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White kitties!

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 
You all will probably know this, but it's worth repeating.

If you have a pure white cat, or a cat with white ears please put some sun screen on the tips of their ears when they go outside in the sun. Cats with white ears can contract cancer of the ear due to the sunlight, in some cases the cats ears have had to be removed.

An extract from Provet Healthcare

White cats have an increased risk of developing cancer of the ears. Why ?

The exact mechanism which leads to white cats having a higher risk of developing cancer of the ear margins is not known, but most experts agree that it is probably due to exposure to high doses of ultraviolet rays in sunlight. Because the hair covering of the pinna of the ears is very thin it provides very little protection to ultraviolet rays in sunlight. There are other situations in which ultraviolet light can harm animals - typically dogs with white bridges to their nose (such as collies) may develop photosensitisation - which leads to sores and bleeding. Also, pigs kept out in the open can easily develop sunburn if they lie out in the direct sunlight for too long.

The type of cancer that develops in white cats is usually a malignant form - called squamous cell carcinoma. Diagnosis is usually confirmed by examination of the tissue which is surgically removed. Most cases respond well to surgical excision, unless the tumour has been present for some time when it can spread.

It is a good precaution to discourage white cats from spending long periods in direct, bright sunlight..

post #2 of 3
That is such a cute picture! I have a little white girl kitty, Pearl, and she has never been outside. She has the cutest little pink ears and nose!
post #3 of 3
My sister had a DSH cat that wasn't solid white, but she did have white ears. She got skin cancer from the sun and had to have both of her ears removed.

So, I agree with BuNN - if you have a white kitty who has any exposure to the sun, use blockout on their ears.

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