Cat's fur is getting short?

la dee da

Songster
11 Years
Dec 18, 2008
610
12
164
Virginia
Hey everyone, I have a puzzeling problem I hope you'll know the answer to.

Ok, we have a silver/gray cat that we found as a kitten as a stray about...maybe a year ago? A few weeks ago (bare in mind I'm not very good at keeping track of time, so it could've been shorter or longer) I noticed that he had a wound on the back of his neck. Nothing to worry about He'd had that exact type of would before as did my older cat, so I figured it would heal in a couple weeks. About a week after he first got it I noticed that some of the fur around it between his shoulders was gone and he had another smaller wound of the same kind almost healed already. No biggy I thought, I just hadn't noticed it because you really only notice it if you look hard and pull his fur away from it.

I kept on eye on his wounds, which have been almost healed for about a week now, and today I've noticed his fur is getting really short in several patches around his body. His fur is not gone and it's not like he's just shedding. The fur he has in the patches are like stubble, mostly on his legs and on his sides. I haven't really checked him lately, so this might have been going on the the last few days, but both my mom and I agree that it isn't normal shedding and it's strange. None of our three other cats have this problem.

It might be helpful to note that when he got the wound I was already a month behind on flea meds and since I do all the animals at once I haven't put the meds on them yet, so I'm about 2 months behind. The cat sleeps in my room and I haven't noticed any fleas, in fact I have yet to see one. My two cats are inside only but my sisters two cats are allowed outside sometimes.
Unfortunatly I can't take pics of it.
What could this be?


Edited to add: I just talked to one of my brothers who says he's noticed small lines of short fur on Bat (the cat) shortly before the first wound.


UPDATE pg 2.
 
Last edited:

lux_interior

Songster
10 Years
Apr 28, 2009
813
3
141
Joliet
Fleas could be the culprit, it sounds like this cat is doing it to himself. I had a cat with a flea problem near his hip, he chewed at it so much that he tore out his hair too.... I would get him a good medicated flea dip, or if he's hard to bathe, you may have to take him somewhere to have this done.... and then definitely put the flea medicine on him once he's clean, and you may have to check him for worms now too, because those result from bad flea infestations


I hope he does better!!
 

la dee da

Songster
11 Years
Dec 18, 2008
610
12
164
Virginia
I was also wondering if it's fleas, but the strange part is that none of us humans have been having a problem with them and no one has seen a flea
. We had a dog who had an alergic reaction but she would chew her fur off, not short so I'm really puzzled.
 

thebritt

Songster
10 Years
Mar 5, 2009
1,574
3
161
Humboldt County
We have 3 "long haired" tabbies. Every year around April/May, their long hair becomes almost short. We thought that was really weird the first year it happened, but in the fall all their hair grew back and fluffy. Following spring - same thing - first all scruffy looking, then a significantly shorter "summer coat". Maybe he's just getting a summer coat?
 

patandchickens

Flock Mistress
12 Years
Apr 20, 2007
12,520
263
341
Ontario, Canada
Clumps of hair pulled out when fighting, leaving only the undercoat?

Hair growing back after injury or other cause of local patchwise hair loss?

Ringworm?

If it isn't scabby or with little sandy gravelly bits of dried serum/blood it probably IME isn't flea allergy.

Good luck,

Pat
 

rhondapiper

Songster
10 Years
Mar 9, 2009
226
2
111
Harford County Maryland
Sounds like he's licking/chewing the fur off.

This can be fleas, food allergies (usually to corn or chicken), grass/pollen/environmental allergies or stress. I've had cats go for years with no problem and then poof, one day they have issues.

I've got one right now who licks and chews himself due to stress, and it looks just like you describe, almost like he took clippers to himself on the belly and backs of his front legs. Another has the same issue, but it is allergies, not stress.

I'd try getting a good quality topical flea med from your vet, none of the stuff you can buy over the counter like Hartz because it's ineffective and can harm the cat, and, if that doesn't resolve the issue, try switching foods.
 

MoTownChickie

Songster
10 Years
Apr 24, 2009
128
2
119
Modesto, California
I'd check to be sure it isn't ringworm.

If it is, it could transmit it to you or other family members & pets.
Also the ringworm spores are a bugger to get rid of.

Treatment through a vet takes about 4-6 weeks - at least in some tame feral kittens I fostered a couple of years ago. Then I had to clean the carpet and mist around with a diluted bleach water solution before I'd let other animals in the quarantine room.

I hope it is just summer shedding or fleas!
 

la dee da

Songster
11 Years
Dec 18, 2008
610
12
164
Virginia
Sounds like he's licking/chewing the fur off.

This can be fleas, food allergies (usually to corn or chicken), grass/pollen/environmental allergies or stress. I've had cats go for years with no problem and then poof, one day they have issues.

I've got one right now who licks and chews himself due to stress, and it looks just like you describe, almost like he took clippers to himself on the belly and backs of his front legs. Another has the same issue, but it is allergies, not stress.

I'd try getting a good quality topical flea med from your vet, none of the stuff you can buy over the counter like Hartz because it's ineffective and can harm the cat, and, if that doesn't resolve the issue, try switching foods.

Food allergies could definatly be it as we got a different type of food a little over a month ago, we have now run out of that so he will be back on what he is used to. The stress thing...I don't know, nothing about the family or house has really changed so I woulnd't think that's it? The "looks like he took clippers to himself on the belly and backs of his front legs" definatly describes what it looks like. I will put the flea meds on in case that's what it is (we have Frontline, so it's a good brand).

I will do some research on ringworm, but wouldn't the cats that go outside be the ones who get it first?

Thanks everyone who answered!​
 

la dee da

Songster
11 Years
Dec 18, 2008
610
12
164
Virginia
Almost forgot to respond to the other suggestions!

Quote:Was their fur like, really really short? his normal fur is maybe 1in. long and the short fur is about half that. He's never had fur this short.

Clumps of hair pulled out when fighting, leaving only the undercoat?

I doubt it, he doesn't really get into cat fights (and again, he's indoor only) and it doesn't look like a cat pulled out fur
.​
 

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