Ringworms are an annoying, itchy skin condition that can easily be treated at home! If your cat has a ringworm, chances are they will try to scratch away the skin layer to get the worm out.
This could hurt or irritate the exposed tissue so you should always watch for symptoms of pain, redness, and swelling. If you notice any of these things, give your kitty some warm compresses or apply a cold compress to reduce inflammation.
If your dog gets ringworms, there is a chance he or she will pass off the infection onto your house if they play with them. So make sure to keep your pets separated until treatment!
Luckily, most cats’ skin is thick enough to protect them from this kind of damage. But sometimes in very specific situations, their protective layers break down and they develop allergies or conditions such as dermatitis.
In this article, we will talk about one such situation where your cat may need extra care. We will also tell you how to identify if your cat needs quarantine time beyond the recommended period. It’s important to know before starting treatments because too long of a break between exposures and infections can lead to more severe health problems.
We hope you find this information helpful! Now let’s dive into some tips for identifying and treating ringworm in cats.
How to tell if your cat has ringworm
If you notice your cat acting or looking sick, it is important to make an appointment with your veterinarian right away!
Your doctor will perform a thorough physical examination of your feline patient, including inspecting their skin and fur for any lumps, bumps, red spots, fluid-filled areas, or thickened hair. Your vet may also take a small sample of tissue from the area to test in a laboratory for possible signs of infection.
It’s very difficult to determine whether these symptoms are due to disease or something else (such as dry skin) without testing, so visiting your pet at a soon as possible can help rule out other causes.
If your cat is diagnosed with ringworm, appropriate treatment will be given according to its strain and stage. Unfortunately, there is no way to prevent this infectious condition in most cases.
Fortunately, most cats recover completely within two weeks. Some strains of ringworm may require several months to clear up, though.
Steps to take to quarantine your cat
If you have identified a potential ringworm infection in your dog or cat, then it is very important to begin a quarantine process immediately!
The length of time for a veterinary-mandated quarantines can vary depending on how severe the symptoms are as well as whether the patient has been exposed to the contagion before.
However, most veterinarians recommend at least two weeks of quarantine for every individual animal that shows signs of possible exposure.
This includes things such as showing clinical signs of the disease (ringing around the nose and mouth, changes in skin and fur color, lethargy), as well as having a positive test for fungus in any body fluid or tissue.
Get rid of the ringworm
If you notice your cat is acting or looking sick, it’s important to get treatment as soon as possible. Luckily, most cats have their own immune system!
Your dog probably had exposure to the fungus earlier than your cat, which may explain why only your cat got infected. Since dogs are not usually susceptible to tinea (ringworm) infection, there is no need to worry about that unless your cat shows signs of illness.
It is very important to check for symptoms in your kitten such as red skin patches with white borders and thickened hair around the patch. Also, make sure to look for drooling, licking, or scratching at the site.
If your cat has been exposed to the fungus but does not show any symptoms, then you can still treat your pet. However, do not put pressure on her if she seems ill because she could become seriously ill later.
Take your cat to the doctor immediately so they can test her for fungal infections. They will be able to tell from the sample whether she has a viral or bacterial cause.
Since this article focuses on how to help your cat who has ringsyndrome, we will leave infectious diseases for another time.
Have your cat get tested for allergies
If your cat has red, scaly skin that does not seem better with repeated washing, it could be due to ringworms! This is unfortunately very common in infected cats as most dogs are already immune.
Ringworms can easily spread from one area of skin to another so make sure to thoroughly wash any part of your cat’s body that you may come into contact with during daily activities or when taking care of this disease.
For example, if your cat drools, there might be some germs present in the saliva which could infect other areas of his/her skin. Make sure to clean those areas too!
If possible, try to pick away any kind of fur at the site where the worm comes out. You do not want anything sticking around longer than needed!
You also need to make sure to check yourself for parasites because they can be passing off through your system as well. For instance, hook worms can cause anemia in humans so look out for them here as well.
Tell your cat's friends and family that they need to be tested too
If you find your dog acting nervous or fearful, it is very important to ask if anyone else has been around their dogs recently (for example, have they visited someone who does not live there?).
If so, these people should be informed of how to properly care for their animal while under quarantine as well as asked to test negative for COVID-19.
For most cats, only about half of all cases are diagnosed when symptoms first appear, making early detection nearly impossible without testing. Because many cats don’t show any signs of disease until they're much sicker, it can take weeks or even months before a positive diagnosis is made.
In addition to having potential exposure to the virus themselves, an infected person may unknowingly spread the illness to their own pets by touching them or picking them up after being exposed to the virus, according to the American Veterinary Medical Association.
Tell your coworkers that they need to be tested too
For anyone who is in close proximity with a person or dog with ringworm, you should also consider yourself test-worthy for this infection. This includes caregivers of dogs and cats as well as members of the community where exposure may occur (for example, if an animal with visible rings comes into contact with others).
Make a plan for your quarantine
While there is no set length of time that should be considered as “quarantining” a cat with ringworm, most veterinary professionals recommend doing so for at least two weeks after the symptoms are noticed.
That means you need to ensure your loved one does not come in contact with other animals or infected areas for this period.
If possible, it is best to keep the cat indoors until it has completed its quarantine. This can help limit opportunities for exposure to outside sources.
For example, if your cat was exposed to an animal with ringworms at the vet, then taking him out to play while he is still quarantined will expose other dogs and cats to the disease.
Drinking water and nutritional supplements is important for feline health, but these things become less efficient when a dog eats contaminated food. Having access to shelter and outdoor play facilities helps your kitty feel more comfortable during the quarantine.
Throw out any possible ringworm treatments
One of the most common causes of skin infections in cats is ringworms, which are caused by parasitic worms. When you try to treat your cat for ringworm, unfortunately, some companies will instead recommend using either off-label or contaminated products at that time!
Off-label means using a product on your pet with no proof it works for that specific infection. Contaminated rings can be leftover from someone else’s treatment or simply left over medicine in the container. Both of these situations can spread infectious agents and cause more health problems for your cat!
If your kitten has been exposed to a potential source of ringworm, take him/her to the vet immediately so they can determine if he/she needs medication or not.