Do cat’s whiskers fall out?
Whereas they have special roles of sensing, feeling, and expressing mood and they have deeply embedded hair follicles with lots of nerves, cat whiskers (vibrissae or tactile hairs) are made up of keratin just like any other hairs.
Therefore, it is normal for them to be shed (fall out) once their dormancy period is over. Animal hair goes through the growth phase, dormancy, and shedding. When the shedding comes, even vibrissae will fall off.
However, normal shedding will involve very few and it may not even easy to notice they are missing. Also, aging does not cause fewer whiskers in cats.
Therefore, is it normal for felines to shed these hairs. However, it should not be excessive as this will be a point that something is off.
You do not want this pet to lose whiskers since they are important and have a purpose or functions. What happens when this animal loses its whiskers are the same things we saw while looking on why these tactile hairs should never be trimmed or cut.
We will be focusing on kittens and cats losing whiskers where we will look at the abnormal or excessive loss and not the normal shedding.
Why are my cat’s whiskers falling out?
To being with, it is possible for a cat to lose whiskers on one side or both sides of their face as well as lose those that are on behind their forelegs just below the wrist, those on their chin or even those on top of their eyes.
Furthermore, it is possible for them to appear to be broken or cut off and the loss can be moderate or severe and sometimes there may be fur loss too resulting in baldness on the affected area.
If your cat’s whiskers keep falling out, there could be several reasons why this happens. Some of the common reasons include:
1. Regular fights
Regular fights can not only cause injuries but the loss of fur but also whiskers which may break off or get plucked (be missing).
You will notice injuries, scratches, swellings, and so in case, your cats fight often. Separating them and neutering may help. If they fight with stray or feral cats, consider cat-proofing your home.
Allergic reactions can result in itchiness making your feline friend to scratch or lick the affected area. If this goes on for a long time, it is possible for bald spots or alopecia to result.
Consider antihistamine and other medication for allergies as well as avoiding the various allergens you may be knowing.
3. Infestation by parasites
Parasites such as fleas, lice, mites, ticks, etc., can make your fluffy friend itch, lick, causing sores as well as bald spots. There are various over the counter and prescription medication for various parasites.
4. Fungal infections and other skin conditions
Fungal infection such as ringworm can result in vibrissae loss if they affect areas where they grow. Antifungals, medicated baths, oral medications, ointments, and creams may be recommended to deal with fungal infections.
Other skin conditions such as dermatitis can lead to fur loss and if the affected area has tactile hairs, the all be lost. Also, growths, severe injuries, scarring from abscesses, and so on can be a cause.
5. A severe case of feline acne
If it is severe and it affects areas which have whiskers especially the chin and cheek areas, it is possible for your feline friend to lose them as well as fur. There are various home remedies for cat acne as well as treatments your vet may recommend.
6. Hormonal disorder
Hormonal disorders and imbalances can cause alopecia. For instance, those that result in hyperthyroidism can cause alopecia which will also affect all body hairs.
7. Nutritional deficiencies and poor health
Deficiencies of some minerals, vitamins or nutrients may contribute to feline alopecia where even the whiskers will be affected.
8. Stress and nervous disorders
Extreme stress and nervous disorders such as overgrooming or barbering may be a reason why your cat may be missing its fur including vibrissae. Scabbing may also be noted.
If your cat or kitten keeps on losing whiskers and you do not know the cause, take him or her to your veterinarian for further diagnosis.