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Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinarian.
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 20397
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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My cat has red bumps and scabs on her back. It also feels

Resolved Question:

My cat has red bumps and scabs on her back. It also feels like she has knots along her spine. She tries to bite when you pet her back there. Could this be allergies or something else?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 years ago.
Thanks for the questionCustomer

I will be very pleased to try and answer your question but to enable me to do so with accuracy I need to know a little bit more information, so first can you tell me :

1. Do you ever see fleas on your cat?

This is just a information request for which you have not been charged, I am online at present. I will answer your question shortly after receiving your reply.

Scott Nimmo BVMS MRCVS
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 7 years ago.
Thanks for the quick reply.

In direct answer to your question : While I cannot diagnose this over the internet it sounds like your cat has a disease called miliary eczema. The distribution and description of the skin lesions in miliary eczema are usually precisely as you describe. As this disease is a probability I will tell you more about it :

The origin of this disease is almost often flea bites, owners will sometimes dispute this as they say they have not seen fleas but as it is a hypersensitivity reaction only one or two bites would cause the clinical signs you are seeing. Not all cat will get this disease following flea bites, only a few which are hypersensitive to fleas will develop the disease. It is therefor important to be absolutely fastidious not only with flea control on your cat but also the cat's environment. Although clearly fleas may be implicated as a trigger factor flea control alone will not cure this disease, more is required and there is also the possibility that other allergens such as dietary factors or house dust may be involved.

Different vets have slightly different ways of thinking about things when it comes to treating this disease. There are two main treatments for miliary eczema both have their pros and cons. Ovarid and drugs like it are hormone preparations which are a perfectly valid treatment for treating miliary eczema but a very small number of cats end up as diabetics as a result of this drug. Steroids and antihistamines are also a valid treatment for this disease but again a very small number of cats end up with both acute and chronic side effects to steroids. Antibiotics may be used in the early stages as these cats often have a secondary bacterial infection.

I am so sorry I cannot recommend any home remedy here, because of the nature of the disease there is nothing much you can do on your own. Accordingly my advice has to be that you should have your vet check your cat over as soon as is practicable.

If I have not answered your question fully enough or if you would like to ask more I will be on line for the next hour or so and I will be pleased to discuss your question further.

Scott Nimmo BVMS MRCVS
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