Ask the expert.. Jan-Feb 2008


Dr. K. G. Umesh (MVSc, MSc (UK)) is a Postgraduate in Clinical Medicine. He is working for WALTHAM as Regional Associate for South Asia.
Q : My three-year-old cat is getting scabs on the base of her tail. What should I do to prevent it?
– Malini Shinde (Mumbai)
Dr. K. G. Umesh : Scabs near base of tail could be due to chronic and/or persistent skin irritation resulting from number of causes. The main causes are usually fleas or mites. Allergy to fleas can give rise to condition called miliary dermatitis or eczema, where a number of raised scabby spots are seen mainly along cat’s back. Some cases have found to have other causes, including ringworm (fungal skin disease), peri-anal problems and bacterial infections. Therefore, thorough veterinary examination and diagnosis will be required in such cases to establish the cause.  Treatment and prevention depends on the underlying cause, for e.g., anti-allergic medication along with rigorous flea control both for cat and the environment is required. Make sure that your cat is receiving balanced diet (Whiskas) as home prepared diets may not supply cat’s special requirements like preformed Vitamin A and fatty acids, which are important for skin and coat condition.