Why Does My Cat Have Scabs: Ultimate Knowledge

Apart from treating human hair bite, fattening up your thin cat, you have to focus on other problems when being a cat owner. Specifically, skin and coat of your cat can reflect its current overall health as well as physical condition. The appearance of scabs on your cat’s skin is a sign of a problem which is in need of the treatment. You have to, however, not only find out causes to get the most proper treatments but also collect other related knowledge to keep your cat in the best health. All of these related to your question “why does my cat have scabs?” are summarized in the rest of this post.

What are scabs?

In general, scabs are dark brown or red patches which are dry and rough formed after a wound heal. The crusty pustules or lesions on the skin of your cat are indicative of the scab appearance. It ranges from one to a multitude of scabs.

What are the most common causes of scab on your cat?

Flea Bite Hypersensitivity:

According to many vets, Flea Bite Hypersensitivity (Flea Allergic Dermatitis) is the most common scab cause on your cat. Even with most of the pets, it is the most common disease related to skin. The wingless parasites (types of fleas) are the cause of Flea Bite Sensitivity. They reside on your cat’s skin then feed on its blood. Just from less than one to 5-year old, any young cats have the likelihood to develop a flea allergy through a bite which ends up being scabs.

At the beginning, scabs are just small, but gradually they develop more serious. Where can these flea bites raise on the body of your cat? Normally, they will appear near to its rear of the body or chin and neck. Don’t let your cat scratch its skin unless you want to put it in a risk. In particular, it is very easy to bleed if your cat scratches its neck body. A flea comb is one of the helpful things to check whether or not fleas have developed on its body.

Food Allergy:

Food allergy is also one of the most common reasons causing scabs in the skin of your cat. For example, the allergic reaction in its skin is caused by protein content in its diet. With some cats, the attached symptoms include upset tummies while others have more serious sore, the skin inflamed. With these symptoms, what your cat is experiencing may be itching around its head and neck areas. If you let your cat scratch the allergic parts, you will see the appearance of scabs very soon.

To check if your cat has the food allergy, let you make a new diet which is not inclusive of what you allowed it to consume in the past. After getting the result, it can be back to its usual diet. If what you do can’t get rid of scabs completely, food allergy may be the hidden reason.

Contact Dermatitis:

In spite of the rare disease, your cat still can have scabs through contact dermatitis. Medications, plants, soap, shampoo are irritants which penetrate the body of your cat to cause contact dermatitis.

To know if your cat gets contact dermatitis, consider the non-seasonal itching feature. As food allergy mentioned, when itching, your cat will scratch areas that it feels uncomfortable which results in the scab appearance. Where scabs form on the body of your cat may include paw, ear and its underbelly.


This is one of the diseases which leads to scabs like others. Parasites hidden the skin deeply is the reason for ending up Mange on your cat.

Areas of formation can spread the whole body of your cat (head and neck are the most) coming with some symptoms like intense itching along its ear margins. In general, if it doesn’t receive treatment, any parts that parasites pass can be affected.


This skin disease not only affects your cat simply. The more serious case is that your feline ends up developing scabs on its body. The main reason of this disease is Demodex mite including two kinds: Demodex cati and Demodex gatoi.

Because of your cat’s poor immune system, it’s very easy to be a target of these two species. Scabs covering its head, neck even ears are indicative of being caused by demodicosis. Intense itching is just one of symptoms. If your cat gets thinning hair, it should make you care about more.

Ear mites:

Another cause of scabs is ear mites which are caused by Otodectes Cynotis. These parasites look like spiders and the parts on your cat’s body where they will attack or infest are ears.

How to tell ear mites is the symptom of intense itching. Its influence makes your cat have scratches on the affected areas resulting in scabs. Bacterial infection and waxy collected in your cat’s ears are also other causes. Stray cats are the main objects of ear mites.

Which ways can treat scabs on your cat?

Depend on the result of each diagnosis, the vet will give your pet a suitable treatment such as topical ointment, spray, dip, and shampoo. Generally, all of them can treat parasite infestations which are the cause leading to scabs.

Antibiotics are the treatment of infections. If your pet is experiencing ringworm which is a kind of fungal condition, Antifungal medication is for your cat. To tackle intense itching, you can consider the options of antihistamines and corticosteroids. In case the diagnosis of your vet is that your cat’s skin problems like scabs are formed by its daily dietary, changing its diet is a must.

Nonetheless, to make sure your cat is always in the best health, the key is to follow the official diagnosis as well as treatment plan of your veterinarian. Don’t try to be a vet (treat your cat’s disease on your own without the help of a real veterinarian) because any misdiagnosis may make you have a cat ending up a more serious case.

Which ways can prevent the future problems?

Although skin problems in cats are very common, as an owner, you can completely do something to prevent a bad case in the future or at least, lessen the opportunities to put it in a risk.

According to ASPCA, the preventions of scabs which you can do are inclusive of applying kinds of shampoos and soaps that are hypoallergenic in the body of your cat, grooming frequently, planning a healthy diet with natural foods, buying the high-quality flea prevention products which are recommended by your vet.

If you would like to know more about the best Flea Treatment for your cat, refer to this video:

If your cat is prone the scab problem or chances to come back this disease are high, your vet will suggest some long term plans such as the use of oral medications or preventative skin creams.


To make clear your problem “why does my cat have scabs?”, I will mention all information briefly again:

  • spinnerScabs are dry and rough patches which come with dark brown or red color
  • spinnerThe basic causes of scabs include Flea Bite Hypersensitivity, Food Allergy, Contact Dermatitis, Mange, Demodicosis, Ear mites.
  • spinnerWith the causes mentioned, you will have the suitable treatments for each case. Topical ointment, spray, dip, and shampoo are some examples for scab disease
  • spinnerWhen it comes to scabs, the proper preventions are effective and possible: letting your cat use types of hypoallergenic shampoos and soaps, grooming regularly, preparing the natural and healthy diet, making a purchase of the good-quality flea preventative products. Think about preventative skin cream or oral medication for a long term plan

Do you have any questions related to scabs on your cat? Feel free to leave your comment below

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