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Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 882
Experience:  Relief Veterinarian at Aloha Animal Hospital
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I have taken our cat to 3 vets and no one can tell us why he

Customer Question

I have taken our cat to 3 vets and no one can tell us why he licks himself so his hair comes off and has terrible sore s. I have put a coat on him so he can,t lick his belly. He is an outside barn cat and is 14 years old. We have put a collar on him for 4 months but it doesn,t stop him from this aggressive licking. I went to the pet store and they said to try this cat lick as it calms them. He licks that off but he isn,t anxious . i wrap his legs and put poly on everyday. His kidneys are good and has been de wormed and in general good health. I tried putting tobasco sauce on but he licks that off as well. So far we have spent over 8 hundred dollars and nothing works.I would appreciate any help you can give us. Sincerely Sharon ***@******.***
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Drhollowayvet replied 1 year ago.
Hello this is Dr. Holloway but you can call me Dr. H.I understand you have a cat named Gizmo who is extremely pruritic (itchy). Itchy cats that lick themselves to the point of sores typically have a skin parasite that is stimulating their allergic response system which causes licking. Now there are a number of parasites that can do this and some are not even visible by the naked eye; including: demodexx mites, ringworm, lice, and of course our friendly fleas. This is where I would look first when trying to find out what exactly is causing Gizmo's extreme itchiness. I don't know the extent of diagnostics that were already done for Gizmo at the veterinary office, but generally we start with a *skin scrape/cytology and a fungal culture. This will usually detect all the parasites mentioned above if they are at play here. Now if these parasites have been completely ruled out with the skin cytology/fungal culture testing, then we have to look for more in depth, immune related causes of itching; including: sebaceous identities, staph infections, allergic dermatitis, eosinophilic granulomas, etc. The best diagnostic test for these conditions is a *skin punch biopsy. This is a relatively straight forward test that involves taking a 2-4 mm punch biopsy of the skin and sending it off for analysis. This test is considered to be a gold standard test because it looks at the cell morphology and explains in detail what abnormalities are present and the best course of treatment to resolve it. In regards ***** ***** options for Gizmo, a bulk of that of course depends on the results of the diagnostic tests mentioned above. However, there are some treatments you can start now to give Gizmo some relief.1) Antihistamine +/- Steroids - your vet can prescribe this for Gizmo and steroids can be used only if demodexx and ringworm are completely ruled out as potential causes.2) Fish oils- EFA and DHA are active ingredients in pet formulated fish oils which have natural anti-inflammatory properties on the skin itself, which is a main driving force for the itching3) Topical shampoo- the Duoxo shampoos and Dermoscent Essentias 6 spot-on (over the counter) are great topical relief products for itchy skin. They are formulated to flush the hair follicles and provide topical relief. Which shampoo your pet would most benefit from depends entirely on how the skin currently looks (i.e. dry skin vs oily skin vs infected skin, etc). If you would like my recommendation on which one to start then just send me a photo of your cats haricoat and I can help point you in the right direction, or just ask your pets veterinarian. I would love to continue the conversation about the recommendations above if you have any further questions. Just reply in the box below. These recommendations are almost guaranteed to find the underlying problem for your cats itchy skin. I understand you have already spent a great deal of money and if you would like to add in which tests were already ran on your pet and what the results are, we can discuss those as well. I will also mention here that baseline bloodwork (CBC/Chemistry/Thyroid test) should be ran as well to complete your pets skin work-up as well. **Afterwards, I would be grateful if you would rate my service by clicking on the "Rate my Expert' button at the top of the page as this is the only way I am credited for helping you. Thank you for your feedback!: )- Dr. H
Expert:  Drhollowayvet replied 1 year ago.
I see that you had a chance to review my reply. Do you have any further questions or concerns for me to address? **Afterwards, I would be grateful if you would rate my service by clicking on the "Rate my Expert' button at the top of the page as this is the only way I am credited for helping you. Thank you for your feedback!: )
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I'll try the shampoo and fish oil and see if any improvement and let you know. Do u bill my credit card the remaining 49.00 now or wait to see if any of this helps?
Expert:  Drhollowayvet replied 1 year ago.
Typically you conclude the session by giving me a rating now for the information received so that I am credited with taking the time to answer your questions/concerns today.If later on down the road you find that the information was inaccurate in any way or not helpful then you can send a dispute to justanswer for a refund @ Dr. H
Expert:  Drhollowayvet replied 1 year ago.
But again. I did not say that only the shampoo and fish oils will solve your pets skin issues. It will help to provide some relief. The full work-up is my complete recommendation for resolution of your cats skin. If the underlying problem is not addressed, then you cannot expect complete resolution of the itching.Your pet is showing classic signs of a pretty moderate-severe skin allergy. That is why the testing is vital to helping Gizmo.- Dr. H
Expert:  Drhollowayvet replied 1 year ago.
Hello again this is Dr. Holloway checking back in with your pet Gizmo and his skin problems. I see you have not had a chance to rate my response from last week to your pet concerns. I would appreciate if you would leave a rating for me as this is how i am credited with assisting you with your pet question.If you have any further questions or concerns about Gizmo, then I would be more than happy to assist you further. Thanks!- Dr. H