EWWWWWW, gross – a hairball! Don’t you wish you could get rid of them? If you’re sick of them, try one of these best hairball control products for cats.
Best Hairball Control Products for Cats
Even though cats are known for coughing up the occasional hairball, if your kitty is throwing up a lot of hairballs, or experiencing complications like constipation, there are many hairball control products on the market. These are specifically designed for felines, and they might be able to help reduce the amount of times that your pet throws up hair. Basically, the right product might allow your pet’s digestive system to move the hair through more easily so that it can be released with the stool.
Below is a list of 10 hairball control products for cats, in no particular order, for your consideration. We discuss the benefits that these products may provide, and also give you information on their ingredients so you can more easily compare your options and make the right choice for your kitty’s needs.
Remember, if your cat’s hairball problem seems the least bit abnormal, contact your veterinarian for some guidance to be sure you are taking the right steps to resolve the issue before it worsens. Your vet can evaluate your pet, determine what could be causing the excessive amount of hairballs, and also help you decide which particular hairball control product is best for your unique kitty so she can get relief sooner.
1. Editor’s Choice: Vetoquinol Laxatone: Oral Hairball Lubricant Gel for Cats
The Vetoquinol Laxatone: Oral Hairball Lubricant Gel for Cats in tasty tuna flavor might help get your cat’s excessive hairball situation under control. This product allows hairballs to pass through your pet’s system by coating swallowed hair and stool so it can go through the digestive tract without causing blockage or irritation.
This formula comes in the form of a gel, so it is also easy to use. All you have to do is apply a small amount of the gel to your kitty’s paw once a day. She should go to lick it off her paw right away, so encouraging your pet to eat the gel will probably be a snap since it comes in two yummy flavors – tuna or maple. If that doesn’t work or your cat doesn’t let you put the gel on her paw, you can offer it to her directly from the tube instead.
The dosage is as follows: administer ½ to 1 teaspoon daily for 2 to 3 days, then ¼ to ½ teaspoon 2 to 3 times a week.
What are the ingredients? Well, according to the label, they include:
- White Petrolatum
- Soybean Oil
- Light Mineral Oil NF
- Cane Molasses
- Corn Syrup
- Gelatin By-Products
- Malt Syrup
- Sodium Benzoate
- Tuna Flavor
2. Runner Up: Sentry Petromalt Fish Flavor Hairball Remedy
Another easy-to-administer hairball control gel is the Sentry Petromalt Fish Flavor Hairball Remedy. This laxative product may help prevent, as well as eliminate, hairballs with the help of Petromalt technology. By coating your pet’s digestive tract, this product’s ingredients might assist in the natural passage of hair through the intestines so that your kitty won’t end up coughing it or vomiting it up, as well as prevent constipation due to hairballs.
This product should be tempting to your kitty, as it tastes like fish and contains barley malt syrup to make it more palatable. You can use it in cats and kittens that are older than 4 weeks, both as a treatment of hairballs and to prevent them in the first place. The gel can be given to your kitty by putting it on your finger and letting her lick it off, or you could mix it into her food, or just put it into a dish and let her lick it up that way.
In terms of dosing, it will depend on whether you are trying to help your kitty pass existing hairballs or you want to prevent hairballs from forming. To eliminate hairballs, give your pet a strip of 1.25 cm (½ inch) per 2 kg (4.4 lbs) of body weight, once a day for 3-4 days. If you want to prevent hairballs, give them a strip of 1.25 cm (½ inch) per 2 kg (4.4 lbs) of body weight, 1 to 2 times per week.
This product’s ingredients include:
- Corn syrup
- Barley malt extract
- Mineral oil
- Water hydroxylated lecithin
- Fish oil
- Guar gum
- Citric acid
- Xanthan gum
- Tocopheryl acetate
Be sure to read the label carefully for more information about how to use this product for the best results.
3. Customer Choice: HomeoPet Feline Furball – Hairball Relief for Cats
HomeoPet Feline Furball – Hairball Relief for Cats could be a good choice if you want to take a natural route when it comes to controlling your cat’s hairballs. Its ingredients might help prevent and eliminate hairballs, while also promoting a healthy digestive system.
This hairball remedy is free of petroleum ingredients and comes in a convenient liquid form so it can easily be administered with a pipette or mixed in with your pet’s food. The natural ingredient formula is designed to provide fast-acting relief for furball symptoms such as coughing, vomiting, and loss of appetite. The unique blend of active natural ingredients supports a healthy digestive system and grooming process.
To give this product to your cat, you can dose them directly into the mouth, or add the liquid in their water bowl or mix in their food. There’s no flavor, so your kitty will be none the wiser! The dose is 2 drops for kittens or cats under 2 lbs, and 5 drops for adult cats up to 20 lbs of weight – administer dose 3 times per day, as needed. In acute cases, the doses can be given every 15 minutes, up to 6 to 10 doses.
Ingredients in this hairball control product include:
- Alfalfa 3X
- Althea 3X
- Carbo Veg 6X
- Cucurita pepo semen 3X
- Linum usit 3X
- Nux vom 8X
- Olea eur flos 3X
- Ornithogalu 3X
- Sulphur 9X
- Triticum 3X
- Ulmus fulv 3X
- 10% USP alc
- Glycerin (vegetable source)
- Purified Water
4. Best Natural: Tomlyn Laxatone Natural Hairball Remedy Chicken Flavor Gel Cat Supplement
If you are a cat parent that uses only natural products on their pampered pet, Tomlyn Laxatone Natural Hairball Remedy Chicken Flavor Gel Cat Supplement is a great choice for both prevention and elimination of hairballs in cats. The natural formula lubricates the ingested hair and helps it pass easily through stool.
Thanks to the gel’s chicken flavor, it shouldn’t be a problem to get your kitty to lick it up. Just shake it before squeezing out the recommended amount to make sure that the consistency is optimal before oral administration and put a small amount on your cat’s paw or on her nose to get her to lick it off and ingest it.
If your adult cat has an active hairball problem, you can give her ½ teaspoon of this gel every day for anywhere from two to three days. If you have a kitten over 4 weeks of age, you can give her ¼ teaspoon daily for two to three days. And if you hope to prevent future hairballs with this product, you can give your kitty ½ teaspoon just once or twice a week.
This hairball product does not contain any petrolatum. Instead, it uses the following ingredients to create a soothing formula:
- Soybean oil, Hydrolyzed vegetable oil, Cod liver oil, and Flaxseed oil
- Chicken flavor
- Vitamin E
- Soy protein
- Maple flavor
5. Best Supplement: Vet’s Best Hairball Relief Digestive Aid Cat Supplement
If you and your kitty aren’t fans of hairball control gels, you can instead try a product like Vet’s Best Hairball Relief Digestive Aid Cat Supplement, which is veterinarian formulated and can be used for adult cats, senior cats, or kittens.
This product comes in the form of chewable tablets. It contains ingredients that may help support your pet’s digestive system. As a result, hairballs might more easily move through the body to be eliminated through the stool. And this product does it all without any petroleum-based ingredients.
Active ingredients include:
- Psyllium seed husk
- Marshmallow root
- Slippery elm bark
- Allzyme enzyme blend (Aspergillus niger, Amylase, Protease, Lipase)
- Papaya extract
Inactive ingredients include:
- Apple fiber powder
- Calcium carbonate
- Liver powder (chicken)
- Magnesium stearate
- Natural chicken liver flavor
- Silicon dioxide
- Yeast (Torula)
As with all of the products on this list, be sure to read the label carefully to ensure proper use of these tablets. Basically, you can give your cat one tablet twice a day. In order to release its ingredients, as well as activate its flavor, break each tablet into smaller pieces. Then, you can either give the pieces to your kitty by hand or add them to her meal.
6. Best Chews: Tomlyn Laxatone Hairball Remedy Chicken Flavor Cat Chews
Another hairball control product by Tomlyn that is worth considering is their Laxatone Hairball Remedy Chicken Flavor Cat Chews. These soft chews double as a treat, so your kitty will gladly eat them, and you don’t have to worry about any messy gels that you have to get your cat to lick up. In fact, this can be an easier-to-administer option if your pet doesn’t like the gel.
This product is veterinarian formulated, gentle, and effective for preventing and eliminating hairballs in cats. It contains omega 3 fatty acids and omega 6 fatty acids to help promote healthy skin and coat, and its ingredients may help your kitty’s digestive system move hairballs through the stool so she will be less likely to vomit them up.
The active ingredients in this product include:
- Mineral oil
- Canola oil
- Soy lecithin
- Aloe vera gel
Inactive ingredients in this formula include:
- Brewer’s dried yeast
- Calcium sulfate
- Chicken liver flavor
- Corn starch and corn syrup
- Natural mixed tocopherols
- Rye flour, oat flour, and oat meal
- Propionic acid and sorbic acid
- Sodium alginate
Cats that are 10 pounds and under should get 1 chew daily, while cats that weight 11 to 30 pounds can get 2 chews daily.
7. Best Simple Solution: VetriScience Hairball Bite-Sized Cat Chews
The VetriScience Hairball Bite-Sized Cat Chews are easy to give to your kitty when you want to make it simple to control hairballs. The ingredients may help with promoting digestive wellness, and this product might help with skin and coat hydration too. With healthier skin, and a coat that is softer and shinier, you might notice that unwanted shedding is managed better, thereby reducing the occurrence of hairballs as well. Manufactured in the USA, these veterinarian-recommended chews are also backed by a 100% satisfaction guarantee.
If your kitty loves the flavor of chicken, this hairball control product will probably be hard to resist. And these soft chews don’t contain any mineral oil or diuretic herbs. Instead, the ingredients include the following:
- Brewers dried yeast
- Natural chicken liver flavor
- Safflower Oil
- Sodium alginate
- Calcium sulfate
- Psyllium powder
- Flaxseed oil
- Cranberry powder
- Zinc proteinate
- Propionic acid and mixed tocopherols (preservatives)
For general skin and coat health, you can give your pet 2 chews every day. But for hairballs, you can give your cat 4 chews twice a day for two to four days or until results occur.
8. Best Wheat-Free: NaturVet Hairball Aid Plus Pumpkin Soft Chews Hairball Control Supplement for Cats
Yet another option you can consider if you think your cat would prefer eating treats for hairball control is the NaturVet Hairball Aid Plus Pumpkin Soft Chews Hairball Control Supplement for Cats. This product allows you to take a tried and tested, natural, and wheat-free approach to reducing the occurrence of hairballs.
With the help of pumpkin, which is high in fiber, this product may help reduce the formation of hairballs, as well as support your pet’s digestive tract. Plus, like other products on this list, it might also support the health of your kitty’s coat, especially if you’re finding that your pet is shedding too much. These chews are produced in the USA, in an NASC and cGMP Compliant facility, so you can rest assured quality and safety are a priority.
These soft chews are lubricant free, laxative free, and petroleum free, relying instead on natural fiber. The ingredients include:
- Psyllium Husk 140 mg
- Pumpkin 28 mg
- Brewers Dried Yeast
- Canola Oil
- Dried Potato Product
- Mixed Tocopherols
- Natural Flavoring
- Rosemary Extract
- Sorbic Acid
- Tapioca Starch
- Vegetable Oil
To help support normal shedding, and to help minimize hairballs, you can give 2 of these soft chews to your cat daily, as long as your pet is over 12 weeks of age. Also, be sure your kitty drinks plenty of water.
9. Best Liquid: Pet Wellbeing Hairball Gold Cat Supplement
The Pet Wellbeing Hairball Gold Cat Supplement may help your kitty’s body naturally pass hairballs through stool, and this product can be used for both the treatment of hairballs, as well as maintenance to help prevent them.
This hairball control product is different from the others on this list because it isn’t a gel, and it isn’t a chew or a tablet either. Instead, it is a liquid that you can add to your pet’s meals in order to help her avoid hairballs.
The herbal and organically grown ingredients in this formula are natural and lubricating, and there aren’t any petroleum products or mineral oil in this supplement.
- Slippery elm
- Marshmallow root
- Triphala blend
- Aloe vera leaf
- Chamomile flower
- Licorice root
- Ginger root
Read the label carefully to determine how much of this product you need to give to your pet, based on her weight.
10. Honorable Mention: Licks Hairball Support Holistic Remedy Pill-Free Cat Supplement
Lastly, there’s Licks Hairball Support Holistic Remedy Pill-Free Cat Supplement, which is a little different from all of the other products on this list. It comes in packets, and you can easily give it to your kitty by placing it in her bowl or on her paw, or you can let her eat it right out of the packet.
With its 100% human grade ingredients and 98% absorption rate, this product may help lubricate, emulsify, and expel hairballs, while also breaking down the buildup of hair to reduce the occurrence of future hairballs. Plus, it may also work on supporting the health of your kitty’s skin and coat.
- Flaxseed oil
- Psyllium powder
- Cod liver oil
- All natural chicken flavor
Carefully read the label for instructions on how much of this product to give to your cat, based on her weight.
Get Hairballs Under Control with the Right Product
In addition to the hairball control products discussed above, keep in mind that there are also a variety of cat foods and treats that are formulated to help keep hairballs to a minimum, so you can discuss those options with your vet as well. And, whether you opt to try a gel, chewable tablets, or soft chews, just be sure to follow the directions on the label closely for the best and safest results. Hopefully, with the right strategy, your cat won’t throw up as many hairballs, and you’ll have fewer messes to clean up.
How does hairball control work for cats?
Hairball control products rely on different formulas to achieve the same results: lubrication. By coating the hair in the system or lubricating your pet’s stomach, they allow the hair to pass through the digestive system freely and without getting stuck on the way out. Some might even contain a small dose of laxative to promote the passage of hairballs through stool.
How do I know if my cat has a hairball stuck?
Symptoms of stuck hairballs are not easy to overlook – you should be able to spot them right away. The most common ones are repeated retching or coughing and hacking, as your cat will try to vomit the hair without much success. Other signs include constipation, diarrhea, lethargy, and loss of appetite. Hairball blockage can become a serious health issue, so if your pet doesn’t pass the hairballs with the help of hairball remedies, contact a veterinarian to make sure it doesn’t lead to potentially life-threatening conditions.
Why does my cat keep gagging hairballs?
Cats are avid self-groomers and during all that licking and grooming of the coat, some of that hair is bound to be swallowed. Normally, the amount of hair that is being swallowed during grooming should be digested and passed normally through stool, but sometimes, due to digestive enzymes or the fact that your cat has a long fur, that hair forms into hairballs before getting a chance to be passed the regular way. This leads to the cat trying to vomit out the accumulated hair, hence the gagging. If this happens frequently, try brushing your pet’s hair on a more regular basis as well a introducing a hairball control product into their routine.
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More by Lisa Selvaggio