Hair Loss Average Cost

From 445 quotes ranging from $200 - 1,000

Average Cost

$400

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What are Hair Loss?

Hair loss, or alopecia, is a condition in which a cat’s hair falls out or does not grow, and it can occur in cats of any age. Hair loss can be partial or total. Partial loss may be symmetrical or can occur in random patterns. In some cases, hair loss is localized to one or more specific areas known as hot spots. Medical diagnosis is necessary to identify why the hair loss is occurring and to treat the underlying cause. Alopecia is a sign of a variety of conditions, and it may be a symptom of a serious or life-threatening issue.

Symptoms of Hair Loss in Cats

The most obvious symptom of alopecia is loss of hair in either patches or all over the body. Hair loss may not leave observable bald patches at first, but could begin with changes to the coat, including fuzzing, excessive shedding, or rough fur. Depending on the underlying cause of the loss, there may be various other symptoms observed, including those that do not appear related to the hair loss. 

Symptoms Include:

  • Hair loss
  • Red skin
  • Bumps or blisters
  • Scabs
  • Scaling
  • Skin loss
  • Itchiness and scratching
  • Cysts or nodules
  • Excessive grooming
  • Whisker loss
  • Easy bruising
  • Ulcers or open sores
  • Hyperpigmentation or darkened patches of skin
  • Foul odor
  • Lethargy
  • Abnormal behavior
  • Depression 

Causes of Hair Loss in Cats

A variety of conditions can cause hair loss in cats. Alopecia can be a sign of diseases, infections, toxins, disorders, cancers, allergies, or infestations. Hair loss that occurs at or soon after birth is often related to improper development in the womb or hereditary disorders. Some common causes of hair loss in cats and other companion animals include:

  • Bacterial infections
  • Fungal infections
  • Parasitic infections
  • Skin trauma
  • Burns
  • Allergic reactions
  • Birth defect
  • Hereditary conditions 
  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Hormonal imbalances
  • Friction
  • Stress
  • Over grooming
  • Autoimmune disorders
  • Thyroid disorders
  • Diabetes
  • Cancer or tumors
  • Cancer treatments 
  • Some medications
  • Poison or toxins
  • Fleas, lice, or mites

Diagnosis of Hair Loss in Cats

Determining the cause of alopecia may require extensive diagnostic testing because of the numerous potential causes of the condition. Be prepared to discuss your pet’s medical history, any medications or toxins they may have ingested, and any symptoms you have observed. Your veterinarian will perform a full physical examination while paying special attention to hot spots and the condition of the skin. A smear, culture, or biopsy of the affected area may be required for analysis. Combing of the hair to identify lice, mites, or fleas and examination of the hair at a microscopic level may provide information on the cause. Veterinary staff may also draw blood and complete a full blood panel and a variety of tests for common infections. Analysis of urine, feces, or any fluids may also be required. X-rays or other diagnostic imaging techniques may be employed to look for internal causes like cancer. 

Treatment of Hair Loss in Cats

The treatment prescribed for your cat’s hair loss will depend on the cause veterinary staff is able to diagnose. Treatment plans will vary widely because many of the causes do not share similar treatment methodologies. The success of remedies will depend greatly on accurate diagnosis of the reason for the alopecia. In some cases, like those involving congenital or hereditary hair loss, no treatment is available. Some common treatments include:

Topical Treatments 

A topical cream is often used when treating alopecia. In some cases, the topical cream may treat the cause of the hair loss, but it is also common to use one to remedy symptoms like skin irritation. When hair loss is caused by fleas or similar problems, fungal infections, certain skin conditions, and skin traumas, this is a popular option. 

Antidepressants or Antianxiety Medications 

In cases of psychogenic alopecia, or hair loss caused by mental conditions like stress, medication may be prescribed to help the cat cope with the issue. This treatment has worked successfully in most cases, completely eliminating excessive grooming while the medication is being taken. This treatment carries some risk of side effects from the medication, but they generally are not severe. Behavior modification and removal of environmental stressors is often used in conjunction with this type of therapy. 

Antihistamines 

When an allergic reaction is the cause of skin discomfort and hair loss, this category of drug will be used to reduce the body’s response to the allergen. This treatment is considered low risk, and may be combined with other therapies used to treat alopecia even if an allergic reaction has not been diagnosed. 

Cause-Specific Treatments 

Numerous other treatments may be used for the underlying condition that has resulted in your pet’s hair loss. Speak with your veterinarian to understand how treatments for infections, cancers, imbalances, and certain conditions may affect your pet and what risks are associated with the recommended therapy. 

Recovery of Hair Loss in Cats

The chances of recovery from alopecia depend on the cause of the hair loss. The hair loss in both total and partial cases may be permanent, especially when follicle conditions are the cause. In the event that infections or other treatable conditions caused the loss, the prognosis is usually good after treatment of the cause. Continue to monitor your pet’s condition, follow all instructions provided by your veterinarian, finish the full course of medications, and return for further medical attention if the situation worsens. Reducing stress in your cat’s living environment and feeding them a healthy diet will aid in their recovery. Avoid making any major changes until your pet is well on the path to recovery. If hair loss is permanent, your pet can still live a full life. Special attention should be paid to the temperature of their living environment in these cases. 

Hair Loss Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Milo
Cat
3 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Baldness

Hi, my cat has developed bald patches on his legs and looks like he's got it on his belly aswell, we treat our cats often and check him for fleas since his baldness has happened I always check hin near his bit's and bum and never see anything, he's not in pain or distressed but continually licking his patches. Any advice on what I can use or try please?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1044 Recommendations
Hair loss in cats can be caused by parasites other than fleas, fungal infections, bacterial infections, or allergies. Without seeing Milo, I can't determine the cause, so can't recommend any treatments for him. It would be best to have him examined by a veterinarian, as they can see his skin, see what might be going on, and recommend an appropriate treatment for him to help this problem. I hope that all goes well for him.

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Cassidy
domestic short hair
5 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Hair loss on belly and legs

My 5.5 year old has been losing hair on her belly And now it’s spread to her legs and foot. I don’t know what to do to help her. No fleas or anything are involved since I have two other cats that’s are showing no sypmtoms, and they’re indoor cats! I think it’s alopecia. I’ve been putting dr Harvey’s organic healing cream on but I’m not seeing improvements. What do you recommend I buy for her to help her? I can’t afford a vet visit right now, so I’m hoping some OTC can help? If not I will make the trip.
I just hate putting her through the stress as well. Thank you

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations
There are many causes for hair loss in cats and most of the time over the counter products are ineffective; hormonal conditions, infections, parasites, allergies, contact irritants among other causes may lead to hair loss. If the hair loss is symmetrical it is most likely hormonal and would need to be seen by a Veterinarian regardless as the underlying cause would need to be determined as there is nothing over the counter for it. If money is tight you should try a charity clinic or reaching out to a nonprofit (see link below). Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.dogingtonpost.com/need-help-with-vet-bills-or-pet-food-there-are-resources-available/

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Skye
Siberian
6 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Loss of hairs

Hello, my 6-month old Siberian cat seems to have lost part of his hairs above his eyes in the area between eyes and hears. The hairs there are shorter and you can see the skin underneath. There are no other balding areas, and the cat doesn't appear to be scratching. He never had a very thick fur over his eyes, but I wouldn't have referred to the areas as "patches". I'm guessing that i should take him to the vet and also—if it is alopecia, what are the possibilities for hairs regrowth?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1044 Recommendations
Some cats have a normal hair pattern that is thinner between their ears, and this may be true for Skye. Since you are not sure if it is normal, it would be a good idea to have it looked at to make sure that there isn't a problem, and that he doesn't have a parasite that requires treatment. I hope that all goes well for him.

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Loki
Stray cat
6 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Licking, red spots on her belly

Medication Used

Estrogen

Hi, my name is Violet, i have 6 year old cat, and she has been loosing fur on her belly and legs, vet told us that she is lucking estrogen, prescribed that medication . But i cant find that medication anywhere to buy, even substitute of the same drug. Is there a other way to treat my cat beside that drug, because vet told us it is not recommended to give her a shot of estrogen, what can i do? Thank you.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1044 Recommendations
Without knowing more about Loki, I'm not sure what form of estrogen your veterinarian recommended, but if they prescribed it for you, they should be able to provide it to you, whether it is through their clinic, with a prescription, or as a compounded medication. It would be best to call your veterinarian and ask them to get the medication for you. I hope that all goes well for Loki!

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Meeko
Longhair
1 Year
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Lethargy

Hello I have an almost 1 year old long hair male cat, Meeko. He is usually very energetic and follows me everywhere. He went missing for a month and came home recently. His fur was very matted and today I was cutting off parts that were literally hanging off his body. (I'm a vet tech student so I gave him a little checkup) and I found several bald spots on his chest. They had little tiny reddish-brown coloring around the edges of the bald spot. I was thinking it could be fleas. However since there several reasons for bald spots I wanted a vets opinion.
(He is also very lethargic and will not follow me around. I can tell he is not feeling well and am concerned something internally could be wrong. Not sure if that could be related to the bald spots.)

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations
There are many causes for bald patches to appear which may include fleas and other parasites, fungal infections, hormonal conditions, excessive grooming, chemical irritation among other causes; you should keep the fur short and bathe the affected areas with a dilute antiseptic (to be on the safe side). Without examining Meeko and doing a skin scrape I cannot say what the specific cause is, if you don’t notice any improvement you should visit your Veterinarian for a checkup. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Frodo
Mackerel Tabby
3 Days
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Hello, my male cat is 3 years old. I am noticing a thinning of hair and changing of color of his hair on his back only (it is not in patches and just runs the length of his back). There is also a little heat coming off the back. I have not changed his diet. He does not act sickly and runs and plays with the same energy level he has always had. Thank you for any thoughts.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations
There are a variety of reasons for hair loss and changes in coat colour which may include hormonal changes (quite common), environmental changes, stress among other causes; I would say to keep an eye on him but if the hair loss is getting excessive or you’re noticing other symptoms you should visit your Veterinarian as soon as possible to rule out other causes. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Lucky
American Shorthair
16 Weeks
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

rusting
Hair Loss

Hi Dr. Turner,

We have a kitten named Lucky and he's about 16 weeks old. Over the past few weekss I've noticed that his hair is thinning in a few spots. It's above the eyes and below the ears. He doesn't scratch the area, there's zero redness nor is there any sign of irritation. Also, around his eyes and nose I notice brown hair (I believe it's called rusting) but he's otherwise a completely black cat. Lucky's hair has been to the vet for parasite treatment (roundworm). The first oral treatment didn't kill all the parasites so they gave him a topical. We'll find out soon if this finally killed them all. My question is, could these parasites have caused a nutrient deficiency? Also worth noting, for the past month or so since we've had him, I've made him a custom recipe of wet cat food mixed with white rice, in a 50/50 ratio. I did this because he was having diarrhea that I suspected was from too much protein (but it turned out to be from the parasites). Anyhow, I'm wondering if this food mix I prepared, being only 50% actual cat food, has caused a nutrient deficiency that could be a reason for the hair loss and "rusting". Since I noticed this hair loss and rusting, I've started him on a normal cat food diet (canned wet), and I no longer mix the cat food with rice. In summation, I know you can't formally diagnose the reason here, but am I right to suspect a nutrient deficiency (due to lingering parasite and/or the lack of protein in diet) as strong possible reason for his hair loss and rusting?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1044 Recommendations
Thank you for your question. It is unlikely that the parasites, or the rice, caused a nutritional deficiency in Lucky, as he was still eating regular cat food, and he most likely was getting the nutrition that he needed from the food. Without examining him, I can't diagnose, as you said, but as kittens turn into cats, there is a normal area of hair thinning between their eyes and their ears - this may be very normal for Lucky, but would be worth an exam to have it looked at and make sure that a skin parasite isn't causing the thinning hair and change of color.

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Garfield
Persian chinchilla
3 years and 3 months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Good morning
My cat’s skin got lots of hair balls since two-three weeks ago and I saw two bald circular Points few days ago and didnt take it serious as I thought it’s might be because of taking some hair balls of him. Today I saw an almost wide bald part under his neck and so scared. Is any treatment that I can do?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations
There are various causes of hair loss in cats which may be due to a few different causes which may include hormonal conditions, parasites, allergies, excessive grooming, excessive scratching among other causes; you should try to bathe Garfield with a sensitive shampoo and look for possible behaviour which may explain the hair loss. Without examining Garfield and possibly doing a few tests I cannot advise much else. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

my cat wants to get married is that why he is loosing hair


please answer me

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Tilly-mint Thompson
moggie
17 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Hello, I have a 17 year old feline who is shedding a lot of fur but no bald patches yet , is this a sign of other health problems?
She also eats in small amounts but its as f she has never been fed at all but she never finishes a meal either , just cries for another meal.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations
There are a few different conditions which may cause a cat to lose or shed more hair than usual which may include hormonal conditions, parasites, infections, food intolerance, stress among other issues; without examining Tilly-Mint I couldn’t say what the specific cause was and blood tests may be required to determine a cause. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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coco
angora
7 months
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

dear doc
the following events of last week have made my cat 7 months old sick and now he is very lethargic and not eating.
1 he went out in the porch and an fought with another cat leaving him some injuries of scratches and swelling in the front leg then his vet gave him and injection and brufen twice daily.
2 his food was changed on altenate days he vomited out so now we are trying the old type of food but he is not interested.
note that one scratch at fore head is not curing.
he is taking water and milk but not in sufficient quantities however he is not taking he cat food or anything else.
please advice.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations
There are many things going on here (fighting, dietary changes, treatment); the treatment with Brufen (ibuprofen) may be harmful if given incorrectly, the dietary change suddenly from one food one day to another the next may have caused some gastrointestinal distress and the recovery from the scratches may take a while. I would try to tempt Coco with a different food altogether like a rich tuna food or similar; regular bathing of any wounds with dilute antiseptic may also help along with other treatment. If you are seeing no improvement, return to your Veterinarian. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Baby
12 / 13
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Hairloss

We have two 12 yr old 100% inside cats, both very healthy and active with no visible aging signs. They dine on CD can food because the male has the propensity to get blocked. They both eat the same food because we cannot feed separately. The female has been losing back fur for several months now and it is a patch about 4" x 3" from the base of her tail to the middle of her back, We do not see extensive licking of the area, but she has always manufactured a lot of fur balls. Even though they stay inside, they still get flea treatments. Could the CD food be adversely affecting the female ? She is high strung and a cat carrier is very traumatic for her, so we try not to make visits to our vet unless unavoidable.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2466 Recommendations

There are a few reasons for a cat to loose a patch of hair, these include stress, behavioural problems, infections, allergies, parasites, hormonal imbalance and contact irritants. Given the high production of furballs it is possible that the hairloss is due to over grooming of the area. From an allergy point of view, the c/d food may be causing an allergy problem in the female, but not the male. If the female is immunosuppressed it is possible that she has parasitic condition called demodicosis and if the male has a stronger immune system he won’t show signs of the parasite; regular flea treatment product wouldn’t prevent Demodex from affecting your cat, but you would see crusting of skin and other areas of the body affected. Other external parasites would cause intense itching. Bacterial and fungal infections would show other clinical signs and can probably be discounted. The causes that are left are behavioural problems, allergies or hormonal imbalances; you would need to visit your Veterinarian to determine which one is specifically affecting your female; skin scraping and blood tests would be the first step in determining a cause. A cheaper way to test for behavioural problems (although it takes some time) is to put an Elizabethan collar on your cat to prevent excessive licking of the area to determine if the hair is falling out or being pulled (licked) out, if the hair starts to grow, it is a starting point in determining the underlying cause. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

Hi i have 2 white twin female 1 year old cats they are always leaving alot of furr around the house but isnt patches is just like old hair but is alot and consistent cleaning im sure they are not sick they are inside cats never been outside . I need some help please

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