6 Causes of Dry Cat Skin

Does your cat have dry skin? Have you noticed dandruff in her fur recently? Is she scratching more often than normal, with no signs of fleas? If any of this sounds like your cat, then you’re in the right place.

Causes of dry cat skin

In this article, we’ll explore six of the most common causes of dry skin in cats. You can use this information to figure out what might be causing your cat’s dry skin and learn what to ask your veterinarian at your cat’s next scheduled appointment, too.

Immune System Problems

Several illnesses and conditions can cause immune system problems in cats. If your cat suffers from one of these, you may notice dry skin coming and going, usually in conjunction with flare-ups from her immune system problem.

Your vet will need to perform a variety of tests, including blood work and fecal samples, to figure out whether or not your cat has an immune system problem. Your vet can also give you more information about how to manage and treat your cat’s health condition as well as any dietary supplements that could help the dry skin issue.

Infection

If your cat has a bacterial, fungal, or viral infection, she may have signs of dry skin to go along with it. Almost any disease or illness your cat can contract has the potential to cause dry skin, although some are more likely to cause this problem than others.

Additionally, if your cat has any bacterial or fungal infections on her skin, she will be more likely to develop dry skin at the same time. For this reason, it is important to talk with your vet and get your cat on any antibiotic or antifungal medications she needs to heal.

Hormones

Cats may deal with problems relating to fluctuating hormones, just like humans can. If your female cat goes into heat or becomes pregnant, she may have dry skin during this time as well. Male and female cats both can also develop dry skin shortly after being neutered or spayed, but this problem should clear up as their bodies regulate their hormones in the coming weeks.

If your cat’s dry skin is related to hormonal changes, it should not last forever. Your vet will be able to give you more information and clarify whether or not hormones may be the cause.

Diabetes

Diabetes is one of the more serious causes of dry skin in cats. The longer your cat suffers from diabetes, especially without any management options to help her, the more likely she will be to have dry skin from it. This type of dry skin may flare up periodically instead of occurring all the time.

Although diabetes cannot be completely cured in cats, it can be managed well if you work with your vet from the initial diagnosis and onward. Cats can live many years with diabetes provided they receive the right type of care.

Malnutrition or Food Allergy

Cats who are malnourished, either because they have been strays or because they have a wasting disease such as hyperthyroidism, may develop dry skin from a lack of vitamins and minerals in their diet. If your cat has dry skin from malnutrition, you will need to talk with your vet for more information.

Food allergies can also cause dry skin and dandruff in cats. If your cat’s dry skin clears up when you change her food, this is a strong indicator that she has a food allergy or intolerance causing the problem rather than a more severe health issue.

Aging

One of the most common causes of dry skin in cats is simply aging. As cats get older, their overall health deteriorates, and this is to be expected. A cat’s skin and coat health may also decline with age, and if this happens, you may notice dry skin and dandruff in your feline friend.

Another reason why aging may contribute to dry skin in cats is related to mobility. As cats get older, they cannot groom themselves the way they once did. This can cause matting, clumping, and overall dingy or poor quality fur, which can lead to dry skin in just a short time.

How to Help if Your Cat’s Suffering from Dry Skin

As you can see, there are many potential underlying causes of dry skin in cats. Some of these are more concerning than others, but they all require a vet to diagnose them officially. When you take your cat to the vet, be sure to ask about any concerns you have regarding her skin and fur health and condition.

By working with a vet you know and trust—and a vet who knows your cat, too—you can give your cat the best possible chance at recovering fully from her dry skin. You’ll learn how to treat and manage this problem no matter what the cause of it might be.

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About The Village Vets

The Village Vets is a network of animal hospitals based in Atlanta, GA and the surrounding area. We offer honest, excellent service to our clients in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. To learn more about our locations and how we can better serve you and your pet, click the button below.

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About The Village Vets

The Village Vets is a network of animal hospitals based in Atlanta, GA and the surrounding area. We offer honest, excellent service to our clients in a comfortable, friendly atmosphere. To learn more about our locations and how we can better serve you and your pet, click the button below.