Why is my Cat Shedding so Much?

Table of Contents

Your cat might be shedding excessively due to a variety of reasons, including:

  • Seasonal changes: Seasonal changes can increase the rate at which your cat sheds its fur. This is because cats naturally shed their coats to adapt to changes in temperature and daylight hours. If you notice an increase in shedding during the spring or fall, this is likely the cause.
  • Poor nutrition or vitamin deficiencies: A poor diet can impact the health of your cat’s coat, leading to excessive shedding. A lack of essential nutrients and vitamins, such as omega-3 fatty acids, can also impact coat health and contribute to shedding. Your vet can give you some food brand recommendations to help offset any deficiencies.
  • Stress or anxiety: Stressful situations, such as moving to a new home, introducing a new pet or family member, or changes to daily routines, can cause cats to shed more than usual. Additionally, anxiety can lead to over-grooming, which can cause more shedding and even skin irritation.
  • Skin irritation or allergies: Skin irritations, such as dry skin or dermatitis, can cause excessive shedding. Allergies to food, fleas, or other environmental factors can also cause increased shedding.
  • Hormonal imbalances or underlying health issues: Certain medical conditions, such as hyperthyroidism or Cushing’s disease, can cause excessive shedding. It’s important to monitor your cat’s overall health and visit a veterinarian if you suspect any underlying medical issues.
  • Lack of grooming: Regular grooming helps to remove loose fur and reduce shedding. If your cat is not groomed regularly, this can lead to an increase in shedding.
  • Excessive exposure to heat or sunlight: Overexposure to heat or sunlight can impact the health of your cat’s coat, leading to excessive shedding. Providing adequate shade and limiting exposure to direct sunlight can help reduce shedding.

While shedding is normal, what’s not normal is sudden, excessive shedding. Monitor your cat’s shedding patterns/rate and overall health to determine the cause of excessive shedding. If you are concerned, please consult with a veterinarian to rule out any potential underlying health issues or concerns.

How to Reduce Cat Shedding

why is my cat shedding so much

You can help reduce shedding by doing the following:

  1. Regular grooming: Brushing and combing your cat’s fur regularly can help remove loose fur and prevent mats and tangles. Check out our cat grooming guide.
  2. High-quality diet: A high-quality, balanced diet can help keep your cat’s skin and coat healthy and reduce shedding.
  3. Bathing: Bathing your cat with a gentle, cat-specific shampoo can help remove loose fur and reduce shedding. However, it’s important not to bathe your cat too frequently, as this can cause skin irritation. Check out this guide: how to bathe your cat.
  4. Supplements: Omega-3 fatty acid supplements can help improve the health of your cat’s skin and coat, reducing shedding.
  5. Reduce stress: Stress and anxiety can contribute to excessive shedding in cats, so providing a calm and comfortable environment for your cat can help reduce shedding. A few treats here and there can help as well.
  6. Consult a veterinarian: If you are concerned about excessive shedding or notice any changes in your cat’s shedding patterns, it’s best to consult with a veterinarian to rule out any underlying health issues or concerns.

How to Stop Cat Shedding

You can’t stop shedding entirely. However, you can help control excessive shedding by following the tips above. Also, keep in mind that some shedding is perfectly normal AND actually healthy. Well, unless you have a Sphynx cat.

Cat Shedding Whiskers

cat shedding whiskers

Cats do not shed their whiskers like they shed their fur. However, they still shed a few whiskers during the growth phase.

Whiskers are sensory organs that play a vital role in a cat’s sense of touch, spatial awareness, and coordination. They’re also much thicker and sturdier than regular fur, and they are deeply rooted in the cat’s skin.

While whiskers may become damaged or broken and fall out occasionally, cats do not shed their whiskers as part of their regular shedding process.

Please do NOT trim or cut a cat’s whiskers, as they are essential for the cat’s well-being and should be left intact.

Cat Shedding Season

Cats shed their fur year-round. That said, there are certain times of the year when shedding may be more noticeable. Generally, cats will shed more in the spring and fall months as they transition between winter and summer coats.

During these seasons, cats may shed their thick winter coats in preparation for a lighter summer coat. However, some cats may shed more in the summer months to regulate their body temperature, while others may shed more in the winter to grow a thicker coat for warmth.

Some breeds of cats, such as the Sphynx and the Cornish Rex, shed less due to their unique coat types. Overall, it’s normal for cats to shed year-round, but seasonal changes may impact the amount of shedding that you notice.

Best Cat Food for Shedding?

There’s not single best food type or brand for shedding as it’ll depend on your cat vitamin and/or mineral deficiencies, breed, age, and activity. That said, some vets feel comfortable recommending Natural Balance and Blue Buffalo as they contain good amounts of nutrients and are made of natural ingredients.

We will create a full guide on selecting the best food for your cat soon.

Cat Shedding Fur in Clumps

If your cat is shedding fur in clumps, it might be a sign of underlying health issues. We recommend taking your cat to the vet as soon as possible.

When Should I Call the Vet?

You should call the vet if you notice any of the following in regards to your cat’s shedding:

  1. Sudden and excessive shedding, especially if it is accompanied by bald patches or skin irritation. Clumps of fur? Take your cat to the vet ASAP!
  2. Changes in your cat’s coat, such as dullness or matting.
  3. Itching, scratching, or biting at the skin, which could indicate skin irritation or an underlying medical condition.
  4. Any signs of illness or lethargy, such as loss of appetite or decreased activity level, which could indicate an underlying medical issue.
  5. Sudden changes in your cat’s shedding patterns, such as shedding more or less than usual.

These signs could be indicative of an underlying health issue or nutritional deficiency, and it’s important to consult with a veterinarian to determine the cause and proper treatment.