Hidden Conditions Could Make Your Pet Lick Excessively
Listen to what Dr. Karen Becker of Healthy Pets has to say about how hidden conditions could make your pet lick excessively.
By Dr. Becker
Acral lick dermatitis, or ALD, is an injury caused by chronic licking that leads to inflammation and irritation of the skin.
If the licking occurs in one central spot that becomes thickened over time, it’s called an acral lick granuloma. A lick granuloma is a firm, raised, and ulcerated area of the skin that doesn’t heal because the kitty’s constant attention prevents the open wound from closing. The licking and inflammation make the skin itchy, which causes more licking, and a vicious cycle of licking and itching can occur.
Acral lick dermatitis can occur in any cat of any age and either gender. The condition is much more common in dogs than in cats, but because it can occur in cats and I’ve had requests for a video, here it is!
In addition to itchy skin, other potential triggers for acral lick dermatitis in cats include painful conditions caused by trauma to the skin, arthritis, neuralgia, and peripheral neuropathy. A bacterial or fungal infection of the skin can also trigger itching, as can skin mites, allergies, a reaction to an environmental irritant or toxin, hyperthyroidism, and certain types of cancer.
Diagnosing Acral Lick Dermatitis in a Cat
In diagnosing your cat’s skin disease, your veterinarian should first rule out any potential underlying allergic conditions. A possible allergy to fleas, food, chemicals in your cat’s food, or something else in her food or environment should all be investigated.
A thorough review of potential environmental irritants – including carpet treatments, cleaning products, room sprays, and laundry detergents, as well as water and air quality should all be evaluated as potential root causes for the skin irritation.
Several skin tests are usually … Click Here to Read More …
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