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I Don't Know if My Cat Has Fleas

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hi guys,

This is my first post on here, but I've had my two cats for three years now. My cats are both white Persians and they are brothers. They are INDOOR cats.

About last June I saw that my one of cat's tails was covered with black/brown specks stuck in the hair in and around the beginnings of the tail. We groomed him and got some flea medication and the problem went away because the tail was shaved.

Now I thought for sure they were fleas, but I had no idea and the problem has come back. Since Casper is white, I thought I would see the fleas moving around, but I didn't see anything. Since I have two cats, I assumed my other cat also has fleas, but an inspection revealed nothing. I've looked at pictures of fleas and flea dirt and they don't look like what my cat has. The dots are kind of oily playdo textured and smeared in and around in the tail and nowhere else. This has caused two big knots in the tail. I tried the water test where ou put the specks in water and they didn't turn red, just stayed the same.

Keep in mind my cats don't scratch either maybe once a week, which I assume is normal cat behavior. My theory is that this whole things might be Casper's sweat or dead skin residue?

So now I don't know if I should go out and get some flea medication, give them a good shower, or shave his tail again.

Your help would be greatly appreciated!
post #2 of 6
If the only place you have this problem is on the tail its probably "stud tail" - something cats get when producing too much oil - its like blackheads on the skin. You have to keep the tail clean and somewhat dry (cornstarch baby powder works).

Most unaltered cats get it - hence the name, but alters can get it too.
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thank you so much! I was worried my cat had a disease or something.

The tail is the only place where this is and the description of "stud tail" matches exactly with Casper's symptoms.

I'm off for some good grooming.

Thanks Again!!! This site rocks!
post #4 of 6
Seems to show up more with white cats or light color ones. My darker cats didn't seem to have as much as a problem. I showed/bred rexes and had all colors, so I know that the darker ones didn't have a problem. Rex tails are not well furred in any color
post #5 of 6
i wonder if that's is the same thing my cat Snow, whose all white, has..it's located near the base of her tail, and on top of the tail, and nowwhere else.. and it's likely not fleas because it's not like she scratches that area or anything.. and because I checked the black dirt specks with water and it didn't turn red. when i've given her baths before and scrubbed that area, it seems to go away, but comes back after several days..

also, i've noticed that that same general white, the has a yellowish tint to it which is pretty noticable.. when i gave her a bath, the yellow-ness decreased.. is this related to the black dots? is the oil or something?

Snow is not fixed yet b/c she's got URI stuff going on.. but will be soon.. do you think it will decrease then?

Do all cats have this, but it just shows up on white/lighter haired cats?
post #6 of 6
Some cats produce more oils; maybe the light/white coats do - I'm not sure. And yes the yellow could be from some of the oil.

Neutering/spaying will help, but like I said - even those cats can get it. Spooky was all white and neutered and he had blackheads from time to time.
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