Over grooming

(15 Posts)
StrongBelwas Tue 11-Oct-16 21:04:11

A few weeks ago we adopted 2 rescue cats. One is extremely timid and had to be rehomed either to a home with an existing cat or at the same time as another cat. Our cat had died the month before so we needed to adopt 2 cats, but all the cats she was close with had already been rehomed. The shelter introduced her to another cat and they seemed to get on so we brought them both home. The second cat was only at the shelter for a few weeks (first one had been there nearly a year, one of the reasons I was determined to have her) and had come in with a really bad flea infestation, which they got under control. He'd lost loads of fur because of it and is covered in scabs. The shelter's vet gave them some oil capsules to help his skin, the last of those was given a couple of weeks ago. The vet saw him again a week ago for some injections.

He's flea free but he's grooming constantly and has managed to create a bald spot on his tail. I've moved the feliway diffuser to the room he's adopted to try and help his stress levels (he's not overly confident himself and had a bit of a panic yesterday on his first visit to the garden). I've tried to make sure he has somewhere to hide when he's particularly worried. I'm giving them good quality food, which they seem to enjoy. He like valerian so I've got him little valerian pillows and we have a good play with other toys.

The girl cat is doing really well, but I feel like I've let the boy cat down sad. Is there anything else I can do to help him?

Toddlerteaplease Tue 11-Oct-16 21:12:29

Is he in pain where the bald spot it? My parents cat did the same thing when he had a minor injury.

hollinhurst84 Tue 11-Oct-16 21:52:28

Drugs grin
Vet can give steroid injections. Ovarid can help or clomipramine - that one is known as clomicalm but get the generic as there's about £40 difference

StrongBelwas Tue 11-Oct-16 21:55:39

Toddler He doesn't seem to be! I'll double check though, thanks for the suggestion. He grooms his whole body, I think his scabs are itching. His hair is starting to grow back on his nose and his coat is starting to look a bit thicker, the new patch is the first one since we got him so it could be unrelated, you're right.

StrongBelwas Tue 11-Oct-16 21:57:53

hollin ahh that's great news! I was going to ring the vet the shelter used to ask for advice so will definitely ask about that! Thank you!

Autumnchill Tue 11-Oct-16 22:03:49

We've a 14 year old that has always over groomed. We call her scruff pot or stoner as she always looks like she's been dragged through a hedge backwards. She goes six monthly programme jabs which seem to help

Wolfiefan Tue 11-Oct-16 22:06:22

How do you know he's flea free (if you don't mind me asking!) What are you using on him?

hollinhurst84 Tue 11-Oct-16 22:11:28

Also if it's itchy type then they can give antihistamines too which may help
Trial and error really

StrongBelwas Tue 11-Oct-16 22:46:33

Autumn that pretty much describes him. To be honest the fact he looked so hopeless (down to facial expression) was one of the reasons we wanted him. He could star in the cat version of Oliver Twist.

Wolfie the shelter did most of the work in the 3 week they had him. He also had advantage last week (which I think still works? Last cat was unbelievably easy to keep flea free bless her). We've looked/combed and there's nothing. Other cat is also ok, but the shelter gave her broadline the day we picked them up. I'll try again tomorrow though in case I've missed something.

hollin thanks! Will give anything a try!

Toddlerteaplease Wed 12-Oct-16 11:50:25

My parents cat has feline esonophilic syndrome. Where he gets little bald lesions on his skin. A dose of steroids usually does the trick.

Weedsnseeds1 Wed 12-Oct-16 23:13:42

Previous cat had flea allergy, just one bite would leave her looking like she had mange, but steroid injections helped. Regular flea treatment mainly managed it but they still get the odd bite even if the flea then dies. Current cat over groomed the base of his tail for about 2 months when first adopted, but grew out of it as he gained confidence, although I know it can often be a difficult habit to break. He was just very nervous to start with and I think it was a comfort thing.

StrongBelwas Thu 13-Oct-16 17:51:46

His tail looks ok now, I don't know how! I think it could well be a comfort thing. Girl cat has decided to hide behind the settee (she's annoyed I turned the radiator down) and he's happier with a bit of space I think. Hopefully they'll both feel more settled soon! Thanks everyone! smile

stumblymonkey Thu 13-Oct-16 18:01:29

I also say...vets. My little Burmese cross over-grooms and ends up with bald patches.

It can often be a reaction to stress....if it is they will either prescribe anti-anxiety meds (yes, really) or a steroid injection. In my experience only the steroids work.

stumblymonkey Thu 13-Oct-16 18:04:07

Btw...he may be perfectly happy living with you, the stress would just be from needing to adapt to a new situation and environment. Cats get very attached to their environment and it takes a while for them to settle (basically once they've got their own smell over everything).

You might also want to get some Feliway which is a cat pheromone diffuser to make them calm that you plug in.

(I'm a Cat's Protection fosterer)

StrongBelwas Thu 13-Oct-16 18:48:07

Thanks monkey! I've got 2 feliway diffusers going now, one in the room they've decided to sleep in, one in the room we used as the bonding room where their food is (biggish house).

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