A rodent ulcer in cats is not caused by a rodent or there no direct connection. I wonder where the name came from? It’s rather misleading. These ulcers begin as a pink or yellow shiny spot. It deepens and becomes a sore. It can begin on either side of the upper lip. It can sometimes occur on the lower lip and sometimes at the back of the jaw behind the last upper molar. Other times it may develop on the tongue. Apparently it causes no pain and is not itchy. As it gets worse the lip can be eroded exposing teeth and gums.
The rodent ulcer is unique to cats. Cats of all ages can suffer from it. It occurs three times more often in females than in males. The cause is not known and as mentioned there is no “direct connection with rodents”.
It is believe that they are caused by either an allergic reaction or an immune or parasitic problem. Hypersensitivity to insects, environment and diet may be the cause. There may be an allergy to the flea bite. They may be linked to dental infections. And finally there may be an underlying genetic predisposition. Cats exposed to the feline leukaemia virus can develop rodent ulcers. But not all cats testing positive for feline leukaemia have these ulcers. A veterinarian will diagnose the condition through appearance and location. A biopsy may be taken to confirm the diagnosis and to rule out a “malignant transformation”. Cats with a rodent ulcer should be tested for feline leukaemia.
See your veterinarian for treatment. It cannot be treated at home…Well, that’s not quite true because the author of an article on Catster.com, Alissa Wolf, used a combination of home treatments including: colloidal silver, coconut oil and L-lysine to cure her cat. Please read her article for the full story. It is not clear if the cure was permanent. These ulcers can recur therefore the cause should be found.
The cat owner can also feed an essential fatty acid supplement or if it is caused by an allergen or irritant they can stop using plastic or rubber food and water bowls. Both should be made of stainless steel or be ceramic.
Reference source: Cat Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook, Third Edition and as quoted.
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