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Best ringworm treatment.

Species: Cat
Breed: Oli - Persian and Mi
Age: 3-6 months
We adopted Milo (5 months) from a shelter 2 weeks ago. He has two patches where skin is missing and it looked like he scratched himself with his never been trimmed claws (which have since been trimmed).

Within the past two days, I have discovered ringworm patches on myself. It makes me think these patches on Milo are ringworm as well. Oli (20 months) is not showing any symptoms of ringworm.

I have an appointment with my vet in a few days for testing but I went ahead and googled medication for ringworm in cats. Since Oli is asymptomatic, would he be treated orally? I've read that griseofulvin is very aggressive and makes a cat sick with diarrhea and lethargy as well as the possibility of causing liver damage and don't want to put Oli through that if he doesn't need it.

What course of treatment would you recommend for Oli and Milo? I temporarily reside outside the US and want to be armed with as much information as I can before seeing the vet here.


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

Sorry to hear that you and your kitties are having these problems!

If you have been diagnosed with ringworm then there is a really high possibility that it came from Milo.

You may be interested in reading this question that I recently answered about ringworm treatments.

Griseofulvin is the drug that most vets will use to treat ringworm in cats. Most cats actually handle Griseovulfin well. Some do get some stomach upset though. While I don't recommend using Griseofulvin in an animal with liver disease, in a healthy animal it is very unlikely to cause liver problems.

There are some animals that can get bone marrow issues with griseofulvin though and this can be serious. But again, most cats do fine.

Itraconazole is another drug that is good to use for ringworm. This is the drug though that can sometimes cause liver problems (although it is not common). But, it tends to be one of the most effective drugs.

Another option is to use lyme sulfur dips. This product is like a shampoo. It smells absolutely horrible and it has to be used several times. But, often it will do the trick for ringworm.

Sometimes, if there is just a small area of ringworm we can treat with an over the counter cream called clotrimazole. But, if we do so we usually need to keep an elizabethan collar on the cat so that he does not lick at it.

Of course, the first thing your vet will do is determine whether this actually is ringworm. They will likely try to shine something called a Wood's lamp on the area. Sometimes this gives us a diagnosis right away. But, sometimes we need to send samples to the lab to get a diagnosis.

Hopefully it will be something simple like a bacterial infection and not ringworm!

Dr. Marie.


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Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

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Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.