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  #1  
Old August 20th, 2010, 12:10 PM
Mr.Tibbins Mr.Tibbins is offline
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All white cat being a pain in the butt! Scratches himself raw!

I have an all white cat named Buster that's a little over a year old. His eyes are green, and he is not deaf. But he's been giving me a bunch of trouble because he scratches himself raw sometimes. The scratching is localized solely to his neck, just below his chin. I keep his rear nails short to minimize the problem, but havent found a solution. It seems like the problem will come and go. Sometimes it will get fairly bad, with a sore around the size of a silver dollar. Then he'll stop, with no changes made to his diet or surroundings, and will be fine for a month or so. Then just as the hair is almost grown back, he'll start scratching again. Hes gone through these fluctuations several times in the 9 months Ive had him. Buster also has an all white brother who went to a different home, but is also doing the same thing. Buster has been frontlined and doesnt have fleas. Im convinced that this is something psychological, because theres no physical reason for it that i can see. Any parasite he could possibly have, I would assume my other cat (Tibbs) would also have, and Tibbs is in perfect health. I find it odd that Buster's brother, in a completely separate environment, is experiencing the same thing. I have done some googling, and it seems that all white cats are somewhat known for problems like this. Any recommendations on how to stop him from scratching? The only thing I can think of is to declaw his back feet, but I'd prefer not to do that.
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  #2  
Old August 20th, 2010, 12:18 PM
BenMax BenMax is offline
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Could be feline acne. If you are feeding in a plastic bowl, change to ceramic. Also, there are some very cat savvy people here that can assist food wise.
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Old August 20th, 2010, 12:20 PM
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What do you feed him? My number one thought would be diet. Cats can have a lot of allergies to certain ingredients in their foods. Corn being one of the worse and unfortunately, one of the biggest ingredients in most dry cat food.
There is also the possibility that he is allergic to flea bites. Just because he is treated with product does not mean he will not have the occasional flea jump on him and bite. They won't stick around for a visit afterwards though.
Declawing a cat is not going to stop the cat from scratching. It will just inhibit his ability to give himself relief. Like a human trying to scratch an itch with his knuckles. Thank you for not considering it. It is barbaric!
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Old August 20th, 2010, 12:29 PM
Mr.Tibbins Mr.Tibbins is offline
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I use the plastic "autofeeder" foodbowls. I had never heard of plastic being a problem- only stainless steel. I will try switching them to ceramic.

Food would actually make sense, because I buy big bags of food that last about the same amount of time as his scratching intervals. What would you recommend?
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Old August 20th, 2010, 12:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Tibbins View Post
I use the plastic "autofeeder" foodbowls. I had never heard of plastic being a problem- only stainless steel. I will try switching them to ceramic.

Food would actually make sense, because I buy big bags of food that last about the same amount of time as his scratching intervals. What would you recommend?
Ahh, so you feed dry. I can recommend a wonderful site to read. It will open your eyes a great deal to the issues of feeding dry and is an interesting site.
www.catinfo.org
As I mentioned before, cats can have a lot of issues with allergies. Chicken is right up there as well. It may take a bit of experimentation in order to find the allergen but it would be worthwhile for your cats sake as well as yours. It would also make sense that his sibling suffers from the same issue.
Stainless steel is fine for food dishes. It's the plasic that leaches poisons.
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  #6  
Old August 20th, 2010, 12:45 PM
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I am thinking diet or acne too.

Jasper would scratch his eyes raw when I fed him kibble but since he has been eating a grainfree/raw diet his scratching has stopped.

If it is feline acne, you should be able to see some black spots like blackheads, I got some antiseptic soap from my vet to clean Puddles's chin when she had them. If they have gotten to the point of being itchy, your kitty really needs to see a vet for treatment. It can get infected .

Give that link that 14+ posted a read, it has some very good nutritional info for cats (then read your cat's food label ), you may be shocked

Good luck.
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  #7  
Old August 20th, 2010, 12:49 PM
Mr.Tibbins Mr.Tibbins is offline
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Lots of good information there. I was under the complete opposite impression about canned food... I though fat cats came from canned food, when in reality I was dead wrong. That site recommends a 100% wet food diet. That would cost a fortune. Id like to perhaps switch to a different dry food that will be out for them to graze on all the time, and maybe give them one meal a day of canned food. Would this be sufficient? I want my cats to thrive, but Buster is a bit of a pig, and Im sure he could kill two cans of cat food a day by himself if i let him.

If I keep them on a partial dryfood diet, what brand do you recommend?

As for the raw spots- Im usually pretty good about putting neosporin on him everyday when theyre open.
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Old August 20th, 2010, 01:08 PM
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All white cats are not prone to itching in one spot. He may stop because it becomes too painful .

Can you see any blackheads on his chin?

Changing his food to a quality grain free will only benefit your cats. They are carnivores, not omnivores. Cats have a very highly unforgiving digestive system, unlike dogs, or humans, their requirement is quite exact.

Genetics can play a huge roll in how our bodies react to different things, including allergies. There is no harm in changing his food to see if it works, if not, a trip to the vet to get a skin scraping may answer your question.

The two that I have used with Jasper to get him to stop are:

Wellness, grain free and Nature's Variety Instinct. Both are good foods. My cats prefer the Instinct, but there are others that prefer Wellness.
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Cat maid to:

Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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  #9  
Old August 20th, 2010, 01:13 PM
Mr.Tibbins Mr.Tibbins is offline
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A friend of mine who has a Savannah just recommended Wellness to me today as well. I will for sure make an appointment with the vet, as both of my cats are due for a checkup, but in the meantime I'll switch to wellness, a ceramic bowl, and wetfood every other day. Does that sound like a reasonable plan of attack?
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Old August 20th, 2010, 01:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Tibbins View Post
A friend of mine who has a Savannah just recommended Wellness to me today as well. I will for sure make an appointment with the vet, as both of my cats are due for a checkup, but in the meantime I'll switch to wellness, a ceramic bowl, and wetfood every other day. Does that sound like a reasonable plan of attack?

It would be great to feed the Wellness or another grain free canned food every day and try to drop the dry all together. In the long run the costs even out. There is a saying here - spend money on quality food now and you won't be spending tons more money on quality vet care in the future.
Your cats are both males? Males are more prone to crystals and stones. Which means more trips to the vet to treat them, more costs for meds, and eventually more costs for a very expensive (around $1500 I've heard) operation which turns them into females basically. Or choosing to euthanize rather than treat them which is what a lot of owners do.
Dry foods are directly related to a ton of health issues. Smart vets are figuring that out. Cats, I'm sure you saw when you cruised that site, need water with their food, not beside it. Dry foods can't do that.
Two adult cats in reality, once they got on a feeding schedule, will probably not eat more than one large can a day of wet. Wellness is expensive but, in the end, it's all relative. There are a little less costly varieties in good pet food stores. Do a little investigation. I'm sure you will find them.
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We can stick our heads in the sand for only so long before it starts choking us. Face it folks. The pet population is bad ALL OVER THE WORLD!
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Old August 20th, 2010, 01:30 PM
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What you may have to do in the beginning when switching is to keep some dry down for the cats. After they have eaten kibble for a while they become addicts to it, for lack of a better explanation. They may not eat the canned. The site I gave you has some great hints for switching kibble addicts to canned food.
Remember, it may not be something in the dry the cat is allergic to. Your best bet would be to take your kitty to the vet and have him tested, as L4H suggested. But please do not buy any of the food they recommend and most likely sell. It is filled with the same stuff you want to try to get your kitties away from.
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Assumptions do nothing but make an ass out of u and me.

We can stick our heads in the sand for only so long before it starts choking us. Face it folks. The pet population is bad ALL OVER THE WORLD!
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  #12  
Old August 20th, 2010, 02:23 PM
BenMax BenMax is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 14+kitties View Post
It would be great to feed the Wellness or another grain free canned food every day and try to drop the dry all together. In the long run the costs even out. There is a saying here - spend money on quality food now and you won't be spending tons more money on quality vet care in the future.
Your cats are both males? Males are more prone to crystals and stones. Which means more trips to the vet to treat them, more costs for meds, and eventually more costs for a very expensive (around $1500 I've heard) operation which turns them into females basically. Or choosing to euthanize rather than treat them which is what a lot of owners do.
Dry foods are directly related to a ton of health issues. Smart vets are figuring that out. Cats, I'm sure you saw when you cruised that site, need water with their food, not beside it. Dry foods can't do that.
Two adult cats in reality, once they got on a feeding schedule, will probably not eat more than one large can a day of wet. Wellness is expensive but, in the end, it's all relative. There are a little less costly varieties in good pet food stores. Do a little investigation. I'm sure you will find them.
Again great advice. Look what happened to my daughter's cat Suki...all due to over eating dry food.

To the OP - take it from these people when it comes to food. I was not a believer in the beginning, but I am certainly one now. My cats thank them.
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Old August 20th, 2010, 02:25 PM
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Love4himies Love4himies is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Tibbins View Post
A friend of mine who has a Savannah just recommended Wellness to me today as well. I will for sure make an appointment with the vet, as both of my cats are due for a checkup, but in the meantime I'll switch to wellness, a ceramic bowl, and wetfood every other day. Does that sound like a reasonable plan of attack?
As 14+ stated, with males you are much, much, much better off feeding wet only. A blocked bladder can cost you thousands and it can be just a matter of hours between realizing something is wrong and death. Cats are notorious for hiding pain, pain is a sign of weakness, weakness is the sign predators look for . I would, and do, use kibble for treats only.
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Cat maid to:

Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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  #14  
Old August 26th, 2010, 07:55 AM
Mr.Tibbins Mr.Tibbins is offline
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Since starting this thread, I switched the cats diet, and have seen a RIDICULOUS improvement. Im astounded and not suprised (yes, both). I was under the false impression that the catfood I was using was of a decent brand (marketing... brand recognition). Upon reading the links you guys gave me, I decided the best solution for me was to switch to Wellness dry food that I can leave out for them, and I feed them a can of canned food to split once a day. All I can say is.. What a difference!! Im not sure if its the wetfood or the wellness that made the difference, but Buster stopped scratching.. basically the very next day. Not only that, but his coat used to be somewhat rough in comparison to Tibbs, and you couldnt pick him up without being COVERED in white hair. Now, his coat is silky, smooth and shiney. Buster has never looked so healthy. Im not suprised that better food did the trick, but I didnt expect the results to be this quick! I think im going to switch them to Blue catfood, because it looks to be of similar quality, but isnt $36 a bag. Thanks all!
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Old August 26th, 2010, 08:16 AM
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I am so glad.

You may find that kibble is cheaper, but can lead to very expensive health bills. Wellness comes in large cans that may fit your budget better

I am not surprised by your old cat food, their goal is to make money and to fool the consumer. It was probably the equivalent to a hotdog with a vitamin pill in it . Not at all healthy for them.
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Cat maid to:

Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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Old August 26th, 2010, 08:20 AM
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This is the kind of success story we all like to hear. Great! Your cats look beautiful. Thanks for the update.
I feed my cats Wellness canned, but they like some kibble too. So they get a little kibble(less than 1/2 cup/day/per cat) of EVO (Ancestral Diet). It's very high in protein, no grains, and the cats are doing very well on it. Because it is high quality I don't have to feed as much to maintain their ideal weight (yes, you can see their waists!), so it isn't that much more expensive to feed them a high quality food that costs a little more as they eat less of it.
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Old August 26th, 2010, 08:24 AM
Mr.Tibbins Mr.Tibbins is offline
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I have noticed that as well. Since starting them on wet food, they go through much less dry food, and seem to be more affectionate as well. My kitties are happy!
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Old August 26th, 2010, 08:30 AM
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Absolutely, they are not chronically dehydrated anymore. You will find they will improve over the next few months too .

Cats, as all animals, are meant to get their water from their food, blood for carnivores, fresh plant matter for herbivores. They don't eat dry crackers in the wilderness, lol.
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Cat maid to:

Jasper, male Ragdoll ?? (approx 10 yrs)
Rose semi feral, a cpietra rescue, female tabby (approx 7 yrs)

Sweet Pea RIP (2004?-2014)
Puddles RIP (1996-2014)
Snowball RIP (1991-2005)

In a cat's eye, all things belong to cats.-English Proverb

“While we are free to choose our actions, we are not free to choose the consequences of our actions.” Stephen R. Covey
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