The itchy cat

Causes of and treatments for non-flea itchiness in cats

source: Ian Mason
Feline Advisory Bureau vol 38, 2 2000
starts p52, 2 pages long

Cats used to suffer itchiness mainly due to fleas, but this has changed as flea control has improved, and attention has now focused on other causes. Cats may show that they itch by excessive grooming causing hair loss. Hair loss in dogs and humans is nearly always linked to hormonal problems, but cats rarely get hormonal skin problems. Cats may also have a type of greasy dandruff, or lesions that can appear to eat away their upper lips, or they may suffer from reddened exuding patches on their trunks. Fleas can cause these problems, but they can also be caused by other factors, such as food or other allergies, mites, insect bites, or bacterial infections. Itching could be linked to food additives, and a change in diet may help, especially to home-cooked food. Antihistamines may help with allergies, and antibiotics with bacterial infections.