The dermatitis in cats is a skin condition, it is not a disease and it is not fatal. However, if your cat has it, it can be very inconvenient for him or even very painful if not treated quickly. Also called eczema, this inflammation causes severe itching in the animal, which can cause secondary infections. Sometimes, with allergic dermatitis, the feline can suffer from an asthma attack.
Causes of dermatitis in cats
Dermatitis in cats can have many causes. It can be caused by flea bites, it is the flea bite dermatitis (DAPP), it manifests itself especially in autumn.
The allergies are among the factors causing inflammation. Among them, there are allergies to certain materials such as nickel or plastic, or even food allergies. Indeed, your cat may be allergic to certain foods or intolerant to gluten, present in most kibble. Dairy products are also one of the main foods that can cause inflammation. Also, if your cat suffers from another condition, it may be that he is allergic to his medication and thus has dermatitis.
A parasitic dermatosis or a autoimmune dermatosis are also causes of dermatitis, just like ringworm. Finally, eczema can also appear in the event of hormonal imbalance, especially during periods of reproduction. Stress is also harmful for cats who can scratch excessively in order to relieve stress.
Symptoms of feline dermatitis
You can detect a feline dermatitis by the appearance of skin lesions. Indeed, crusts or papules appear in specific places: its legs, back, neck or around its mouth. Also, when a cat has dermatitis, it tries to relieve its itching by licking itself frequently or by biting the place that itches, pulling out the hair by dint of insisting on the area.
A atopic dermatitis, also called atopic eczema, can be identified by a veterinarian. In this case, the cat will create lesions by dint of scratching. These lesions are recognizable by hot areas with red spots, these are the places where the itching is the strongest. Then you may observe yellowish blisters and scabs, and then dandruff over the irritated areas. This is how the skin dries up and the itching reappears in chronic dermatitis.
Cures for cat dermatitis
Specific care in case of dermatitis
It is quite complicated to detect dermatitis in cats, especially when it is due to a food allergy. Indeed, it is advisable for the veterinarian to set up a diet called foreclosure diet, which aims to remove one food at a time in order to find out which one is causing the animal’s allergy. This plan is spread over a minimum of one month. To identify the cause of the condition, it is therefore necessary to proceed by elimination.
When the veterinarian suspects atopic dermatitis, the animal’s immunoglobulin level should be monitored by blood work in the veterinary laboratory. Usually, eczema can be treated very well and depending on the cause, appropriate treatment is implemented. When the dermatitis stage is advanced, the cat becomes itchy to the point of creating lesions. For this, a drug treatment is set up to relieve it, orally or locally. The veterinarian prescribes corticosteroid ointments and antihistamine creams. However, their use is only for a short time because of the many side effects they cause.
If the eczema is caused by food allergy or malnutrition, a change of diet is recommended. Your cat’s inflammation and itching will subside through a hypoallergenic diet and healthier. If you prefer a natural treatment for your pet, know that homeopathy is effective for eczema problems. Indeed, you can apply green clay poultices to the inflamed areas and complete this operation by taking homeopathic medicines prescribed by the veterinarian. The itching will subside as well. Herbs are also very effective for eczema, including fumitory, wild pansy, and burdock which have anti-inflammatory and antipruritic properties.
Of course, if the dermatitis is caused by fleas, a antiparasitic treatment is set up to eliminate the insects responsible for the affection, both on its coat and in your home.
Dermatitis prevention guide
Above all, it is essential to take care of the environment of your cat. He must live in a clean place, his bed must be maintained. Use dewormers, flea products, and remember to treat all the animals in your home so they don’t contaminate each other.
In the case of a food allergy, there is not much you can do except to be patient and stick to the avoidance diet until the end. Either way, eating a healthy diet can lower the risk of dermatitis. Check on your cat is important, especially his behavior, because if he scratches or licks himself often, it should alarm you. Several factors can be the cause of dermatitis in cats. It is easily treated, but requires special attention to avoid any complications.
Multitudes of inflammatory factors can cause dermatitis in cats : food allergy, insect bite or hormonal imbalance. It’s important to find the origin of the problem by several tests at your veterinarian in order to provide appropriate treatment for your cat. Simple preventive measures can reduce the risk of your pet developing eczema, such as maintaining his clean environment or take care of his balanced diet. Paying attention to your behavior is very important in order to detect the signs of dermatitis and take care of it quickly. Then, in case of attack, a follow-up with the veterinarian and a good application of the treatments will relieve your cat.