Twitch-Skin Syndrome in Cats

Twitch-Skin pic
Twitch-Skin
Image: petmd.com

As a board-certified small animal veterinarian, Dr. Joel Todd Leroy Prince treats both common and rare disorders in dogs and cats. Dr. Joel Todd Leroy Prince has a special interest in neurological disorders, such as feline hyperesthesia.

Also known as twitch-skin syndrome or twitchy-cat syndrome, feline hyperesthesia is an unusual disorder in which a cat’s back twitches from the shoulders to the tail. The phenomenon is visible in some cats, but others show it only through the behavior they exhibit in trying to stop the strange sensation.

The twitches of feline hyperesthesia typically happen episodically and can last from several seconds to a few minutes. An episode may first become apparent to an owner when the cat turns to look at his or her tail as though something has just bitten it.

Some cats bite at their backs or hiss at a perceived invisible attacker. Cats with severe cases may chew at their fur until they develop skin lesions and bald patches.

Veterinary science has not yet identified the source of feline hyperesthesia. Suspected causes include seizure disorders and behavioral issues. Cats that are particularly high-strung or subject to environmental stressors may be at a higher risk.

Stress reduction is a key component of treatment for this condition. Experts recommend feeding the cat a balanced diet rich in protein, but seeing a veterinarian for a specific treatment plan is the important first step.

Benefits of Routine Dental Care for Small Pets

 

Elmhurst Animal Care Center pic
Elmhurst Animal Care Center
Image: elmhurstanimalcarecenter.com

Based in Elmhurst, Illinois, veterinarian Dr. Joel Todd Leroy Prince is one of only 15 animal care practitioners in the state to obtain diplomate status with the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners. Dr. Joel Todd Leroy Prince is a long-time partner and staff veterinarian for Elmhurst Animal Care Center, a practice that provides a number of dental care services for pets.

Like humans, pets can become seriously ill due to poor dental health. Dogs and cats over the age of 3 are particularly susceptible to periodontal disease. Moreover, advanced dental problems can cause tooth loss and major organ failure.

Incorporating a professional dental cleaning into a pet’s annual health examination can help veterinarians identify dental problems early on and prevent them altogether by removing plaque buildup.

Owners can also follow a more frequent cleaning routine at home. Every day, dogs should chew on toys specially designed to reduce plaque. Pet owners can also use a variety of toothbrushes or bacteria-eliminating dental fluids to keep their pet’s mouth clean.