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Fur missing on front paw

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 
Oh gosh, can't believe I hadn't noticed this until a few minutes ago, but one of my kittie's front left paw is missing a patch of hair. It's right on top of the paw at the very tip. The area is slightly smaller than a dime and it's pink (her paws are pink underneath, so that's her natural color). I cleaned it with some saline solution and it didn't seem to cause her any distress.

Is it a result of over-grooming? She has been playing rough with her sister so I wonder if it's some injury. Damn, we were just at the vet this weekend, I wonder if I missed it or it wasn't an issue then.
post #2 of 18
any chance of a pic? That would help alot.
post #3 of 18
Hi,

I agree a photo would help. Otherwise keep a close eye on the patch. It's likely that they got into a play fight- but it could also be a fungus.

If the patch increases in size or you see your Kitty nibbling there excessivly you should go to the vets. If not it will probably grow over fairly soon.

christine
post #4 of 18
Thread Starter 
I'm afraid she is nibbling on it quite a bit and yes, the patch does seem bigger. I googled ringworms...I'm a little bit worried.

Here are two pictures, not the best unfortunately. I'll try again when she's still as she's playing on the cat tree.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/37443611@N02/3445455555/

http://www.flickr.com/photos/37443611@N02/3445456261/
post #5 of 18
Hmmmm. The first pic does look like ringworm. (my cat had it, and both my daughter and myself got it) But the only way to tell for sure is to have a vet culture it.

If you happen to have a black light, shine it on the area.... if it fluorescense a bright green then its most likely ringworm.

The danger with RW is how contagious it can be to both other pets and humans. Aside from that, it can go away on its own in bout 3 mos if it is RW. It's pretty easy to treat if a human catches it.... treatment for cats vary. Some vets use creams, some use anti fungal meds. IF this is what your cat has, please research the dangers of some of the meds used to treat it.

If its not RW, it could just be an injury, which will heal if you can get her not to bite it.

Is she due back at the vet for booster shots or anything?
post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Both of my kitties have been dealing with URIs so we have a follow-up visit the Saturday after this coming weekend, so in about 10 days. They have been on antibiotics for about 4 weeks now.

I agree, it doesn't look like an injury to me. If I choose a wait and see approach for the next couple of days, is there anything I can do for her in the meanwhile?
post #7 of 18
Thread Starter 
My other thought is that I tried to give her lysine in paste form and when she wouldn't eat it, I smeared it on her paw. I wonder if she overgroomed to get rid of the lysine? That's a long shot though...the fur loss is pretty severe due to that alone.
post #8 of 18
There's not really anything you can do in the mean time unfortunately, aside from research....look into the different treatments for RW, and educate yourself so you can make an educated decision along with the vet in regards to treatment. The culture for rw can take 5-14 days to come back with the results. They just take some fur and a little scraping from the area, put it in some goop and wait for it to grow (painless for the kitty). With my cat, his first culture came back in bout 5 days (positive), and his second culture took 12 days to come back with a positive. It didn't get worse in the meantime, he waited bout 3wks to start treatment for it. (between when I got him, got him to the vets, then wait time for the culture to come back)

Although you may want to do some additional housecleaning to keep it from spreading to your other cat or yourself. The spores can live in the environment for 18mos...... some extra vacuming and such will help.

RW is a pain in the butt, but its not life threatening and often pops up in times of stress (uri's, moves, etc.)
post #9 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdonline View Post
My other thought is that I tried to give her lysine in paste form and when she wouldn't eat it, I smeared it on her paw. I wonder if she overgroomed to get rid of the lysine? That's a long shot though...the fur loss is pretty severe due to that alone.
hmmm, that is a possibility too.....

if you think its getting worse, or you find more patches of missing fur on her, get her into the vet sooner.

Having been through rw myself, IMHO (I am not a vet) I would wait till your appt. unless it seemed to get dramatically worse.... it could just be a case of overgrooming or something, and if that's the case I think just keeping it clean if its dirty (you don't want to keep it wet in case it is rw) and trying to stop her from biting at it, should help it clear up.
post #10 of 18
It is possible it is ringworm. There are a variety of treatments, so as suggested look into them & talk to your vet about your options. I had a kitty who was a carrier of ringworm until her death - so any new cat introduced to her got ringworm. When she was first added to my household I had to treat everyone, because she broke about a month after I got her.

Ringworm is not actually a worm, but rather a fungal skin infection. If your vet is a conventional one - many treat with oral or topical anti-fungals. I've heard of some vets treating with simply oral anti-fungal, some with just topical, some with both. Oral meds can be harsh on a kitties system - so many vets do not use them. I myself used them many times, and IMO they are the most effective treatment (due to the variety of treatments I have seen tried over the years at the shelter).
post #11 of 18
Thread Starter 
I can't do much about the grooming since I'm out of the home for work during the day. And putting a bandaid or bandage on it doesn't seem like a good idea either.

I trimmed her nails last night and she had a couple of dry brittle nails, which would add to the RW picture.
post #12 of 18
Thread Starter 
The de-furred area is quite dry now and the pink skin is going grey.

We have a scheduled vet visit next Saturday because the doc wanted to see the cats a week after their antibiotics usage. They are in good shape but can't shake the sneezing.

I'm thinking of moving the vet visit up a little earlier. Also, I've read that it's okay to use human OTC antifungal creams on cats, just to stop the spread of the fungus, not necessarily for a cure. Do you think it would be okay to use a cream for the next few days?
post #13 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by tdonline View Post
Also, I've read that it's okay to use human OTC antifungal creams on cats, just to stop the spread of the fungus, not necessarily for a cure. Do you think it would be okay to use a cream for the next few days?
well, i've used the vaginal yeast creams on mine - but never in that accessible an area [Pixel had a bit on the tip of one of her ears]. i'd be concerned about ingestion since the paw is so easily reached by the tongue...
post #14 of 18
An athlete's foot cream will work on it, if it's ringworm. Apply it and rub it in, so you don't see any of the cream left. You can get it for less than $5 in generic form at discount stores or drug stores.
post #15 of 18
Thread Starter 
Even after wiping it clear onto the paw, will it be safe? She will likely start licking it as soon as I let go. Is covering it a good idea? Gauze and medical tape?
post #16 of 18
Covering it is a bad idea. You have to ensure they don't lick it - as it can make them ill. I've had to "cone" kitties to keep them from licking anti-fungal creams before.
post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 
Went to the vet today and had the paw looked at. Apparently the discoloring was dried blood and the area's inflammed. She came up negative for ringworm under the blacklight but the area was cultured for the 10 day test. Meanwhile she will get tresaderm and clavamox since the vet isn't sure if it's a fungal or bacterial infection. Poor kitty has to wear an e-collar, it's really hard watching her struggle with it. Hopefully she can adjust quickly.

Is it better to just leave it on all of the time (other than feeding and medication time)? Or can I take it off a couple of hours after I put the ointment on her? Will the ointment have dried by then? I'm afraid taking the collar off and on will only confuse her further.
post #18 of 18
Thread Starter 
The good news is that it's not ringworm. Vet said it was likely a bacterial infection, possibly from a split claw. I wonder if it could have been a bite from a pest. I did notice the missing patch of fur a couple of days after claw trimming and Dory did have a flaky dry claw on that paw. So we are going to use Tresaderm for another week and finish off the Clavamox. AND yet another visit to make sure all good.

Meanwhile, any tips on prevention of infecting claws from trimmings? If something looks dry or split should I apply neosporin?
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