Ringworm in cats is a quite frustrating condition. It makes your cat keep scratching the affected area, and while it is scratching, you don’t know how much fur it is shedding. And in those shed fur, the fungi caused ringworm can spread around the room!
Before discussing about this too far, we should know that ringworm is a skin issue which can cause lesions and bald patches in the affected area. In the bald patch, you can usually see a ring with red as the center. This is why the condition is called ringworm, even though it is not caused by a worm.
Ringworm is caused by fungi, and this kind of fungi likes to live in a damp, humid, and crowd area. Ringworm is highly contagious, be it to other pets or to humans.
Ringworm can be completely cured by topical and oral treatment. Topical treatment is best used by mild cases of ringworm and shorthaired cats. For longhaired cats, if the owners want to use topical treatment, it’s better to clip the fur first. And when clipping the fur, it should be instructed by the vet, because clipping fur in the wrong way may lead to irritation.
Why it’s important to clip the fur? It’s to make sure that the treatment can reach the skin easily. Topical treatment is also useful if the lesions are only in small spots.
For severe case where the lesions spread in the entire body of the cat, oral treatment is the best solution. The drugs should be prescribed by the vet.
However, to improve the effect, it’s important to be aggressive when treating the ringworm in cats. It means you should combine both topical and oral treatment. Commonly, topical treatment should be applied (if it’s a cream) 6 times a day, while the oral treatment should be given 3 times a day. Yet, it depends on the prescription from the vet.
It’s important to never miss a schedule when treating your cat. So how long does it take to get rid of ringworm in cats? If you regularly treating the cat aggressively, and you have cleaned the environment from the fungi causing ringworm, it only needs 3-4 weeks until your cat is completely healed.
Topical treatment can be in cream, shampoo, or rinse. In shampoo, you have to bathe your cat in with anti-fungal shampoo twice a week. Usually it is a shampoo containing chlorhexidine and miconazole. This kind of shampoo is useful to fight infections.
For creams, you should choose miconazole cream which is useful for small area of lesions. However, if the area is in the lickable spot, so you have to limit the application.
Anti fungal dips can also be used in this case. Enliconazole or lime sulphur dips can be used daily to treat infection and kill the fungi.
When it comes to oral treatment, griseofulvin is a widely used oral treatment. However, it has side effects as well to the cats. Itraconzole is an alternative, knowing that this is considered as the most effective oral treatment for ringworm in cats.