Cat Losing Hair Around Eyes – Potential Causes

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Are you worried about your beloved cat losing hair around eyes? This is a common concern among cat owners. Our comprehensive guide will delve into the causes of this issue and symptoms to watch for and provide effective treatment strategies.

Read on as we navigate through this hairy predicament together!

Key Takeaways

  • Hair loss around a cat’s eye can be caused by various factors such as facial alopeciaflea infectionsmites and mangeringworm infectionfood allergiesenvironmental allergies, chronic stress, genetic predisposition, solar dermatitis, and sebaceous adenitis.
  • Observing other symptoms that may accompany hair loss in cats is important. These can include excessive itching, increased hairballs, visible skin abnormalities, changes in appetite and energy levels, gastrointestinal issues like vomiting and diarrhea, increased thirst and urination, conjunctivitis, and ear inflammation.
  • Cats do not have eyelashes like humans but rely on their third eyelid, called the nictitating membrane, for eye protection. They also use their facial whiskers to sense changes in their environment. Domestic cats have scent-producing temple glands above their eyes which play a role in marking territory and social bonding among feline species.
  • Regular vet check-ups are crucial to early diagnosis and treatment of potential health problems leading to your cat’s hair loss around the eyes. Prompt treatment of underlying causes such as fleas or allergies can help prevent further discomfort for your furry friend.
cat blue eyes

Recognizing Hair Loss in Cats

Cats can experience hair loss around their eyes, which is often noticeable due to the distinctive bald patches or thinning fur in this area.

Other Symptoms to Check For

In dealing with hair loss in cats, it’s crucial to also keep an eye out for other accompanying symptoms. These signs can often provide more insight into the underlying cause of hair loss.

  1. Excessive itching: Inflammatory alopecia may cause your cat to scratch or lick excessively.
  2. Increased hairballs: As your cat grooms excessively due to itchiness, it might ingest more hair, leading to increased formation of hairballs.
  3. Visible skin abnormalities: Look for redness, bumps, scabs, discoloration, or blisters on your cat’s skin.
  4. Changes in appetite: Systemic diseases can contribute to changes in a cat’s eating habits.
  5. Gastrointestinal issues like vomiting and diarrhea can signify underlying health problems that lead to hair loss.
  6. Changes in energy levels could be a sign of a systemic disease affecting your pet’s overall well-being.
  7. Increased thirst and urination often suggest underlying health issues such as diabetes or kidney disease.
  8. An enlarged abdomen is another symptom of certain systemic diseases. Ensure you discuss any observed changes with the vet promptly.
  9. Symptoms such as conjunctivitis and ear inflammation may indicate allergy-related alopecia.

Do Cats Have Eyelashes? Understanding Cat’s Anatomy

Unlike humans, cats do not have eyelashes. This might be surprising to many cat owners as the lack of lashes doesn’t affect a cat’s functionality or overall health. Instead, felines rely on other anatomical features for eye protection and communication.

Cats boast a third eyelid known as the nictitating membrane, which keeps their eyes moist and removes debris. Located in the inner corner of each eye, it is usually invisible unless your cat is unwell or sleepy.

Additionally, they use their facial whiskers located above their eyes to sense changes in their environment and navigate accordingly.

Interestingly enough, domestic cats have scent-producing temple glands that rest within the patch of fur above their eyes – an area often mistaken for eyebrows because it takes up space where we’d expect eyelashes to be on ourselves! These gland secretions are crucial in marking territory and social bonding among feline species.

So while they may not possess actual lashes, these unique characteristics are key components in your cat’s anatomy, making them equally captivating pets!

cat with diferent eyes

Causes for Cat Losing Hair Around Eyes

Various factors, including facial alopecia, flea infections, mites and mange, ringworm infection, food allergies, environmental allergies, chronic stress, genetic predisposition, solar dermatitis, and sebaceous adenitis can cause cats to lose hair around the eyes.

Facial Alopecia

Facial alopecia is primarily seen in aging cats, wherein the fur around their eyes thins out over time. Despite its alarming appearance, it’s typically not a sign of disease or discomfort and is usually part of the natural aging process.

This hair thinning can give your cat an odd look but isn’t something you need to fret about. However, if accompanied by other symptoms like excessive scratching or changes in behavior, it may warrant further investigation for potential underlying conditions.

Besides age, certain breed predispositions exist, with Siamese, Burmese, and Devon Rex breeds depicting more genetic hair loss around their eyes than others.

Flea Infections

Flea infections can commonly cause hair loss around the eyes in cats. These tiny parasites are not only irritating but also trigger excessive scratching and biting, leading to noticeable hair loss.

Fleas are skilled jumpers and can easily find their way onto your cat, causing havoc on their delicate skin. Apart from hair loss, you may also notice redness, inflammation, and itchy patches near the eyes.

Treating fleas promptly is essential to prevent further discomfort for your feline friend. Regular use of veterinary-recommended flea prevention products can help keep these pesky critters at bay and protect your cat’s gorgeous coat.”.

Mites & Mange

Mites and mange are common causes of hair loss around the eyes in cats. Mites like Demodex or Notoedres cati can infest a cat’s skin, leading to intense itching and scratching.

This constant scratching can result in hair loss, especially around the sensitive eye area. Mange is another condition caused by mites that affect not only the eyes but also the ears, face, and neck.

It often presents with crusts on the skin along with hair loss.

If your cat has mites or mange, you might notice additional symptoms like frequent head rubbing and a foul smell coming from their ears. These pesky parasites should be addressed promptly to prevent further discomfort for your furry friend.

Ringworm Infection

Ringworm is a fungal infection that can cause hair loss around the eyes in cats. It is not caused by worms but rather by a group of fungi called dermatophytes. Cats with ringworm may exhibit symptoms such as red rings on the skinitching, and crusty lesions.

Ringworm can be diagnosed using a wood lamp that detects fluorescent colors in affected hairs or through fungal culture testing. Treatment for ringworm in cats usually involves oral antifungal medication, topical creams, and thorough cleaning of the environment to prevent re-infection.

If you suspect your cat has ringworm or is experiencing hair loss around their eyes, it’s important to consult with a veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Food Allergies

Food allergies can commonly cause hair loss around the eyes in cats. Like humans, some cats can develop an allergic reaction to certain foods, leading to skin irritation and excessive grooming.

It’s important to identify the specific allergen causing the reaction through elimination. You can pinpoint the culprit behind their hair loss by restricting your cat’s diet and reintroducing different foods one at a time.

Once identified, it’s crucial to avoid feeding them that particular food.

Environmental Allergies

Environmental allergies can commonly cause hair loss in cats around the eyes. Environmental substances, such as pollen, dust mites, or certain cleaning products, often trigger these allergies.

When a cat is exposed to these allergens, it can lead to symptoms like itching, redness, and skin inflammation. Over time, excessive scratching and grooming can result in hair loss around the eyes.

Other signs of environmental allergies may include sneezing, watery eyes, and ear infections. Suppose you suspect your cat’s hair loss is due to environmental allergies. In that case, it’s important to consult with your veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment options tailored to your furry friend’s needs.

Chronic Stress

Cats are sensitive creatures; just like humans, they can also experience stress. Chronic stress in cats can lead to excessive grooming, which can cause hair loss around the eyes.

This excessive grooming is often a way for cats to cope with their anxiety or discomfort. If you notice your cat constantly licking and biting around their eyes, it may be a sign of chronic stress.

Stress in cats can be caused by various factors, such as changes in their environmentconflicts with other animals, or even a lack of mental stimulation. It’s important to address the underlying causes of stress to prevent further hair loss and promote your cat’s overall well-being.

Environmental enrichment, like interactive toys and scratching posts, can help alleviate stress and keep your feline friend happy. Seeking veterinary advice is crucial if you suspect chronic stress in your cat, as they can offer guidance on managing or treating this condition effectively.

Genetic Predisposition

Some cats are more prone to hair loss around the eyes due to genetic predisposition. Certain breeds, such as Siamese, Burmese, and Devon Rex, have a higher likelihood of experiencing this issue.

Genetic factors can influence the development of conditions like alopecia universalishereditary hypotrichosis, and follicular dysplasia in cats. These conditions may lead to hair loss around the eyes and in other areas of their bodies.

If you notice your cat losing hair around its eyes, it is important to consider its breed and genetics as potential factors contributing to this problem.

Solar Dermatitis

Solar dermatitis can commonly cause hair loss around the eyes in cats, especially those with lighter-colored coats. When exposed to excessive sunlight, the sensitive skin above their eyes can become irritated and burned, leading to hair thinning and even bald patches.

Additionally, sunburned areas can be quite uncomfortable for cats. To prevent solar dermatitis in your feline friend, limiting their sun exposure by providing shade or keeping them indoors during peak daylight hours is important.

Using sunscreen specifically formulated for cats on exposed areas can also help protect their delicate skin from harmful UV rays. Remember that if you notice any signs of sunburn or hair loss around your cat’s eyes, it’s best to consult a veterinarian who can provide appropriate treatment and management options based on your cat’s specific needs.

Sebaceous Adenitis

Sebaceous adenitis is a skin condition that can cause hair loss around the eyes in cats. It is an inflammatory disease that affects the sebaceous glands, which produce oils to keep the skin and coat healthy.

Cats with sebaceous adenitis may experience hair loss around their eyes and in other areas of their body. The affected areas may become dry, scaly, and prone to breakage due to the lack of protective oils.

Diagnosing this condition typically involves taking a skin biopsy and examining it under a microscope. Treatment options often include using topical medications and making dietary changes to improve your cat’s skin and coat health.

cat with green eyes

Diagnosing Hair Loss in Cats

Veterinarians use various diagnostic methods to determine the cause of hair loss in cats, including Wood’s Lamp examination, fungal culture, skin scraping, and bloodwork. Read more here to find out how these tests help identify the underlying issues causing your cat’s hair loss.

How Veterinarians Diagnose Cat Hair Loss

Veterinarians use a thorough approach to diagnose hair loss in cats. Here are the steps they follow:

  1. Health history: Veterinarians will gather information about your cat’s overall health, including any previous medical conditions or treatments.
  2. Physical examination: A comprehensive physical exam helps identify any visible signs of hair loss and assess the condition of your cat’s skin.
  3. Wood’s lamp testing: This special ultraviolet light can help detect fungal infections like ringworm by illuminating infected areas on the skin.
  4. Fungal culture: Your veterinarian may take samples from affected areas for fungal culture, which helps determine if there is an underlying fungal infection causing hair loss.
  5. Cytology: Skin cells collected through fine needle aspiration or scraping can be examined under a microscope for signs of infection or inflammation.
  6. Skin scraping: Scraping the skin gently with a blade or scalpel allows vets to check for mites, such as Notoedres cati, which can cause mange and hair loss.
  7. Skin biopsy: If necessary, a small piece of skin tissue may be surgically removed for examination under a microscope to rule out more serious conditions or tumors.
  8. Bloodwork and urinalysis: These tests help evaluate your cat’s overall health and screen for underlying systemic diseases that could contribute to hair loss.
  9. Allergy testing: In some cases, allergy testing may be performed to identify specific allergens that could trigger an allergic reaction leading to hair loss.
  10. Imaging: Radiographs (X-rays) or ultrasound examinations may be recommended if there is concern about internal organ involvement related to hair loss.
do cats have eyelashes

Treatment Options for Hair Loss in Cats

Treatment options for hair loss in cats include parasiticide treatment to eliminate any underlying parasite infestations, topical therapy to soothe and heal the affected area, systemic antibiotics to treat bacterial infections, an elimination diet trial to identify and remove potential allergens from the cat’s diet, medication such as behavior-modifying drugs to address stress-related alopecia, and environmental enrichment techniques to reduce stress levels.

Cat owners must work closely with their veterinarians to determine the most appropriate course of treatment based on the underlying cause of hair loss.

Treatment of Feline Parasitosis

The treatment of feline parasitosis involves using parasiticides to eliminate external parasites like fleas and mites that may be causing hair loss in your cat. Topical therapies, such as spot-on treatments or medicated shampoos, can kill these pesky critters and stop further hair loss.

Additionally, systemic antibiotics or antifungals might be prescribed by your veterinarian if an underlying bacterial or fungal infection contributes to the problem. It’s important to follow your vet’s instructions closely and ensure you administer the medications as directed for optimal results.

Remember, treating parasitosis is crucial to resolving hair loss in cats and restoring their healthy coat!

Treatment of Dermatitis in Cats

It’s crucial to address the underlying cause to effectively treat dermatitis in cats. Your veterinarian will create a tailored treatment plan based on your cat’s needs. In cases of allergic dermatitis, identifying and eliminating the allergen is key.

This may involve switching to a hypoallergenic diet or removing certain environmental triggers from your cat’s surroundings. Topical therapies such as medicated shampoos or ointments can relieve and help manage inflammation.

Systemic antibiotics or antifungal medications may be prescribed for cases caused by bacterial or fungal infections. Ensuring proper hygiene and cleanliness in your cat’s living environment can help prevent re-infection.

In some instances, behavioral modifications might also be necessary if excessive grooming due to stress plays a role in the development of dermatitis. Your veterinarian might suggest behavior-modifying medications or techniques reduce stress levels and promote healthy skin.

Treatment of Feline Ringworm

Feline ringworm is a common fungal infection that can cause hair loss around your cat’s eye. Fortunately, there are effective treatment options available. Your veterinarian may prescribe oral antifungal medication to eliminate the infection from within.

Additionally, topical creams or ointments may be used directly on the affected area to soothe discomfort and promote healing. It’s also important to thoroughly clean your home and disinfect any bedding or furniture your cat has come into contact with, as ringworm spores can survive in the environment.

With proper treatment and care, your cat should be able to recover from ringworm and regrow their fur over time.

Feline Stress Treatment

Stress can significantly impact your cat’s overall health, including its fur. If your cat is experiencing hair loss around the eyes, addressing any underlying stress factors to promote healing and regrowth is essential.

Stress in cats can be caused by various factors, such as changes in the environmentroutine disruptions, or even other pets in the household. To help alleviate stress, create a calm and safe space for your cat by providing hiding spots and plenty of vertical spaces for them to explore.

Additionally, engaging in interactive play sessions and puzzle toys can help redirect their energy and reduce anxiety. Remember that consistency is key when implementing stress management techniques for your feline friend – gradually introduce new experiences or changes to minimize their impact on your cat’s well-being.

Treatment of Feline Folliculitis

If your cat suffers from folliculitis, treatment options are available to help alleviate the condition and promote healing. Feline folliculitis is typically treated using a combination of topical therapy and systemic antibiotics if a secondary skin infection is present.

Topical treatments may include antimicrobial or antiseptic creams that can be applied directly to the affected areas to reduce inflammation and kill bacteria. Maintaining good hygiene by regularly cleaning the area with gentle, pet-safe cleansers will also aid recovery.

It’s important to identify and address the underlying cause of feline folliculitis for effective treatment. Soothing products such as prescription shampoos or sprays can relieve irritated skin, while your veterinarian may prescribe systemic antibiotics if an infection is present.

Treatment of Feline Solar Dermatitis

Several options are available to treat feline solar dermatitis or hair loss around the eyes caused by excessive sun exposure. First and foremost, limiting your cat’s sun exposure is important by keeping them indoors during peak sunlight hours or providing shaded areas outside.

You can also apply specially formulated sunscreen for cats on the exposed areas.

If your cat does get a sunburn and experiences discomfort, there are soothing products available that can help relieve any pain or inflammation. In severe cases of feline solar dermatitis, topical or oral medications may be prescribed by veterinarians to reduce inflammation and promote healing.

Seeking veterinary advice is crucial to ensure proper diagnosis and treatment for this condition.

Remember that recovery and regrowth of hair in cats with solar dermatitis may take some time, ranging from weeks to months. Long-term management is also often necessary, such as year-round flea prevention, regular use of topical therapies, prescription cat food if your vet recommends, and potentially additional medication based on your cat’s specific needs.


In conclusion, hair loss around a cat’s eye can be caused by various factors such as facial alopecia, fleas, mites and mange, ringworm infectionallergies, stress, or even genetic predisposition.

Consulting with a veterinarian for proper diagnosis and treatment options is important. With the right care and attention, most cases of hair loss in cats can be effectively managed and resolved.

So don’t worry too much if you notice your furry friend losing fur around their eye – just seek professional help for their well-being.

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