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An attentive owner often notices that the cat has broken whiskers. Any disease of the pet is always a stress for the owner, because the animal cannot say that something disturbs it and how it feels. The only way to determine the disease is to consider the related signs and perform laboratory studies in a veterinary clinic. People do not always detect the breaking of vibrissa (the scientific name for whiskers in cats) in time. In some cases, the loss or breakage is a normal process. In other situations, treatment is required, as this process may indicate abnormalities in the body of the animal. You should be able to distinguish natural loss from a disease.
Natural Breaking of Vibrissa
If your cat has broken whiskers, do not panic. It’s probably a trivial loss of hair. Changing vibrissa is a normal periodic process in animals which refers to a similar process of molting. Replacement of hard hairs occurs once every few months. The phenomenon can be observed independently, without shedding. The fallen whisker after a while grows again. If the owner notices that the vibrissa breaks periodically, he/she should contact a veterinarian. This phenomenon is normal. It is required to determine the cause and purpose of treatment.
Attention!The absence of vibrissa may be due to genetic predisposition. For example, the sphinxes do not have whiskers at all. A similar phenomenon is observed in hybrids crossed with sphinxes. If the individual is born with the presence of vibrissa on the muzzle, it is strictly forbidden to cut them off to match the breed.
Reasons for Breaking of Vibrissae in Cats
A cat has broken whiskers on one side or both sides due to the following reasons:
- Curiosity. Cats are very inquisitive, and therefore may break the vibrissa when studying the world around them (often the whiskers are burnt when playing close to the flame). Do not worry, the damaged ones will grow again;
- Fights with other individuals. Pets with access to the street can fight with street cats. As a result, the owner discovers broken vibrissa. There is no cause for concern;
- Too dry air in the room. This often occurs in winter when heaters are on in the house. In this situation, you may identify broken whiskers on your pet’s muzzle. Drying out affects every individual. You should help the pet to overcome the disease, if necessary, contact the veterinarian for the appointment of vitamin complexes;
- Frequent washing with a low-quality shampoo. Cosmetics of poor quality often cause seborrhea in cats. It’s a skin disease, which is quite painful. Seborrhea leads to the breaking and loss of hairs;
- Metabolic disorders in the body. Age-related changes or diseases of the internal organs contribute to the breaking of the vibrissa, that is why older cats have broken whiskers;
- Improper diet or poor quality drinking water. If the pet refuses to drink or drinks too often and its whiskers break, this is the cause for concern. Perhaps an internal disease is developing and urgent treatment is required. Poor balance in the diet affects the condition of vibrissa, it loses its elasticity and can break at any time;
- Allergic reaction to food. Allergy often manifests itself by the loss of vibrissa, as well as by skin itching, redness of the mucosa, secretions from eyes.
The following signs are among the main symptoms associated with the breakdown of vibrissa:
- lack of vitamins is accompanied by fur loss, poor condition of the claws, fetid smell from the oral cavity;
- the presence of fungal diseases makes the whisker very thin;
- louse – parasites, leading to hair loss and brittle hairs;
- hypothyroidism is accompanied by an increase or decrease in body weight, hair loss.
In order to identify the accompanying signs of pathology it is recommended to address the veterinarian for inspection.
If a pet eats meat very rarely, then its organism is experiencing lack of taurine and collagen. To remedy the situation, it is necessary to include a vitamin and mineral complex in the diet. It should be remembered that the breaking of the vibrissa is a symptom, not the disease itself, so the appointment of effective treatment requires a competent assessment of a specialist. Upon detection of the whiskers breaking you should not carry out any direct manipulations with vibrissa. Do not smear it or comb. To improve the problem with vibrissa fragility, you just need to find the cause of it. A qualified veterinarian will help you. The owner’s task is to follow the recommendations of the doctor, to feed the pet properly and to take care of the cat.