How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Dr Scott Nimmo Your Own Question

Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinary Surgeon.
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 19139
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
10315041
Type Your Cat Question Here...
Dr Scott Nimmo is online now

Hi There My cat has had a real ongoing issue with self mutilation.

Customer Question

Hi There

My cat has had a real ongoing issue with self mutilation. We thought it was initially FAD, and as a result she has taken anti allergy pills and steroids. However 2 months on (of which shes been wearing an e collar the entire time!) she is still self mutilating whenever we take the cone off.

My vet seems very unhelpful and is unable to suggest anything else at all - I am at my wits end and worried I will need to have her put to sleep if this continues.

Thanks - Helen
Submitted: 3 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 3 years ago.

Scott Nimmo :

Hello and welcome. My name is Scott and I am an experienced small animal veterinary surgeon, I will be very pleased to work with you today and will try my best to answer your question to your satisfaction.

Scott Nimmo :

Hello and welcome. My name is Scott and I am an experienced small animal veterinary surgeon, I will be very pleased to work with you today and will try my best to answer your question to your satisfaction.

Scott Nimmo :

sorry , clicked that twice ...

Scott Nimmo :

What you are seeing could well be caused by an allergic skin condition so hence the steroids and anti-allergy drugs ... However ....

Scott Nimmo :

If these drugs fail then the next most common cause would be compulsive disorders have been described in the cat such as feline psychogenic alopecia. This is where the cat pulls at its fur for no particular reason like a nervous teenager biting their nails. And of course once it is established the itch scratch cycle takes effect and this perpetuates things.

Scott Nimmo :

Where stress may be a factor or a feline compulsive disorder is suspected your vet may prescribe very small doses of tranquilisers.

JACUSTOMER-1j4aa7wn- : I see. So is there a cure for this or would she need to live in a cone forever. She is not happy and I feel the cone is making her very distressed.
Scott Nimmo :

I have sometimes had very good success with a drug called Amitriptyline

Scott Nimmo :

It is frustrating I know and there are no guarantees but sometimes cures are possible.

Scott Nimmo :

I would try the tranquilliser now if I was handling such a case because if the cat leaves her skin alone so it completely heals then that could sort it.

Scott Nimmo :

You see in the final stages of healing the skin can be very itchy.

Scott Nimmo :

Beyond that you might want to look at the root causes of the allergy rather than your current treatment. Try a prescription hypoallergenic diet for example or desensitisation.

Scott Nimmo :

Also a skin biopsy might point to a precise diagnosis and that can lead to precise treatments, worth thinking about ...

Scott Nimmo :

Until you have a plan of action though it may be best that the hood remains but do not be dissuaded, there are things you can try still ...

JACUSTOMER-1j4aa7wn- : Thanks Scott. I will speak to my vet about this.
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 3 years ago.
Glad to have advised you Helen,

This sort of disease can get both the owner and the cat down and vets can become dissuaded with it as well but with enthusiasm often something can be done if you work through all the likely causes.

Where I was making no headway in practice I often referred these cases to a specialist vet with a further degree in dermatology.

Regards,

Scott

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • It was so professional, so personally concerned (as we were) and you answered all of our questions. George and I are so happy that I found ""JustAnswer"" on my Google search -- you are now in my ""Favorites"" list! And, yes we do love our kitty - she makes our life complete! Bev & George
< Previous | Next >
  • It was so professional, so personally concerned (as we were) and you answered all of our questions. George and I are so happy that I found ""JustAnswer"" on my Google search -- you are now in my ""Favorites"" list! And, yes we do love our kitty - she makes our life complete! Bev & George
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP
  • I couldn't be more satisfied! This is the site I will always come to when I need a second opinion. Justin
  • Just let me say that this encounter has been entirely professional and most helpful. I liked that I could ask additional questions and get answered in a very short turn around. Esther
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C.
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Dr. Joey

    Dr. Joey

    Board Certified

    Satisfied Customers:

    576
    15 yrs in practice, specialist canine/feline medicine
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/ZF/zforward/2012-6-6_202211_headshot1.64x64.jpg Dr. Joey's Avatar

    Dr. Joey

    Board Certified

    Satisfied Customers:

    576
    15 yrs in practice, specialist canine/feline medicine
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/vetdeb/Debbie Headshot 500.64x64.jpg Dr. Deb's Avatar

    Dr. Deb

    Cat Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    179
    I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/NE/nekovet/2013-8-20_23339_nekovet.64x64.jpg Dr. B.'s Avatar

    Dr. B.

    Cat Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1322
    I am a small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats and am happy to discuss any questions you have.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/doggfone1/2009-07-16_133633_vet_pic.jpg Dr. Scott's Avatar

    Dr. Scott

    Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    3955
    15 years of small animal, equine and pocket pet experience in medicine and surgery.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/VE/vetforyou/2012-6-20_33122_PearlPhoto.64x64.jpg Dr. Andy's Avatar

    Dr. Andy

    Medical Director

    Satisfied Customers:

    3073
    UC Davis graduate, Interests: Dermatology, Internal Medicine, Pain Management
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/AN/andrewDVM/2012-4-27_12585_iStock000011751407XSmall.64x64.jpg Dr. Drew's Avatar

    Dr. Drew

    Cat Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    2359
    Small Animal Medicine and Surgery
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/fshlee/2009-7-15_23110_drlee.jpg Dr. Lee's Avatar

    Dr. Lee

    Cat Veterinarian

    Satisfied Customers:

    1219
    8 years of experience in veterinary medicine and surgery
 
 
 

Related Cat Questions