How to prevent cat from chasing his tail

  • My cat Inky he is 4 yes old.  For the past few months he has been chasing his tail. Trying to bite it. His skin on his back is spasms when this happens. Is there any thing that I can give him. He runs around the house Trying to get away from his tail


  • Hi Mary, this is Linda, a small animal vet.

    I'm sorry Inky has been having this issue.


    It sounds like he is irritated and possible itchy.


    The first considerations would be fleas. They are not always easy to spot and cats often groom them right off.


    The easiest thing to do first is to rule out fleas as a possibility.


    I use Advocate spot on for those who may have fleas, though Advantage spot on can be purchased over the counter and is equally as good. They both contain the active ingredient Imidacloprid.



    Once all pets are treated, we need to move on to the environment. This has to be done on the same day. While 5% of the flea burden live on the pet, the remaining 95% are in the bedding,sofas etc. We need to hot wash bedding over 60'c, hoover thoroughly and use a flea spray such as Indorex or RIP Fleas to eliminate the issue. These sprays contain an Insect Growth Regulator, so work well. Sometimes this needs to be repeated a few weeks later in case any eggs/larvae have escaped the initial cleaning.



    If this is not the issue, we'd wonder about another source of irritation such as a bacterial infection, blocked anal glands or allergic skin disease.

    A vet check is wise is signs are continuing as he may need e.g. some anti itch medicine to break the itch scratch cycle.


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