We all love cats for their ability to clean themselves. In fact, they are one of the cleanest pets that exist because they are groomed frequently.
However, the fact that cats are constantly licking themselves does not mean that we can ignore their cleanliness and care. This ability to self-manage your hygiene has a negative side: hairballs.
Tricobezoars or hairballs are a serious problem in cats; It can even complicate the cat’s health to the point of requiring surgery.
Therefore, today we are going to tell you what you need to know about tricobezoares and what the risks are for your pet.
A rare intestinal obstruction
Cats are licked frequently to keep the fur clean and eliminate excesses. However, this means that the hair goes to your digestive tract, creating the famous hairballs, which are the tricobezoars.
Given that this process is completely common in cats, it usually does not represent a problem that hairballs form.
The cat expels the hair through feces, like the rest of the food, in a normal excretory process. But, in some cases, the hairs do not continue the journey through the intestines, getting stuck in the esophagus.
Depending on the size, the cat may vomit the hairballs or they will become clogged. Even in some cases, it can get stuck in the small intestine and start growing from there to generate inflammations and, eventually, ruptures.
As we said, the expulsion of hairballs usually occurs naturally in the animal’s cycle. In fact, one of the reasons we see a cat eat the popular straw alone is to stimulate its digestive system.
However, we cannot forget that the intestinal tract is full of villi and mucus, which are responsible for the absorption of nutrients from food. These villi are potential vines for cat hairs.
Depending on where the hairball is located, the risk and complication increases. The milder complications go through gastritis and colitis, while a ball of hair in a segment of the intestine can lead to inflammatory processes, ruptures and compromise of the vascular system.
Symptoms of tricobezoars
Some of the anomalies that the cat can manifest due to complications with hairballs are:
- Frequent cough
- Constant vomiting
- Abrupt weight loss.
- Complaints that suggest pain.
- Dehydration, which is reflected by a whitish coloration in the gums.
- Respiratory difficulty, evident from gasps.
- Spend too much time spent, with little mobility, much more sedentary than normal.
- How to prevent tricobezoars?
Considering that this health problem derives from frequent behavior in cats, it is necessary to be vigilant and take certain measures to reduce the risks.
Brush frequently: a daily brushing helps remove excess hair, reducing the amount that will stop the cat’s intestines.
Provide fresh water: the consumption of fresh water in the cat’s diet helps facilitate intestinal functioning.
Provide a diet rich in fiber: fiber is ideal for the proper functioning of the intestinal tract as it stimulates constant bowel movements.
It is necessary to consult with the veterinarian about some supplements and special croquettes for cats that contain the adequate amount of cereals to stimulate and take care of the digestive health of the animal.
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