What is the treatment for feline dandruff?
If your cat is covered in little white flakes, it just might have a bad case of dandruff. Yes, cats get it too. It happens when cats get dry, flaky skin that will tend to flake off. Dandruff in cats is usually caused by dietary issues. Diabetes is also a big factor (a diabetic cat will often develop it). Sometimes cold weather can cause it seasonally as well (then it’s not a health issue, it’s just that the skin is drying out because of the lack of humidity).
It isn’t really a big problem to worry about in most cases healthwise, but it can be very annoying. Some owners may think it’s a little gross to pet the cat when flakes keep going everywhere. There are three basic things you can do to treat it:
1) Groom your cats more often. Brush and comb them once a week or so. That will get rid of loose fur and dandruff flakes, which will keep them off your furniture, bed, etc.
2) Bathe the cat. There are some dandruff shampoos made specifically for cats that will help you out by making it less likely – sort of a Kitty Head and Shoulders.
This shampoo is a foam thing, and I’m not sure you really need to give them a bath with it so much as rub it into the coat so it gets at the skin (it says no rinsing, but I’m not sure that means no bathing).
Then there is Flake Away Dandruff Shampoo for Dogs and Cats:
This is definitely a traditional shampoo. That means you’ll have to give your cat a bath, though – which can be very tough work. It’s best to ease them into it – for the first few times, try putting them in the tub you are going to bathe them in (it can be your bathtub or a sink or whatever) and running a wet cloth into their fur. Get them used to doing that, then put a little water in, then increase the amount. Give them treats afterward as a reward, and pet them and praise them verbally. It’s harder to get adult cats to adjust to it, but it can be done with most cats.
3) Finally, supplement your cat’s diet with some fish oils. This can usually produce a better coat and better skin, especially if a dietary problem is behind it.
This is salmon oil made especially for cats. It’s a dietary supplement, and most cats will like the fish taste. You basically just spray it on the cat’s food. It’s got a lot of other nutrients in there too, so it will generally make your cat healthier in addition to giving it better skin and hopefully less flakes as a result.