Preauricular Alopecia in Cats

Preauricular (which literally means before the ear) alopecia (hair loss) is a normal condition in many cats.  When I was practicing, owners used to bring their cats in to the vet clinic thinking their cat had a skin disease.  It’s often not real noticeable in kittens but between one and two years of age is when owners usually notice this condition.

With preauricular alopecia, there is a sparseness or thinning of the hair between the eye and the ear (the temple area).  It is unrelated to breed, sex, or age.  It shows up better in black cats or darkly colored cats.

My cat Bigfoot had this condition.  He was a dark gray and white cat so it showed up well in his dark gray hair.  Here is a picture.

preauricular alopecia in a cat

preauricular alopecia in a cat

See the baldness between Bigfoot’s eye and ear?  This is a good example of preauricular alopecia.  And it is perfectly normal.  There is no treatment because this is not considered a pathological condition.  It is often misdiagnosed as ringworm, allergies, mange, etc.  If a cat with this condition were scratching the area or there is redness or scabs present, then diagnostic tests should be done to rule out other skin conditions.  Otherwise, it’s a perfectly normal condition.

Gail ♥

About Gail

I am a wife, mother, sister, aunt, friend, veterinarian, and wanna be writer. I love nature and animals of all kinds, music, cooking, and spending time with my family.
This entry was posted in Animals, cats and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to Preauricular Alopecia in Cats

  1. abby says:

    is the hair loss permanent?

  2. Stacey says:

    I went to the vet recently cause my cat had a feline herpes flare up in his left eye. The vet that last saw him saw the missin hair and I told her I thought it was from my two cats playing around and she said it was from fleas. I have yet to find any fleas on either of my cats and we haven’t seen any fleas in our house. The cats have neither had any worms as well from ingesting the said fleas. I ever use a flea killer cat treatment on my cats that the vet had me purchases. I’m not sure what the brand is but it’s the wet clear stuff that I apply to both cats between tier shoulder blades to help flea and ticks. 🙂 Thanka for posting this blog cause I myself was questioning what my vet was saying.

  3. Michaela says:

    Thank you for this information Gail. Puss is about 13 and lost hair just like Bigfoot over the last 6 months or so. She looks a bit odd but she’s not worried and now neither am I! (the vet was noncommittal at her annual check-up).

  4. Patrice says:

    Thank you! Both my black kittens have the same. 🖤

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