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Ask the Veterinarian/Cat skin condition


Skin sore
Skin sore  

skin sore initially
skin sore initially  
My cat (3 year old male) developed some skin sores all over his body, they are small, flaky and white and after a while they become crusty and occasionally bleed. He also has very small, brown specks all around his body at the base of the hairs; they come off when I try to remove them but I am sure he doesn't have fleas (I know what they look like, these specks are smaller than fleas, and the vet also confirmed he doesn't have them).He has some brown spots on his eyelids and gums as well.
We took him to the vet and he told us the cat had severe ear mites and a fungal infection, we treated him for 10 days (as instructed) and he was getting better but then the skin sores reappeared and his ears started to look bad again (brown secretion). We restarted his treatment immediately (this was a week ago) but I don't know what to do if he doesn't get better.
Is it possible he was misdiagnosed? Can he get re-infected from the environment, should we have disinfected the house?

If he had ear mites, this could be the problem on the skin as well as in the ears.  Mites that crawl on the body are feeding and they will cause something called Otodectic Mange. The treatment is systemic mite medication that will get all over the body not just in the ears.  Another possible cause of these crusty lesions is called Miliary Dermatitis, which is an allergy to something in the environment, not always fleas. The treatment for that is a long acting steroid shot to reduce the effect of the allergies on the skin.  This may need to be repeated several times during the year.

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Dr. Louis N. Gotthelf


Dermatology and ear diseases of dogs and cats


I am the author of "Small Animal Ear Diseases; An Illustrated Guide" published by W.B. Saunders. I have over 25 years of clinical experience with a special interest in dermatologic conditions and ear diseases.

American Academy of Veterinary Dermatology

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