Pets.ca - Pet forum for dogs cats and humans 

-->

bald spot on 1/4 of cat's face--between eye and ear

AndreeaF
August 25th, 2010, 08:05 AM
I have recently adopted a stray cat--Gloria--who may be about three years old, according to the vet. She's been spayed and has recovered very quickly. She's been vaccinated, is taking intestinal warm medicine right now and has been treated for fleas (though it looks like she may still have some and I intend to bathe her with an anti-flea shampoo). The only serious medical condition that she seems to have is a large bald spot that extends between her right eye and ear and above half way down her cheek. It is irregular in shape (largely resembles a diamond, but is not perfectly round or oval), has a brown "stain" across the middle that sort of resembles the shape of the entire spot, and is pale (toward her ear) and a bit yellow-ish toward the eye. The skin is not swollen and appears clean (no pustules, no redness), except for a couple of places where she's removed bits of it because of scratching--these spots are a bit bloody, but heal fairly quickly. Her scratching is not intense and not focused on this spot--I think the scratches on the spot are simply there because the skin is not protected when she scratches her head. She does not seem to be experiencing pain or abnormal itchiness. She's had this spot ever since I first encountered her almost eight weeks ago. It's hard to tell if it's getting any bigger.

What could be the cause of her condition? Could it be contagious? I've put antibiotic/soothing ointment on the spot to help heal the scratch marks. She seemed okay with it. I also have a topical corticosteroid that I used for a rash--would that help or be detrimental?

Is it possible that she's been the victim of a local child who may have burned or otherwise destroyed her skin? There are definitely cases of animal cruelty among the many stray cats in my city.

I plan to take her to the vet for a proper checkup, but thought I'd ask ahead of time to know if I should not touch the spot directly.

14+kitties
August 25th, 2010, 08:41 AM
Cats normally do have spots on their faces that are slightly bald. If it isn't getting any bigger and she isn't bothered by it then it's possible that is what you are seeing. But you say she is pulling out tufts of fur? There are a couple of possibilities. One being an allergy to food. Another an allergy to fleas.
What are you feeding her? I see you are in Jordan so I am not going to assume you have the best foods available to her. However, dry food and a lot of canned foods contain grains and corn. Both high on the list of allergen causes for cats. Chicken, another popular ingredient in foods, is also a good candidate for allergies.
If you can find a grain free, by product free canned cat food that is a good place to start. Also investigate the raw diet which truly is the optimal food choice for cats. You will find lots of information for that in the food section of the forum. Another good site to read is www.catinfo.org
What product was used to treat for fleas? If it was Advantage or Revolution they have to be applied monthly during flea season. I hesitate using flea shampoo as it tends to not work usually and dries out the cats skin as well. That in itself could lead to increased scratching. Cats are naturally very fastidious in cleaning themselves and rarely need a bath.

mikischo
August 25th, 2010, 08:50 AM
Hi, AndreeaF and welcome to the forum.

I don't have any other suggestions other than those made by 14+. Skin problems in cats are generally not contagious.

Thank you for rescuing this kitty.:thumbs up

AndreeaF
August 25th, 2010, 09:02 AM
Cats normally do have spots on their faces that are slightly bald. If it isn't getting any bigger and she isn't bothered by it then it's possible that is what you are seeing. But you say she is pulling out tufts of fur? There are a couple of possibilities. One being an allergy to food. Another an allergy to fleas.
What are you feeding her? I see you are in Jordan so I am not going to assume you have the best foods available to her. However, dry food and a lot of canned foods contain grains and corn. Both high on the list of allergen causes for cats. Chicken, another popular ingredient in foods, is also a good candidate for allergies.
If you can find a grain free, by product free canned cat food that is a good place to start. Also investigate the raw diet which truly is the optimal food choice for cats. You will find lots of information for that in the food section of the forum. Another good site to read is www.catinfo.org
What product was used to treat for fleas? If it was Advantage or Revolution they have to be applied monthly during flea season. I hesitate using flea shampoo as it tends to not work usually and dries out the cats skin as well. That in itself could lead to increased scratching. Cats are naturally very fastidious in cleaning themselves and rarely need a bath.

Hi 14+kitties, thanks for the quick reply and advice. I'm feeding her canned Whiskas (no chicken thus far) and, only sporadically, kibbles for a snack (I know they're not ideal). I may be able to find better food at the one or two well-stocked stores here. It cannot be food allergy however, because she's had the bald spot since before I met her a few weeks ago. She's probably been outdoors, eating out of trash cans her entire life until six weeks ago when I started feeding her human food (only meat products) outside my apartment (transitioned to cat food when she became a full-time resident in our household:cat:). I'm afraid I have no idea about the flea drops she was given but I can probably get the vet to give me more. Maybe we'll skip the bath--my parents have two cats who've never had a bath in over ten years and I know they keep very clean--in fact, Gloria has become quite a bit shinier since coming in and is cleaning herself regularly.

Goldfields
August 25th, 2010, 11:39 AM
What about ringworm? Does any hair near the bald spot look as if it has broken off just above the skin? A vet can easily check if it's that.

Love4himies
August 25th, 2010, 11:40 AM
I was thinking ringworm also. Can you post a pic of the bald spot?