Pet Health Pet News

Dog National HairBall Awareness Day

Rachel Phelps
Written by Rachel Phelps

This past Friday was National Hairball Awareness Day for cats … but I have decided to declare today, May 1st, Dog National Hairball Awareness Day! When you think of hairballs, you think of cats. Yep, they lick themselves a lot … then they are surprised they get hairballs (what do they expect is going to happen after ingesting all that hair?). Luckily, my cat’s have food with special ingredients to help the hairballs go through their system. There are even tubes of brown stuff that Mom puts in their mouths to help with the issue.

This is all nice and good … but no one thinks of us dogs! Hairballs are an occupational hazard if you live with a cat. First of all, they leave them all over the place and they usually smell like their cat food (which smells so good). It is like a kid looking for eggs Easter morning. You never know where you will find them, but it is always a good surprise. I have learned that the best way to find a fresh one is to listen for a cat gagging and making the “I’m about to throw up” meow. Much to the dismay of the cats, I rush to the scene of my brother and sister cats and wait for them to finish. I also hope Mom doesn’t hear them so she doesn’t run over with the paper towels and cleaner.

However, no matter how good they may smell, dogs, DO NOT, I repeat, DO NOT, eat them. I tried it once. I gobbled one down and then I got the hairball caught in my throat. It was not pleasant to say the least! I tried and tried to get that hairball up. I even ran around a little bit thinking it would work its way back up. Mom wasn’t much help. She was too busy laughing at me. I admit, I guess it was funny. How often do you see a dog trying to hack up a hairball? Even the cats were laughing at me. I finally got it out! It is a good thing I did … I didn’t want an embarrassing vet visit in which I had to admit to the vet I ate a hairball!

Anyway, if you have a cat, there are a few signs to watch for if they are having hairball problems. First, you will find gross wet hairballs on your carpet, on your bed, or on a very important piece of paper (they always know which one that is). Second, you will see the hairballs in the litter box in their stool. Lastly, you will hear them hacking, coughing, and gagging.

One easy way to control the problem is to give your cats a hairball control food. If you would like to try it out, I am hosting a giveaway for ten bags of Hill’s Science Diet Hairball Control food next week. Keep your eyes peeled for this great giveaway.

So Happy Dog National Hairball Awareness Day!

Your pal,

About the author

Rachel Phelps

Rachel Phelps

Rachel Phelps, “America’s Pet Parent,” is an award-winning writer, photographer, and certified dog trainer. She keeps busy managing the career of her Internet celebrity dog Preston from Preston Speaks. Her three Westies — who think they are mini-humans — and three cats rule the house. To learn more about Rachel go to: Rachel Phelps Website


  • Preston, why would you want to eat a hacked up hairball? ewwwww. You are really helping support my theory that dogs have more issues. Cat’s can’t help it when they have a hairball, but you could control yourself and not eat them. I am getting the heaves just thinking about this. xoxoxox Your pal, Gracey

  • One of our cats eats too much and then throws up her food a lot. I’m always right there trying to get to it before my peeps. I leave the hairballs alone, though.

    Nubbin wiggles,

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