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feline acne won't go away!

Posted by bizabet (My Page) on
Fri, May 13, 11 at 22:46

my 5 year old neutered indoor male has developed a minor case of acne. He had it twice before but a little tending took care of it. Not this time! So far:

I switched to ceramic, and also to a more shallow dish.
I've tried swiping under his chin with a damp rag and then with a alcohol wipe after he eats.
I tried scrubbing with acne pads (this was what I was told to do years ago with my first cat and it worked on RUdi the first two times. Now the vet says not good, and it wasn't working anyway)
I've tried scrubbing with antibiotic soap. (Yes, he'll let me do that, but it's hard to get all the suds out)
I took him to the vet who advised scrubbing with alocohol wipes in lieu of the acne pads, and also put something white under his chin (antibiotic?)
I've tried scrubbing with the alocohol wipes.
I took him back to the vet and got a long lasting shot of ab's. Vet also said that sometimes some 1%cortisone was needed, so when the ab shot didn't clear it I started rubing a little dab of hydrocortizone in once a day.

All of the above would some evidence of improvemnt but nothing is clearing it up. I've been using the cortizone on him nightly for a week now, and he still gets BIG black heads and then you can fill a big squishy lump under the skin. It's obvious that those are pretty tender, but I did manage to gently squeeze one--barely touched it and it just shot gunk out. Today it is still swollen and there's another one! Sometimes he just has scabs, probably from digging at night. I have on occasion gotten a big hardened oil plug out, and sometimes 'whiteheads'.

Help! Any advice anyone? Do I need to be doing all of the above everyday, cortizone twice a day? None of the other cats are having a problem, but since this can be/is an infection, is it transmittable? I have 2 black cats--I wouldn't be able to tell they had black heads until it was practically terminal.


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: feline acne won't go away!

Your cat is just not doing a good job of cleaning its chin itself so you will have to assist it. Clean the chin and keep it as clean and dry as possible for as long as possible. I have heard that some of the over the counter acne solutions can be used but check with your vet first. I would recommend Proactive - always check with the vet first. Good luck


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

Evidently what you are doing so far is not working, so try something else.

Get a veterinary antiseptic like novalsan cleanser, which is a vet's choice for cleaning wounds. Get surgical sponges (cotton gauze). Add a small squirt to warm water and apply gently as a compress as long as the cat will allow. I did it twice a day on my dog's hot spots which are very difficult to treat, and it dried out quickly.

I think you should try to keep it dry, as opposed to putting ointments and creams on it, which will collect more dirt.

Put food in a flat saucer and clean the cat after each meal. Keep dry.

Here is a link that might be useful: Novalsan cleanser


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

My first cat was prone to acne. I used to use hot (warm) compresses, and or cleaned her chin with hydrogen peroxide. After a pimple was expressed, I'd dab a little Neosporin on the spot.

After we'd switched from plastic food and water dishes (to Corelle bowls) I think her acne problem cleared up or at least lessened.

Good luck!


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

One of my cats was prone to getting acne. My vet said it is a condition of light-faced cats, so I doubt your black kitties will have a problem with it.

What finally cleared it up for us was SulfOxyDex shampoo on the recommendation of the vet. We just washed the affected areas daily. SulfOxyDex is available through Amazon if you are interested.


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

Well, I'm already using Corelly saucers. He is def'ly a light faced cat--his entire face except for one smal patch above one eye is white, and he is also prone to plaque, although that may be unrelated. I did try an epsom salt compress once, but while he will allow me to scrub him, he wouldn't sit for the compress. Once I get this cleared up, is it going to take daily extensive cleaning or will a quick wipe with a damp towel or a cleanser do it? Once a day twice a day? you know come to think of it I rarely see him sitting around doing the lick paw wipe face routine that I see with other cats. He's got several swollen spots under there today, but it doesn't seem to be making him feel bad at this point.


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

One of mine has acne. Sometimes she gets a pretty good sized pimple which makes everything pretty gross! Most of the time I wipe here with a gauze soaked in peroxide. IF she breaks out, I switch to a soft-bristled BABY toothbrush soaked in a very dilute solution of Nolvasan. Gently brushing the spot against the fur cleans up nicely. Just make sure that it doesn't get in the eyes.

There are other preparations made for skin problems but this regimen works best for me. BTW, the cat never ate nor drank from plastic. She is not allowed to lick out empty food tins either, and her food dish is flat.

I think that some cats have a lower immunity threshold which lets them break out. This cat also gets L-Lysine and is kept in as calm an environment as I can create. Major stress episodes also bring on her outbreaks.

Hope some of this helps.


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

bizabet, my cat's acne came and went throughout his lifetime. Generally when we'd get it cleared up, it would stay cleared up for extended periods of time without being cleaned or treated- for us it was breaking that cycle and getting it cleared up that was the tricky part. The last time that cat had acne, he ended up losing all the whiskers on one side of his face as a result. I had him in an e-collar for a while, and also ended up putting soft-paws on his hind claws to keep him from scratching and mutilating himself. That reminds me that I also made a point of cleaning his feet/claws regularly to avoid extra contamination.

I had heard, and strongly believe, what harebell said about lower immunity. This particular cat was also prone to having ringworm and similar outbreaks. That is generally associated with a lowered immune system. That's not to say that there was something fundamentally wrong with him, immune systems can wax and wane, but anything you can do to strengthen his immune system might help.


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

Is this always in the same spot (pores)? My mother's bichon doggie (white of course) used to get them in one spot on her back. Looked like a big white head/black head and it collected junk under it. If you expressed it, it left a crater behind. Her's never got inflamed, but I could see where it might have. Turned out to be a sebaceous cyst and eventually we had to have it excised as it kept getting larger and grosser.


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RE: feline acne won't go away!

The classic treatment for show cats is cleaning the chin with Listerine mouthwash.


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