People want to understand why their cat is losing hair around the eyes. Web surfers also want to know why their cat is losing hair above their cat’s eyes, which is significant in my opinion.
There is a patch of fur above the eyes of a domestic cat which is always a bit thin. You can see the skin below quite easily very often. This is exacerbated by the fact that the hair in that area stands on end exposing the skin which is more visible. This adds to the impression that there’s been hair loss and that the hair is thinner
This area appears to become even thinner with age or may become thinner with age. It appears to be an example of the what people go through in older age: hair thinning.
There is nothing in the cat health books which specifically refer to hair loss around the eyes so my initial thought is that there are possibly no health issues associated with this condition. However, I explore some other avenues..
The following possibilities are much less likely than the explanation above
If it is not an age related issue it may be due to over-grooming. It makes cats feel better to groom. If they are stressed for whatever reason they may groom more than usual and groom the area above the eyes with the foreleg. If this excessive it may lead to thinning of the hair.
Other conditions which might lead to over-grooming on the face are allergic reactions (itchiness) to a whole range of possible allergens: airborne, food related, environmental (something in the home) etc.
Feline scabies causes hair loss on the ears, face, eyelids and neck. This is due to the Notoedres cati mite. There will be itching and scratching. I don’t think this cause of hair loss is one that is connected to the question concerned but it does cause facial hair loss (my thanks to Dee). See feline mange.
My gut feeling is that if the hair loss around the eyes is not age related it will be due to over-grooming for which there are a number of possible causes, the most obvious of which is stress.
For those who want more…there is a good page (link) on hair loss in cats on this website but I can reassure you that even though there are 176 comments none ask questions about hair loss around the eyes.