Does My Cat Have Allergies?

by catfood

The following is an excerpt from Catfoodsite’s FurKeeps Kickoff live Facebook Q&A.


Q: My male cat, who is 6 years old, has allergies. He has a plastic allergy. He doesn’t spend much time there, yet he still persists on scratching his neck till it bleeds.

I have made every attempt. Could this behavior change?

A: Since plastic is used in so many things, including the undersides of furniture and everything that comes from the food store, plastic allergies are a major issue.

It is doubtful that your cat’s activity is the cause if it is drawing blood. In actuality, when a skin biopsy reveals a behavioral disorder, it is almost always an allergy that has to be properly managed.

Also take into account the possibility that you suffer from both food and plastic allergies.


Q: A sensitive region of skin has formed on the back of my 5-year-old female cat directly over her hindquarters. She acts as though it is terribly itchy when I run my hand down her back and touch that place. If I brush or prod the area, she makes licking motions and meows a little.

Nothing seems to be unusual about the fur or flesh underneath. Her shedding has also grown significantly, and I have seen a noticeable increase in dandruff. She had previously experienced this, and the shedding and dandruff gradually got worse. Could this be an allergy to food or to fleas?

When she experienced the symptoms the last time, they vanished when I changed her food and flea treatment at the same time. I assumed the flea medicine was working more effectively. But now the same signs have come back.


A: I usually consider a few things when you have back areas with elevated dander. A cat may refuse to use her built-in comb (her tongue) to groom the middle of her back if she becomes overweight and/or indolent.

Cats typically develop food sensitivities on their heads (although a diet change may bring more essential fatty acids to the skin, which cuts down inflammation).

You might also experience hyperesthesia syndrome, which makes your back more sensitive, itchy, and responsive. Typically, it is not treated.

The back may also itch due to other allergies. Treatment may not be necessary if the symptoms are relatively mild.

Last but not least, back pain could be the culprit.

Dr. Grant Gugisberg, D.V.M.

Parkview Cat Clinic

Mendota Heights, MN

Learn more about FurKeeps, Catfoodsite’s program to help KEEP pets in homes. Find out more about our FurKeeps experts.

Wondering about 10 Questions Cat Vets Wish You Would Ask? Check it out on our latest post!


You may also like

Leave a Comment