Cats and Skin Conditions
Here is an article Isis’ vet shared with me:
Cats can suffer from a variety of different skin disorders, including feline acne, allergic dermatitis, mites and ringworm. If your cat is frequently itching, scratching, licking his skin beyond normal grooming, or suffering unexplained hair loss, a skin condition may be the cause.
The first step to treating a skin condition is diagnosis of the specific problem. Many skin conditions share similar symptoms, such as dry or flaky skin. Depending on your cat’s symptoms, a veterinarian may begin by ruling out the most common skin problems.
Even if your cat is an indoor pet, another pet in the household may have exposed your cat to fleas. Fleas can trigger allergic dermatitis and cause a host of skin problems. Flea allergy dermatitis is characterized by small bumps covering the inner thighs, base of the tail, and back of the rear legs. A single flea bite can trigger a reaction that lasts for days! Good flea control is essential to preventing allergic dermatitis.
Feline acne on the chin is one of the most common feline skin conditions. That’s right; even cats can suffer from a bad case of pimples! Everything from poor grooming to an allergic reaction may be the underlying cause. For most cats, feline acne will simply clear up by itself. However, if your cat’s acne persists, a medicated shampoo or a prescription ointment will help. If the acne is associated with an allergic reaction, than removing this allergen from the cat’s environment is essential to preventing future skin outbreaks. A veterinary dermatologist can work with pet owners to identify possible allergens or if a disorder is responsible for the acne.
Red skin, bumps or inflamed skin are signs of contact dermatitis as well as many skin diseases. Like some cases of feline acne, an environmental trigger may cause contact dermatitis. Possible triggers could include inhalants, food, or flea allergies. The most common allergens tend to be fleas, food, pollen, molds and house dust mites.
Not all skin problems are confined to a cat’s fur. Mites can also affect the ear. Symptoms of ear mites include constant itching, scratching at the ear, and shaking the ear. Cats with ear mites may also have excess brown wax in the ear canal. Without proper treatment, the constant scratching and itching may lead to a secondary skin infection. With prompt treatment, mite-killing ear drops can clear up the primary problem before secondary infections occur.
A veterinary dermatologist is trained to diagnose and treat different skin disorders. Prompt treatment will help prevent secondary infections or complications and keep your feline healthy.
American College of Veterinary Dermatology (ACVD)
Posted on November 20, 2012, in Health, Tips, Uncategorized and tagged cat, cats, cats and skin conditions, cats and skin health, dermatitis, feline acne, fleas, mites, skin health. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.