You may be wondering ‘What is that black stuff under my cat’s chin?’ Many people think that the black specks they discover under their Ragdoll Cat’s chin are flea dirt but they are actually blackheads.
Feline acne is a skin condition that primarily affects cats of all breeds, including Ragdolls. It is sometimes called cat acne or kitty acne, but it’s important to differentiate feline acne from human acne. Here are some things you need to know about this skin condition before taking your Ragdoll cat to the vet.
What is Feline Acne?
Feline acne is a typically mild skin condition that some cats develop. Feline acne affects the faces of cats and is most common on the cat’s chin.
What does Cat Chin Acne look like?
Chin acne in Ragdoll Cats often looks like blackheads on the cat’s lower lip and chin. The blackheads may not be clearly visible in which case the acne may make the chin look dirty. The acne may cause abscesses which open and crust over.
Though most cases of feline acne are minor, more severe cases can lead to skin irritation, hair loss, swelling, open sores, and infection. If the cat is scratching the area of the acne, the risk of hair loss, sores, and infection increases.
One of the main causes of chin acne is poor grooming habits. Other possible causes include stress, allergic reactions, and dirt or food caught in skin folds on a cat’s face. Cat acne can also be because of overactive sebaceous glands in cats’ skin.
Mange, fungal infection such as ringworm, yeast infections of the skin, and a bacterial infection can be mistaken for cat acne. The skin pigmentation changes that light-colored cats can undergo can cause black dots on the chin that resembles this condition.
Because other skin conditions of the chin could be mistaken for feline acne, the cat should be examined by a veterinarian for a proper diagnosis. A biopsy, skin scraping, or other diagnostic tests may be performed.
How to treat Feline Chin Acne?
The veterinarian may recommend that you use mild soap, special shampoo, Epsom salts, or other treatments for your Ragdoll cat’s chin acne. He/she may prescribe topical medication or an antibiotic to see if these will be effective. If the condition does not respond to these treatment options and the vet thinks it is necessary to administer corticosteroids (anti-inflammatory medications), he/she will do so in most severe cases.
How to prevent Cat Acne?
Improved hygiene may help prevent feline acne. Therefore you might need to pay more attention to keeping your cat’s face clean, a quick clean after mealtime is recommended.
Sometimes those with feline acne have an allergy to their food bowls. If your cat has feline chin acne it is advised to switch from plastic food or water dishes over to other materials such as stainless steel, glass or ceramic which can help avoid a reactions
Should You Pop Cat Acne?
The pimples should not be squeezed. If this skin condition does not clear up with the recommended treatment, the affected cat should be examined by the veterinarian again. The veterinarian may prescribe a different topical treatment.