Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome
What Is Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome?
Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome or “twitchy cat syndrome” as it is often called is one of the more peculiar ailments. It is known to afflict only domestic cats. It is often mistaken for nothing more than quirky behaviour. The usual characteristic of the cat’s mad hour (usually around dusk and dawn) when cats become more alert. The behaviour of an animal with Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome however is usually far more acute and stark. It has also been called “rolling Skin disorder” because in some cases the skin can be seen to physically “ripple along the animals back from neck to tail. In the most extreme cases cats will often “over groom” to the point where they develop bald sore patches. They may also self mutilate through biting and overly aggressive scratching too. Bolting for no apparent reason and tail biting are also signs. that a cat suffering from Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome is likely to display all or some of the above. All in all it can be a very disturbing and unnerving condition for both cat and owner.
What Causes Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome?
There is no agreed upon cause of this weird affliction. However experts are convinced that it has its roots in either a neurological disorder (like Epilepsy). It may even be stress triggered. The neurological theory carries some added weight because a suffering cat will often display dilated pupils. Some experts have even suggested that during some episodes the animal may also be hallucinating. Whatever the actual cause, there is very strong evidence to support the idea that stress is involved in many cases. It is often noted that many of the cats that suffer these bouts are of a submissive nature. This also alludes strongly to this relationship with stress. The bottom line is of course that whatever the cause the symptoms of Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome needs to be recognized and treated. As with any illness amongst cats, early detection and treatment are key to gaining a positive prognosis.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome.
Apart from the obvious physical and behavioral symptoms diagnosis is more a matter of excluding other ailments rather than identifying the illness. As mentioned already the causes of the condition are somewhat unclear so a process of elimination using blood tests is usually the cause of action. Skin conditions, hyperthyroidism and possible toxin ingestion are likely to be ruled out first. Along with brain disorders and any undetected underlying conditions. The most effective treatments appear to be minimizing stress and any possible dietary allergies. Whilst the disorder is not considered life threatening it can cause a great deal of distress for the animals concerned. This in turn can lead to further stress possibly initiating a perpetuating cycle that only serves to worsen the symptoms. If you would like a more detailed explanation of Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome take a look here.