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post #1 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2013, 04:57 PM Thread Starter
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Obsessive grooming

I'm looking for some insight. Tessa is around 8 and has belonged to my girlfriend since she was found as a stray 7 years ago. Last summer they moved into a bachelor apartment in a high rise and she started grooming to the point of hair loss. The vet suggested adding a second cat as it seemed to be stress related, so Percy was adopted last December. It did seem to help and her coat had come back in fully. In September my girlfriend and I moved in together into a new place and my dogs came with. Now the obsessive grooming has returned. She really doesn't seem stressed, though. Both cats adapted to the dogs quickly, and although Tess doesn't play with them like Percy does, she has no problem sleeping and relaxing on the floor or couch with them. She's eating normally and there haven't been any litter box issues and she doesn't hide away. It's just the constant licking. I can't find feliway in the city, but do have access to other calming products from work.
This is the outside of her hock area
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The inside of both legs are like this
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The underside of both front legs
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And there's a small patch on the underside of the base of her tail.

This is how she is around the dogs, though, so it doesn't really seem like they're stressing her out all that much.
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Thoughts? She's turning herself into a sphinx.


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post #2 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2013, 05:41 PM
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Poor baby! Are you absolutely sure it's not allergy related? Food allergies can crop up anytime.

I had a black cat, Maggie that was a compulsive groomer after we adopted Billy. Maggie licked entire sections of her back and sides off. I had great luck with a GNC product, Calms Forte. She ate them out of my hand and within a week or so she had stopped doing that to herself. There is also a product available on Amazon called Homeopet for Anxiety Relief. I have not tried it but I've tried other Homeopet products with great results so it may be worth a try.

I just finished a book called The Cat who Cried for Help by Dr. Nicholas Dodman. He is quite insightful about these types of problems and often recommends a mild sedative to take the edge off. If you need, PM me and I will go back through the book and see what the name of the sedative is.
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post #3 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2013, 05:47 PM
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Anti-anxiety Medication for Cats

You may find this article interesting too. Also, try Fel-i-way diffusers, too. Put several in the apt for saturation (one covers about 350+/- sf) It may help calm her down enough to stop the grooming mutilations.
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post #4 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-18-2013, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Marcia View Post
Poor baby! Are you absolutely sure it's not allergy related? Food allergies can crop up anytime.

I had a black cat, Maggie that was a compulsive groomer after we adopted Billy. Maggie licked entire sections of her back and sides off. I had great luck with a GNC product, Calms Forte. She ate them out of my hand and within a week or so she had stopped doing that to herself. There is also a product available on Amazon called Homeopet for Anxiety Relief. I have not tried it but I've tried other Homeopet products with great results so it may be worth a try.

I just finished a book called The Cat who Cried for Help by Dr. Nicholas Dodman. He is quite insightful about these types of problems and often recommends a mild sedative to take the edge off. If you need, PM me and I will go back through the book and see what the name of the sedative is.
I'm fairly certain it's not allergy related, her diet didn't switch prior to it starting last year. She's been eating wellness chicken, chicken and herring, California natural venison and rice, holistic select turkey since September, one case at a time, so at least a few weeks of each variety. I've seen no difference with each food. Up until about a year and a half ago she was eating only cheap grocery store kibble and didn't have any issues. I do have the homeopet products at work, so I may give it a try just to see. Poor girl, she's such a sweet kitty.


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post #5 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-19-2013, 12:55 PM
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Ohhhhh poor baby!!!

Could be from:
Stress
Flea allergy
Food allergy

Maybe switch to a quality grain free food, check for fleas...put cat on white towel and brush or comb...see what comes off...lil black things could be flea dirt..if you wet it and it turns red...flea dirt
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post #6 of 6 (permalink) Old 11-19-2013, 11:38 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gizmothecat View Post
Ohhhhh poor baby!!!

Could be from:
Stress
Flea allergy
Food allergy

Maybe switch to a quality grain free food, check for fleas...put cat on white towel and brush or comb...see what comes off...lil black things could be flea dirt..if you wet it and it turns red...flea dirt
Definitely not fleas, I check everyone almost daily because I don't use chemical preventatives. I'm almost positive it isn't a food allergy, but she's only getting California natural venison canned until this case is gone so I'll see if a new protein source changes anything. After the current case and a few more wellness cases that I already have they're most likely going to be eating Stella and Chewy's freeze dried raw, so I'll know for sure if it's food related then.
Apparently this is no where near as bad as it was last year. Last time she was completely naked on her belly, so hopefully we figure it out before it gets there. I'm going to pick up the homeopet and see what else we have at work on Thursday and see if that makes a difference. I don't remember why, but we can't get the feliway plug ins anymore in store. It might only be available through a vet and last I heard they were around $50 each. I know we can no longer order them from the states to be shipped into Canada, so I'm wondering if it's a new policy thing with an ingredient.


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