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Is Your Cat Overgrooming? Signs, Causes And Prevention


Cats are naturally obsessed with keeping their coats clean, often spending up to half of their waking hours grooming themselves. Occasionally, their behavior can lead to excessive cat grooming. Read on to discover why your cat is experiencing this and what you can do to help it.


Causes Of Overgrooming

Boredom: Cats are naturally busy creatures and may become bored if they do not have enough stimulation in their environment. This can cause your cat to overgroom his coat because he needs something else to keep himself busy.


Fleas: Fleas are a common reason for excessive grooming in cats, as fleas can cause irritation and itching on your cat's skin. The scratching may lead to wounds your cat needs to clean up.


Skin irritations: Overgrooming can be caused by skin irritations, such as fleas or allergies. These irritants can cause the cat to groom excessively to remove them.


Relieve stress and anxiety: When a cat is stressed or anxious, it can become more aggressive in grooming to self-soothe. 


Pain: Cats are very good at hiding their pain and discomfort. They may seem fine and happy, but if you pay attention, you will notice that your cat tends to lick and scratch at a part of their body to relieve the pain.


Signs Of Overgrooming

Behavioral changes don't always indicate a problem, but it's smart to recognize signs your cat is overgrooming. These are a few signs to look out for.


  • Hair loss
  • Too much time spent on grooming
  • Excess hairballs
  • Non-stop scratching
  • Behavior change- your cat may seem withdrawn or hide.


How To Fix An Overgrooming Problem

Your cat's overgrooming can be prevented in several ways, depending on what's causing the problem. To prevent your feline from overgrooming, here are a few solutions you can implement:


Provide appropriate outlets for scratching and stretching: Make sure there are suitable places for your cat to scratch, such as on a scratching post or tree branch. The goal is to provide your cat with various outlets to eliminate excess energy.


Environmental enrichment: Cats prefer to spend time near sources of stimulation, such as toys or food dishes. Enrichment items should be placed in areas where your cat spends most of his time.


Cozy spots to rest: Cats need a place that they can go to relax and unwind after a long day of playing or hunting. A cozy spot should be warm, have soft furnishings, and be free from annoying noises or disruptions like other pets walking past or children playing nearby. A comfortable and well-rested cat will be less likely to overgroom.


Synthetic Pheromones: In stressful situations, synthetic pheromones mimic the natural pheromones to help induce calm and security. It aims to alleviate or prevent behaviors such as marking, scratching, and overgrooming.


Anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications: In extreme cases, some anti-depressants and anti-anxiety medications can be prescribed by a veterinarian to help reduce the incidence of these disorders.


If your cat is licking or chewing on his fur excessively, take him to the vet for an exam and checkup to rule out any underlying health issues that may be causing this behavior. 


Life Of Riley Is Here To Help Your Pet Pet Relax And Feel Pampered

If you're looking for a place to take your dog, look no further than Life of Riley DC. Our services are designed to make it as easy as possible for your pet to get the care they need while you go on with your day. We offer dog daycare and boarding, as well as dog grooming. We can help you find the right fit for your pet's needs. Book an appointment for your pooch today, or call us for more information on our services.


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