Common Skin Diseases in Cats


Abscess is a swollen body part inside the skin which carries an accumulation of pus. There are two types of abscesses in cats i.e. Dental Abscess and the fight abscess.

Dental Abscess is caused when the periodic disease of cat’s teeth is not examined or cured in time.

Fight Abscess occurs when the cats get a fight either offensively or just for fun. The wounds they get during the fight, if not cared well, will lead to the accumulation of pus in it or the Abscess.

Cat Abscess (No. 1 Pets)

Ear Mites

Otodectis Cynotis is the most common Mite responsible for the ear mites in cats. Ear mites are actually the habitation of the black mites in the outer ear and the ear canal of the cats. They are prolific in nature and can be multiplied over the time; this is one of the reasons that the kitten or the other cats at home cat be affected by the one affected cat of mites. This may lead to a dark dirty brown colored secretion from the ear of the cat in a minimum amount, and can be seen accumulated in the ear of the cat.

Ear Mites in Cats (No. 1 Pets)

Contact dermatitis

Contact dermatitis occurs often in cats when they are exposed to the places where the plants are sprinkled with some chemicals, the places where dyes are applied for some purpose or the cottage industries where the carpets are prepared. The areas of the cat’s body which get easily affected are the sparse ones, like armpits, chest, under legs, neck etc.

It causes the redness of the skin and the irritation which makes cat busy in itching at times.

Contact Dermatitis (No. 1 Pets)

Feline Acne

Feline Acne is a disease which is caused due to the overactive sebaceous glands or the oily hair on the skin of the cats. It leads to the formation of specks or comedones on the head, sides of the face or the lower lip of the cat. The skin looks dirty and can be seen easily. In severe cases it may cause the sparse haring of the cat.

Feline Acne (No. 1 Pets)

Flea Allergy Dermatitis

Flea are the blood sucking insects.

FAD or the Flea Allergy Dermatitis is caused by the Flea saliva. When the cats are subjected to the Flea they get spread on the skin and bite them which leads to the penetration of their saliva through the pores and causes severe itching to the cats. Even a small number of bites of the Flea fortnightly can cause the hypersensitivity of the cat’s skin and they can survive  from a half to full year.

Flea Allergy Dermatitis (No. 1 Pets)

Psychogenic alopecia/ over grooming

Psychogenic alopecia is the baldness in the cats that is cause due to the chronic stress, sometimes inherited on the genetic basis, nervous temperaments. For indoor cats it is caused because they are deprived of sunlight. Normally a cat spends almost 25% of their waking hours in grooming. Over grooming takes place due to the hindrance of cat from some sort of stress and they spend the time in grooming themselves.

Stress in the cat’s life comes from losing a family member, replacement of residence, a change in the owner’s schedule or the change in the appearance of their habitat. It’s not harmful in a controlled way but may lead to other diseases if goes on with the flows. It can lead to hair loss, ulceration and skin wounds.

Psychogenic alopecia (No. 1 Pets)

This is also termed as the psychological baldness because it has the psychological basis. But most of the times it is not that much dangerous for health. When the cats get some stress, some hormonal behavior leads them pulling the hair. The act of traumatizing the skin during the process causes hair loss, redness or rashes on the skin.


Ring Worm

Contrary to the name “Ring Worm” the disease is not caused by the worms but due to a type of fungus, termed as dermatophytes. This highly contagious disease spreads along the outer dead layer of the skin. Its growth can be seen on hair, nail or the skin. Ring worm is mostly found on the head, forelimbs and ears. In the start they may show a flaky dandruff type pattern but later on they will take the shape of rings or circles having baldness and a reddish appearance in the centre. They can spread through the body of the infected animals via spores that spread out in the environment and can have a lifetime of 24 months.

Ring Worm (No. 1 Pets)

In most of the cases the disease is self limiting i.e. it will be cured over time. It should be cured at time as it can be transmitted from one person to another. There are many types of the fungi around the world, of which the common ones are Microsporum Canis, Microsporum gypseum, or the Trichophyton specie.


Stud Tail

Stud tail, also known as Tail gland hyperplasia, is a common among the male cats specially those who are non-neutered. This is caused due to the hyper active glands or the over secretion of the sebaceous glands present on the body (to keep it moist or greasy enough to avoid dryness and irritation). The hyper activeness is more common in male cats because of their hormonal activity. Studs cause hair lose as the sebaceous glands are connected with the follicles of the hair. This leads to the brownish greasy appearance on the infected areas of the body which is caused because of the secretion of the brownish greasy material (known as sebum) from the sebaceous glands of the infected area.

Stud Tail (No. 1 Pets)


Just like the white skin human beings, the white fur cats are also supposed to have the sunburn. The reason is that the cats with dark hair or thick  fur have the skin protecting pigments which provide a shielding to them from the exposure to the sun rays but the cats with white or thin fur lack this shielding and can be easily exposed to the sunburn. These cats lack the skin protecting pigments. The areas which are equally likely to be infected in white or the dark cats are the ears and the nose.

Sunburn (No. 1 Pets)

In the start of the sunburn the skin of your cat may appear reddish but it will cause pain to the cat. If the problem is not examined or treated in the start, the sun rays of the next season will affect the already affected areas in a bitter way which leads to a type of cancer termed as Squamous cell carcinoma. If this fetal condition approaches due to the lack of care, the cat owner is supposed to pay a heavy charge for the removal of the cancerous cells but a proper care can save you from this hesitating condition.


Food Allergy

Before dealing with this type of allergy, there is a need to know about the food allergy and food intolerance. Food allergy is a considered as the skin allergy while the food intolerance is associated with the stomach disorders. Food allergy can cause the itching to the cats and in the severe cases it will lead to the formation of pimple like bumps on the skin and the water discharge, especially through the ears, swelling of the eyelids and tearing. Besides these symptoms, according to a research, almost 10 to 15 percent of the cats also get gastrointestinal signs.

What is allergent?

An allergent is a substance to which the cat is allergic. It is the main cause of allergy.

Sometimes the out season food can be a cause of allergy and same can be a sudden change in diet to which the cat’s stomach is not habitual. A hypersensitive immune system can also cause a normal food to be an allergent.

Food Allergy (No. 1 Pets)

How to discriminate the Food Allergy from Flea dermatitis?

When the cat gets food allergy the itching eruption takes place in the upper thoracic region i.e. head and the neck. While in case of Flea dermatitis, the itching is caused throughout the body.

It should be tried to find the cause of the allergy or the allergent and remove it from the regular feeding of the cat.


Yeast Infection

Yeast is a type of fungus that is usually present in all types of environments, in different ratios. It is a normal part of the body but the excessive growth of it may cause some diseases in human beings and the cats as well. The commonly intact yeast is divided into the following two categories;

  1. Candida
  2. Malassezia

Candida is normally found in the ear, nose and gastrointestinal structures of the cats. It also forms the normal flora in the mouth of the cats. It is a sugar digesting fungus and useful for the cats but the exceeding amount makes it more harmful than useful and the condition is termed as Candidiasis . The animals lacking in their immunity become its victim as the fungus in opportunity finder and spreads along the body of the animal, specially the moist or oily areas of the body where the sebaceous glands are excreting an extra amount of sebum. But sometimes it invades through the whole body area of the animals regardless of their age or category. The common symptoms of Candidiasis are itching, hair lose, dandruff and chin acne.

Yeast Infection (No. 1 Pets)

Malassezia is the other most common and body residing type of fungus. It is found nearly on all cats bodies in a small amount, especially on face. Just like the Candida its small amounts are harmless while the over growth can lead to skin diseases. The over growth of the yeast takes place due to the untreated skin problems and these give a space for the Malassezia spreading.



Like the yeast infection, sporotrichosis is also caused due to a certain type of fungus. But it is not that much common disease and leads to the worse results if not cured in time. The fungus responsible for its occurrence is termed as Sporothrix schenckii. Unlike Candida and Malassezia it is not a present on the skin of the victim but its habitat is the fertile soil, plants, sphagnum moss and the favorable environment. It is not navigated by the spores but majorly through the scratches or the bites of the other diseases animal. The outdoor or the indoor-outdoor cats are more likely to have this disease as they come across fights in fun or the serious ones with other cats which results as the wounds on their body. And if the cause of the bite or scratch is some infected animal, the healthy cat will also get contaminated with its germs and will fall into the disease. The common symptoms of this disease are the bumps filled with pus on epidermis which start with a mere wound on the skin and lead to the severe conditions of skin diseases of contagious nature.

Sporotrichosis (No. 1 Pets)


Prior to the discussion about lice, it should be quite clear that the lice for the cats are different from those of human beings. In fact the lice have specification in their habitats depending upon their species. Although the human lice are contagious but if you find a risk that your cat has gotten some of those, you need not to worry about their growth on your cat’s fur. Because the lice cannot survive on specie to which it is not habitual. Different species of lice have different needs to survive so neither a man’s lice  get its nutrition fulfilled through the cat’s blood  nor the vice verse.

Lice (No. 1 Pets)

There are two types of lice;

  • Blood sucking

These type of lice are termed as Anoplura. They stay on the body of the cat and get their nutrient through the blood. Actually they are fed upon the blood composing ingredients. It will create the itching problem.

  • Skin chewing

This specie of lice is termed as Mallophaga. They satisfy their hunger or the nutritional needs by directly chewing the skin of the cats. Which will cause your cat itching and biting it’s skin.

Lice don’t transmit through the environment as the fleas and ticks do but through the direct contact of the healthy animal with the infected animal. The other thing to be noted is, it’s not an easy task to get rid of lice because they leave their eggs (nit) on the skin of the cat which can be removed or destroyed through some veterinarian prescription.


Eosinophilic Granuloma

Eosinophilic Granuloma is not a particular disease but a group of disease causing ulceration and granulation. It is commonly known as the lick or linear Granuloma. Some of the researches also say that it is not a disease rather it can be defined better if we say that it is just a couple of reaction towards some diseases or most probably the allergic one’s. Eosinophilic is a weapon of the cats to fight with parasitic species but the problem goes on when it starts a fight against the allergen rather than the parasites. This problem is caused when a cat is having Eosinophilic Granuloma Complex. This may lead to the following probable types of skin diseases;

  • Eosinophilic granuloma
  • Indolent ulcers (rodent ulcers)
  • Eosinophilic plaque

Eosinophilic granuloma is usually elevated and elongated. They can appear on the back of the thighs, forelimbs, lips, chin and the nose of the cats. They can raise in the form of clusters and the lips can have it in the form of the swollen lower lip.

Eosinophilic Granuloma (No. 1 Cats)

Idolent ulcers appear as the erosion of the upper lip and can spread on the tongue.

Indolent Ulcer (No. 1 Pets)

Eosinophilic plaque appears as the raw and thick skin. They are intensely itchy and are found on the back of the thighs, belly or the neck region.


Eosinophilic plaque (No. 1 Cats)


Skin tumors

Skin tumor is a wide topic to deal with. Tumors are basically the cancerous cells that grow inside or outside the body of living organisms with roots or may have a group of them that will grow in the form of completing a cycle. As the tumors refer to the cancer so we will discuss it keeping in the scope of cancer. Tumors are also known as neoplasm, cancer, masses and they are formed due to the abnormal growth (over multiplication) of cells of the body. But the growth of these cells or tissues is of no use to that particular organism or cats in this case. Skin tumors are the most frequently noted neoplasm disorders in the domestic animals.

Skin tumors are caused majorly due to the exposure of the pets to the non-healthy environment. The tumors are classified into two categories;

  • Malignant
  • Benign  

Malignant tumors are the true cancerous ones and they harm the animal by their over growth. In severe cases they could be fatal. Approximately 50-65% of the tumors in cats are malignant in nature. The visible enlargement, bleeding ulceration and a sore/wound that does not heal are the signs of malignant tumors.

Benign are the non-cancerous cells growth along the skin or some other exposed parts of the body like nose and ear which are sparse in hair growth. The other cause is the light skin fur of the animals which is when exposed to the ultra violet radiations coming from the sun, get affected by it results in causing the growth of benign.

skin tumors (No. 1 Pets)

As the benign tumors are not the serious problems so we will discuss malignant tumor in detail. Following are the most common types of the malignant tumors;

  • Squamous cell carcinoma
  • Basel cell carcinoma

Squamous cell carcinoma grows within the squamous epithelium (a layer that forms the outer layer of the skin). Skin is the largest part of the body that gets exposed to the sunlight and hazardous environment so the tumor grows and is usually a resistant to healing. This disease can spread to such an extent that a cat can have as many as thirty sores on the skin, and this condition is called Bowen’s disease.

Basel cell carcinoma is among the 15-26 % of the skin cancers in cats. It originates in the one of the deepest layer of the skin, the basal epithelium cells of skin. It is usually found in the older cats. These can either be malignant or benign these can be 0.2 to 10 centimeter in diameter.






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