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Arrgg! Nasty lump with scab on her head!

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
Now, I'll swear this wasn't there yesterday. Late this afternoon I noted that Gizmo had a bald patch about the size of a pencil top on her head. Upon closer inspection it revealed a scab, with a bit of fur growing out of the center. Not a pretty sight. It's not bleeding, and she does let me touch it, but it means a trip to the vet. Just when I was looking forward to a little rest for the rest of the summer. The vet promises to give me antibiotics if there is an infection; I'm hoping that there isn't.
Now this cat is not wheezing any more, her scratching got much less invasive when she switched to a new protein (rabbit); so what I want to know is, why is she digging holes in her head? (this is actually the second one?) The second 'bald patch' is very small and she appears to have just lost the fur on the pinpoint sized area.
post #2 of 26
Could she have gotten in a little fight? Fell?

Gosh, I hope it's not an allergic reaction--what would you "guess" it's from?
post #3 of 26
Thread Starter 
Gizmo never sees any other cats so it couldn't be from a fight. She does like to play in the hallway but there is nothing there when she does.

I think it may be an insect bite, or else she scratched her head and got to break the skin. I'm at my wits end about her scratching, but this is the worst it's been. She goes to the vet tomorrow.

she might have been bitten by a bug, but I can't tell at this remove. The vet should know.
post #4 of 26
It's hard to say but it doesn't sound nice. Good luck at the vet and check back in with us on your baby's status!!
post #5 of 26
Pandi had psoriasis, just like mom, usually in the winter due to dry air. Small to dime size patches of fur would come out after a non-bleeding scab would appear. This was fixed with a humidifier! Maia just scared me with a sudden scaby, fur loss, on her forhead and chin....went to vets and it seems to be an allergic reaction to something she contacted. Started looking better before our appt., and was reassured by the vet.
Our pets can have the same allergies as us, sometimes to more things even, but it is always best to have a VMD appt. to make sure of no infection or micro. infestation. Hope all is well!
post #6 of 26
Thread Starter 
HI there, yes, that does sound like what she has; she has another tiny spot on her head that I thought resulted from a long claw pulling out the fur.

Even though it is cool outside at night I'll close the bedroom window and use the humidifier. Another air filter is also on its way. She has allergies and has done a lot better since I got a filter for the 'studio room' which is quite dusty.

Cats upstairs have also been scratching their heads and shaking them, but I haven't noticed any bald spots.
post #7 of 26
Thread Starter 
Gizmo was carried to the vet's today in her little soft sided cat carrier. I live about four blocks from the vet's office so I walked in the pleasant sunshine. After a few sad yowls Gizmo was quiet. I think that she believes that a trip in the carrier means that she is being abandoned, so she makes all the noise before we leave the house.

The vet diagnosed feline acne on Gizzy's chin. She does like to plow into her food so I will have to wash the plate more often. She already uses a ceramic, not a plastic, dish.

The stuff on her head was more problematic. I was asked if I had ringworm! Not likely, and I 'm not sure the cat does either. So I paid for a culture to be taken from the cat and we'll know in two weeks. Gizzy winced as the hairs were pulled from her but did not make a sound.
She also has to have a little antibiotic cream put on her head twice a day for ten days. I balked at pills just now.

And the new air purifier came today so I'll put that and the vaporizer on in the bedroom tonight. It hopefully will be good for both of us.

When we got home Gizmo plowed into her food again. She's like her owner, stresses out with comfort food. But her weight has dropped by a pound! and she now weighs exactly what she should!

So the good news actually is reported last.
post #8 of 26

How's your hair holding on, I guess, would be my only question.
post #9 of 26
Air purifiers are great for us and our pets, glad to hear all is well!
post #10 of 26
Thread Starter 
I'm doing pretty well, considering that I'm juggling two books, a sick cat, and getting ready for the new term in two weeks' time. Gizzy's condition is not life threatening. The best news I had yesterday was that her heartbeat was normal. We'll find out what the culture yields in about two weeks; but I know that this apartment is really moldy and there are a lot of other plant thingies in the air. So the air filter it is.
Putting the meds on Gizmo's head won't be difficult but I have to make sure it stays there and she doesn't start washing it off. A Q tip quickly daubed on her while she is sleeping should do the trick.
post #11 of 26
Good to here that is something easily handled!!! Now I would switch from Ceramic to Stainless Steel dishes that will cut down the chnaces of forther kitty acne..
post #12 of 26
Thread Starter 
Interesting, Gizmo already has a stainless steel water dish. I don't have a stainless food dish for her though. Guess I'll buy one today.

She loves to drink out of a small ceramic bowl in the studio. I will try replacing that with steel as well.
post #13 of 26
Thread Starter 
Got two stainless steel dishes; a little one for her food and a larger one for the water in the studio.
Her chin looks better already. I guess the ceramic dish was breeding bacteria, even though it was a 'human' plate.
post #14 of 26
Be sure to often change water as well, thoroughly cleaning bowl each time. Maia drinks bottled water, but we live in NYC. I put only about 1 inch of water and change 2 times a day. Also avoid any erasols and carpet cleaning products can agrivate this skin conditions....By the way when I said Pandi had psoriasis like her mom, I ment me! Our poor kitties! Goodluck and good health!
post #15 of 26
Thread Starter 
Hi all,

I don't have carpets (can't stand them), Gizmo's water is changed twice a day, and both of us drink filtered water. Gizzy's chin appears to have cleared up remarkably and at least her head isn't getting worse. The humidifier is back on in the bedroom and the air filter goes on tonight.

Thanks for all the good advice, I will let you know when Gizzy is no longer aka 'baldy'. Right now it looks like a rather stupid vampire tried to bite her on the top of the head and got fur instead...
post #16 of 26
Thread Starter 
NOw the bloody scab is back in her ears. It's possible that this whole thing was caused by Gizmo scratching her head. I won't know for sure til the cultures are 'read' in ten days' time.
I may have to ask the doctor to put her on antibiotics even though Gizmo did not respond well to Prednizone when she was put on it last year by another vet. It gave her violent diarrhea. An antihistamine quartered prescribed by this vet turned herinto a drooling zombie. I have to be very careful with her medication but it's best to get this over with now while I am at home for another two weeks.
post #17 of 26
Thread Starter 
The fur is growing back on her 'bald patches!"

What a relief. And she's stopped clawing her ears bloody. The upstairs neighbour mentioned that her cats were shaking their heads and clawing, also that she was having some problems breathing. I guess everyone has allergies.

I'm assuming that the two BlueAir filters are doing their work. Between the two of them they can clean the air in the entire apartment. They were obviously worth the money.
post #18 of 26
Maia still has a bit of her bloody scabs on corner of mouth and edge of ear, plus we have a fiscious case of fleas right now which I can only trace back to getting from the vets!!!!!!! They absolutely love me! I have had a heat rash in or on areas that they seem to be very attracted to!!! It has only been 7 days since our appt. yet I see them on me, her, blankets, chairs, it has really grown out of control. As soonm as I realized I stripped the bed, Maia and I both had Dawn Baths(which is excellent and safe for killing fleas), yet today, 3 days after stripping and bathing, they were all over me again and she is still itching!!!!!! I have been doing nothing but washing, spraying, vacuming, for the past 30 hours!
One thing I really wanted to mention is have you or your neighbor had your homes tested for mold. My roomates wall in his room is crumbling and moldy, it looks like black mold possibly, and I am starting to wonder if this has more to do with Maia's as well as my skin problems lately...........
post #19 of 26
Thread Starter 
I sympathize with your problems! and hope that you are all better soon.

Yes, this building is most likely a mold factory, and that's why I got the two Blueair filters. Gizmo's fur is growing back so fast I can almost see it progressing by the hour!
post #20 of 26
So happy to hear you happy! I am going through it right now!!!!!!!! The further I go ,inspecting, cleaning, the more I find. The good news is that one of my friends is one of those nerdy, freak kinda guys, he is an exterminator!!!!! Loves his job, reminds me of Grisom from CSI (my favorite show!). I spoke to him today and found out that true enough, fleas can multiply this fast and it does take a chemical treatment, when this bad, to rid them. Maia and I actually have to leave overnight for it.......fine, better then this!
After all this, I look into my dressor to get a fresh shirt, and notice tiny black spots on a balled up pair of socks..................then they move, FLEAS!!!!!! Allthrough my clothes, entire dressor, in one weak a real infestation!!!!!! No clothes to wear, no towels for a shower, I am miserable! These things are a real pain in the ars!
post #21 of 26
Thread Starter 
Gizmo doesn't have fleas, and never did. She's never been outdoors in her life.

She still gets Revolution every month just in case the fleas come in from outside. There's a lot of heartworm here as well and this ensures that a mosquito bite does not kill her.
I recommend it for your cats in future. You'll have to boil all your laundry as well as have the house fumigated.
post #22 of 26
I feel your pain. We had such a bad infestation a number of years ago that we also had to have a professional exterminator in to finally get rid of the beggers. We took the cat to the vet for a de-flea treatment and overnight stay while the house was done. Once you get rid of these things, do use Revolution/Advantage on your kitty once per month during the warmer months. Even though kitty is indoor, you can bring fleas in on your clothing from outside.
post #23 of 26
Yeah, I have to stay at boyfriends for the night while we get the extermination, and you can't clean afterwards! That is going to be so hard for me, I am a clean freak! I do everything they reccomend for infestation already and still...... Right now I have Heart's 3 in 1 7 month collar on her, got it today, my poor little girl. Her skin is still scaby on her forhead and chin so I was worried about useing Frontline or the chemical drops. They love me so I definitely am going to have to regularly treat her.....Never had this before and both my last kitties 16 years with no treatments or fleas.......Hmmmmmmmmm
post #24 of 26
Thread Starter 
Warmer weather brings out more fleas. It's also been a wet summer here so there's a lot of it going around.
post #25 of 26
My cat Misty used to get all kinds of scratches, scabs, and bald spots on her. They seemed to go away when I started trimming her nails. It could be that your cat is just scratching herself. That was the only thing I could come up with when this happend to Misty. She was an only cat and didn't go outside either. As long as your cat is an inside cat you could try trimming her nails or getting SoftPaws for her.
post #26 of 26
Thread Starter 
Gizmo is declawed on her front end.

The hind end needs regular trimming, but the bald patch on her head was not caused by scratching.
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