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4.5 month old Sphynx sensitive skin tips please :)

arc23

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Hi all!

A little background info:

I have had my Sphynx kitten for a little over a month now whom I love dearly. I try to feed him the best varieties of food. Currently, I'm in the process of transitioning him to Orijen Cat/Kitten kibble (the breeder had him on Hill's Science Diet wheat/corn free kitten kibble). He eats 2 wet meals of day consisting of Applaws (the in broth formula without additives) and Instinct grain-free wet kitten food. I also give him the raw freeze-dried Instinct mixers and Pure Bites as treats. I recently changed his litter 3 days ago to Pretty Litter, as the previous litter I was using (Tidy Cats Free & Clean unscented litter) was getting stuck in his little toes (causing irritation) and was tracking too much. So far, the Pretty Litter tracks a lot less and doesn't get stuck in his paws, but doesn't seem to cover up the poop odor as well. He also doesn't sneeze anymore, etc. He has some stinky poops, but overall very good digestion (no diarrhea or gas)

Last week, he began developing more eye drainage and irritated skin on his face, which slightly worsened as I began wiping his face more frequently to keep his eyes/folds clean. I stopped used the EarthBath eye wipes I was using a week ago and switched to plain water and saline to clean his face and eyes. I took him to the vet a few days ago, and they prescribed him some antibiotic eye drops because they said he has an infection in his eyes (although it looks more like irritation/allergies to me).

Long story short, I'm curious about what litters and food people have tried for their Sphynx kittens who have more sensitive skin? The skin on his body is in great shape (I use baby shampoo and coconut oil), but his face/eyes are ultra sensitive (I usually just wash his face with water and moisturize with coconut oil). This is the first time he has broken out like this on his face though since I've gotten him. Is there a better litter and/or food I should try? I would also love advice on how to clean the delicate skin on his face.

Thank you all in advance!
 

Condo commando

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I recently started using Trizulta+Keto on cotton pads to wipe their skin down. This was on a tip from @Yoda mom . It worked out perfectly because I already have Trizulta+Keto for cleaning ears so I don't have to buy an extra product.

I have 3 Sphynxes, 2 of whom never cause me any problems and 1 who always seems to have something going on. For him I also use a medicated shampoo that the vet recommended. The first 2 just use a regular cat shampoo. A word of caution on shampoo: the Ph on human skin is different than cat skin, so human baby shampoos are not the best for your kitten. A couple of good brands to look into are Hylyt and EarthBath shampoo. And finally, overbathing can lead to dry skin so be careful not to overdo it. I don't know how often you bathe him so that's just something to think about.

I'm a big proponent of wet food and one of the reasons is kibble has more fillers, and therefore it's more likely to cause allergic reactions. 2 wet meals a day is great and you could augment it with some kibble in between.

Finally litter - I used to use clay litter but it creates a cloud of dust that can be problematic. Because of that I went looking for a natural litter. I have mostly been using grass seed litter which I liked a lot but with 3 cats I was spending a lot of money on something that went in the trash. Also I was constantly having to vacuum. So recently I switched to wood pellets and I'm not ready to say if I like it yet. I will say the grass seed litters are minimal dust so they are good for cats with allergies ....the brands are Smartcat (the original grass litter), Frisco (Chewy's knockoff), and SoPhresh Unscented (Petco's knockoff). Lucky for me their poop doesn't smell so that's one thing I don't have to worry about (my crew eats raw food).

Hope this helps.
 
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arc23

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Hi all!

A little background info:

I have had my Sphynx kitten for a little over a month now whom I love dearly. I try to feed him the best varieties of food. Currently, I'm in the process of transitioning him to Orijen Cat/Kitten kibble (the breeder had him on Hill's Science Diet wheat/corn free kitten kibble). He eats 2 wet meals of day consisting of Applaws (the in broth formula without additives) and Instinct grain-free wet kitten food. I also give him the raw freeze-dried Instinct mixers and Pure Bites as treats. I recently changed his litter 3 days ago to Pretty Litter, as the previous litter I was using (Tidy Cats Free & Clean unscented litter) was getting stuck in his little toes (causing irritation) and was tracking too much. So far, the Pretty Litter tracks a lot less and doesn't get stuck in his paws, but doesn't seem to cover up the poop odor as well. He also doesn't sneeze anymore, etc. He has some stinky poops, but overall very good digestion (no diarrhea or gas)

Last week, he began developing more eye drainage and irritated skin on his face, which slightly worsened as I began wiping his face more frequently to keep his eyes/folds clean. I stopped used the EarthBath eye wipes I was using a week ago and switched to plain water and saline to clean his face and eyes. I took him to the vet a few days ago, and they prescribed him some antibiotic eye drops because they said he has an infection in his eyes (although it looks more like irritation/allergies to me).

Long story short, I'm curious about what litters and food people have tried for their Sphynx kittens who have more sensitive skin? The skin on his body is in great shape (I use baby shampoo and coconut oil), but his face/eyes are ultra sensitive (I usually just wash his face with water and moisturize with coconut oil). This is the first time he has broken out like this on his face though since I've gotten him. Is there a better litter and/or food I should try? I would also love advice on how to clean the delicate skin on his face.

Thank you all in advance!

Thank you for the tips! I considered switching to Earth Bath soap, but he doesn’t seem to have some irritation from the face wipes (not the ear wipes or body wipes though). I bathe him once a week, but I have been bathing him twice a week the last two weeks before his eyes/face have been getting so crusty and stained.
I recently started using Trizulta+Keto on cotton pads to wipe their skin down. This was on a tip from @Yoda mom . It worked out perfectly because I already have Trizulta+Keto for cleaning ears so I don't have to buy an extra product.

I have 3 Sphynxes, 2 of whom never cause me any problems and 1 who always seems to have something going on. For him I also use a medicated shampoo that the vet recommended. The first 2 just use a regular cat shampoo. A word of caution on shampoo: the Ph on human skin is different than cat skin, so human baby shampoos are not the best for your kitten. A couple of good brands to look into are Hylyt and EarthBath shampoo.

And finally, overbathing can lead to dry skin so be careful not to overdo it. I don't know how often you bathe him so that's just something to think about. Hope this helps.
Thank you for the tips! I considered switching to Earth Bath soap, but he does seem to have some irritation from the face wipes (not the ear wipes or body wipes though). I bathe him once a week, but I have been bathing him twice a week the last two weeks because his eyes/face have been getting so crusty and stained.
 

Sheldon13

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I agree the grass litters are great for allergies because they are dust free for real! I too use Aspen pellets now and I prefer it because it doesn’t track nearly as much as most litters. It’s really cheap at Tractor Supply, too. Just $6 for a 40 lb bag.


Love and Sphynx ~ It’s all you need
 

Yoda mom

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@arc23 ,with my first sphynx years ago I switched from baby shampoo ( different ph) to Hylyt. shampoo by members recommendations. hylyt is soap free, hypoallergenic, easy to rinse. I dont over bath. I have 4 nakids. I had to switch off acana food, the newer USA formulas made them grease balls. I switched to Nutrisource cat and kitten food (no recalls) touted for gut health. my batman likes his hills urinary hairball kibble. he is a dry food addict. the rest share a can of proplan urinary focus canned food. they are all turning 10 soon except baby toby at 7. no skin or poo issues. using Dr. elseys unscented litter.

my vet got me hooked on TRizultra with keto to wipe out ears( i don't flush, I wet a swisspers cotton round with a little squeeze to it). I use the trizultra on larger rectangle swisppers cotton pads to wipe down skin between spa day. I do it 2x a week. really gets arm pits, necks and chins clean. I do not use on face. just a warm wet baby face cloth .

hugs n head smooches, keep us updated
 

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IMG_0702.JPG
 

Condo commando

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I agree the grass litters are great for allergies because they are dust free for real! I too use Aspen pellets now and I prefer it because it doesn’t track nearly as much as most litters. It’s really cheap at Tractor Supply, too. Just $6 for a 40 lb bag.
I may be going back to grass litter. I've had a couple of incidents outside of the box but that's not all. All 3 cats walk around the litter boxes and start to go in with one foot, then back out, walk around some more, foot back in, back out.....this goes on for like 30 minutes before they finally step all 4 paws in the box and do their thing. This never used to happen; they used to walk in, squat and be done in no time. My crew is 7, 8 and 10.
 

arc23

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Hi all!

I decided to switch to OkoCat pellet litter. While it doesn’t completely cover up his poop smell, it’s a heck of a lot better than the Pretty Litter. I may experiment with grass litter soon too. My sphynxes face and eyes have cleared up nicely! I plan to transition to some raw meats soon to see if it helps his poop smell :)
 

Sheldon13

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Amazing! So you like the new litter pretty well?

You won’t regret going raw. It’s the very best of the best for them.


Love and Sphynx ~ It’s all you need
 

arc23

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Amazing! So you like the new litter pretty well?

You won’t regret going raw. It’s the very best of the best for them.


Love and Sphynx ~ It’s all you need
Amazing! So you like the new litter pretty well?

You won’t regret going raw. It’s the very best of the best for them.


Love and Sphynx ~ It’s all you need

Pretty litter was a lot better than clay litter (less tracking, less respiratory issues, and less dirty), but didn’t do a good job at covering up his poop smell. Also, it’s a bit expensive and not worth it in my opinion. So far, the wood pellets have been going really will. I had to mix it with the pretty litter because my kitten did not want to use his box with just the pellets.

For his first real raw meal, he’ll be trying a bit of rabbit mixed with his canned food to see how he does! It’s a brand made locally in Oregon :)
 

Condo commando

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Pretty litter was a lot better than clay litter (less tracking, less respiratory issues, and less dirty), but didn’t do a good job at covering up his poop smell. Also, it’s a bit expensive and not worth it in my opinion. So far, the wood pellets have been going really will. I had to mix it with the pretty litter because my kitten did not want to use his box with just the pellets.

For his first real raw meal, he’ll be trying a bit of rabbit mixed with his canned food to see how he does! It’s a brand made locally in Oregon :)
What if you just flush the poop to get rid of the smell?

I'm not at all trying to turn you off to raw though. It's what I feed my crew. I bet your little guy will love his new food. Just remember to add the appropriate supplement to the meat.
 

arc23

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What if you just flush the poop to get rid of the smell?

I'm not at all trying to turn you off to raw though. It's what I feed my crew. I bet your little guy will love his new food. Just remember to add the appropriate supplement to the meat.

I do immediately scoop it when home and notice it. It's more when I go back to work soon that I'm worried about it sitting and stinking up the whole house - haha!

The brand of raw food I'm going to be feeding him does have some added supplements Feline Recipes | mysite

Let me know if this looks like an OK brand :)
 

Condo commando

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I do immediately scoop it when home and notice it. It's more when I go back to work soon that I'm worried about it sitting and stinking up the whole house - haha!
Ohhhhhh totally get that now!!!

The brand of raw food I'm going to be feeding him does have some added supplements Feline Recipes | mysite

Let me know if this looks like an OK brand :)
This is weird, their chicken and turkey recipes are the only ones that include the ingredient "calcium carbonate" - calcium is a requirement so I don't know if they just forgot to put it down for the rabbit, beef and duck recipes. So that's an open question.

Normally pet food tells you what the ratio of calcium to phosphorus is. In raw food it might be something like 1.5 to 1 or 1.2 to 1. Even their recipes that list calcium carbonate fail to mention the ratio. This is another open question.

They have a "contact us" link on their web site so I would contact them and ask about those 2 things. Don't let this stop you from feeding this food for a little while until they get back to you. Then you can go from there.
 

arc23

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Ohhhhhh totally get that now!!!


This is weird, their chicken and turkey recipes are the only ones that include the ingredient "calcium carbonate" - calcium is a requirement so I don't know if they just forgot to put it down for the rabbit, beef and duck recipes. So that's an open question.

Normally pet food tells you what the ratio of calcium to phosphorus is. In raw food it might be something like 1.5 to 1 or 1.2 to 1. Even their recipes that list calcium carbonate fail to mention the ratio. This is another open question.

They have a "contact us" link on their web site so I would contact them and ask about those 2 things. Don't let this stop you from feeding this food for a little while until they get back to you. Then you can go from there.

I just asked them - thanks! The other brand they have at this pet place I go to is Vital Cat mini patties, Tiki Cat raw, Primal raw nuggets, and Instinct raw signature. Do you know anything about these brands? If so, are there any you prefer? I already feed him a few of the Raw Instinct freeze-dried mixers in the morning, so I'm hoping the transition will be ok :)
 

Sheldon13

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I feed Vital Essentials and Instinct both and they are good. Some Tiki Cat is made in Thailand, so I would check into that on an individual product basis.


Love and Sphynx ~ It’s all you need
 

Condo commando

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@Sheldon13 you are correct Tiki Cat canned food is made in Thailand ----- but I looked up the Tiki Raw and it says made in USA. Their web site says they are complete and balanced too. So it looks fine.

@arc23 all those you just mentioned look fine.

When I started raw feeding I used both Instinct and Primal Nuggets. Instinct is frozen which is more economical but you have to make room in the freezer for it. Primal Nuggets are freeze dried so they are super convenient, but pricey. My little routine was go to the pet store every weekend and buy mostly frozen raw for the week, plus a bag of freeze dried for snacks.

Vital Essentials (assuming it's the freeze dried patties) sounds similar to Primal Nuggets. Tiki Cat is frozen so it's more like Instinct. I wouldn't have a problem feeding any of them.

One more thing to consider as a snack is raw chicken hearts. You can usually find them in human grocery stores and they are high in taurine which is great for cats. Chicken hearts are small enough most cats just chew them and you don't even need to cut them. One of my cats chomps down and it's gone in 3 seconds tops.....I worry that she will choke but she's 10 and she's been doing it forever. Just crazy how she can put those hearts away. Anyway food for thought for you!
 

arc23

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Hi all! Thank you all for the suggestions.

Update:

I’ve been feeding raw mixed with a little high quality canned food (he won’t eat raw plain yet) 2-3 times per day, and it’s greatly reduced his bad poop smell! He still even snacks on kibbles in between, and it’s amazing how much less stinky it is.

I’ve also been using OkoCat pellet litter, which has been great so far. He barely tracks it and he gets far less dirty! It doesn’t seem to bother him.

One thing I am still concerned about his how watery his eyes get, and I even notice some crust form in the morning on the side of his nose. I wake up and his eyes/nose are so dirty from drainage. He just finished a course of antibiotics eye drops 2 weeks ago. His eyes improved for a short bit, but I have a feeling this is more allergy related and not an infection (the drainage is clear and/or slightly brown jelly eye boogers). He doesn’t sneeze or cough, plays often, eats great and doesn’t seem distressed. The only thing is that he does sometimes squint his eyes. Since they get so crusty, I use a cotton pad with warm water or saline to get off the crust. Then, I will use his coconut oil to moisturize his face and get off the remaining crust (avoiding his eyes) since his face gets dry. I will of course take him back to the vet, but I fear they will just keep putting him on antibiotic drops. Does anyone else have this issue with their sphynx?? I’ve attached a photo of him this morning.
 

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arc23

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Ohhhhhh totally get that now!!!


This is weird, their chicken and turkey recipes are the only ones that include the ingredient "calcium carbonate" - calcium is a requirement so I don't know if they just forgot to put it down for the rabbit, beef and duck recipes. So that's an open question.

Normally pet food tells you what the ratio of calcium to phosphorus is. In raw food it might be something like 1.5 to 1 or 1.2 to 1. Even their recipes that list calcium carbonate fail to mention the ratio. This is another open question.

They have a "contact us" link on their web site so I would contact them and ask about those 2 things. Don't let this stop you from feeding this food for a little while until they get back to you. Then you can go from there.

Hi! I found out that all of their ratios are 1:1. He said they don’t add the calcium carbonate to those recipes recipes because there is bone included in them, so it’s already there :)
 

Condo commando

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Hi! I found out that all of their ratios are 1:1. He said they don’t add the calcium carbonate to those recipes recipes because there is bone included in them, so it’s already there :)

Alright, that's on the low end of what the ratio should be. Usually it would be somewhere between 1:1 and 1.5:1 and most of us try to shoot for the middle just to have margin for error. But if they really hit 1:1 then it's OK.

When I started raw feeding I also started getting my cats' blood checked as part of their annual checkup. If I messed up their diet I wanted the blood test to be a flare. Take sodium for example.....most chicken nowadays is "enhanced" with a sodium solution, but the ingredient label for your cat food will just say chicken. You have no way of knowing how much extra sodium was in that chicken.

Another thing and this really did happen to me......I got a probiotic which happened to also have green superfoods. I think green superfoods are something of a fad nowadays and I just didn't think too much of it. It turns out green foods affect the Ph in cat urine and one of my cats was at risk for urine crystals. Luckily I found out before it became a problem because we went for her annual exam and had her urine tested just as a routine thing.

It's never a bad thing to test.....I hope this helps.
 

Condo commando

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One thing I am still concerned about his how watery his eyes get, and I even notice some crust form in the morning on the side of his nose. I wake up and his eyes/nose are so dirty from drainage. He just finished a course of antibiotics eye drops 2 weeks ago. His eyes improved for a short bit, but I have a feeling this is more allergy related and not an infection (the drainage is clear and/or slightly brown jelly eye boogers). He doesn’t sneeze or cough, plays often, eats great and doesn’t seem distressed. The only thing is that he does sometimes squint his eyes. Since they get so crusty, I use a cotton pad with warm water or saline to get off the crust. Then, I will use his coconut oil to moisturize his face and get off the remaining crust (avoiding his eyes) since his face gets dry. I will of course take him back to the vet, but I fear they will just keep putting him on antibiotic drops. Does anyone else have this issue with their sphynx?? I’ve attached a photo of him this morning.
It could be a virus, possibly herpesvirus. Antibiotics won't do a thing for viruses so your kitten must have had a bacterial infection to get antibiotics prescribed. I would wait to make sure that's cleared up first. Then, if he's still squinting, try adding 500 mg of lysine to his food each day for a few days and see if it helps. The thing with viruses is you can't get rid of it; it will go away and then flare up again later.
 

arc23

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Did your vet do a PCR test?


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No, he didn’t. I will ask him! Today, his eyes have cleared up completely? It’s so strange how it waxed and wanes. He has sensitive skin too, which makes me believe he may have allergies? Not too sure
 

Condo commando

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No, he didn’t. I will ask him! Today, his eyes have cleared up completely? It’s so strange how it waxed and wanes. He has sensitive skin too, which makes me believe he may have allergies? Not too sure
Yeah for skin I would suspect allergies first.

I think my little man Henry has a really weak immune system that makes him highly susceptible to allergies. He tested positive for calicivirus as a kitten which probably means he was exposed to the virus before he got his kitten vaccines. He also has a heart murmur. It's not exactly the things you see from a responsible breeder. I might be wrong but I don't think allergies just happen at random. Anyway I clean house more because of him. I just threw out a not very old A/C filter to see if it helped and I think he's been sneezing less. In a way it forces me to keep a cleaner house so it's good in a way lolol.
 

arc23

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Yeah for skin I would suspect allergies first.

I think my little man Henry has a really weak immune system that makes him highly susceptible to allergies. He tested positive for calicivirus as a kitten which probably means he was exposed to the virus before he got his kitten vaccines. He also has a heart murmur. It's not exactly the things you see from a responsible breeder. I might be wrong but I don't think allergies just happen at random. Anyway I clean house more because of him. I just threw out a not very old A/C filter to see if it helped and I think he's been sneezing less. In a way it forces me to keep a cleaner house so it's good in a way lolol.

Aww! Sorry to hear that. My little guy had no issues until a little over a month after I brought him home. So I'm not sure what happened or changed a month ago to make his eyes this way. I'm suspecting it's viral because the antibiotics only seemed to clear up his eyes for a week. The drainage does not look like an infection to me, but I could be wrong. It's strange that he doesn't have any other issues than just his eyes being watery and some skin sensitivities. What a delicate breed they are!
 
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