Tail Hair Loss in Cats

Updated July 19, 2017

If you have a cat, you probably love to pet his soft, glossy fur. If, however, the fur is thinning or falling out, this could be a sign your feline buddy is in distress. Here are some reasons you may see hair loss in your cat's tail region.


Endocrine alopecia, a condition where there is a deficiency or surplus in the hair growth hormones that disrupts the hair growth cycle, is most commonly seen on the body and tail but rarely affects the head, legs, and face. If you notice this type of pattern to your cat's hair loss, see your veterinarian.


Psychogenic alopecia is a condition in which your cat will over-groom himself due to stress, anxiety, fear, or nervousness. This can be brought on by changes in your cat's environment like newcomers to the household or even a change in food. Try to discover any causes of anxiety in your cat's life and work to fix them.You may also need to see your veterinarian to discuss anti-anxiety medications.


Injury to the tail could be causing your cat to over-lick the wound, thereby causing hair loss in the area. Check to see if there are any noticeable injuries on your cat's tail on or near the area of hair loss.


Cats may pull out the fur at the base of their tail as a reaction to flea bites. If your cat goes outdoors or lives with a dog, he is at greater risk for attracting fleas. Check your cat's fur thoroughly for fleas or flea bites on the skin.


Irritant contact dermatitis can develop when your cat comes into contact with chemicals, paint, or other irritants. The hair loss may be localised at the site of contact or may spread beyond it in the case of allergic contact dermatitis. Search your cat's environment for any potential causes. Cats that go outside may be at greater risk for coming into contact with irritants.

Stud Tail

Stud tail is a condition that results in the build-up of oils from a cat's sebaceous glands near the base of the tail. A waxy or greasy appearance, occasionally accompanied by a rancid smell and sometimes with hair loss or hair thinning, are symptoms of this condition. It is most common in unneutered males but can also be seen in neutered males and females. See your veterinarian if you suspect this condition.

Cite this Article A tool to create a citation to reference this article Cite this Article

About the Author

Alana Grelyak is a writer and musician living in Chicago, Illinois. Grelyak earned a Master's Degree in music from the University of Wisconsin, and has written on the topics of entertainment, restaurants, music, telecommunications, and more. Her work has appeared in numerous places, including Punchline, Lumino Magazine, Time Out Chicago, Midwest Beat, Pipeline, and others.