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Cat skin infection

Infection in Cat's Skin:

Skin disorders are among the most common cat health problems, and while such problems are usually far from life threatening, they can seriously affect a cat’s quality of life.

Besides this, in some situations, a skin condition could get severe enough to lead to various complications, some of which could actually be life threatening. It is therefore important to recognize and treat a skin condition in your cat at the earliest.

In many cases, skin conditions are the result of an infection, and many of these infections are caused by bacteria or fungi that are normally present on the body. Under normal conditions, the growth of these organisms is kept under control by the body’s natural processes, and some of these organisms may in fact have an important role to play in maintaining the health of the animal.

However, various factors can allow or encourage these bacteria and fungi to get out of control, leading to a skin infection. Cleanliness is therefore very important in order to minimize the risk of cat skin problems. Cats are of course very particular about grooming and cleanliness, but in some cases, owners too may need to get involved. Of course, cat bathing is extremely difficult, and when it is necessary, most owners prefer to leave it to a professional.

However, other factors may often be responsible for cat skin infections too. These include disorders of the immune system, allergic reactions, and certain medications that upset the natural pH balance and the population of microorganisms on the skin. If there is an underlying, secondary condition that is causing or aggravating your cat’s skin infection, this condition will need to be diagnosed and treated too.

Two of the most common cat skin infections are ringworm and malassezia yeast infections. There is also a condition known as cat bite abscess, in which a bite from another cat can introduce bacteria into the skin and the underlying tissues, causing the development of an abscess and other symptoms such as fever and moodiness.

Whatever the infection may be, it is important to have your cat examined by a veterinarian. If necessary, a few tests may need to be performed to determine what microorganism is causing the infection. The vet will then prescribe a suitable course of treatment – in mild cases, this will usually be medication that is topically applied, but for more severe infections, oral medication may also be necessary.

  Submitted on May 7, 2010  

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