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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: General
Satisfied Customers: 5784
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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Extreme dander

Resolved Question:

Extreme dander
Submitted: 9 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 9 months ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.
When we see an increase of dander in a cat's coat, we do need to consider a few issues. We can see this associated with a depression of the cat' grooming habits secondary to arthritis, and as an early hint of endocrine/organ diseases (ie hyperthyroidism, etc). As well, if the dandruff is severe, then you do want to make sure that it isn't actually the work of Cheyletiella mites, who are often referred to as 'walking dandruff'. Finally, we can see dander, scaling, and decreased coat quality arise with a deficiency in dietary essential fatty acids.
To help get the bottom of her extreme dander issues, it would be advisable to get your vet involved to help you pinpoint which of the above is the culprit. Otherwise, you might wish to try and rule these out individually. The mites can often be treated with spot on flea medications (Ie Frontline, Revolution, etc) if they are suspect.
In regards ***** ***** dander and helping improve her coat, you should consider some essential fatty acid (EFA) supplementation. EFA’s are the fats that are part of skin cells composition and play a role in their health and coat health. A general recommendation for dietary supplementation with essential fatty acids is based on supplying 1.5-2.5 ml fish oil for a 4kg cat. Alternatively, you can offer a small volume of fresh salmon weekly. If Luci doesn't like fish, then you can speak to your vet about alternative EFA therapies. Examples of oral EFA supplements include Viacutin or Yumega. As well, there is a spot on preparation that gets around a kitty even having to ingest these EFAs, called Allerderm.
If you feel that she is grooming less, is a bit stiff and the region of dander are in places that would require 'kitty yoga' to reach, then you may wish to consider trying glucosamine/chondroitin supplementation. This is a nutrient supplement that is available at your vets, pet shops, and health food stores (as capsules, liquids, and even treats). It works by aiding joint suppleness by helping cartilage replenish itself and blocking enzyme destruction of cartilage in the joint. Often we can find this helpful in animals with arthritis and can sometimes be just enough to take some of the discomfort away from her aching joints. Normally we give kitties 50mg glucosamine + 15mg chondroitin a day per 10 pounds of body weight. So, do consider trying this with her to help her address her grooming once again.
Overall, extreme dander can be a sign of a few different issues. The key is determining if her dander is due to a lack of coat care (where arthritis should be addressed and ruled out), due to parasites (which your vet can confirm or you can try treating with Frontline), or if the dander is the result of poor skin health (which the EFA's will aid). Therefore, in this case, I would advise ruling out each in turn. I would advise supplementing EFAs to reduce poor skin heath as a reason for her dander issue and making sure that some of the aforementioned underlying issues are not to blame for the state of Luci's coat.
I hope this information is helpful.
If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!
Dr. B.
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Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 5784
Experience: Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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