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Q. I have three outside cats who have ringworm, and was wondering if I should just let it heal on its own or treat it.

Answered By
DESTINI R. HOLLOWAY, DVM

A. The real question here is IF ringworm will heal on its own. The answer to that question is probably not, because ringworm is a very resistant type of fungal infection, which is why often-times it takes extended anti-fungal treatments (topical and oral) that continue even after the skin lesions have disappeared to ensure the ringworm is gone in its entirety. It is also highly contagious and easily spreads throughout the skin. Which is why it is sometimes recommended to shave the haircoat to not only allow good topical penetration for the medicine, but to limit spread.

Now treating all 3 cats can be a nightmare as far as expense is concerned; however, if you express concern about cost and have a sympathetic veterinarian, they may be willing to combine medication dispensing for your 3 kitties to help reduce the cost and expense.

- Dr. H

Answered By
DR. JENNIFER LADD, DVM

A. If it is confirmed ringworm, I would definitely treat it. Ringworm is zoonotic, meaning it can affect humans. It can also be transmitted easily from animal to animal, animal to person, and person to person.


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