Author Topic: Butter for hairballs  (Read 3855 times)

Offline Middle Child

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Butter for hairballs
« on: August 30, 2012, 12:02:58 PM »
I've seen a lot of people recommend using butter for hair ball control. I've always had my doubts about it's effectiveness. Since butter is a fat, it gets digested, so how can it help with hairballs?

But.....in an effort to reduce the amount of petrolatum product Struvite Kitty (SK) and Little Cat (LC) have to ingest, I thought I'd give it a try.

Right now they are on Cat Lax every four days. I'm going to start by just replacing one of the Cat Lax doses with a lump of butter. But I wonder how much I will have to use.

Top Cat (TC) gets pumpkin, one tablespoon a day, every day, for constipation, and this apparently controls any hair ball issues she may have, too. Plus she allows any amount of brushing, combing, or furminating.. SK and LC won't eat the pumpkin. Neither of them allow more than a very little bit of grooming by me. So they need help.

If it really does help, HOW does it help? Since it just gets digested. You know, the petroleum product in the hair ball remedies work by glomming onto the fur in the gut and helping it slide through. Since butter is digested, I can't see how it helps.



PS

Offline The Kittens

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #1 on: August 30, 2012, 04:09:45 PM »
I have read, more, than a few posts on catsfur, that say, not to give it. Something about it coats the intestines, and prevents absorbtion of the nutrients, or something, like that.  The others might be able to give you a better explanation. 

If the issue is hairballs, I use Petromalt. They lick it right off my fingers, the kittens even fistfight, about who's
turn it is, mol.  If the issue is constipation, yrs ago, when one had it, my vet said to give Metamucil, its a powder, you give 1/4 teaspoon, once a day, mixed with wet food, or baby food.  It has to be sugar free and unflavored.  One thing, I can guarantee, will move things along, is give them a whole jar of baby food. Made that mistake at one show, forgot his food, at the show hotel, and thats all I had to give him, the next morn, he had diarea, had to wash his bee-hind in the hotel sink, mol.   

Offline Middle Child

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #2 on: August 30, 2012, 07:59:39 PM »
Thanks for your reply. :)

Petromalt has changed the formula after being bought out by Sentry, and the first ingredient is now corn syrup. Apparently, once they receive the patent or recipe or whatever, from the old company, they intend to return to the original formula, so I was told when I complained.  I'm not holding my breath.   Laxatone also now contains corn syrup.  It is petroleum products like what are in hair ball remedies that interfere with nutrient absorption. That is why hair ball remedies have to be given on an empty stomach at least 2 hours before feeding.

That's why I went to solely Cat Lax (I used to rotate three brands)

However, even without the corn syrup, I am trying to get away from giving the cats petroleum products.

Butter is a fat, and digestible.  I don't think it will interfere with nutrient absorption, though since I want it to move the fur, I will give it on an empty stomach, like any other hair ball medicine. But will it be effective. And at how much. That's what I am wondering.

Offline Lola

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #3 on: August 30, 2012, 10:15:22 PM »
I have a LOT to be thankful for...we rarely have hair ball issues.  (knock on wood)  We have a "run" from time to time, but it doesn't seem to be the norm. 

The ingredients, in hair ball remedies, are prettttty darn scary.  Is bringing up a hair ball, once in a while, a better option...then some of the remedies? 

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Offline The Kittens

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #4 on: August 31, 2012, 06:02:12 AM »
Well, sometimes, they don't bring it up, and it gets lodged in their tummy or creates a blockage in their intestines, then ya really got probs. I don't have an anser.  :-\ 

Offline Middle Child

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #5 on: August 31, 2012, 08:26:05 AM »
Well, sometimes, they don't bring it up, and it gets lodged in their tummy or creates a blockage in their intestines, then ya really got probs. I don't have an anser.  :-\ 

Yes.  this is what happens to SK.  I still tease her about her $400 hair balls back when she was in her twos.

I don't have an answer either.  The butter might have made her reflux or indigestion or whatever her issue is, worse.  Two hours after the butter I fed her a small meal...usual routine.  Then I went to work.  8 hours later, home again, I fed her her usual meals, .37 ounces (that's point 37, or 1/16th of a 6 ounce can), two servings half hour a part.  An hour after those two servings she vomited projectile (which means belly full of gas) and she seemed very distressed and uncomfortable.

So I don't know.  If I want to continue with the butter, I may have to just give her a pepcid a few hours after giving butter.  I just HATE giving her all that petrolatum.  How do I know that isn't what killed my precious sweet Red Boy.  He also had trouble with hair balls and took tons and tons of hair ball gunk.

There just isn't any happy solution here, since she hates the pumpkin and I am leery of psyllium.  .....Maybe I better try the psyllium again.  Last time I tried it she promptly regurgitated, but maybe I gave her too much.

The Rad Cat does have some psyllium, and she will hopefully be eating one meal (out of 7) of Rad Cat soon, as soon as I can split up a chub (it came yesterday)

Offline Lola

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #6 on: September 11, 2012, 12:54:30 AM »
OMG...hairballs blocked in their intestines!  When the vets thought Leonard had some sort of blockage..wonder if that was what they had in mind.  We were too stressed...didnt think to ask.  Not that it matters now...  :(

Anyway...what are the signs a person should watch for?
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Offline Middle Child

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #7 on: September 11, 2012, 07:22:42 AM »
I'm pretty sure there is a difference between a hairball and other types of masses in the intestines, Lola. I haven't the slightest doubt that you did right by Leonard. HeadButt

Hairballs are usually accompanied by a ton of gas surrounding them, at least that has been my experience when cats had severe illness due to hair balls.

Offline Lola

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #8 on: September 11, 2012, 09:22:46 AM »
Noooooo, i know Leonards mass wasnt a furball.  I meant, I wonder if that is what they were expecting...before the tests.  We all just assumed he was going to be fixable. 

Anyway, none of our cats have furball issues...so, i was wondering what to look for if it ever should happen. 
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Offline Middle Child

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #9 on: September 13, 2012, 09:27:41 AM »
Some cats will bring up a hair ball once or twice a week, just the hair ball all by itself and never have any trouble at all.  Some can't seem to, and have to bring it up when they have a full belly. Some, like my Sweet Boy. would get very sick.  Struvite kitty, when she had trouble with them lodging in her intestines causing blockages, would projectile vomit.  She'd try to eat, have the projectile vomiting, then look at me with pleading eyes "help me".

Watch for a certain posture, hunched with the neck stretched out and a coughing sound, with swallowing after. This could mean there is some fur stuck somewhere. Frequent regurgitation is also a sign, but regurgitation can be caused by so many other things it's hard to know.

Offline Lola

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Re: Butter for hairballs
« Reply #10 on: September 14, 2012, 10:40:11 AM »
As always...thanks for the info.   HeadButt
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