about cat health and tips, check out our Cat Care Guide.

A dog and cat snuggle

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We’re the official blog of Trupanion—chosen by veterinarians as the #1 pet insurance in America. Here you’ll find useful dog and cat care tips, interesting veterinary insights, and fun pet topics galore.

While you’re browsing our pet blog, please note that the views expressed here are those of the individual authors and do not necessarily reflect those of Trupanion. Our articles are reviewed by veterinarians for accuracy, but they are not a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment. Always consult with your own pet’s veterinarian for advice.

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