Food Allergies in Cats

  • Nonseasonal itching, especially on the front half of the body, head, face, ears, and neck
  • Otitis externa – Itching and scratching can lead to inflammation and sometimes infection of the ears
  • Excessive licking of the affected skin
  • Papules (small, fluid-filled bumps) which eventually burst and crust over
  • Hair loss (due to excessive scratching, grooming etc)
  • Feline acne
  • Vomiting
  • Diarrhea

Food allergies can present with the same skin signs as environmental or seasonal allergies. In this picture below, there is fur loss, swelling of the skin, red and inflamed skin, fur discoloration, broken skin, scans and crusting as a result of food allergies:

example allergies skin disease on a chat's chin


  • Avoid food that caused allergies, by switching to a homemade diet using novel ingredients (such as kangaroo) or the use of a commercial hypoallergenic one. If you are feeding a homemade diet it is important to ensure that your cat is receiving the correct nutrients in the diet.
  • Corticosteroids to control itching. Unfortunately, not all cats will respond to this treatment.
  • Antihistamines to control the itching.
  • Antibiotics to treat skin infections caused by itching.


  • Julia Wilson, 'Cat World' Founder

    Julia Wilson is the founder of Cat-World, and has researched and written over 1,000 articles about cats. She is a cat expert with over 20 years of experience writing about a wide range of cat topics, with a special interest in cat health, welfare and preventative care. Julia lives in Sydney with her family, four cats and two dogs. Full author bio

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