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Cat has licked all fur off his belly - any advice?

(16 Posts)
twirlyagogo Sun 23-Sep-12 09:11:16

My almost-10 yo male cat has a completely bald belly where he has licked off all the fur. He has done this once before, but it grew back (naturally, with no intervention).

However, this time, not only has he licked himself bare, but his continued licking has resulted in some rough bits appearing which I would think will only get worse as he continues to do it.

He is a smooth-haired moggy, and doesn't need grooming. He is very, very clean and it's almost as if he's just over-groomed himself.

Nothing has changed in his world - no other pets have arrived, no house move, no new children, no change of food. He seems perfectly happy and content, still wants lots of cuddles, still goes out when he feels like it, but I'm rather worried that this bald patch will get worse if he keeps cleaning it.

Does anyone have any advice or suggestions for natural remedies?

Thank you!

Kormachameleon Sun 23-Sep-12 09:12:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 23-Sep-12 09:56:19

Number one on the list of causes of this I am afraid is fleas and 90 percent of times I will find a flea on this cats. I would recommend a really good flea product like Advocate, Stronghold or Seresto applied like a religion on the day it is due. Next treating the house with Accliam or Indorex that have flea knockdown, residual larvicide and kill house dust mites.
Stress is also a part of this and it maybe an interaction outside you can not appreciate so getting Feliway plug in can help a lot.
In older cats this can be pain related so assessment by a vet for arthritis in the older cat is a good idea.
Finally about 1percent of cats have a serious allergy that is identified on blood testing in 14 years I have seen one food allergy and one house dust mite allergy,
My own tail less wonder was self epilating her tail on arrival from rescue centre immediate application of Seresto collar, re treating my house with Acclaim just in case and switching the Feliway back on and she has stopped doing it and has a hairy stump now.

GreatGooglyMoogly Sun 23-Sep-12 09:57:06

Our cat used to do this due to loneliness/ boredom - she stopped once my Dad retired and was at home a lot. She was a very anxious type of cat though!

crackcrackcrak Sun 23-Sep-12 09:58:34

Yup. Fleas im afraid. It fixed us with my tabby as we never saw any. Vet explained they just groom them off and this results in the bald patches. My cat used to make the backs of her legs bald - she has fluffy bits there so perhaps the fleas favoured that area.
You need to deflea and see what happens but odds on its that sad

twirlyagogo Sun 23-Sep-12 10:38:40

Thank you so much for all the quick replies - didn't think I'd get any on a Sunday morning!

He doesn't have fleas as far as I can tell - we 'do' him regularly on Advocate. I'm here all the time as I work from home, so he can have contact with me when he wants, and we live in a rural area which means he can be busy if he likes too.

So, that leaves a Feliway plug in (will google that), stress from something I don't realise, pain (he seems to run and jump just as he did when he was a kitten though), or an allergy?

In terms of the flea issue, can they get resistant to one treatment? If so, maybe my first thing should be to change that. I'm loathe to go to the vet tbh, as I've never had good experiences, so if there is anything I can do for him, I'd rather try.

PheasantPlucker Sun 23-Sep-12 10:48:29

Was interested in this. We have two cats, and one is currently almost bald on two parts of her back. She did this before, and the vet said it was 'excessive grooming' due to stress (we had just moved house, and the cat hadn't taken too well to the arrival of dd2!)

She is now bald again. But I am confused re fleas - her brother is not doing this, not scratching, we can see no sign of fleas, and none of us humans have been bitten.

Maybe I do need to get one of those plug-in things again?

Vickles Sun 23-Sep-12 10:54:24

I've heard of licking hair off can be linked with stress... But, I'm no expert. Poor little thing. Hope you eat it sorted soon. x

Lonecatwithkitten Sun 23-Sep-12 14:15:29

You need to be religious whatever flea treatment you are doing never let it even go a day over, as I said earlier it is always worth doing the house again. These cases are often multifactorial, but stress and fleas are by far and away the biggest factors.

Smellslikecatspee Sun 23-Sep-12 17:01:35

Hi had same with one of my cats thought it was flea allergy. She was fullof flaes when we gother and although it was over 10 years ago I thought it looked the same

Took her to the vet who stated that if I was frontlining her as I 'claimed' she couldn't have fleas. No way could the Fleas develop an immunity. And I was. it got to a point, well I have 2 cats, she was always more of an indoor, back garden only if its dry and warm. He's a wander everywhere and anywhere type, but she was so stressed I actually thought about keeping him in incase he was bringing fleas hom,e even though he was fine.

Scrubbed/steamed etc the house from top to bottom, still she had bad skin and getting to the point of biting herself.

It got to a point, well I have 2 cats, she was always more of an indoor, back garden only if its dry and warm. He's a wander everywhere and anywhere type, but she was so stressed I actually thought about keeping him in incase he was bringing fleas home even though he was fine.

She was so unhappy, losing weight so stressed, we were back and forward to the vets, it was silly

Anyway a friend eventually said you know what what harm will using a different flea treatment do?

So I bought and used Advantage, and the change within 2 days was amazing.

She was back to her full coated/ sheding every where self within a month, though as I said in 2 days she was clearly happier and eating much better.

I know one story doesnt make data but its worth considering

even as just elimation of any other causes

I now have a supply of both Advantage and Frontline, so if the same starts to happen I can get in quick.

BTW we never saw fleas/ got bit/ other cat fine, she seems to one of thoes that the fleas like, in the way midges never bite me, but mozzies love me I am necter to them.

Smellslikecatspee Sun 23-Sep-12 17:03:38

What the flip happened there?

Sorry for bad grammer and repeating, no wine involved (yet) honest!

twirlyagogo Sun 23-Sep-12 17:40:40

I think it's worth a try smellslike and will get some different treatment tomorrow. He isn't due some until start of the month though - so does anyone know if I should just leave things until then?

StrangeThings Sat 28-May-16 08:53:21

I know that this may sound very simplistic but try giving your cat a good bath if he or she hasn't had one for awhile, and make SURE to rinse all the soap off very well.

I was having this same problem with my cat and was beside myself to get her to stop licking her belly. Finally I realize that perhaps she is licking her belly in desperation, because the rest of her that she cannot reach, like her back for instance, she instead licks her belly and legs since that is all that she can reach!

I gave her a bath, and put her into one of those large plastic laundry tubs full of warm water and used the shower sprayer and dunked her in it several times *not her head, of course). In this way I made sure to get all the soap off. I refilled the tub more than once. Because dried on soap that doesn't get rinsed off can also cause itching.

Also make sure the cat's rear end is clean, because if they are overweight and cannot reach it to clean it, it will itch and they will instead lick what they CAN reach, being their belly and legs.

Again, make SURE to keep your floors clean, dust free, because we don't realize this but cats are walking right down there IN IT and they can be allergic to dust and/or dust mites! But don't use anything with harsh chemicals on your floor or it could cause an allergic reaction. Make sure also to keep the places where they sleep clean, like couches, kitty baskets, etc. Try also to keep the dust out of their litter tray. scoop up the ground up fine dust out of it and throw it away because when they kick up the dust when using the litter, it gets on their belly!

Anyway, my kitty went from being miserable and licking her belly almost raw to a peaceful, serene happy kitty in just one day, simply because I gave her a good bath and rinse, and cleaned up the floors! Now I am going to make sure to do that more often.

JennyFBSC2017 Tue 20-Dec-16 00:08:16

Hello, I need some advice on our kitten what is a year old now. She seems to be licking so hard that she makes her fur come out she started to be removing from her belly up would now and she started to do it on left hip she losing her fur.
We have 3 others cats I don't know if they are bullying her which is making her stressed or something that she is uncomfortable about.

OzzieFem Tue 20-Dec-16 01:46:51

I agree with Smellslikecatspee my cats were treated with Advocat for months, then I noticed that after one particular dose they all started scratching like mad and licking themselves that day. So I stopped using it and changed to another brand and they have been fine since.

Araminta99 Tue 20-Dec-16 06:09:40

My cat had bald patches, we think it was an allergic reaction. She had a steroid injection at the vet, we changed her food brand to gourmet perle, and gave her advocate and she's fine now.

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