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Cat Increased Pigmentation

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Cat Increased Pigmentation

Lentigo is most common in orange cats.

Pigment is what gives your cat color. It colors their hair, skin, eyes and any part of their body that is not white. When there is an increase in that pigment, there is a possibility of some disease process going on in your cat. There are many conditions that can cause hyper pigmentation, many of which are harmless while others can be quite serious. Some conditions causing increased pigmentation in cats:

The most common cases of hyper pigmentation and increased color are jaundice and lentigo. Jaundice is usually caused by Cat Liver Disease. The skin, whites of the eyes and other mucous membranes become yellowed. It will be diagnosed with blood studies. The treatment will be associated with the type of liver disease that is present.

Lentigo is most common on orange cats. There will be circular brown-black areas on the lips and nose. Your vet will most likely perform a biopsy to determine the causes of the increased pigmentation and treat it accordingly.

Less common causes of hyper pigmentation:

Yeast problems or Malassezia is common on cats in some areas and will appear on a cat’s skin. This is usually due to a compromised immune system and can be treated accordingly. Determining the cause is the first step in any treatment protocol.

Hemangiosarcoma is an invasive, malignant tumor. This is more common on cats who are outside animals, as it is the result of sun damage to the skin, such as with Cat Sunburn. There will be dark colored nodules on the head, legs, groin, ears and axillae(armpits) of the cat. Biopsy is the only way to diagnose this and the only treatment is surgery. The lesion will be removed and a large area around the lesion will also be removed. If it appears on the leg, amputation is unfortunately quite common.

Epitheliotropic lymphoma is a rare Cat Cancer that is usually associated with the Feline Leukemia Virus. There will be redness and Cat Itching which can result in the ulceration of the causative nodules. A needle biopsy is most often performed. Most treatment modalities are ineffective. These can include chemotherapy as well as surgery.

It your cat has a reaction to an injection, there can be some discoloration of the skin surrounding the injection site. It can also be accompanied by hair loss. There is no treatment for this malady and it is therefore a permanent condition.

Cat Hypothyroidism can sometimes cause changes in skin color as well. The disease is due to a decrease in the production of the thyroid hormone. Although uncommon in cats, it can occur. It will cause Cat Obesity, a slower heart rate, yeast infections and some changes in the skin. Diagnosis is made by blood tests which will assess the function of the thyroid gland. If these tests are positive, your cat will take thyroid supplements throughout its life.

The sensitivity to mosquito bites is something that is fairly common in cats. Cat Mosquito Bite Hypersensitivity

is a reaction caused by an overreaction of the cat’s immune system. The cat’s body is defending itself against the mosquito saliva. It can cause red swollen spots that can ulcerate. Prevention is the key to this issue. Keep your cat in an environment that is fairly mosquito free. Cat friendly insect repellents can be used and prednisone will relieve some of the itching.
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