Originally Posted by DrJean
Well, I am totally lazy and feed my cats on disposable picnic plates...otherwise it would be glass or ceramic, and yes they must be washed after every meal. I'm not crazy about stainless steel, because it holds an electric charge and can give your cat a static jolt. But as long as it's polished and not brushed, it won't hold bacteria.
If the acne is bad (and sounds like it is), then you may already be to the stage where the vet needs to sedate him and treat the acne (not a pleasant task for either the cat or the vet!). The area will be shaved, so it will be easier to keep clean afterwards. Antibiotics may be needed in rare cases.
I'm not convinced that all cats go through the "black speck" stage; or that on a non-white cat that the average person would ever notice it. A lot of times it isn't noticed isn't until there are abscesses that burst.
I've also seen cases where there was no plastic involved. So there aren't really any hard and fast rules about it. For instance, acne is not supposed to be contagious either, but when I was in vet school both of my cats developed it. The clinicians at the vet school were so excited about that, they insisted on biopsying the first cat!
In general, my home treatment plan would be to (1) get rid of plastic dishes (you already know that!), (2) get rid of dry food (the oil and bacteria on the surface is a big factor), (3) wash daily with a cloth dipped in warm water with Betadine (povidone iodine) diluted to the color of weak tea, and (4) try a dose of homeopathic Silicea 30C, the main remedy for abscesses.
Now that I think about it, I've almost never seen acne come back after it was beaten. So there's light at the end of that tunnel!
Hi Dr. Jean,
Where do you buy the Betadine and the Silicea 30C?
My cat Matilda has had acne since I adopted her in October. She has always had stainless steel bowls that I put in the dishwasher after each feeding. It started as black specks, so vet gave me chlorhexidine. Didn't really help so they shaved her chin and gave me cerumene and I used that with the chlorhexidine every day. Then in November it turned into full blown zits so she started Clavamox combined with the chlorhexidine & Animax ointment. The Clavamox sort of helped for a bit, and then it didn't. We've tried a few rounds of Clavamox and had used up 2 tubes of the Animax. In January most of the big cystic bumps burst and drained (ick) and now her chin is mostly just the black specks with a few residual bumps. My vet wants to biopsy her chin.
Nobody has ever mentioned the dry food possibly being the issue, but that makes sense. That stuff is greasy! Right now she eats dry in the morning and wet at night, except for maybe 1-2 days a week she'll have wet food for both feedings. Also, in mid-February I switched her to a completely grain-free diet to see if it would help. (Her dry food is the Natural Balance stuff now but I was going to switch it to the Wellness Core when she ran out because I just found a pet store near me that sells it. Her wet food is typically either Wellness grain-free flavors, Solid Gold, or the Natural Balance grain-free flavors).
I tried Rescue Remedy & Feliway incase the acne was stress related but nothing changed.
I have heard that 100% witch hazel is good for treating the inflamed bumps (the kind without any alcohol)? Any truth to this in your experience?