A healthy animal has a beautiful thick coat that shines in the sun and molts naturally. Thinning of hair, uniform or focal alopecia always has its causes and indicates that pathological processes occur in the cat's body. In order to restore the normal condition of the coat, it is first necessary to find out why the cat is balding.
Manifestations and Symptoms
To understand the cause of baldness, it is necessary to establish with what intensity this phenomenon progresses and what accompanying symptoms appeared in the animal.
The main signs are as follows:
- uniform thinning of the coat throughout the body;
- bald spots on the abdomen, on the muzzle, paws, on the ears, at the base of the tail or along the entire tail;
- redness and peeling of the affected areas;
- signs of anxiety (constant licking of sore spots, nervous tail wagging, etc.);
- ulcers, ulcers, bumps or blisters on bald spots.
Identification of these symptoms requires immediate attention to the veterinarian, as baldness can quickly worsen.
The problem of baldness in cats is equally relevant for both sexes, bald head can form at any age and become a consequence of factors of a non-pathological nature or a certain disease.
These factors do not require intervention, because immediately after the cessation of their action, the situation is leveled and the state of the animal is restored. A consultation with a veterinarian helps to understand them, and sometimes more detailed tests and diagnostics may be required.
Age-related baldness is always more pronounced in shorthair cats that have a dark color, since bald spots shine through due to the light color of the skin. First of all, the areas above the eyes are balding, but there are no redness on the skin that occurs during pathological processes.
There are two age peaks when a cat goes bald. The first of these occurs at the age of 14–20 months, at which time the structure of the coat changes during molting. The second stage is manifested in old animals with a weakened body. A natural decline in immunity and a deterioration in metabolism can provoke an increased thinning of the coat, which, most likely, will not return to its previous levels.
Pregnancy and Feeding
Sometimes during pregnancy and feeding kittens, the cat loses a significant part of the coat. This leads to both hormonal changes that are actively occurring in connection with the upcoming or begun motherhood, and insufficient intake of the necessary substances, vitamins and trace elements that are consumed in the production of milk.
After the feeding stops, the pet will again become smooth and fluffy. Probably, the veterinarian will prescribe her vitamin support therapy, with which the situation will even out even faster.
The consequences of taking medication
A pet may become bald after taking certain medications. This side effect is not frequent, but it must also be taken into account. Medicines that cause similar skin reactions are most often atimicrobial or antibiotic. Substances that lead to deterioration of the coat:
Intramuscular injection response
The local center of baldness often appears in the place where the injection was made. Moreover, such a reaction appears even 2-3 months after the manipulation. Together with this symptom, compaction of the correct form and hyperpigmentation are sometimes observed. In 2-3 weeks this condition resolves on its own.
After a strong nervous shock, moving, change of owner or other stresses, the cat may begin to bald. Loss of hair in such cases occurs evenly throughout the body, but after the emotional state of the animal is restored, baldness ceases. In order for this to happen faster, a specialist will recommend taking sedatives.
It looks like crusts on bald spots in the ears and nose. It occurs in response to the influence of sunlight on the skin of the pet, often occurs in light and white breeds. It runs faster when the pet is kept in conditions when it is less likely to be exposed to direct rays of light.
Diseases and pathological causes
Identification of such factors requires the appointment of laboratory tests, and after that - drug therapy or surgery.
Males are more susceptible to adenitis. It appears in the form of crusts on the ears and in the head area. A characteristic sign of adenitis is that the hair in the affected areas pulls out without effort, while the animal does not show signs of pain or discomfort.
Relief can bring the use of special cat shampoos, which slightly slow down the development of the disease at the time of diagnosis.
Allergic reactions in the form of partial loss of hair in the back, tail and face occur on certain types of feed, materials, chemicals that are used for cleaning the house or hygiene products for caring for animals. In this case, there may be concomitant symptoms in the form of itching, redness and tubercles on the skin.
To identify the cause, allergic tests are performed. Treatment includes antihistamines, and in the case of food allergies, a partial or complete change in diet is required.
It manifests itself in the form of hyperfunction of the thyroid gland with the production of increased doses of hormones. Diagnosis includes a mandatory hormone test. Symptoms are the intensive licking of balding areas, which leads to increased inflammation in the lesions.
Treatment involves radioiodine therapy or surgical removal of an enlarged part of the gland.
Fleas or ticks
The presence of parasitic insects can cause not only itching, but also baldness. In the initial stages, it is invisible, but with the transition of the disease to a serious stage, the symptoms worsen.
Based on histological examination, the veterinarian will prescribe synthetic pyrethroids to get rid of bald spots.
The infection affects the hair follicles, which makes it fall out. The largest lesions with folliculitis are observed on the head, in the neck and on the muzzle of the cat, later they can move to the back, stomach and base of the tail. The disease is accompanied by severe itching.
To detect an infection, a skin scraping and biopsy are taken, after which a long-term antibiotic treatment is prescribed.
There may be several reasons for the development of polymorphic erythema:
- reaction to medication;
- oncological diseases, etc.
The cat balds on the face around the mouth, on the ears, in the groin and armpits. Vesicles and ulcers may appear, often the temperature rises, apathy occurs.
After the diagnosis, treatment is prescribed aimed at eliminating the underlying disease and restoring normal skin and wool.