Skin asthenia in cats: what is Ehlers-Danlos syndrome in cats

Skin asthenia in cats: a hereditary disease that can affect all breeds of feline. Here are the symptoms that should not be underestimated.

Adopting a feline means taking care of him. Unfortunately, there are many diseases that can affect our four-legged friends and some of them are rare and often hereditary.

For example, feline skin asthenia, a congenital pathology that makes the cat’s skin fragile. But let’s see together what are the causes, symptoms and treatment of cutaneous fatigue in cats.

Skin asthenia in cats: causes and symptoms

The cat’s skin is healthy if it has these characteristics: excellent elasticity, hardness and strength.

These characteristics are possible thanks to a good functioning of collagen. When there is a lack of collagen in the cat, there is the presence of feline cutaneous asthenia also called Ehlers-Danlos syndrome.

There are two forms of skin asthenia in cats:

  • Autosomal recessive;
  • Autosomal dominant.

This pathology weakens the cat’s skin, making it less elastic. Aesthetically, the kitten, even a few months old, looks older.

However, this disease does not only involve aesthetic problems but also various problems that make the feline’s health fragile.

In fact, in addition to the fragility of the skin and consequently the presence of wounds that take time to heal, internal problems can also occur such as the hernia of the perineum and the diaphragmatic hernia in cats.

The main symptoms of cutaneous fatigue in felines  are:

  • Loose abdomen skin
  • Hyperextensibility of the skin
  • Skin ulcers
  • Brittle joints
  • Brittle bones
  • Wounds on the body

Skin asthenia in cats: diagnosis and treatment

To diagnose cutaneous fatigue in cats, the veterinarian will begin a clinical examination with histological examination.

The specialist may also perform the skin extensibility test, which is to lift the cat’s skin to show the maximum level of extension.

In addition, there may also be differential diagnoses, the main one being the acquired skin fragility syndrome which is caused by various pathologies such as:

  • Hepatic lipidosis in cats
  • Cat diabetes
  • Feline FIP
  • Cushing’s syndrome in cats
  • Hepatic insufficiency


Being a genetic disease, cat skin asthenia cannot be treated. However, some vets recommend taking vitamin C to clinically improve the feline’s medical situation.

It is very important that cats with this pathology are not in contact with other animals or objects that could cause injury to the cat. It is also necessary to cut the feline’s nails to prevent scratching from causing injury.

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