For a cat parent, hairballs are most likely a fact of life. Vaseline can be used to help eliminate hairballs, but your kitty's nose is not the best place to apply it for this purpose. As always, consult your veterinarian before using any human substance on your kitty.
Vaseline on Your Kitty's Nose
Applying Vaseline or other petroleum jellies to your cat's nose is more appropriate for cold symptoms than hairballs. If a cold is causing his nose to be dry, the Cat Health Guide recommends applying a dab of petroleum jelly to it as a moisturizer. This will help prevent painful cracks from forming.
Vaseline for Hairball Prevention
Vaseline or other petroleum jellies can be used to help prevent hairballs, although in a different way. Instead of applying it to your kitty's nose, dab a bit on his paw about once a week. He will lick it off. Once he ingests it, it will help lubricate his digestive tract, which will help more fur stay down instead of coming back up.
Other Hairball Prevention Methods
Other things you can feed your cat that will help prevent hairballs are butter or margarine and mineral oil. According to VetInfo, a pat of butter or margarine, or half a teaspoon of mineral oil also will accomplish this goal.
Hairball Control Cat Food
Certain kitties are more prone to hairballs than others. These include long-haired breeds, senior citizen kitties and those with weakened digestive systems. If your cat is one of these, you might want to consider switching him to a cat food formulated specifically for hairball control. They typically contain more fiber than other cat foods, which helps the stomach and intestines digest their contents more efficiently. Consult your vet if you think your cat might need hairball control formula food.
Leslie Carver has been a professional author since 2009. Her work appears on multiple websites. She has an associate's degree in English with progress toward her bachelor's at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. She has been awarded an Outstanding Student Award in English and twice nominated for creative writing awards.