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Can Cats Lose Hair From Stress? All You Need To Know!

There are other creatures that experience stress. Stress may lead to a variety of health issues, including high blood pressure, obesity, heart disease, and even diabetes. What about our feline buddies, however? Can cats lose hair as a result of stress?

Sadly, stress can cause cat hair loss. Psychogenic alopecia is the disorder that results from compulsive licking and scratching.

Learn more about this disease and how you may assist your cat feel less stressed in "Can Cats Lose Hair from Stress? All You Need To Know!" by BestForPets (bestforpets.org).

What Causes Psychogenic Alopecia in Cats?

Psychogenic alopecia is essentially self-trauma induced by the cat. Psychogenic indicates that a problem is caused by an emotional or mental difficulty or conflict.

Psychogenic alopecia is best defined as the inability of a cat to quit grooming itself. Moving into a new house, introducing a new pet, battling for the litter box or food, or a neighboring cat or other animal constantly coming in your cat’s view, such as via a window, are examples of situations that might provoke the condition.

Any of these circumstances might generate stress in your cat, which can result in excessive grooming. Overgrooming is excessive licking and scraping that causes premature hair loss.

Is Psychogenic Alopecia Curable?

Stress-related psychogenic alopecia can only be prevented by eliminating the problems that are causing your cat stress. If you find bald areas or discomfort on your cat, you should take it to the veterinarian immediately. Your veterinarian can evaluate if the illness is caused by stress or a medical concern, which we will discuss shortly.

Maintaining your cat’s composure is crucial to managing the disease. Try giving your cat frequent massages (if he would let it) and avoid stressful circumstances. You can attempt to keep your cat away from active sections of the home, such as those with noisy youngsters or active dogs, and provide your cat with a high-up sanctuary. Cats like looking down on their surroundings, and a cat condo is a fantastic way to provide your cat solitude and, if necessary, safety.

Boredom may also lead to tension, so provide your cat with plenty of toys for mental and physical stimulation, which is essential for a happy cat. In rare instances, veterinarians may prescribe drugs to aid in the treatment of an illness.

Is Alopecia in Cats Serious?

Alopecia is not generally a serious condition, but obsessive and excessive grooming can lead to issues such as irritation and infection. If your cat is compulsively grooming himself, you should take him to the veterinarian to rule out a medical condition.

What Medical Conditions Can Cause Alopecia?

Psychogenic alopecia is not the only cause of hair loss in cats. As we’ve discussed, medical disorders can cause alopecia, and it’s crucial to identify the reason for your cat’s health and safety. Potential medical conditions include the subsequent:

  • Infections
  • Allergies caused by food, fleas, or the environment.
  • Some malignancies, including lymphoma, bile duct carcinoma, thymoma, and pancreatic carcinoma, are resistant to chemotherapy.
  • Inflammation of the urinary bladder, digestive tract, kidneys, or anal sacs.
  • Hyperthyroidism and Cushing’s disease are both endocrine disorders (rare in cats)

Tips for Keeping Your Cat Healthy, Safe, and Stress-Free

To provide physical and mental activity for your cat, provide scratching posts, a cat condo, and toys. Ensure you have sufficient litter boxes, especially if you have many cats.

A good rule of thumb is to have an extra litter box; for instance, if you have two cats, you’ll need three litter boxes to prevent fights and bullying amongst your cats.

Eliminate any potential stressors and maintain your cat’s tranquility. Massaging our cat is a fantastic method to strengthen our friendship and alleviate tension.

Give your cat high-quality cat food that has all the nutrients it needs to grow and remain healthy. Ensure that your cat maintains a healthy weight to prevent obesity, which can lead to a variety of health issues. Contact your veterinarian for dietary recommendations for your cat’s best health.


As mentioned in “Can Cats Lose Hair from Stress? All You Need To Know!” by BestForPets (bestforpets.org), stress is a major cause of hair loss in cats.

It is not necessarily a major issue, but identifying the source of the issue is essential for treating the disease. Please visit your veterinarian if you observe bald areas or discomfort, and eliminate your cat’s stressors.

Spend time with your cat by playing with toys and showering it with affection. Physical and mental stimulation should be provided to prevent boredom, which can lead to stress.

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Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher


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