How to Get Rid of Dry Skin on Cats?

Skylar Dial
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Why Do Cats Get Dry Skin?

The cat skin is self-cleaning and naturally, produces oil, known as sebum, to keep it waterproof. Generally, the skin produces the right amount of sebum for its needs. But on the other hand, cats spend a large part of their day grooming. This can affect how much oil gets deposited on their skin.

Dry skin can be caused by various factors and it is best to identify the underlying cause to assess the best program of treatment. If cat skin is dry due to flea infestation, treatments are available to deal with that. Allergies may be another cause of dry skin. In that case, the signs of the allergy, such as inflammation and itching, must be dealt with first.

You should first see a vet to find out the cause, and then get the necessary treatment to deal with the cause of the dry skin and ensure that the skin returns to normal. If the vet thinks that the cause of your cat's dry skin cannot be treated with medication, you will have to manage the condition at home with additional care. This will help to reduce the dry skin in cats and keep their skin in good condition.

The downside of having a cat that has dry skin is that in some cases your pet will scratch their skin and may cause themselves injury. This situation is further aggravated if your cat is indoor only.

How to Prevent Dry Skin

If your cat's skin is flaky and dry, chances are he has a mild form of mange, called feline scabies. You should rule out scabies before starting any treatments since treating a mild case of mange requires close medical supervision to make sure that the medication is not toxic to your cat..

Scabies is a highly contagious condition among cats, and the scabies mite usually spreads via direct physical contact between cats. You can identify the symptoms by checking for the following signs:

  • Dry, flaky skin
  • Visibility of liquid waxy crusts in the skin folds
  • Inflammation of the skin with redness and itching
  • Bulges, crusts or uneven patches on the skin


The first thing you need to do is figure out what is causing the dry, itchy skin on cats. The more food your cat has the more moisture he needs in his diet. Dry skin on cats is often caused by a food allergy, food intolerance, or digestive issues. If your cat is overweight, losing even a little weight can help.

If your veterinarian has checked your cat for allergies and digestive issues such as eosinophilic gastroenteritis (EG), exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI), or inflammatory bowel disease, and determined that nothing is causing the problem, then it may be that your cat’s diet is not high enough in moisture. Eliminating as many dry foods from his diet as possible is a good idea and switching to an all-wet food diet is a good idea.

You should also consider switching from dry food to a homemade diet including plenty of fresh meat, a few fruits and vegetables, whole-grain breads and cereals, and plenty of water. This may not only get your cat’s skin back to normal, but will also help him maintain a healthier weight and have fewer digestive problems. Homemade food is a great way to help dry skin on cats.

Flea and Tick Prevention

I’ve never found a flea or tick on either of my cat, but they’re both indoor-only. In every piece of clothing I’ve worn to work, I’ve found them crawling.

Upon arrival, if I pull my clothes back on quickly, I can run them down with my fingernail. If I try to pick them up, they roll up in a ball and spring out of reach. Sometimes, I’ve had to chase them. I’ve even tried dissolving them in cat-hair catching traps before.

None of those methods worked, until I started using Frontline treatments. Now I can catch fleas easier.

When treating your cat, you should see their skin within a few days. During the month long treatment, your cat will rub their back against things, scratching themselves. The places where the fleas are getting itchy will be irritated and red. If you see spots like that, there are fleas present.


101: Preparing Your Cat for Grooming

Before you start the grooming process, it is very important to groom your cat in the right way. Grooming your cat in the wrong manner can hurt them, increase their anxiety and give them more stress to deal with.

Basic grooming on a cat is important just like it is for your dog. Brushing their fur, removing their shed fur, and then giving them a good bath can be a great way for them to not only feel better, but to have a healthier coat.

One major thing that you need to keep in mind before you even start grooming your cat is to make sure that you have all of the tools that you need for the job. Having everything that you need out and ready will help you to groom your cat quicker and will help to distract them from being anxious about what you are doing.

Another important thing to remember is to make sure that there are no distractions in the area where you are going to be grooming your cat. You want to be able to pay attention to the cat and all of the grooming needs that they have quickly. This will help them to stay calm and not start to grow anxious over what you are doing. One of the best ways to do this is to create a small cat playhouse where you can set up the grooming chair and they can run in and out whenever they want.

Manage Allergies

Even if you have not been diagnosed with allergies, if you live in a dust-rich environment, you may be exposed to high precipitated dust levels throughout the year.

Dust mites require warm, humid and dark environments to survive. Climatic deterioration, aging, damp, and dust accumulation are all triggers for dust mite growth, so if you live in a temperate region, air-conditioning the inside of your residence or vehicle can contribute to the proliferation of dust mites.

Allergists used to believe that dust mite allergy was restricted to children, but recent research reveals that approximately 50 percent of adults are allergic to dust mites, often triggered by breathing in dust and dander, which are the products of the digestive system of dust mites.

The familiar signs and symptoms of an allergic reaction to dust mites include sneezing, coughing, shortness of breath, nasal itching, and throat itching. Less frequently, but more significantly, an allergic reaction to dust mites can affect the cardiovascular and neurological systems in ways that can be life threatening.


The first step to resolving your dry cat skin problem is to determine whether it is caused by an issue with your cat's skin, or by an environmental issue.

Dry skin on your cat can be triggered by a number of different factors, including allergy season, new environments in the summer, and an indoor cat that has been spending less time working in the yard and exploring.

There are a few simple lifestyle tips you can implement right now that go a long ways towards resolving dry skin on cats.

First, make sure that your cat is spending plenty of time outside. Outdoor cats not only have fun while they are playing in the great outdoors, but they also get plenty of natural sunlight that helps keep their skin healthy.

Indoor cats should also get chances to explore the outdoors. When a cat stays indoors all the time, it starts looking for ways to entertain itself and can get into all sorts of trouble, including an increased risk of boredom and obesity.

If you would like to give your indoor cat more time outside of its home, consider putting together a doggie cam. Simply strap a small camera to a harness and you'll be able to monitor your cat without having to let you cat out of the house or take it outdoors all the time.

Also, make sure your indoor cat gets plenty of exercise. Don't assume that just because your cat doesn't have claws it can't get in some exercise.