Feline Acne

Feline acne is a condition that can affect cats of any sex, breed, or age. It is characterized by the formation of blackheads, or comedones, on the chin. Although acne in cats can be controlled, there is no treatment to cure it.

Feline Acne


There is no known exact cause of cat acne. However, there are several factors that can increase the risk of it occurring. They include poor grooming, stress, dermatitis, and various other diseases. Felines with a weakened immune system are also susceptible to the condition. Cats that suffer from food allergies or overactive sebaceous glands can develop acne too.


As mentioned earlier, feline acne causes blackheads to form on the chin. They may also appear on your cat’s lips. These blackheads may turn into abscesses which will then break open and form crusts. Some cats also experience hair loss as a result of acne.


In order to diagnose acne in cats, the veterinarian will likely take skin scrapings. They will help determine if your cat is suffering from a condition other than acne. Sometimes, a skin biopsy will be performed.


Treatment of cat acne is aimed at controlling symptoms rather than curing the condition itself. If your cat has overactive sebaceous glands, he may benefit from antiseborrheic shampoos which help break down excess oils.

Secondary bacterial infections can also become a problem which will need to be treated with topical or oral antibiotics. If your cat develops severe inflammation, the vet may choose to prescribe him a short course of corticosteroids.


There are certain things that you can do to prevent feline acne. It may be helpful to switch to glass or stainless steel food and water dishes. You can also clean your cat’s chin yourself if he isn’t grooming himself properly. This is especially important just after he eats.