I have a young cat (about a year and a half) that I found (and finally managed to catch) in my neighborhood about 7 months ago. Someone had put a flea collar on her, and she had managed to get her left front paw through the collar........so that the collar ended up around her neck and up under her shoulder. She was like that for maybe 3 months (I know because I was actively trying to catch her) and as a result the skin in her "armpit" was literally worn away. When I caught her, I of course took her to the vet repeatedly for treatments (antibiotics, deworming, cleaning the wound, etc.). The area has "healed" and no longer seems to bother the cat, but it seems to sweat and the hair around it mats........so I try to keep it clean and trim the hair back. But the area seems totally devoid of any skin. It's not an open wound obviously, just very pink.......it looks like just the slightest transparent covering over meat.....just like there is no skin whatsoever. The cat seems to be just fine in all respects, but I worry about that area. Is there anything else that can be done? A surgery perhaps. Or am I worrying needlessly and the area will eventually develop a more substantial "covering"? The vet she saw basically said (when she was been treated for an actual wound) to just wait and see. I've spend a great deal on this animal and am certainly willing to spend more, but I would like your opinion. Thanks very much.
Dr. Marie replied:
Oh, poor kitty! Thank you for rescuing this little cat.
This is a tough question to answer without seeing Lily's wound. It is certainly possibly that a surgery could be done to reconstruct the area so that it is covered with healthier skin.
If it has been like this for 7 months now then it may not get any better. However if it has only been a few weeks since treatment then it may get better than it is now.
If it is still weeping it is worthwhile to have your vet take another look just to make sure that there is no infection there.
Another thought...you could consider seeing if she would tolerate wearing a small t-shirt. Having the area covered may help.
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Dr. 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.
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