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Hi - my cat Murphy (male and 14 years of age) is having some problems with coughing/vomiting. Maybe a month or so ago, he was vomiting on a regular basis, but I think I've got that problem taken care of as I believe he was doing so because he was eating a bit too much. For a little while, I wasn't portioning his dried food properly and he winded up eating too much and vomited on a regular basis. So the vomiting has stopped but now he's coughing and I believe it to be attributed to hairballs in his system (but maybe not). He hasn't actually coughed anything up, but when he does go into his little coughing sessions, it gets me quite worried that I can't do anything; I basically have to watch him cough until it's all gone. Also, I'm giving him the tuna-flavored hairball medicine (half-finger length every couple of days) that I got from the vet and his dried food is an indoor-formula w/hairball control. Murphy is long-haired and usually get's a lion cut every few months. After trimming him myself last time, I really do not want to go through that again (he's VERY non-tolerant and it took close to two hours) and it costs a bit much to get him groomed by someone who doesn't even trim him properly because he's that hard trim without sedation. So I guess I'm asking for suggestions other than getting him trimmed. When his hair is short, he doesn't have these coughing episodes so this leads me to believe it's a hairball problem. Should I give him a good shampooing/bath and brush his hair on a normal basis to get the loose hair off? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!!! :)
 

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Both of my cats have been long haired - I love them, but gee whiz, the hairballs! I'd definitely invest in some good grooming tools like a slicker brush. Boscosmom here on the forum recommended this to me, along with a curry comb - and I can't even tell you the amount of fur that came off Pfeffa when I used the slicker. I didn't realize she could LOOSE that much fur and still have fur left! I can't recommend that highly enough - go get one and use it often!

Certainly continue the hairball remedy, and the hairball control food, as well.

Have you mentioned the coughing/vomiting thing to your vet? It sounds like it is hairballs, but it might be worth a visit.
 

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Thanks for the response ospunkyo :D

I have not been to the vet yet. That was an imminent reality I think - just thought I try here first. Do you recommend a specific type of brush? And could this be purchased at say my local Petsmart or should I go to the vet to purchase it?

Sounds like you have your hands full with your cats!!! I totally understand the whole long-haired insanity :x :lol:
 

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I can't think of the brand of the slicker I got (it's at home, and I'm at work, but I could tell you later) but it is one with extra soft bristles. The ones I looked at had little holes in the plastic wrapper thing so you could actually feel the bristles - mine felt noticably softer (it has metal bristles, but this one had a little more give) than some others there. But I'd definitely get a slicker brush.

I'm sure Petsmart will have them (I got mine at a local pet food store and had several to choose from). Your vet probably has one too, but I've noticed supplies at the vet tend to be a bit more expensive.
 

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Ok thanks - let me know when you get home what kind of brush it is and I'll pick one up for Murphy tomorrow during lunch :)
 

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I'm home! (yay!)

The one I have is a Vista Slicker Brush. It's black plastic, with fine metal bristles that are of two different heights. It's good - but if they don't have this specific brand, just look for a slicker where the bristles aren't too stiff. When you use it, (in my opinion) don't press or push it right to the cat's skin - that seems like it would hurt with all those teeny metal bristles.

Let me know what you and Murphy think!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Got a brush and it works great!!! Also went to the vet just to make a 100% sure that nothing is wrong with Murphy. He's fine; he's got some hair lodged up inside him - I may just have him groomed soon. He usually gets a lion cut every 3-4 months, but he's getting older and becoming less tolerant when his hair is messed with :roll: :D
 

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I'm glad you like the brush!

Sorry to hear about poor Murphy and his hair lodging - it's good to know it wasn't something serious. What will be done about that - is there a procedure or does it, er, work itself out on its own?

What does a "lion cut" look like? I have very amusing images of this in my head (sorry Murphy) :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Lion cut basically looks like a Lion cut :D

Seriously!!! He's basically Mufasa when he gets shaved. I'm giving him the Tuna Lax to loosen up the hair in his system. The type of hair on Murph is easily tangled and hard to break up in his stomach/intestines. All the stomach acid eats up the oils that are normall on the hair which helps it to break up. Since it may be in the system, the lax stuff should works its magic. Eventually he'll get shaved again.

Of course this good news doesn't come with bad - read up on my new thread if you're curious :(

http://www.catforum.com/viewtopic.php?t=5631
 

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Discussion Starter #13
drjean said:
Persistent coughing is also a symptom of asthma; you really should have it checked by the vet.

Cheers,
Dr. Jean
The vet did check him out yesterday and he said he was healthy and all. His throat was a bit sore (perhaps from the stomach acid from vomiting). Other than that, I'm gonna give him the Tuna Lax for a while to see if it subsides. Ultimately getting him shaved will be the solution I think...

BTW - thanks for the advice and link :)
 
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