An increasing number of cat owners report their pets experiencing symptoms of hair loss, which, in the worst-case scenarios, can result in baldness. Hair loss, also known as alopecia, has its grounds in underlying health issues, such as parasites, bacterial or fungal infections, allergies, stress etc. The good news is that by changing your cat’s diet and ensuring they get the proper medical care, depending on the cause, you can reverse this nasty problem. Seasonal shedding is nothing to worry about, as the hair re-grows in a matter of months.
Any change in behavior, alongside with hair loss, is a reason to pay a quick visit to the vet. Almost all of the health conditions are completely curable as long as you are willing to provide the best life for your precious feline.
How Dangerous Are Parasites for Your Pet?
Internal parasites are not the main reason cats lose their hair, however, it’s often overlooked. Although some worms are not as dangerous and don’t lead to serious health conditions, it is important to react promptly. Your cat will nervously scratch the skin, infecting the agitated area, which will prolong the duration of the medical treatment. Fleas are known to be the main cause of alopecia, causing allergy dermatitis. Consulting a local vet will determine the correct cause and start the proper therapy is the way to help your cat get rid of that horrible itchy feeling. Extensive fur licking that causes reddened skin and hair fallout is most often the first sign of the presence of parasites.
Apart from fleas, cats are also susceptible to mites and lice, and although scientists still can’t agree whether those are transferable to people, what we know for sure is that the infection comes from the environment. An organic non-toxic common bug deterrent can be used to kill off the parasites. NaturPet’s Freeze is non-toxic and can be used on cat bedding, fur (avoid the face and careful not to allow cat to breathe in the powder), and your furniture.
Infections Are the Number One Cause of Alopecia in Cats
Bacterial and fungal infections are the leading cause of hair loss in cats. The symptoms can vary from skin irritation to complete hair loss. A notoriously famous fungal ringworm infection is widely spread among cats. The fungal spore gets into the skin, where it can stay for months without any symptoms. If your kitty has extra sensitive skin or a weaker immune system, you should pay closer attention. Some cats’ hair can become visibly unusual before it starts falling out in patches.
Your vet will play a key role in determining the infection type and prescribing the medications accordingly. The main goal is to clean the cat, thus getting rid of every spore on the skin. It is also important to mention that alopecia might be the only visible symptom of a more serious disease.
A perfect natural remedy for boosting your cat’s immune system and its ability to deal with a variety of symptoms is Dr. Maggie Skin & Coat. Great for treating both dogs and cats, its omega-3 rich fish oil, flaxseed oil, and olive oil with antioxidants formula can help prevent hot spots, hair loss, and speed up healing. The flaxseed oil, in particular, helps support brain and heart health and even improves digestion and relieving constipation.
Environmental Allergies Can Be the Trigger
Your little jaguars are allergy-prone animals. Their soft skin is hyper-sensitive, which is why they tend to lick the fur so often. Whether you are using common cleaning agents full of chemicals or dusting up on an irregular basis, your feline won’t feel great about it. Pollen, and other seasonal allergies, are out of your control but are not as common in the first place. Directly exposing your cat to dangerous substances such as fabric softeners can lead to hair loss, swelling, or irritation. Apart from that, cats often experience food allergies that have the same consequences. Switching to a healthier lifestyle, where a cat is placed in a safer environment and fed fresh, natural products can be a real game-changer in this case. Identifying the allergens can be done with the help of a professional veterinarian, who can assist your cat regrow the hair.
The Importance of Diet
Food allergies can be a temporary issue that you are dealing with. However, a cat who doesn’t get enough nutrients from food might develop a tendency for hair loss. Cat owners should ensure their pets don’t lack easily digestible proteins that directly influence the fur quality. Any sort of vitamin deficiency leads to many problems, starting from thinner hair to a complete hair loss. Your vet should be able to tell you the main cause after running the allergy tests. Cats are naturally born with a layer of thick fur, incredibly soft to the touch. If they eat a balanced diet consisting of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins their fur will grow strong and shiny. Healthy skin is, therefore, a product of a good diet. Changing the dietary preferences in the agreement with your local vet is sure to help your cat grow high-quality fur.
Can Cats Lose Hair From Stress?
Unlike their big ancestors who freely roam large fields in Africa, cats are most often indoors. They don’t get as much opportunity to explore the world and being curious as they are, restricted living space can influence their mood. Our kitties have feelings too and are anxiety-prone just like us fellow humans. The question is then, how can cats lose hair from stress? Well, there is a state called psychogenic alopecia, where cats compulsively bite and lick their skin. This causes them to lose their fur. Some breeds are known to have more nervous personalities than the others, but rather than going for antidepressants, try altering the living conditions by providing your cat a royal treatment that it deserves.
A perfect solution to helping your feline friend de-stress is through NaturPet Be Calm. It uses all-natural ingredients to reduce anxiety and stress in both dogs and cats. Plus, it lowers blood pressure, heart palpations, and muscle tension so your pet can get back to feeling like themselves. Valerian root is a key component in the formula which helps relieve tension, anxiety, and overly excitable states.
How Much Grooming Is Too Much?
Speaking of obsessive grooming, that might be another cause of alopecia. Licking their fur helps cats relax and beat boredom. If done repeatedly, it becomes a form of self-harm, which most often leads to various infections. Grooming is a process that cats have mastered to dispose of skin debris, but not every cat can handle the daily doses of parasites that they eventually intake through the tongue. Apart from the hair loss, which is mainly caused by the above-mentioned high-stress levels in the body, this might be the beginning of digestive problems as well. The solution then is to address the underlying behavioral issues that made your kitty anxious in the first place.
The Psychological Background of Hair Loss
Stress and overgrooming are both psychological issues that can affect your cat’s health and mood. However, your feline can continue excessively scratching the skin even after the initial problem, such as an inflammation or infection, was cured. This is just one of the ways that your cat is showing their dissatisfaction. They might feel unhappy due to numerous reasons related to the physical changes in the house or even your emotional state. Sometimes, the problems can be as small as cosmetic products that their small body can’t tolerate.
Imminent Dangers of Hormone Imbalances
An overactive thyroid is a more serious problem that affects cats. Apart from hair loss, hyperthyroidism is known to cause changes in appetite and blood in the stool. This hormonal imbalance can have devastating consequences if not treated, so ensure you react on time by consulting with a vet. Prepare your cat for a thorough physical examination that involves a blood test and scintigraphic imaging. The therapy usually consists of hormone balancing drugs, and a complete dietary regimen change. This disease is curable as long as the feline gets the medication that will, in turn, relieve their anxiety and increase their overall metabolism. Stimulating hair growth hormones is a potential solution to helps cats regain the ability to regrow the fur.
Tips and Tricks on Raising a Healthy Feline
In some cases, hair loss can be a medical state, which calls for immediate actions. However, in other cases, such as pregnancy or a natural shedding process, it’s a temporary phase. Your cat will almost always be able to regrow the fur once the stress level hormones go down, and the medical conditions ameliorate. Cats are very sensitive animals, both physically and mentally, and small changes in the surroundings can activate their defense mechanisms.
Noisy drilling, moving houses, construction works, or a small thing as a loud vacuum cleaner can set off their fight or flight response. Felines hear higher pitches than us humans, causing them to experience the surroundings differently. Whether there is a new guest in the house or another pet in the yard, cats can be quite unpredictable if they feel the visitors have come to take away their place or, even, food.
Your cat’s emotional cup should never be empty. The main reason cats undergo alopecia is rooted in stress. If you want to raise a healthy kitty, then you should start with the basics. These animals require a healthy diet which can be found in natural products. Also, make sure you are not using chemicals in the house, as they are particularly sensitive to artificial substances. Natural and durable materials, as well as enough space for play and exploration, are also some of the ways to ensure your cat’s emotional cup is overflowing.