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What is Fungal Infection Of The Skin?

Fungal infections occur when fungi present in the environment is inhaled by your cat or it enters his system through a break in his skin. Fungi are found in the soil and in the feces of infected animals. These infections can affect cats of any age or breed. Certain types of fungal infections attack cats that are sick or have immune deficiency diseases.

There are a variety of fungal infections that can affect your cat’s skin. Some may not cause serious problems and clear up with medication. However, there are certain types of fungi that can damage your cat’s skin and put his health at risk.

Fungal Infection Of The Skin Average Cost

From 399 quotes ranging from $200 - $500

Average Cost

$300

Symptoms of Fungal Infection Of The Skin in Cats

Fungal infection of the skin can cause a variety of symptoms, depending on the type of fungi present. Here are some symptoms seen by veterinarians most often in cats:

  • Redness of skin
  • Scaly skin
  • Hair loss
  • Greasy skin
  • Skin lesions that can emit a foul odor
  • Thick skin
  • Hyperpigmentation of the skin in patches
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Organized lesions known as granules
  • Nodules underneath the skin 
  • Lesions inside the nose
  • Fever
  • Lack of energy
  • Depression
  • Draining masses on the head, chest and limbs

Types

There are many types of fungal infections that can affect your cat’s skin. The following is a list of some of the most common in domestic cats:

  • Malassezia pachydermatis
  • Cutaneous sporotrichosis
  • Disseminated sporotrichosis
  • Rhinosporidiosis
  • Phaeohyphomycosis
  • Mycetomas
  • Cryptococcosis
  • Coccidioidomycosis
  • Candidiasis
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Causes of Fungal Infection Of The Skin in Cats

The cause of fungal infections of the skin in cats depends on the type of fungi responsible for the infection. Here are some things that doctors have identified as the primary causes of these skin infections:

  • Flea allergies
  • Cancer of the pancreas or liver
  • Exposure to high humidity and heat
  • Contact with infected feces
  • Exposure to infected soil
  • Inhalation of fungal spores outdoors
  • Contamination of wounds
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Diagnosis of Fungal Infection Of The Skin in Cats

Your veterinarian will need some information from you to diagnose your cat’s condition. It is important to let him know when you first noticed symptoms and if you cat takes any medications for pre-existing health conditions. After taking a medical history, your doctor will examine your cat thoroughly. He will observe his mannerisms, gait and neurological function. Your cat’s heart rate, respirations and temperature will also be taken and recorded. 

Your doctor will likely take a blood sample to see if infection is present. A biochemical profile and complete blood count or CBC will be sent to an outside laboratory for testing. A urine sample will be taken for urinalysis, as well. If your cat has lesions on his skin, your doctor may take a skin scraping. He will examine it underneath a microscope to determine if yeast is present. Lesions that are draining may be biopsied while your cat is under anesthesia. These samples are sent to an outside laboratory for diagnosis. It is important to accurately diagnose fungal infections of the skin because some types can be transmitted to humans. 

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Treatment of Fungal Infection Of The Skin in Cats

How your cat is treated for his fungal infection of the skin will depend on the type of fungi present. Some skin infections can be treated with special antifungal creams or ointments or oral antifungal medications. Infections that are caused by yeast may be treated with special shampoos or dips. Cysts or lesions under the skin may require surgical removal. In some cases, these cysts recur with frequency and are often difficult to treat.

If your cat develops bacterial or secondary infections as a result of his fungal infection, your veterinarian will treat these as needed. Cats that are very sick or contagious may be kept in the hospital until the symptoms improve. Your doctor may give you instructions on how to avoid becoming infected before you take your cat home.

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Recovery of Fungal Infection Of The Skin in Cats

Recovery time depends on how severe your cat’s symptoms are and the type of fungal infection present in the skin. Certain types of antifungal medicines take weeks before you can see an improvement in symptoms. It is important to give your cat his medicine exactly as prescribed. Your doctor will most likely see your cat every few weeks to monitor his progress. It is very important that you report any changes in your cat’s condition quickly to your doctor. This includes any changes in the appearance of the skin or in his behavior. If your cat had surgery to remove nodules or lesions, his recovery may take a bit longer. Your doctor will give you detailed instructions on how to care for his incisions and how to administer any medications sent home. You will be given an appointment for suture removal if necessary. Sutures typically come out 10 days after surgery, depending on the size and depth of the wound. In rare cases, fungal infections of the skin can cause secondary issues that cause serious health issues or are untreatable. Your doctor will recommend the best course of treatment in these cases.

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Fungal Infection Of The Skin Average Cost

From 399 quotes ranging from $200 - $500

Average Cost

$300

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Fungal Infection Of The Skin Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

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Ask a Vet

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Persian

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2 months

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Unknown severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Ichiting, Bald Spots, Black Spots

The baby is itchy and there are patches of black and the patches are bald

Sept. 29, 2020

Owner

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Dr. Michele K. DVM

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1 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Puppies are quite prone to parasites of the skin, and it sounds like your puppy may need to be seen by a veterinarian. Ringworm is also a possibility, and if it is severe enough that hair is falling out, the puppy probably needs treatment. Having a veterinarian take a look at the puppy would be best, as they can examine the skin and see what might be causing this problem. I hope that all goes well for the puppy.

Sept. 29, 2020

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RORY

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BSH

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3 Years

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Moderate severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Wet

My cats skin is wet all over her belly sometimes moves to grin or armpit an is smelly and dirty looking when i clean her almost like old blood vet said overgroom but she has a cone an its still wet

Sept. 25, 2018

RORY's Owner

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Bistro

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Persian

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6 Months

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Mild severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

Has Symptoms

Hair Loss
Bad Smell
Redness On Skin
Alot Of “Pimples” On

I’ve had my persian kitten for a while now (about 4-5 months) and never notices these pimples that are present on his second until 3 weeks ago, i thought that they were dirt or something to not worry about, then when i was petting him i smelled a foul odor and then took him to the nearest vet. The vet confirmed that he had a fungal infection and gave me a spray and shampoo i’ve kept him in a cage since i have other cats and i dont want him to be infected. Please help :(

Sept. 1, 2018

Bistro's Owner

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Blue

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Cat

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8 Years

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Serious severity

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1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

None

My cat has a chunk of skin /flesh that was biten yesterday from a wild animal outside. She came home with the bite. Its a big bite. But she isn't limping or moaning. She's acting just fine. Should I be concerned?

Aug. 21, 2018

Blue's Owner

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1 Recommendations

Any bite from a wild animal is concerning, especially if you live in an area known for rabies; also any large bite should be treated by your Veterinarian to help healing and prevent against secondary infection, severe large bites may require suturing closed in some cases. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Aug. 22, 2018

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Wedgit

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Calico

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12 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Licking And Scratching

My cat has a patch on her back that’s missing fur and it doesn’t have any bite marks but it looks infected and we’ve been cleaning it up ever since we saw it but we don’t know what it’s from. We think she may have burned herself maybe on one of the lightbulbs or gotten in a fight with another cat and it like been pulled out instead of bitten out if that makes sense.

Aug. 19, 2018

Wedgit's Owner

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0 Recommendations

It is possible that Wedgit pulled the hair out themselves due to irritation from an injury, infection or sting/bite; without examining Wedgit I cannot say what the cause is but if the area looks infected you should visit your Veterinarian for an examination to determine a cause and to receive treatment as systemic therapy may be required to help clear it up. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Aug. 20, 2018

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Stitch + Simba

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domestic short hair

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5 Years

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Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Hair Loss
Flaky Skin
Pus
Brittle Nails
Waxy Build Up
Spreading

I took my cat into the vest for what I thought was a nail disorder or build up of ear wax idk. The vet just said the clean it with Chlorhex. Make sure he doesn’t lick it because he’ll get an yeast infection and gave him an antibiotic shot. And apply antibiotic cream after I clean it. It seemed to clear up for about a week and now I notice it back on one nail instead of 4 but my year old kitten has a build up of black/brown crud under his paw deep within his under claws, and fur seems to be shedding. I did my best to clean it with Chlorhex then applied the same antibiotic cream but it wouldn’t come off and he seems to be in pain. My 5 year old cat stitch started with swollen claw bed and brittle nails then hyperpigmentation and it was crusty, dry, scaly and had a waxy pus. It eventually cleared up after two weeks and had been clear for a week but I noticed one nail bed was starting to be infected again. Also not sure if Simba my 1 year old cat has the same infection as he has no symptoms on his nail beds just the under paw.

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Milo

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Ragdoll

dog-age-icon

7 Months

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

Has Symptoms

Balding
Crusty Skin
Excessive Grooming
Red Skin

Hello, my 7 months old cat recently got fungus beneath his arms. His skin looks red and he lost his hair along with the fungus growing on it. Ive been recently prescribed with itraconazole, but the side effects of the medicine worry me. My question is: can i bathe him still with the fungus growing? or do i need a certain way to remove them before showering him? The fungus is

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piper

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Tabby Cat

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4 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Itchy Skin Around Head
Itchy Skin Around Head Odour

Tabby female- itchy skin around head - neck and smelly odour from breath - took her to four different vets - they suspect allergy - tests been done but no parasite have been found - changed food and bowls to hypoallergenic including grain free diets - this issue occurred after she was spade - vets often give her steroid injections

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April

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Russian Blue

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1 Year

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

Has Symptoms

None On The Cat

I rescued 1 Russian blue female (1-year-old) and 2 black domestic short hair brothers (6 months old) from a shelter. One week later one of my daughters with sensitive skin developed a bad rash seemingly overnight. The rash does not look like ringworm. Pediatrician said it was a bacterial infection from scratching whatever was itching her, and that the initial cause could be the cats. Took the cats to the vet, vet said the russian blue had a history of beign treated for ringworm and testing negative because of prior exposure but had no current sores. The cats are having an anti-fungal bath at the vet. Vet said ringworm is a contstant battle and because of my daughter's sensitive skin we may consider returning her to the shelter. Not sure what to do.

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Snowball

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DOMESTIC

dog-age-icon

10 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

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0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Mild severity

Has Symptoms

Hairloss

My 10 yr old cat went to vet n he has feline herpes virus.Mild case.And he is scratching at his face n that is where hair loss is.Wondering if he has fungus infection

Fungal Infection Of The Skin Average Cost

From 399 quotes ranging from $200 - $500

Average Cost

$300

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