Why Is Cat’s Nose Crusty?


Sores and crusts on cat’s nose may be the result of dermatitis, allergy or infectious disease. It is impossible to make a diagnosis at home on your own because nasal culture and skin scraping are necessary.

Nose Injury

Crust on cat’s nose may be brownish or black. This symptom characterizes mycotic infection, nasopharyngeal inflammation or allergic response. The most harmless cause is home accidents.

The fact is that the nose of a healthy cat is slightly wet. It makes damaged skin difficult to recover, and sores may be healing for a long time. If the owner is sure about the character of crusts, they should help their cat to recover quickly. It is best to apply an antiseptic cream on nose several times a day. Preventing the sore from reinfection makes regeneration much faster, and crusts come off after a few days of treatment.

A black scab on the nose, which appeared after skin damage and caused discomfort, should not bother the owner. No treatment is needed, the crust will come off without any help when the tissues are fully restored. The only reasons for using an antiseptic are pus-filled blisters on the sore or scabs, which block the airway.

Infectious Diseases

If black crust on cat’s nose does not heal within a few weeks, infection may be the cause. Infectious diseases are characterized with the following symptoms:

  • nasal discharge;
  • conjunctivitis;
  • otitis;
  • frequent sneezing;
  • loss of appetite;
  • apathy;
  • increased lethargy.

A pet may refuse to eat and become weak. The most severe cases are accompanied by vomiting, diarrhea and dehydration.

Cat infections are especially dangerous for an unvaccinated pet. Black crusts are one of the most harmless symptoms. But when they come with other serious signs, the disease may cause death. The owner should take their pet to a veterinary clinic without trying to treat it all by themselves. Some cases require hospitalization and long-term treatment.

Dermatological Diseases

Crust on top of cat’s nose may be the result of skin disorders and different types of dermatitis. These diseases are triggered by fungi and bacteria. Some analyses like nasal culture and skin scraping help to find out a certain cause of scabs. Veterinarians may also use a Wood’s lamp examination to determine if there are any fungal infections.

The way of treatment depends on the type of disease. Epidermal fungal infection is usually cured with antimycotic agents. The treatment consists of creams and nasal solutions. Dermatological diseases require antiseptic treatment of a damaged skin area. It is necessary to prevent reinfection. In this case chlorhexidine or miramistin solution are widely used.

Photo Gallery of Crusts on Cats’ Noses

Sores as Allergic Response

Black or white crust on cat’s nose and around its mouth may be sign of allergy. Usually, they appear in response to food allergens but sometimes scabs are caused by exposure to household chemicals.

This kind of crust are treated with special antihistamine eye drops. They are available at veterinary pharmacies. If the allergic response is moderate, it can be cured without any medicines. In this case symptoms are decreased simply by removing an irritant and avoiding it in the future. Crust debridement is necessary to prevent reinfection.

Feline Calicivirus

Sudden appearance of a black crust may be sign of feline calicivirus, which is one of the most dangerous cat diseases. The owner should pay close attention to pet’s behavior. Usually, pets are vaccinated for this illness and are free from danger. However, stray cats, which may get into the house, are at high risk of feline calicivirus.

The disease is characterized with the following symptoms:

  1. sores and crusts on oral, nasal and ear mucosa;
  2. conjunctivitis and tearing;
  3. joint damage;
  4. high temperature;
  5. lymphadenopathy;
  6. difficulty in breathing.

There is no universal treatment regimen. The way of therapy depends on symptoms and pet’s age. That is why the owner should consult a veterinarian before using any medicines.

It is best to cover crusts with chlorhexidine or Lugol’s iodine twice a day. Regular use of special nasal drops help ease cat’s breathing.

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