Friday, December 31, 2010

Cat dandruff: What it is and what you can do about it

Maggie sometimes deals with cat dandruff

My husband and I joke that Maggie was a princess in a previous life. She does not play, and gets quite offended if the other cats try to play with her. She does not get any sort of dirt or moisture on her fur without going into an immediate and lengthy grooming session. She also takes a very long time to eat her food, as she must take each grain individually and chew it thoroughly. She will not interact with strangers, unless she is properly introduced.

I imagine that her latest health problem is very offensive to her ladylike sensibilities:  She has cat dandruff.

Small, white flakes are all over her back and head, and they stand out very clearly from her black fur.

She has this problem every winter, when the air is cold and dry. Her skin is sensitive, and just cannot take the winter air. So every holiday season, her fur is decorated with festive little flakes.

Some cat people add humidifiers to their homes in order to keep the air moist and comfortable. That's one option, but there are other things cat people can do to make things better.

For example, I supplement with fish oil. This natural cat food supplement provides Maggie's skin with the vitamins and minerals it needs in order to hang together when the air is dry. One little squirt is really all it takes to help her fur shine and her skin stay together.

I also look for opportunities to brush Maggie. It seems counter-intuitive, I know, but a brush can help with flaky skin. Each stroke helps to distribute the oils evenly throughout the entire coat, and that can help reduce the dander factor.

Here's hoping the princess will be back to normal soon. She really hates the flakes!