do cats grow their whiskers back

However, if your cat loses a whisker or if you accidentally damage or pull one out, don’t worry. They will grow back if cut or damaged. It typically takes between six and twelve weeks for a whisker to fully grow back after falling out.

Do Cat Whiskers Grow Back?

If your cat breaks its whiskers or needs to have them clipped for medical reasons, the hairs will regrow as long as the follicle is unharmed. Actually, like other hairs, normal cat whiskers sporadically shed, but never more than one or two at a time.

A cat’s facial whiskers can regrow to the proper length in six weeks to three months, depending on the species. For some coat colors, it is quite common for the white whiskers to revert to black, or vice versa. The color change will not affect their function.

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Dr. After earning a Marine Biology undergraduate degree, Jamie Lovejoy graduated from Tufts Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine in 2012.

How Many Whiskers Do Cats Have?

Whiskers grow in very specific places and are very regularly spaced, though it may be difficult to tell in some cats. The longest whiskers are in back and the shorter ones are in front of the most noticeable whiskers, which are arranged in rows of four or five on the upper lip.

The majority of cats have three whiskers above each eye, about twelve on each upper lip, and a few shorter ones on the chin. The majority of cats also have a few whiskers on the back of their wrists, if you look closely!

Can Cats Injure Their Whiskers?

Although cat whiskers can convey sensory information, the hair is made of keratin, the same material as hair on your head, and cats are not sentient.

That said, each cat whisker follicle can be associated with as many as 100-200 neurons, and overstimulation of the whisker, or “whisker fatigue,” is a real issue. Whisker fatigue is usually caused by chronic, recurrent pressure on the whisker and firing of the neurons in a way that overstimulates your cat. It is often associated with inappropriately sized food and water dishes.

Tell your veterinarian if you observe that your cat doesn’t like to eat from their food bowl or appears upset until they scoop it out onto the floor. Shallower dishes could be beneficial for your cat to safeguard their delicate whiskers.

Diseases that can affect the haircoat, such as infection, mange, and vasculitis, can also affect cat whisker follicles and make them fall out or delay their growth.

Furthermore, certain drugs, such as chemotherapy ones, can cause a cat to lose its whiskers. If you have any worries about the condition of these crucial structures, as always, don’t hesitate to consult your veterinarian.


How long does it take for cat whiskers to grow back?

It can take between 6 weeks and 3 months for a cat’s facial whisker to grow back to the appropriate length to be functional. It is very normal with some coat colors for white whiskers to grow back as black, or vice versa. The color change will not affect their function.

What happens if you cut off a cat’s whiskers?

Cutting whiskers is not only painful, but can decrease a cat’s spatial awareness. This can cause them to knock into things, become disorientated, less able to protect themselves from danger and less agile. So, put the scissors away and let your cat’s whiskers grow wild!

What purpose do cat whiskers serve?

Whiskers are finely tuned sensory equipment that guide a cat through daily functions. These specialized hairs aid vision and help a cat navigate the environment, providing additional sensory input, much like antennae on insects.

What happens if a cat’s whiskers are gone?

Cats who lose a lot of their whiskers may have no balance and may be wobbly and unsteady when walking and jumping. They may be more prone to startling when they can’t recognize incoming intruders, and they may be at a greater risk of eye injuries as well.