Scabies in cats: cause, symptoms, treatment

Scabies in cats is caused by a mite and can also infect people. To know all the details see this article.

You have almost certainly heard of this contagious skin disease, which is caused by a mite and is one of the most common skin problems in cats. Discover the characteristics of this very common pathology: its symptoms, its possible treatments and the prevention to consider, for scabies in cats.

Cause and contagion of scabies in cats

Scabies is a contagious skin disease caused by a mite, which is one of the most common external parasites in cats, which is a very small, almost microscopic, spider-like animal. Scabies is characterized by intense itching, albeit variable, which even causes lesions on the cat’s skin.

It is a disease that may have followed in other species, including humans. It is infected by contact and causes a series of symptoms that are easily recognizable. The moment they are observed, you should promptly take the cat to the vet. There are different types of mites that develop different types of scabies, they are:

  • Cati notoedres mite: This type of mite only affects cats and generates the most common type of mange in felines. It begins by affecting only the cat’s head and ears, but can later affect the entire body. The type of scabies generated by this mite is called notoedric mange
  • Otodectes cynotis mite: This type of mite causes otitis in felines. It not only affects cats but can also affect dogs. The type of mange generated is called Sarna Otodecticaes.
  • Cheyletiella blakei mite: This type of mite is similar to dandruff. Due to the lack of knowledge of this parasite, it can go unnoticed and mistaken for simple dandruff. This type of mite generates Queiletielosis scabies.
  • Demodex mite: This type of mite is common in dogs, although it can also affect some cats. They produce a type of scabies known as demodectic mange, which is the least contagious of the previous ones.

Symptoms of cat scabies

Although the types of scabies are different, the disease causes the same symptoms, regardless of the mite involved. The symptoms detected are:

  • Ear drainage: When scabies touches the ears, the cat produces a large amount of brown ear wax. If nothing is done, the animal develops ear infections and its eardrum can be punctured.
  • Persistent itching: the cat scratches itself very frequently, irritating its skin.
  • Hair loss: severe itching and scratching causes hair to fall out in the affected areas.
  • Thickening of the epidermis: The cat’s skin thickens and becomes covered with pink-brown spots.
  • The formation of pimples and scabs: The infected area is red and hot and can become covered with pimples and small red spots and scabs, such as eczema.
  • Skin lesions: the skin may have more or less deep lesions.
  • A feeling of restlessness: the cat with scabies is stressed by the presence of mites and tends to move or otherwise remain in position.

Diagnosis and treatment

The veterinarian for the diagnosis will start with the observation of the general condition of the cat and will follow up on an examination mainly of the skin and this means that it is best to consult the doctor at the slightest symptom to allow for quick treatment. A blood test will subsequently confirm the diagnosis before establishing appropriate treatment.

To confirm his pre-diagnosis, the vet will need to scrape the epidermis to study small samples under a microscope and accept the nature of the parasites. Your vet will establish appropriate treatment for the type of scabies diagnosed. Scabies is fundamentally not easy to treat, which is why experts recommend that you go to your vet quickly as soon as the first symptoms appear.

An advice that we feel we can give and avoid establishing the care of the cat by ourselves, even if it has already been sick, as it could be affected by another form of scabies and profane intervention, could worsen the situation.

In any case, it is always advisable to isolate the sick cat to avoid any contagion and thoroughly disinfect its environment in its entirety, using products suitable for eliminating mites in cats. The treatments provided to cure a sick cat are:

  • The use of sprays, shampoos, powders or aerosols intended to neutralize parasitic mites.
  • The shearing of the coat , with the administration of treating lotions and ointments.
  • The application of pipettes dedicated to the elimination of scabies.
  • Injection of skin solutions.
  • Tablets to eliminate parasites present in the cat’s body.

Prevention of scabies in cats

The excellent way to avoid fighting a disease like scabies in your cat is to apply prevention methods. The only preventative method against scabies is to properly give your cat parasite control treatments in your cat every month.

Pipettes are ideal for keeping away ticks and fleas, but also these tiny microscopic parasites that are mites. Constantly check your cat’s health, avoid contact with other animals, especially if they are infected or may be infected, and keep their space clean and healthy.

Remember to get your cat vaccinated every year and during this visit take the opportunity to check the general health of the feline.

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