was petting Tabitha, her cat a while back and felt
something out of the ordinary on her face. More
accurately, Lacey’s description reflects something
wrong in the area along Tabitha’s lips.
was scabbing and thickening of the tissue, and when
Lacey looked closely, she saw that the involved areas
were quite reddened. Tabitha objected to being touched
along her lip margins indicating there was likely some
pain involved with her lesions.
has always been an indoor cat living with Lacey since
she was 7 weeks old. She is now 4. Lacey shares that she
feeds Tabitha a dry cat food made by Science Diet and
has no other four legged members of the household to
contend with. Lacey is looking for direction as to what
might be causing Tabitha’s lesions around her mouth
and wondered if it might be diet related.
lesions that Tabitha is displaying around her mouth are
not unique to one specific disease process, so I can not
give a definitive diagnosis; however, as many of my
loyal readers will attest, that will not stop me from
offering up a possible cause.
off, let’s address Lacey’s thoughts concerning a
possible diet association for Tabitha’s problem. It is
possible that a diet sensitivity or allergy might be
causing Tabitha’s problem. Another possibility is a
contact allergy such as a plastic food and/or water
can test these theories with a diet change and
elimination of plastic food/water bowls if being used
currently. If both of these things are done at the same
time and Tabitha’s problem ceases, we will not know
for sure what caused the problem. Tabitha I suspect,
will not care.
method however, will likely take a fair amount of time
to work thus postponing relief for Tabitha.
number one rule-out for the lesions Tabitha is enduring
is a process called eosinophilic granuloma. This process
in common lingo used to be called rodent ulcers as it
was observed to occur with cats that ate rodents. The
name is a misnomer, however, as there is no causative
association between eating rodents and the development
of eosinophilic granulomas.
term we use here is a description of the type of
cellular reaction and tissue response that occurs with
this process. Eosinophils are a type of white blood cell
involved with the immune system and are commonly
associated with an allergic response. Granulomas occur
in response to chronic inflammation so in this case, we
have an eosinophilic inflammatory response leading to
order to arrive at a definitive diagnosis, Lacey will
need the help of Tabitha’s veterinarian. A biopsy of
Tabitha’s lesions will yield the cause and from that
information, a treatment protocol can be established.
the cause is indeed eosinophilic granuloma, we will
often treat with corticosteroids to stop the hyperactive
(allergic) immune response and allow the lesions to heal
and bring Tabitha relief. It is sometimes difficult to
figure out what might be causing this exaggerated immune
response although the plastic bowl scenario mentioned
previously is a viable possibility. So too as mentioned,
key for Tabitha is relief which will come with treatment
tailored specifically to whatever is causing her