Is Your Cat Flakey?
Dandruff can be an itchy and uncomfortable condition. But don't just brush it off as a cosmetic problem. While sometimes the cause of dandruff can be simple, there can be more serious reasons.
Once you identify the cause of your cat's dandruff, you'll know more about how to fix the problem. Some illnesses can lead to dry skin. If the solutions below don't solve your feline's flakey skin, it's time to visit your veterinarian.
Let's look at the various sources of cat dandruff.
Dehydration - Cats don't need as much water as dogs do, but they do need water - about 4 ounces per 5 pounds of body weight. Many cats are not great water drinkers. If you feed your cat dry kibble, the chances of dehydration are greater than if you feed your cat wet food. To counteract this, you could switch to wet food or pour a little water or bone broth over the kibble. Your cat might be more interested in drinking from a water fountain instead of a bowl.
Omegas - Your cat needs fatty acids in her diet to be healthy, so you can try adding some in the form of a supplement. These are often made from fish oil. Oddly, some cats will not eat food with a fish oil supplement; you might try a cat treat containing these fatty acids. Or you could try feeding your kitty salmon, sardines, mackerel, or tuna, which contain Omega 3's. It will take a few weeks to see a difference, but these omegas are very beneficial for a cat's fur and skin.
Grooming - An essential way cats maintain healthy skin and fur is through grooming. However, many cats have trouble reaching their lower back and neck area. If your cat is overweight, these areas are even harder to reach. Spend a little time every few days and brush Fluffy.
Allergies - Some cats suffer from seasonal allergies just like we do! They can also get contact allergies from laundry soap, fabric softener, and shampoo you use. These allergies can make Fluffy's skin itchy.
Like dogs, some cats are allergic to certain things in their diets, so switch up their food and see if dandruff and scratching improve. Try switching to a soap brand that has no scent or coloring. Also, air fresheners, perfume, and cigarette smoke can cause skin and coat issues.
Bugs - Lastly, parasites can also cause flakey and inflamed skin. Look at your cat for fleas, ticks, or a rash when grooming them. Even indoor cats can have fleas! Ask your vet for parasite treatments if you find them.
Try the above ideas and see if your cat's dandruff improves; it will in most cases! If not, it's time for a vet visit!