I had a horrible realization today.
Remember when I was telling you about Minion's bald heels?
I'd first thought it was a food sensitivity. Then I thought it was more likely the litter. I switched litter, and food, but he's getting worse. He's always had a bit of this bald heel thing coming and going, but it's never been this bad. And now he's getting bald spots elsewhere too.
Then I realized today . . .
What if it's all the wax tarts I melt?!
Usually scented litter can be the culprit. The vet said stress is also a very common cause. He said, "You might not think cat's have anything to get stressed about but you'd be amazed."
When I was doing laundry today, Minion was sitting on the dryer watching me, as he often does. I poured the detergent into the cap and he stuck his head to sniff it then did that shocked retreat thing. I'm sure you've all seen it in your own pets. We all chuckle about it. Then it just hit me! Oh my gosh, what if he's sensitive to all the wonderful scents I have filling the house????
I mentioned this to Casey and he said, "Take a break for month and see what happens." And -BAM- it hit me again! Remember this summer when I *did* take a break? It was like a six week break from melting because I'd run out of everyday scents and didn't want to start fall scent yet. Well, some time ago . . . possibly in summer, possibly during this break . . . Minion's bald spots were pretty much completely healed. I can't remember just when that healed time was though! Did it coincide with the break I took from tarts?! I wish I knew!!!!
I did some more Google research and found some articles that say scents can be overwhelming to cats, even stressful. Aha! The vet had said it was stress! The articles suggest things like scented litter and carpet deodorizers, as well as things like hair spray, perfume, and air fresheners. So no, apparently it doesn't have to be something they are in contact with, as I'd been thinking before.
So, I'm going to take a break from melting, effective immediately, and see what happens with his little bald heels. In a way, I hope this IS the culprit, because it's easy enough to fix. But then I think about all the wonderful tarts I have in my stash, all those pumpkin and cranberry scents for Thanksgiving, all those mint scents for Christmas . . . and I just want to cry.
Do any of you have any experience with this type of situation?
I'd love to hear about real situations and not just the general possibilities that most things online ramble about.