What months do cats shed the most?

Cat hair gets everywhere. Carpets, curtains, cushions, clothes. 

A day will rarely go by where you’re not sweeping up fur from the floor or off the furniture.

Cats shed in order to remove dead hair from their bodies. 

While your feline will shed all year-round, you may begin to notice them moulting more at certain times of the year. 

Cat shedding season generally takes place twice yearly; in the spring and the autumn.

During the spring months, the moulting takes place so they can lose their thicker, heavier winter coats. In the autumn, the shedding makes room for the thicker layers of hair they’ll need to keep warm when temperatures drop. 

Shedding happens across all breeds, irrespective of hair length. However, seasonality isn’t always the single cause, which means pet parents need to be extra vigilant if they do begin noticing more hair around the house.

Is excessive shedding during certain months normal?

It can be quite alarming for a pet parent to witness their cat losing large amounts of hair all of sudden; even more so if it’s something they’re not entirely familiar with. 

The good news is, cat shedding, for the most part, is a completely normal, natural process. Excessive shedding during the spring and autumn months, as we’ve already touched upon, is also nothing to be concerned about. 

Cat shedding is largely influenced by the number of hours a feline spends in the sun. This is referred to as the ‘photo period’. 

As the days grow shorter – and they sense winter is on its way –  their undercoat will bulk up in readiness for the cold.  

Once springtime arrives, bringing with it warmer temperatures, these thicker layers will begin to drop away.

Where this can get a little confusing is with regard to indoor and outdoor cats. Felines who spend the majority of their time inside are less likely to be affected by a shift in daylight hours, and may simply remain in a constant state of shedding throughout the year.

The main reasons behind why your cat sheds excessively

  • Seasonality. You can’t quite set a clock by their hair growth cycles, but don’t be surprised if you’re cleaning up more fur than usual March – May, and September – November. During these months, it can be a good idea to spend a short period of time each day brushing your cat so as to lessen the amount of hair left around your home.
  • Stress and anxiety. Some cats will shed more when they’re struggling with stress. Feelings of anxiety can be brought on by a number of things including moving home, a trip to the vets, a new pet, even a new baby. Excessive shedding won’t usually be the sole symptom of stress. Other signs may include a lack of appetite, exaggerated meowing, and a change in behaviour. Do all you can to make your feline as comfortable as possible while you get to the bottom of what’s upsetting them.
  • Poor-quality diet. Wholesome, nutritious food won’t just strengthen your cat’s muscles, boost their immune system, and fuel their adventurous spirit. All those essential nutrients can also stop your feline’s coat and skin from becoming dry and flaky, which can cause excessive shedding. Focus on foods containing real animal meat, rich in vitamins and minerals.
  • Parasites. Pests can wreak havoc on a cat’s skin, as well as their health. Some felines will develop an intense itchiness each time they’re bitten leading to constant scratching, and clumps of hair falling out. Fleas, ticks and lice can be picked up anywhere, anytime. Over the counter treatments are available, but if the problem persists, you may be best contacting your vet for a more lasting solution.
  • Age. Cats are excellent groomers, but occasionally they may need a helping hand in order to keep their coats in pristine condition. Old age brings with it numerous obstacles, and where our cats may once have had no problem reaching every inch of their body, conditions such as arthritis can make this an impossible task. Daily brushing will help remove any dead hair, and should put a stop to mountains of fur piling up on your carpets and furniture.
  • Hyperthyroidism. Certain medical conditions, such as hyperthyroidism, can bring about excess shedding. Hyperthyroidism is caused by an increase in the production of thyroid hormones. It can present in a number of ways, but a matted, unkempt coat is often a common sign. Felines may begin to groom obsessively as a result of this, leading to bald spots. If you think hyperthyroidism is the root cause behind your cat’s sudden hair loss, speak with a vet as soon as possible.

Limiting the amount of fur you’re picking up

Dealing with cat hair is part and parcel of being a pet parent. 

While every cat will have their own unique shedding patterns, there are preventative measures to limit the amount of fur you’ll end up seeing around the house. 

Brush your cat often, daily if possible, and do so in the same place, somewhere easy to clean. 

Also, ensure they are eating a complete and well-balanced diet, packed with high-quality proteins, vitamins and minerals. Their coat, and your carpet, will thank you for it. 

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