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The 5 Best Hairball Remedies For Cats

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Medically reviewed by  Dr. Bartley Harrison, DVM
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Note: Veterinary review of this article includes only the medical information in this article. The veterinarian reviewing this article does not personally endorse, recommend, or vouch for the efficacy or claims of any product mentioned in this article.

The best hairball remedies do more than help hair slide through your cat’s body. They treat the problem at its root by supporting overall digestive health.

That’s why we chose Cat Lax as the best hairball remedy on the market. This well known hairball gel contains a blend of ingredients that break up hairballs, prevent new ones from forming, and minimize shedding to keep hairballs at bay.

Before we learn more about Cat Lax and our other top five picks, let’s talk about the types of hairball remedies and how they can help.

At a Glance: Our Top Picks for Best Hairball Remedies for Cats

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Want a quick look at the products reviewed in this article? In the comparison table below, we’ve highlighted some of the most important features of each product. You’ll find more detailed information about each product later in the article.

Overall Best
Picked by 31 people today!

Tomlyn Laxatone Hairball Remedy Tuna Flavor Gel

  • Contains a blend of lubricants
  • Most cats like the gel’s flavor
  • Affordable
Runner Up
Picked by 31 people today!

Vetoquinol Laxatone Tuna Flavored Gel Hairball Control Supplement for Cats

  • Over 1,600 customer reviews, 4.5 star rating
  • Cats seem to enjoy the tuna flavor
  • Helps lubricate ingested hairs to prevent hairballs
Picked by 25 people today!

Vetnique Labs Profivex Probiotic 5-Strain Pork Pet Digestive Health Probiotic

  • Rich in omega-3 fatty acids
  • Controls hairballs while supporting digestive health
  • Most cats like the way the gel tastes
Picked by 21 people today!

Vet’s Best Hairball Relief Digestive Aid

  • Most reviews are positive
  • Made from a blend of well-regarded ingredients
  • Appears to be safe for cats
Picked by 18 people today!

Get Naked Furball Relief Soft Treats for Cats

  • Contains fiber to help move hair through the GI tract
  • Features prebiotics and probiotics for digestive health
  • Free of potentially-harmful ingredients

Types of Hairball Remedies for Cats

Hairballs form when hair gets stuck or slowed on its way through the digestive tract, allowing it to form into a clump. Once it forms into a clod, hair is unable to continue its journey to the litter box and instead it gets stuck or heads in the opposite direction.

Hairball treatments come in many different forms. You can buy hairball remedies in a tube, try homemade remedies, grow a pot of cat grass, or groom your cat to keep him from ingesting his hair at all.

Some cats with frequent hairballs may have an underlying problem like inflammatory bowel disease (IBD) that affects motility of their intestines, so diagnosing and treating this could solve their problems.

Here’s a quick breakdown of the types of hairball remedies available and how they work.


Fiber supplementation helps to bind single strands of hair to food particles, which carry the hairs on their journey towards the colon. By encouraging the hair to move quickly through the body, fiber-based hairball remedies reduce the hair’s chances of fusing into a ball and coming back up.

Additionally, a small amount of dietary fiber can help keep the digestive system functioning smoothly, correcting hairball problems at their roots.

Fiber-Based Hairball Remedies

The following are sources of fiber that, when integrated into your cat’s diet, may help hair move smoothly through the body.

  • Psyllium Husk Powder
  • Ground Chia Seeds
  • Guar Gum
  • Powdered Cellulose
  • Cat Grass


The second type of hairball remedies includes products that lubricate ingested hairs, preventing them from sticking together.

Petrolatum (Petroleum Jelly)

Petrolatum, also known as petroleum jelly, paraffin oil, or white petrolatum, is a highly refined derivative of petroleum. After it’s been fully refined, petroleum jelly appears to be safe for cats and people.

If you decide to give your cat petroleum jelly from your medicine cabinet, check the back of the package to ensure that you’re giving your cat 100% plain petroleum jelly with no scents or other additives.

Hairball Gels

Most products marketed as hairball remedies are petroleum jelly-based. Others use vegetable oils or beeswax instead of petrolatum. They contain added flavors and sweeteners like malt syrup, fructose, and dextrose.

Butter and Oil

Butter and olive oil are frequently recommended for hairball control, but as digestible fats, they’re more likely to make your cat chubby than keep him from hacking up a furball.

Mineral oil had previously been recommended for hairballs, but it carries the risk of aspiration (going down into the lungs) since it doesn’t trigger a cough reflex.

Other Hairball Remedies

Egg yolks have interesting properties for hairball control. They contain choline and lecithin, which work together to, respectively, encourage GI contractions and emulsify the fat that binds hairballs together.

You can provide the anti-hairball power of egg yolks by feeding your cat fresh egg yolks or by giving him an egg yolk lecithin supplement. A safe and effective dose for lecithin has not been established for cats, and most supplements formulated for people contain much more than is present in hairball products for cats.

Slippery elm bark contains soluble fiber, which may help to soothe and lubricate the digestive tract, reducing inflammation and helping the hairball move in the right direction

Dietary Changes

Though hairball-specific cat foods usually focus on fiber alone, this isn’t always the right approach.

If your cat is already eating a diet with a little bit of fiber, the best dietary change is finding a food that reduces inflammation. Hairballs often indicate digestive problems and should be approached the same way you’d approach any other symptom of gut inflammation, like diarrhea or vomiting.

Typically, this would mean giving your cat a high-protein food made primarily from meat and animal fat. You want as little plant matter as possible. A moisture-rich diet is ideal.

Read Our Article On The Best Cat Food For Hairball Control


Finally, you can control hairballs by brushing your cat a couple of times a week. If your cat has a long, thick coat, you might also give him a full-body clip in the warmer months. Capturing loose hair before your cat licks it up is the most reliable means of stopping hairballs.

Read Our Guide To The Best Cat Grooming Brushes

Top 5 Best Hairball Remedies Reviewed

The following hairball remedies are popular, top-rated products that have a reputation for safety and effectiveness. Most are lubricating products, but you’ll also find a few that take a different approach to hairball control, addressing it as a component of digestive health.

#1 Overall Best: Tomlyn Laxatone Hairball Remedy Tuna Flavor Gel 

Tomlyn Felovite II Nutritional Gel Cat & Kitten Supplement, 2.5-oz tube

This well-regarded brand has been in the hairball gel business for over 25 years.

The gel contains petrolatum as the first ingredient. Petroleum jelly is mixed with a blend of mineral oil and soybean oil. All of these ingredients coat the hairs and help them to smoothly move through the digestive tract.

The gel is sweetened with corn syrup, malt syrup, and cane molasses. A blend of natural and artificial flavors give it a taste that, while palatable to some cats, seems to repel others.

Laxatone Hairball Remedy isn’t quite as well-received as Cat Lax, with about 86% of 276 reviewers saying they’d recommend it to a friend. Most unhappy customers say that their cat didn’t like the way the gel tasted.


  • A well-regarded product with a history of efficacy
  • Contains a blend of lubricants
  • Most cats like the gel’s flavor
  • Affordable


  • Contains three types of sugar
  • Contains artificial flavors

#2 Runner Up: Vetoquinol Laxatone Tuna Flavored Gel Hairball Control Supplement for Cats

This tuna-flavored lubricant is formulated to help eliminate and prevent hairballs. It is a petrolatum-based product that also contains soybean oil and light mineral oil. It’s sweetened with cane molasses and corn syrup and flavored with tuna.

With over 1,600 reviews on Amazon and a 4.2 out of 5-star rating on Chewy, this hairball control supplement seems to be a hit with cat owner. One user comments that the formula is most effective when you use it regularly.

This formula isn’t quite as popular as the Tomlyn supplement reviewed above, but a significant number of reviews mention the product’s appealing flavor.


  • Over 1,600 customer reviews, 4.5 star rating
  • Cats seem to enjoy the tuna flavor
  • Helps lubricate ingested hairs to prevent hairballs


  • Contains added sweetener
  • Made with artificial flavor

#3 Best Fiber Supplement: Vetnique Labs Profivex Probiotic 5-Strain Pork Pet Digestive Health Probiotic

An increase in fiber intake can help your cat pass ingested hair but a healthy digestive tract is key. Not only does this powdered supplement provide two types of fiber for your cat, but it’s infused with probiotic strains of bacteria to restore and protect your their gut microbiome.

With desiccated pork liver as the first ingredient, this supplement has a flavor cats seem to find appealing. Rice flour and sweet potato powder offer dietary fiber but also act as prebiotics, providing food for beneficial bacteria in the gut.

The supplement contains five strains of probiotic bacteria along with bromelain, a natural enzyme derived from pineapple which may offer digestive, anti-inflammatory, and immune-supporting benefits.

Administration of this supplement is easy. Simply sprinkle one scoop of the powder over your cat’s dry food or stir it directly into wet food. Some cat owners have also had success soaking the powder in water or broth and using it as a liquid food topper.


  • Contains dietary fiber and 5 probiotic bacteria strains
  • Cats seem to enjoy the pork flavor
  • Powdered supplement is easy to administer


  • Not specifically formulated for hairball control

#4 Best Hairball Prevention Supplement: Vet’s Best Hairball Relief Digestive Aid Review

Vet’s Best Hairball Relief Digestive Aid Review

These tablets are designed to relieve hairballs and support overall digestive health. They’re primarily made from psyllium husk, a source of soluble fiber. Marshmallow root can help lubricate the digestive tract while reducing inflammation. Slippery elm bark has similar properties and is a popular remedy for hairballs on its own.

The tablets contain a blend of digestive enzymes and probiotics thought to improve digestive health, along with papaya extract, which may be able to reduce inflammation and support digestive health.

The breakable tablets are flavored with liver powder and natural flavor and, according to customer reviews, cats like the taste. Some reviewers say that the tablets are too large and hard to break into bite-size pieces, making them difficult to administer.


  • Most reviews are positive
  • Made from a blend of well-regarded ingredients
  • Appears to be safe for cats
  • Cats like the way the tablets taste


  • May be difficult to administer

#5 Best Hairball Control Treat: Get Naked Furball Relief Soft Treats for Cats Review

If you’d rather give your cat a treat than a gel or a tablet, these soft treats may be a good choice.

They contain a mix of ingredients intended to support healthy digestion, including flaxseed as a source of fiber and a mix of prebiotics and probiotics intended to keep the gut in top shape.

Chicken is the first ingredient and with no potentially harmful preservatives, dyes, or flavors, these treats are among the few that appear to be completely safe for cats.

The treats get mixed reviews, with almost a third of customers on Chewy saying their cats refused to eat them.


  • Contains fiber to help move hair through the GI tract
  • Features prebiotics and probiotics for digestive health
  • Free of potentially harmful ingredients


  • Some cats don’t like the way the treats taste

Ultimately, you don’t want to have your cat on lubricants and other hairball treatments for the rest of his life. You don’t want him to have hairballs.

The above hairball remedies can help, but they’re not a complete solution to the hairball problem.

If your cat coughs up hairballs more than a few times a year, his frequent hacking is probably connected to digestive problems. In this case, he probably doesn’t need to be swept out with fiber or lubricated with grease—he might need to go to the veterinarian. Extremely frequent hairballs may be a symptom of organ dysfunction, IBD, and other conditions.

If you determine that your cat’s hairballs are caused by a digestive issue, you may want to consider treating the hairballs the same way you’d treat any chronic digestive problem.

Adjust your cat’s diet to reduce inflammatory ingredients and consider incorporating probiotics, prebiotics, and omega-3 fatty acids to promote digestive health

Also Read: Best Cat Food for IBD

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About Mallory Crusta

Mallory is the Head of Content at Cats.com and an NAVC-certified Pet Nutrition Coach. Having produced and managed multimedia content across several pet-related domains, Mallory is dedicated to ensuring that the information on Cats.com is accurate, clear, and engaging. When she’s not reviewing pet products or editing content, Mallory enjoys skiing, hiking, and trying out new recipes in the kitchen. She has two cats, Wessie and Forest.

5 thoughts on “The 5 Best Hairball Remedies For Cats”

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    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta Post author

      Thanks for your comment!

      A pot of cat grass isn’t necessary for all indoor cats, but it could be a pleasant addition to your cats’ environment and may help to relieve hairballs. Unlike some ferals and your cats’ ancestors, who might rely on grass as a primary source of dietary fiber, most indoor cats get plenty of fiber in their diets as-is. If your kitties are already eating a relatively high-fiber food, a pot of cat grass may not be the direct solution to their hairball issues. In addition to cat grass, it’s important to address other underlying causes of recurrent hairballs. That might include exploring digestive inflammation and brushing your cats more often during high-shedding seasons.

      Hope this helps!

  1. Eileen Mathias

    Your article says Cat Lax is the best, but there is no info on Cat Lax. Who makes it? What is the full name of the product? Where can it be purchased? Why is it the best?

    1. small mallory photoMallory Crusta Post author

      Hello Eileen, thanks for commenting, and I apologize for the late reply! In 2022, there was a change in the products ranked here, but the rest of the article was not properly updated to reflect the change in recommendations. I will edit this! However, Cat Lax is made and sold by Dechra Pharmaceuticals, a veterinary product company. You can buy it on Chewy (linked). This is my original review:

      Though Cat Lax doesn’t mention hairballs in its name, this product is just as popular as a hairball preventive as it is a laxative.

      In fact, this gel is one of the most trusted hairball control products on the market. On Chewy, it has 210 customer reviews and 97% of reviewers say they’d recommend it. Customers say their cats like the way it tastes and that it helps to keep hairballs down. One reviewer says they’ve been successfully using it for decades.

      The gel’s first ingredient is cod liver oil, which is both a lubricant and a source of the omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. These fatty acids have anti-inflammatory properties and may improve skin and coat health, helping to control the hairball problem at its source.

      It also contains white petrolatum, which coats the hairs and helps them to pass through the digestive system. Finally, the gel contains lecithin, a natural emulsifier that helps to loosen hairballs in the body.

      The gel is sweetened with caramel and malt syrup, neither of which are great for cats.

      Hope this helps!