Cat Fur, Coat, and Skin Care: How To Help Your Cat Have A Shiny, Clean, and Itch-Free Coat

A kitty’s skin and fur coat are not only signs of vitality and good health, but they also serve as protective agents.

A healthy fur coat acts as a natural protection against various environmental factors such as scorching sun, dry air, wind, and other temperature-based assaults. Furthermore, it also helps the feline manufacture essentials like Vitamin D and other nutrients. Plus, it gives the cat sensory data about its surroundings.

A healthy, silky, shiny fur coat is not only beautiful, it’s also a delight for any pet parent out there when it comes to stroking their beloved feline furball.

Cats are well-known for their self-cleaning obsessions. Unfortunately, as devoted as their self-grooming is, their skin and fur coats sometimes lose their softness and appeal. It can happen to any kitty out there – from young kittens to their adult counterparts.

Why does this happen, and how can you revive the shine, smoothness, and overall health of your precious pet’s skin and coat? We’ll answer these and  other questions below.

Problems With Skin And Coats: Why Is My Cats Fur Patchy Or Falling Out?

There are numerous things that can worsen the condition of your pet’s skin and fur coat. They can lead to dry and flaky skin, irritation, itchiness, inflammation, fur thinning, shedding, hair loss, and so forth. Here are the most common offending factors which pose risks to your kitty.

Malnourishment

Every responsible pet parent out there knows that proper nutrition is vital. High quality cat food is of intrinsic importance for your fluffy pal as cats have specific nutritional requirements which human foods cannot meet.

A well-balanced meat-based diet is essential for every single cat. Minerals, vitamins, fats, oils, carbohydrates, and proteins are key ingredients for the happy, healthy, and thriving kitty. On the other hand, malnourishment results in a number of problematic outcomes including digestive issues, diseases, and of course – bad skin and coat condition.

If you’re not feeding your pet with all the essential ingredients a feline diet requires, a thinning coat and irritated skin will be the least of your problems.

The Aging Factor

As cats from any breed and size get older, their overall health worsens. Their immune systems aren’t as stable as they used to be when they were younger. As a result, they become more vulnerable to all sorts of external and internal health-based issues.

Not only do senior cats need special diets, but they also need a bit of a boost in terms of additional supplements. Age plays a significant role in the health of a cat’s skin and fur coat, and as said age progresses, your pet will need your help when it comes to maintaining its shiny and soft fur.

Lack Of Proper Grooming

Even though feline creatures are notable for their self-grooming ways, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t groom your cat.

The type of cat brushes and combs you’re using can make a severe difference for better or for worse. The wrong brush can actually damage a cat’s skin and fur coat. Being consistent also matters. Longhaired breeds like the Persian require daily brushing as their fur gets easily tangled and mats.

Bathing your cat is also important. However, bathing a cat too often can harm your pet’s skin and coat as much as not bathing it at all. Each breed has unique bathing requirements and depending on your kitty’s health condition, you should consult with a vet on how often you should give your precious furball a bath.

Health Problems

Diseases like diabetes, skin cancer, abscess, and so forth often result in thinned and matted fur, dandruff, and dry and flaky skin. Obesity is also among the common culprits for skin and coat issues as overweight kitties have a hard time reaching all parts of their body while grooming themselves.

Common parasites such as fleas also affect the way your cat’s skin and fur coat look and feel.

Last but not least, allergies, especially ones from pollen, dust, insect bites, and other similar external factors, will cause various skin problems such as irritation, itchiness, and excessive shedding.

How To Care For Your Cat’s Skin And Fur

Every pet parent out there wishes to have a pet companion with clean, soft, and itch-free skin. Here’s how you can help your furball maintain its velvety softness and beautiful, healthy looks.

Regular Grooming

Grooming can be a great bonding experience for you and your feline pal. As long as you’re not pulling too much hair with the de-shedding tools and are using massaging brushes, your furry pet will adore every second of the daily grooming sessions.

Removing mats, tangles, loose hair, and debris guarantees sleeker, cleaner and shinier fur.

Moreover, cleaning up your feline pal also plays a role in its skin and coat condition. Using specialized cat wipes is your best option when it comes to cleaning everything from the top of the head all the way down to the paws.

Vitamins

Similar to human beings, kitties need vitamins and minerals in order to thrive.

Vitamins A and E do wonders for skin cell repair and strengthening. They also help maintain the smoothness of the fur. Vitamin C is an antioxidant and promotes the health of all tissues, including the skin.

B complex vitamins also have a vast variety of benefits, one of them being providing essential nutrients for a cat’s skin and fur coat.

Sufficient Protein Intake

Lack of sufficient proteins can easily cause hair loss, dry skin, patchy fur spots, brittle coat, and flaky skin lesions. Make sure your beloved pet is receiving enough proteins from real meat. Cats are carnivorous creatures, thus their main source of sustenance and health is meat.

Increasing your furry pal’s protein intake ensures that it will lead a healthier and happier lifestyle.

You may not know this, but a cat’s skin is primarily composed of alpha-keratin proteins. When there’s a substantial lack of protein in the kitty’s diet, its body starts deriving the lacking nutrients from its own skin’s protein reserves.

Fatty Acids And Healthy Fats

Cat food is significantly fatter and oilier than other pet foods. Why? Because high quality cat food is packed with healthy fats and fatty acids.

Omega 3, 6, and 9 are crucial for your furball’s skin and coat condition, as well as for its overall health. Focus on healthy fats such as fish oils and omega fatty acids when changing a cat’s diet. Mind you, you should be careful as some cat breeds are more prone to suffering from obesity than others.

On the other hand, some breeds like the Sphynx thrive better on dry food diets, so keep an eye on the amounts of fat your kitty is receiving.

Commercially Available Products

If you wish to boost your pet’s skin and fur coat health, there are numerous commercially available products on the market like additives, gels, and topical solutions. Unfortunately, there’s the risk of an inactive ingredient triggering an allergic reaction or posing risk to your kitty’s health. As such, you should always consult with a vet prior to administering such medications and supplements.

The best way to discover the roots of the problems with your cat’s fur and skin condition is to schedule a check-up with a reputable vet. You should never try self-diagnosing your pet – instead, seek a professional’s opinion.

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Emily Parker
 

Emily Parker is the Content Manager at Catological. She's passionate about helping cat parents love their cats better by providing the best information and recommendations about everything you'll need to know about your cat, from kitten to senior years. She believes natural, biologically-appropriate products are best...why wouldn't you provide the best for a member of your family?!

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