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Readers Respond: What worked to clear up your cat's case of chin acne?

Responses: 35


Feline acne is a superficial dermatitis (skin infection) of cat's chins. Clinical signs range from comedomes (blackheads) to large draining pustules (pimples). Cats may be very painful, itchy, or as often seen with blackhead-only cases, not very bothered by chin acne.

Please see your vet if you suspect your cat has chin acne for diagnosis. Sometimes changing food and water dishes and washing the dishes daily is all that is needed. Other times, cleansing the chin in conjunction with veterinarian-prescribed medications are essential to clear up the condition. What worked to clear up your cat's chin acne? Share your cat acne tips

cat acne

Use a terry washcloth wet with water and ivory liquid. Wash and rub gently till the acne goes away.
—Guest Kathy

worked for me

I cleaned it with peroxide daily. It developed a big whitehead and I popped it and cleaned it. It was gone by morning.
—Guest Dixie Blue

Ceramic Bowls

My cat developed chin acne after I started using metal bowls...after I switched back to ceramic it disappeared. I also started washing her food bowl more frequently - I at least rinse it out to remove dried-on food every other day.
—Guest SonnysFirstClue

Why didn't I think of this?

My cat had started getting acne on her chin about 2 weeks ago. The vet said the best thing for cat acne is to serve their food on CLEAN, ceramic or stainless steel dishes. (I bought new flat dishes for my kitty). And to gently wipe the affected area with OXY pads for sensitive skin. Not only is it clearing up slowly, but she doesn't play with her food anymore since it's on a flat dish! Best of luck :)
—Guest Stefanie

acne on cats

One of our three cats had mild acne which got worse but not to the stage of ruptures. I had some ear wipes I had used with a different cat. I got them at a pet supply store. They are small moist wipes. They have witch hazel in them. He doesn't object to me gently cleaning his chin with a couple of these wipes. I all threw out all plastic bowls. The acne is clearing up. If I don't get complete results I am going to try apple cider vinegar or hydrogen peroxide.
—Guest Mary


My newly adopted adult cat had acne as well as lots of dirt in her ears. The vet examined her and also found small blisters inside her mouth. He said it was allergies from dry cat food that has corn as a main ingredient. We immediately switched to Hills Science Diet or Purina One Beyond, and after the change in diet, the acne and dirty ears have cleared up almost completely. It has taken about 3 months, but I'll never feed her the cheap foods again.
—Guest cat lover

Cat acne

We tried everything, changing bowls, steroids, antibiotics, for months. The vet told us to keep the cat inside, that it could be an allergy, or a sensitivity to lawn fertilizers. We had used 'weed and feed', for the first time around the same time as the acne started. Kept her inside, and it was gone in 2 weeks!
—Guest Cindy

Cat has multiple issues

Has anyone had problems with severe comedones in the upper lip area? My cat has it all around her mouth, chin and now her upper lip is awful. It looks like she has a black moustache. The cats do drink out of a plastic fountain but I am buying a stainless steel one next month. She was diagnosed with diabetes in the last month or two and that is when the acne got much worse. Is there a connection? I have tried mupirocin, and her mouth area got bloody and raw. Stridex didn't seem to help. I think I'll try the hydrogen peroxide. She's just so pathetic looking, her eyes are always inflamed from an unknown allergen (we use neomycin got that). Now with her acne it hurts to look at her :(
—Guest Tanner

My cat's chin acne remedy

Both my cats get chin acne from cheap wet food, never from decent kibble. I use wet food very sparingly, as treat. They don't get it from people food. I never use plastic dishes.
—Guest sofiaemilia

of all things!!

All 3 of my cats had feline acne. My eldest cat had it the worst with big swollen, blood filled lumps. I tried everything and everything. Unscented sensitive baby wipes twice a day helped but.. the answer to my long battle with acne.. dishwasher detergent! I washed all my pet bowls in the dishwasher thinking the hot wash would do it good. I started rinsing all bowls in hot water after they were washed and their acne cleared up within DAYS! !
—Guest Zoe

We cured it in our cats!

We have three cats who all developed chin acne at the same seemingly out of the blue. We took the one cat who had the worst case to our vet and he gave that cat an antibiotic and he gave us advice on how to treat all three cats at home. Within two weeks the acne disappeared and has not returned, on any of our three cats. We did as we were told--we immediately replaced plastic water and food dishes with stainless steel (and now we use a stainless steel water fountain) and, very important, we gently cleaned each chin with isopropyl alcohol wipes twice a week. Voila--no more chin acne. And that was months ago.
—Guest Caliali

Apple Cider Vinegar

My cat suddenly got chin acne and I tried hydrogen peroxide, benzyl peroxide (2.5%), special feline soaps and nothing seemed to be helping. I believe he started getting it after I switched him to a half wet food diet (I dont use anything plastic). In anycase, I went out and bought apple cider vinegar as it has received rave reviews. I wash his chin and face twice a day with warm water and a bit of dawn dish soap, then using cotton balls to apply a mixture of 1/3rd ACV and 2/3 water and then wiping his face with a dry paper towel after, his chin acne is finalllly clearing up and he isnt as itchy anymore. Thank goodness.
—Guest Steph

Apple cider vinegar

I use apple cider vinegar on any acne or skin rashes of my cats. Soak a cotton ball of acv and hold it gently against the area, if its on the face dillute the acv otherwise its too strong and your cat may through up, test first very dilluted and gradually add more. All my cats skin problems go away even after a few days...
—Guest Mia

Severe Feline Acne Infection

My kitty developed severe feline acne after we brought a new dog into our home. It had comedomes and draining pustules. Another of our cats also developed the condition though not as severely. The ONLY thing that did work, after countless attempts with steroids, antibiotic pills and creams, was witch hazel soaked wipes with organic raw unfiltered apple cider vinegar applied twice daily. It still did take about 8 weeks for the condition to clear up entirely, but it did resolve. I am a vet tech and was quite surprised that I could not get it cleared up with western medicine options.
—Guest Patty E

Clear it up easily

I found that the disposable plastic bowls I was using caused acne in one of my cats. I have several cats and appreciate disposable bowls. I bought Chinette Natural Fiber bowls (disposable) and within about 6 days, the acne totally cleared.

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