What Causes Hair Loss In Cats And Dogs
Pet hair loss can be very upsetting to pet owners that thick fluffy coat you love to stroke may begin to have bald patches or areas of thinning hair. Pet hair loss may indicate an underlying illness or problem. Our furry friends are experts at hiding symptoms of disease and the first sign of trouble we may notice is hair falling out. Here are the leading causes of hair loss in dogs and cats.
How Long Will It Take For My Cats Fur To Grow Back
A long-haired cat, however, will generally have to wait between 3-6 months for its fur to fully grow back. The length of time it takes for short-haired cats to grow is between two and three months. The characteristics of each cat are unique, just like the characteristics of humans. The fur of some animals will grow back faster, while the fur of others will seem to grow slower.
Is Hair Loss Normal For Cats
Shedding and light hair loss are generally common in cats with longer fur. Still, for many Cat Parents, bald patches can serve as an early sign to pay a bit more attention to their cats health. Cats that are known to be susceptible to stress or have had issues with their thyroid in the past should particularly emphasize this vigilance concerning their cats health.
Suppose you notice a patch of hair loss or baldness on your cat that may be out of the ordinary. In that case, we recommend that you seek medical attention as soon as possible.
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What Is Meant By The Term Flea Allergy
In spite of common belief, a normal cat experiences only minor skin irritation in response to fleabites. Even in the presence of dozens of fleas, there will typically be very little itching. On the other hand, a cat with flea allergies has a severe reaction to even a single fleabite. This reaction is an allergic response to proteins or antigens present in the flea’s saliva.
“In an allergic cat, just one bite can result in intense itching that can last for days.”
When a flea bites a cat to consume a blood meal, some of its saliva is injected into the skin. In an allergic cat, just one bite can result in intense itching that can last for days. Cats with flea allergy dermatitis do not have to be infested with fleas a single flea is enough to cause a problem.
Common Causes Of Hair Loss
Cats may overgroom for many reasons, but itching from allergies, fleas or mites, or even allergies to fleas and mites are some of the most common. In summary, the most common causes of hair loss in cats are as follows:
Environmental things such as dust, grass, pollen, trees, cotton, or wool, or things in food like chicken, or insect bites.
Its actually very common for cats to be allergic to flea bites! This is called Flea Allergy Dermatitis and is one of the most common reasons for hair loss in cats. Cats with this issue can be so allergic that a single flea bite can make them itch and have hair loss for weeks even though you never saw any fleas on them.
Having fleas and mites, even if theyre not allergic to them, can still cause itching and damage to hair and hair follicles, which leads to hair loss. There are several types of mites cats can get, including Mange and Scabies mites.
Stress and Anxiety
Another reason cats commonly over-groom and cause hair loss is stress and anxiety .
Cats love routine, and anything that disrupts routines can be stressful for them. Not all cats get along with other cats or other pets, and that can be a source of stress too. Many cats are predisposed to anxiety and stress, which can lead to excessive grooming and hair loss.
Other Causes of Hair Loss in Cats
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Hair Loss Culprit #: Fleas
Some cats are allergic to the saliva left behind by flea bites . While a flea-ridden cat will exhibit the typical symptoms of extreme discomfort and excessive itching and grooming, a cat who is allergic to their unwelcome friends will also experience patchy hair loss exposing raw, irritated skin, particularly on the neck and face. It is important to note that this allergic reaction can occur up to two weeks after all the fleas are gone. WebMD Pets says, Your pets veterinarian will recommend a topical, oral, or injected medication to ease your pets itching and inflammation. They also recommend giving your cat year-round treatment with flea prevention medication to stop the reaction from occurring in the future, but you shouldnt stop there. It is equally important to treat your home for fleas and eggs by cleaning the carpeting, bedding, furniture, etc.
How To Tell If Your Cat Has Fleas 8 Signs & Symptoms
Fleas can become a nasty infestation and pest on our feline friends. Fleas can affect both indoor and outdoor cats, so it is difficult to prevent either feline from catching fleas.
One of the most noticeable signs that a cat has fleas is excessive itching, but most cat owners will be surprised to know that there are a range of other ways to tell if your cat has fleas. Not every itchy cat has fleas, so it is important to learn how to tell through other symptoms whether your cat may be suffering from a flea infestation.
This article will give you detailed insight as to whether your cat may have fleas or not, by explaining common signs of flea infestations in cats and how you can deal with them.
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Ways To Prevent Hair Loss In Your Cat
There are a few preventative measures you can take to ensure that your cats skin and fur remains healthy and intact.
1. Give your cat a safe environment You should make sure youre promoting a safe environment for your cat at all times. If their hair loss is due to allergies, its important to identify what the allergen may be so you can eliminate it from your cats environment. If your cat spends time outdoors, you should use a preventative treatment to protect from mites, heartworm, fleas, and ticks.
2. Reduce stress If your cats hair loss is due to stress, you can do things to help lower their anxiety levels. Always ensure your cat has access to clean food and water. If youre undergoing a move or change, make sure to keep your cat on their normal schedule, so they experience a seamless transition. Try buying your cat something like a scratching post to help reduce their stress levels. Help keep your kitty engaged by enriching their environment with perches and interactive toys.
3. Feed your cat a high-quality diet Feeding your cat a high-quality diet can help keep their coat healthy. Cats need protein, complex carbohydrates, and healthy fats to help keep their coats shiny and intact. Omega-rich diets help prevent a cats shedding.
What Do Bald Patches On Cats Look Like
Bald patches on cats can take many forms, from a singular bald patch right down to the skin, to a more patchy loss of hair covering a larger area. How your cats bald patch presents will depend on the ailment thats causing it. Vets will usually be able to rule out certain causes just by looking at your cats fur and bald spots.
These bald patches on their skin can appear on any part of their body, from their tail right to their neck or ears depending on the cause. The nature of the hair loss, rather than the location, is usually the best guide to potential causes and there are no areas of the body that should cause you direct concern if you notice a bald patch.
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Home Remedies For Hair Loss In Cats
The specific treatment prescribed for your cats hair loss will primarily depend on what the veterinary staff diagnoses as the cause. Because many of the causes of feline alopecia do not share similar treatment methodologies, treatment plans will vary widely from cause to cause.
Cat parents should be aware that there is simply no treatment available in certain cases, such as those involving hereditary or congenital hair loss. A few common treatments for treatable feline alopecia may include:
Why Is My Cat Losing Hair
There are a few different reasons for cat hair loss. Some cats experience skin allergies, which can cause hair loss to occur. Parasites that bring about mange, and fungal issues like ringworm, are also common causes of cat alopecia, especially in younger cats or those with other health issues.
Nervous disorders can also cause hair loss in cats. Hormonal imbalances, specifically too much thyroid or increased levels of steroids in the body, may lead to cat hair loss. Another less common factor is heredity. Cat alopecia is common in older cats that are diagnosed with some types of cancer.
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Certain Breeds Are More Prone To Hair Loss
Some hairless cat breeds actually start out with fur, like the Donskoy, and then lose their hair over time. Other breeds, such as the Lykoi, Minksin, and Peterbald, are often partially hairless.
Furthermore, certain purebreds may carry genes that are more likely to cause alopecia in cats for instance, Siamese cats are more prone to hair loss on the outside of the ears.
Common Causes Of Hair Loss In Cats
Cats may lose hair for various reasons, and it can be quite stress-inducing trying to figure out the cause on your own Below we have provided a short list containing some of the most common causes of hair loss in cats:
Allergies are the leading cause of feline hair loss. Like humans, your cat may be allergic to certain foods, certain medicines, pollen, insect bites, or even dust! Cats will often lick an irritated area to ease an itch until there are bald spots in their fur. If this is the case, youre in luck! While this cause of hair loss is simple to treat, you may be giving them medicine for the rest of their life.
Lice, mites, ticks, and fleas can make your cat scratch and lick at their fur, too, potentially causing bald spots and even sores. When it comes to this cause, treatment is typically quick and easy. We suggest asking your vet which medicine they suggest.
Despite what the name might suggest, a ringworm is not a worm. It is, in fact, a fungal infection. And a scaly or rough ring of missing hair may be a sign of a ringworm infection. Your vet will be able to tell you for sure and should prescribe antifungal ointments or creams, medicated baths, or possibly even oral medication.
Stress and anxiety
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What Does A Cats Bald Patch Look Like
A bald patch on your cat can have a variety of appearances, and your cat may have multiple patches of fur loss or only one or two. Depending on the cause, you may notice scabbing in areas where your cat used to have fur. For example, an external parasite can cause both hair loss and scab in cats, as the parasite damages both the hair follicle and the skin in general.
If you just detect fur loss and their skin looks to be in fine condition, your cat may be suffering from stress-induced hair loss. Where the bald spots are located is a good indicator of what is causing your cats fur loss. The bald patches on your cat could be the result of overgrooming if theyre in the usual grooming places.
It is critical to seek the counsel of a veterinarian if you discover new bald spots or scabbing on your cats skin, regardless of the source. Although not all causes of bald patches in cats are dangerous, some can have long-term negative consequences for your cats health.
Ideas To Reduce A Cats Stress Level
If your cats lab results are all normal and there is no evidence of other causes, you may wonder what to do next to help your cat. Because psychogenic alopecia is based on emotional states of stress, anxiety and frustration, focus on minimizing stress for your kitty. Here are some ways to do that:
- Place perches and climbing posts in key areas, such as in front of a window. This may encourage your cat to express her natural tendency to rest on high surfaces and view her environment from above.
- To enrich her environment and offer privacy, give her access to some cardboard boxes and paper bags .
- Play with her using interactive toys, such as a feather wand, to stimulate her natural hunting instincts and help her burn off excess energy.
- Get a Feliway diffuser, which releases a synthetic version of a feline pheromone, a calming chemical substance that cats produce naturally.
- Other options for providing enrichment include scattering kibble around to encourage her to hunt for her food, offering nontoxic cat grasses or catnip, and giving her food puzzle toys.
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Do Fleas Make Fur Fall Out
The flea is more common in warmer months, and can be caught from other dogs or from flea eggs on rugs and bedding that have not been used for a long time. It is common for your dog to scratch or bite itself in order to relieve its itchy skin. The scratching and biting can cause the dog to lose hair and cause bald patches if not treated.
Can Fleas Decrease Appetite
What was the severe litable pest? An animal that exhibits this condition can become anemic because of large populations of fleas taking small quantities of blood from the cat. Cats lack of energy can make them lethargic and they might lose weight. Please check with your vet first to rule out all possible reasons.
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Symptoms Of Hair Loss In Cats
The most obvious symptom of alopecia is loss of hair in either patches or all over the body. Hair loss may not leave observable bald patches at first, but could begin with changes to the coat, including fuzzing, excessive shedding, or rough fur. Depending on the underlying cause of the loss, there may be various other symptoms observed, including those that do not appear related to the hair loss.
- Hyperpigmentation or darkened patches of skin
- Foul odor