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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Vet
Satisfied Customers: 22457
Experience:  General practice veterinary surgeon with extensive experience in a wide range of species.
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Hi What would be the best way to help dry dandruff skin

Customer Question


What would be the best way to help dry dandruff skin after brushing a cat ?

Thank you
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Vet
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 4 years ago.

Hello, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with Bon today.

Now you have asked about addressing dander after brushing Bon, but I would say that the actual issue to be address arises before the brushing even starts. Specifically, the key to tackling dander post-brushing is to address the issues leading to a decline in skin health and therefore an increase in dander production.

When we see an increase of dander in a cat's coat, we do need to consider a few issues. If Bon were older, we'd have to assess whether she was showing a decline in her grooming habits (which can often happen when cats are unwell, have hormonal imbalances, or have moderate arthritis). And if you were actually seeing plaques of thick dander along her back, we'd even have to rule out the Cheytiella mite. That said, if Bon is otherwise healthy and only has dander issues, then we are likely looking at a deficiency in dietary essential fatty acids.

In regards to the dander and general skin health, you should consider some essential fatty acid (EFA) supplementation for her. EFA’s are the fats that are part of skin cells composition and play a role in their health and coat health. A general recommendation for dietary supplementation with essential fatty acids is based on supplying 1.5-2.5 ml fish oil for a 4kg cat. Alternatively, you can offer a small volume of fresh salmon weekly. If she doesn't like fish, there are some non-fishy EFA supplements (ie Viacutin, Yumega) and even a spot on one (ie Allederm) that your vet can provide for you. And remember that since these are supplements and not drugs, we often need to run a 4-6 week trial (the timeframe for EFAs to get into the skin cells) to fully appreciate their effects on skin health.

Overall, your history is suspicious of a EFA deficiency for Bon. While it isn't a critical type of deficiency, when lacking we will see a decline in skin health and eventually coat quality. Therefore, I would advise supplementing EFAs to reduce poor skin heath as a reason for her dander issue and of course just monitoring her to ensure that non of our other potential influencing factors (hormonal disease, arthritis, etc) are contributing to the state skin and this overproduction of dander.

I hope this information is helpful.

If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!

Dr. B.


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