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Dr L Simmon
Dr L Simmon, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 5191
Experience:  Veterinarian MVB MRCVS
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Simmon, We have previously spoken about our cat. We have a

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Hi Dr Simmon,We have previously spoken about our cat. We have a male Ragdoll cat who turns 6 in September. He has been diagnosed with IBD for which he receives a special diet, Royal Canin, Gastro Intestinal, which helps him well.
Last week on Saturday, 30 May, our cat was sick with a hairball. He was then fine again and continued to eat and drink and play. However, today in the morning, so 9 days later, he has vomited another large hair ball. He had done a nice looking poo at 4.00 am, which also included hair ‘sausages’. After vomiting the hair this morning, he snapped out of it very quickly and ate twice since. I want to mention that for the past week, we had some slight changes with his daily routine. We were unable to take him outside for his walks, as he had a slight injury on his paw whereby his nail had got stuck in something and had been torn off. Our vet, via phone consultation (and pictures) advised not to take him outside so it couldnt get infected. I am mentioning this as I wonder whether he may have cleaned himself more than normally. The paw has since also healed nicely. I am concerned about the hair balls though. He has never vomited two hair balls in such a short amount of time. I am worried that this may be a sign of an underlying problem? The past three days he went for a poo every 24 hours. Normally there is more time in between his poos, but it has happened before that he goes once in a 24 hours interval. We had not given him Katalax over the past week. I’d be grateful if you could let me know if there may be a grave underlying issue? He gets very stressed when we take him to the vet and it sometimes flares up his IBD but please let me know if this is an emergency or ought to be addressed.
Hi there, I hope you are doing well.
The main concern when it comes to hair balls is that they can cause an obstruction, however he is showing no signs of this.
We would monitor for reduced appetite vomiting, tense abdomen lethargy and constipation.
I suspect the increase in hair balls is a combination of increased grooming, lack of time outdoors and the humid weather we have been having.
If not something you do, I would highly recommend using a brush such as a Furminator twice daily to dramatically decrease the amount of fur he will ingest when grooming.
I would also advise as much environmental enrichment as possible e.g. cat tree, food puzzles, cat nip etc. to take his mind off grooming.
Is he up to date with parasite prevention? A mild flea infestation (extremely common this time of year) could also explain an increase in grooming.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you so much. How would I know if he is constipated? Or has a tense abdomen? Can I just feel it? Or what should I be looking at when I touch his belly? He is still very active; we play with him every night for about 5-6 hours straight and he jumps and runs so I dont think he is lethargic, but how would I know? Would he not be playing at all then? Monty is up to date with his flea treatment, but I have noticed a flea on him a few weeks ago- around early May, but I havent seen one since and I inspected him. To me, apart from yesterday afternoon, it didnt look like he was overgrooming. Yesterday afternoon, he had a very long cleaning session- for around 4 minutes of continuous cleaning. Could it be an underlying health issue? Did you also see the additional vomit next to the hair ball? The undigested food that came along with the hair ball? Could this be a sign of organ failure or something very serious?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
File attached (TS215QZ)
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
He seems relaxed now, but I am not sure how I can feel if he is constipated or in pain
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I just touched his belly and he let me push in; it seemed to be soft, but I’m not sure what I’m looking for
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Could this be a sign of colon cancer? That the whole hair cant pass through? Although he did also have 3 hair sausages in his poo today
Given the frequency of his poos,he isn't constipated. If it goes 2 or 3 days without a motion, then we may be dealing with constipation.
A tense abdomen means if we gently press the tummy it feels tock hard rather than 'squishy'.
From what you say,he certainly doesnt sound lethargic at all. Lethargic cats hide away and will not interact or play.
As you have seen a flea do ensure to also treat the home for any eggs by hot washing bedding,hoovering and using a flea spray such as Indorex.
It is not uncommon for some vomit or saliva/ bile to come up alongside a hair ball so as long as he is eating well and is not vomiting without hair balls I would not worry. It is just that he happened to have food in his belly when the hair ball was coughed up.
No,I am not worried about anything serious at all from these symptoms.
He is not showing any signs of cancer if the gut; or of any other sinister disease.
He looks very content indeed!
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Ok thank you very much; we will continue to monitor then and we will brush him twice daily with the furminator. Thank you so much for your guidance, it is much appreciated! Have a lovely day!
Very happy to help and please feel free to keep me updated. Wishing him all the best!
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