July 10th, 2009, 11:52 AM
My 14 year old female indoor tabby named Gordie (yup, she's named Gordie) has developed two small red sores on her bottom lip in the last week or so. I've never seen something like this on her before and she's been otherwise healthy her entire life. She's very active still and shows no other signs of illness, injury or discomfort.
Should I be concerned? Has anyone else encountered this before? I've attached two close-up pictures showing the sores.
Thanks in advance for any help you can provide,
July 10th, 2009, 12:26 PM
Could be what's called an eosinophilic granuloma (http://www.cathealth.com/EosinoGranuloma.htm), or possibly chin acne (yes, cats can get acne). Plastic dishes are often a source of acne in cats because they harbour bacteria, so if you are using plastic, switching to stainless steel, glass or ceramic would be a good idea.
Granulomas are sometimes caused by food allergies. What do you feed Gordie?
July 10th, 2009, 12:38 PM
Thanks for the swift reply. Well, she IS a teenager now, so I suppose acne is a real possibility :)
As for food, I feed them Nutro's Max Cat Indoor Adult (Salmon flavour). They were on the Chicken for the longest time until there was a recall on it for elevated potassium levels, though this was several months ago. They have been on the new food since then and this particular problem only just manifested, so it less likely to be food-related (at least, not their regular food). Their dishes are both ceramic.
I'm wondering if it could be an allergy.. I let them out on the balcony (we are on the second floor) and there are a number of herbs and vegetables we're growing out there. She has a tendancy to think of the plants as her own personal salad bar, so I suppose it could be related to that. Perhaps I'll keep her exclusively indoors for a while to see if that helps..
Unless the condition worsens dramatically in the next couple of days, I plan to give it a week to see if there's any improvement. If not, I'll likely have to bring her into the vet to see what's what.
Thanks again for your help,
July 10th, 2009, 12:49 PM
i had a kit that got those ahd to keep her food bowl very claen and i used a little aloe on it it would clear up and come back at diiff times
July 10th, 2009, 02:33 PM
They have been on the new food since then and this particular problem only just manifested, so it less likely to be food-related (at least, not their regular food).
Food allergies in cats are actually more likely to appear after long-term repeated exposure, often taking months or even years, so I wouldn't necessarily rule that out as a possibility. Fish is also a common allergen for cats, as are grains and yeast. Dry food as a whole is not a great diet for felines, for a number of reasons. It's way too high in carbohydrates for an obligate carnivore, doesn't contain enough moisture for an animal that evolved (in the desert) getting all of its water from fresh prey, and is the wrong texture for their teeth, which are designed for tearing into flesh and bone, not grinding dry nuggets of cereal. Any possibility of feeding your cats wet food instead? Here is a great link on why they shouldn't eat kibble, with tips on how to transition over to wet: www.catinfo.org
Ingredients for Max Cat Indoor Salmon:
Chicken Meal, Ground Rice, Wheat Flour, Corn Gluten Meal, Poultry Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols, a source of Vitamin E), Dried Plain Beet Pulp, Rice Flour, Natural Flavors, Soybean Oil (preserved with mixed Tocopherols, a source of Vitamin E), Salmon Meal, Salmon Protein Concentrate, Tomato Pomace, Oat Fiber, Yeast Culture,....
In the meantime, you could try gently wiping Gordie's chin with a warm damp cloth to make sure it's keeping clean (cats often have difficulty grooming their chins). Jim's idea of applying a drop or two of aloe vera gel is a good one (just make sure it doesn't contain sodium benzoate as a preservative).
July 10th, 2009, 03:17 PM
Fantastic, thanks for the tips, guys. Other than this recent issue, they are healthy, trim, active and happy, so I'm reluctant to change the food they've been on for pretty much all of their lives.. but obviously if it turns out to the at the core of this issue, I'll have to re-think that. Thanks also for the link re: the food, as well, I'll read that over and consider that option.
Luckily, aloe vera is one of the plants we grow, so obtain some fresh stuff is a scissor-snip away. I'll try applying some and periodically helping her out with the chin-cleaning and see where this leaves us in a week.
Again, I very much appreciate the swift, thoughtful responses!
July 14th, 2009, 11:55 PM
My vet gave me a bottle of STANHEXIDINE 4% (they use it to clean wounds before and after surgery) for my Messina...warm wash cloth with a dab of this stuff then wipe on/off and her acne cleared up in a couple of days!
I have to say it works on me too during certain times of the month :o LoL!