YouÂ vacuum and vacuum, but yourÂ cat just keeps shedding itsÂ fur year around. Don't worry,Â your cat's not going bald. Here's why your furryÂ friend is shedding so much.
Shedding Light on Cat Fur
Cats' fur not only insulates them, but also provides a barrier against physical and chemical damage to their skin, and protects them from harmful sunlight.
Cats can't take off their fur the way people can take off coats, so they need to shed. But shedding isn't just aÂ seasonal phenomenon.
Shedding is influenced by everything from genetics to nutrition to environmental temperature. Research has shown the main factor that determines when a cat sheds is the amount of sunlight outside.
Changes in sunlight cause a cat's brain to signal to its hair follicles that they need to respond. When there's less sunlight, cats start growing short, fluffy secondary hairs whose job is to provide insulation. And when there's more sunlight, cats start shedding to have a lighter summer coat.
Indoor cats who are exposed to less natural sunlight and more artificial light can lose track of seasonal changes, and they just shed pretty constantly year round.
Good nutrition, lots of exercise, and plenty of grooming can help keep your cat healthy and happy, but the thing is, shedding is a natural part of the hair life cycle, and you're just going to have to learn to live with it.
Want to learn more about cats? Read this article to learn about why their eyes sometimes look like they're glowing.
Sources And Further Reading:
- Everhart, Ann. "It's winter. Why is my pet shedding so much?" American Animal Hospital Association. Accessed February 13, 2018.
- "Shedding in Cats." WebMD Veterinary Reference from the ASPCA found at WebMd.com. Accessed February 13, 2018.