Cat Lice are tiny, six-legged parasites that feed on blood and can cause anemia. Weak, run-down kittens are the most susceptible to feline lice. Tiny white spots, called nits are visible to your eye and are located in your cats fur. These are the cat lice egg casings, visible in the photo below. Feline lice spend their entire life on your cat and are not transferable to other pets or people. They do not infest your home and are a problem primarily in the cooler winter months. Feline lice can cause blood loss which in young kittens can result in anemia. In the United States, lice on kittens and puppies are rare although head lice on school children are quite common.
SIGNS OF CAT LICE
White nits in hair
Anemia (pale-whitish gum color in a weak kitten)
WHAT YOU and YOUR VET CAN DO for CAT LICE
- Once cat lice have been confirmed, the treatment for feline lice is relatively straightforward and is similar to that for fleas. Most products that kill fleas also kill lice.
Bathe your cat with d-limolene or a pyrethrin-based shampoo. This kills adult lice but not eggs, so repeat the baths weekly until all the eggs are gone. Leave the suds on for 5-10 minutes, then rinse well.
Pyrethrin dips are also effective for lice.
Chrysanthemums contain pyrethrins which are effective for lice and fleas. These are available commercially as dips which are sponged on after bathing and allowed to air dry.
Improve the general health of your kitten. Enhance the diet by adding a natural pet comprehensive vitamin-mineral supplement rich in B-Vitamins which will help to combat anemia by promoting red blood cell production.
COMPLEMENTARY CAT LICE THERAPY
Itching from mites and cat lice which are magnified and may be seen in photo on the left can be controlled with
Vitamin C supplementation – 250 milligrams of powder 3 times daily added to meals.
Vitamin E – 400 IU (international units) per week added to meals.
HERBAL CAT FLEA REMEDIES
Citrus fruits like lemons contain d-limolene which act as a repellent for lice and fleas and mites.