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excessive cleaning!!!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I was wondering does anyone else have this issue. My cat Chilli cleans herself (especially her tail end) so much that she actually thins out the fur causing bald spots. Everything else about her healthwise seems normal and healthy. When she was a kitten (before she was my cat) she was abused. Nothing super severe these college girls owned her and did not give her suffieceint care. She was the runt of the litter and always seemed a little timid. The previous owners played overly loud music which I believe caused Chilli to be even more fearful. Then there was the flea situation; she had so many fleas that her skin felt like brail. In my attempts to help her with a flea collar, the other girls would take it off believing the fleas would jump off the cat and land in the appt.The final straw was when Chilli went in heat and became preg. by her own brother, the kittens all came out dead and deformed. I believe she was too young and too small and in bad health at the time. My old roomate took her to the vet and $400 later she was ours. I have had her about 5 years now, give her tons of xoxoxox and advantage for her fleas. She's so clean that she sparkles, but she will probalbly never act like a "normal" cat. The deal is I went to the vet the last time to get an idea of her skin ailment. I felt bombarded with applications of pet group clubs and hypothesis of allegies and even possibilities that it could be in her head! Does anyone else have a cat who cleans her tailend so much?
post #2 of 10
Our cat Diesel had a fungal infection on the end of his tail when we found him. And he was cleaning his tail and the fur was falling out as well... You should take your cat to the vet and get a proper diagnosis. If you're not happy with what the vet has said, you should get a second opinion. If both vets can't seem to find any thing wrong you might want to try some alternative therapies such as reiki, which will help your cat heal ... or maybe some aromatherapy flower essences...

Bach Remedies
post #3 of 10
Fred licks compulsively. Loud, slurpy licking, and it drives me nuts! Several vets have told me that it could be because he has dry skin, or it could be due to a head injury he had a few years ago. I tend to believe the head injury theory, because if he is not licking himself, he is licking one of the other cats. I must have the cleanest cats around! I agree that a trip to the vet is in order.
post #4 of 10
Licking is also a means by which mother cats pacify and calm their young.

Kittens take this behaviour with them through to adulthood.

Cats tend to lick themselves when they fall off a table... bump into something... etc. to calm their nerves and secure themselves emotionally.

Perhaps your cat feels insecure, nervous, scared.
Some of the alternative therapies I mentioned may help you if this is the problem.

What kind of a head injury was it?

A head injury is more likely to cause some sort of physiological problem such as twitching, muscle spasm, paralysis. It's less likely that a head injury would give rise to behavioral abnormalities such as tail licking.

It could be that your cat has the equivalent of what we know to be an Obsessive Compulsive Disorder that he developed while he was younger.

You should pay very very close attention to what it is that causes him to lick. The cause could be something as invisible as bits of dust clinging to his fur... Or it could be an environmental factor... a sound, a smell, a color... it could be anything.

If the vet doesn't turn up anything, you should consider an animal therapist.

Be aware of the difference between an animal therapist and an animal psychic disguised as a therapist. If you do consult a therapist make sure they are qualified. I believe you should be able to locate a therapist in your area over the net or ask your vet.
post #5 of 10
Flea collars generally do not work very well. The spot-on flea treatments work best. She could have a skin condition or even mites that are causing her some discomfort. You should take her to the vet and have him examine her to give you the proper diagnosis.

Next time you treat her for fleas, try using Frontline instead of Advantage.
post #6 of 10
Originally posted by hissy
Next time you treat her for fleas, try using Frontline instead of Advantage.
Mary Anne, I didn't realize there was much of a difference between the two! What makes Frontline better? (I use Frontline, but assumed the two were pretty much the same.)
post #7 of 10
About 9 years ago, Fred sneaked out and got into the fan shroud of the car. When my s/o cranked the car, he got spun into the fan. Fortunately it was a car that would stop turning if something was caught in the fan, or he would have been cut to pieces. The vet said he had a severe concussion, a small fracture of the skull, and a few bruises. In addition to the compulsive licking, he sometimes has head twitches, and will just leap straight up for no apparent reason. He will sit and stare at nothing and fall right over, and will fall asleep sitting up with his nose against the back of the couch. I have him checked regularly, and the same vet that treated him then could not believe that he is still in such good shape all things considered. We recently moved back to town, and resumed using this vet after 5 years being away. To this day I will not crank my car without blowing the horn, just in case.
post #8 of 10
I think I've already mentioned it, but i'll mention it again.
In addition to what your vet prescribes... etc there's no harm trying some alternative remedies

My boyfriend's mothers cat, had chronic kidney failure...
Along with the water pouch treatment we took her for Reiki.
The vet couldn't explain how come she recovered so well and so fast.
We all know it was the reiki that helped.
Animals are a lot more sensitive to subtle energies than humans are.

It's worth a shot...
There should be a reiki centre in your area.
You'll be able to find one on the net
And it's is usually given for free.

In fact you can even learn to do it yourself.

In any case, i wish you both well.
post #9 of 10
I've seen a cat begin constant grooming when other cats were brought into the household. You did not mention if Chili is the only cat in the household. Considering the unfortunate past history, this cat may be content only if in a single pet household.

post #10 of 10

Sorry, just now saw this posting. The fleas can build up a resistance to a spot-on flea treatment, so it is good to switch every once in awhile. I use front line, advantage and revolution with my crew in the course of a year. I just switch every few months.
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