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Pododermatitis Super Support Kit

Felimm, Yucca, Stimmune & Heal Care Ointment

USD $160.80
Pododermatitis Super Support Kit USD $160.80 Add to Cart

Vet Talks: Treating Pillow Foot or Plasma Cell Pododermatitis in Cats

Vet Talks 3 min read
Vet Talks: Treating Pillow Foot or Plasma Cell Pododermatitis in Cats

What is Pillow foot?

Pillow Foot in Cats (Plasma Cell Pododermatitis in Cats) is a rare disease of the footpads of cats. Due to the accumulation of a specific type of white blood cells called plasma cells, the footpad becomes inflamed. Plasma cells play a major role in the immune system.

Causes of Pillow Foot in cats

The cause is unknown but is thought to be immune-mediated; that is, the immune system causes or aggravates inflammation. Some studies have found a link between pillow foot and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV) infection so it is important to screen an affected cat for this virus.

Symptoms of Pillow Foot

In the early stages of pododermatitis, soft, non-uncomfortable swelling of the footpads develops.

In the early stages of pododermatitis, soft, non-uncomfortable swelling of the footpads develops. More than one pad on more than one foot is typically involved. Pads may look purple and appear streaky, with white scaly material on the surface. Later, the pads can become bloody and uncomfortable. Sometimes kidney disease and inflammation of the tissues in the mouth can also occur.

pillow foot in cats

Diagnosis of Pillow Foot in Cats

The main diagnostic marker is simply the appearance of the footpads. Removing cells with a small needle and examining them under the microscope (fine needle aspirate) may reveal numerous plasma cells. Blood tests may be recommended to look for infection, kidney problems, or evidence of immune response, but the results are variable. A biopsy of an affected foot pad usually confirms the diagnosis.

Treatment for Pillow Foot

Treatment may be not needed if the inflammation is mild and the cat feels okay. In some cats, the condition spontaneously disappears. However, in other cats, medications are needed to balance the immune system. In this case, steroids or immune-suppressive medications may be prescribed. Sometimes, surgery is an option to remove lesions that affect only one food pad, but this is uncommon. Many pets require some medication for life and need periodic blood tests to monitor for adverse effects of the medications.

pillow foot in cats

Prognosis for cats with Pillow Foot

Prognosis can be good if the signs spontaneously resolve. Prognosis may only be fair, however, if long-term immune-suppressive drugs are needed or if the kidney and mouth are involved.

pillow foot in cats herbie

Supplements for cats with Pillow Foot

There are many supplements that NHV has to support a cat with pillow foot or pododermatitis. The two most useful ones according to me are:

Felimm: as some studies have shown, pillow foot may have a relationship with FIV, the herbs present in this formulation can be helpful to balance the immune system, help fight against FIV and pillow foot. NHV Felimm is great to help support the lymphatic system.

Yucca: Yucca contains steroidal saponins that are well researched and reported and stimulate the body to produce its own natural corticosteroids. This can help to modulate the immune system and ease inflammation. NHV Yucca is formulated and dosed specifically to be safe for long-term use in pets.

However, based on the cat’s specific symptoms the NHV Pet Experts would recommend a holistic regimen. For little Herbie Johnson, NHV Stimmune proved to be really helpful. If the cat’s paws are cracking due to the inflammation then NHV Heal Care ointment will be useful for promoting healing, topically.

pillow foot supplements

You can book a consult with Dr. Amanda here or get a customized diet plan , specially formulated for your pet.

Dr. Amanda Nascimento DVM, MVSc, PhD

Dr. Amanda Nascimento DVM, MVSc, PhD

Dr. Amanda completed her undergraduate degree in veterinary medicine in 2010 and graduate studies in veterinary pathology (MVSc. 2012 and PhD 2016) at the School of Veterinary Medicine, University of São Paulo. She completed her post-doctoral training at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine – University of Saskatchewan in 2018. Dr. Nascimento will be hosting her own blog series and sharing her knowledge with our extended NHV family.

Published: September 20, 2019

5 replies

  1. Susan Barkle says:

    Hi, As a cat lover & had a lot of cats in my life & still have quite a few at home, I was very interested to read about Paw pillow & found it very beneficial for me to understand this. It was very easy to understand & learn. Thankyou very much as I haven’t come across this , but will be well prepared. Yours truly Susan Barkle

    1. Team NHV says:

      Hi Susan,

      Thank you so much for reaching out to us!

      As fellow cat lovers, we love knowing that you found our blog on pillow foot beneficial! It’s important as pet parents to be able to look out for symptoms and signs that our furkids may need some help. Please know that we’re always here if you have any questions or just want to chat, and we have lots and lots of informational blogs that we’d be more than happy to share with you as well!

      Sending you lots of love and positivity!

      Yours in wellness,
      Team NHV

  2. Steve says:

    I tamed a black stray kitty that had soft paw, although at the time I didn’t know anything about that. I just knew he was bleeding all over my porch and didn’t leave the shade of my truck although the temp was 95. I knew that was not normal. Put together that he was out of the same litter with my stray mother and his sister and brother. They are all normal, but he had the paw problem diagnosed, when we took him to have him fixed. I kept him inside a cat kennel I built inside my garage when I observed he couldn’t get along with his brother and sister. Too much street fighting in his past. But he made a decision to stay close because he had food and water and loved his attention. Unfortunately. He developed a stomach problem as well throwing up two to three times a week. So his I paws swelled until they burst open and were raw. Thought he might develop a infection with the kitty litter box, but never did. A very loving kitty. I didn’t realize his paws and stomach problem were connected to some sort of autoimmune disease. I always thought he’d consumed antifreeze which damaged his liver. The kitty was perfectly happy and contented but couldn’t overcome his problems. Turned out the soft paw was the least of his problems. My vet recommended we put him down. I still feel guilty, I loved midnight, and know I gave him the best life he’d had . It was a tough decision. But he couldn’t get better only worse. He isn’t suffering any more.

    1. Team NHV says:

      Hi Steve,

      Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful story with us on our blog, about Midnight. It sounds like your boy had been through a lot and you were always there for him. Thank you so much for giving him all your love and support.

      We are absolutely positive that Midnight loved and appreciated you wholeheartedly. Please continue to cherish all the beautiful memories you’ve made together.

      Please know that our whole team is here for you if you ever need us. We’re always happy to help.

      Sending you lots of love.

  3. Team NHV says:

    Hi Amanda,

    Thank you so much for reaching out to us.

    We’re so sorry to hear that your precious boy is going through this. We can’t imagine how stressful and uncomfortable this must be. Please know that our team is always here for you.

    Our supplements are 100% all-natural, powerful, and gentle, so none of our formulas will harm your little one. Our recommendation for pillow foot in cats would be our Pododermatitis Super Support Kit, which contains our Felimm, Yucca, Stimmune & Heal Care Ointment. When used together, they can help to promote healing of the paws, soothes discomfort, and reduce inflammation.

    In addition, we think including Milk Thistle in your kitties regimen may help as well since he’s been taking traditional medications that can be tough on the body, especially the liver and kidneys. Milk Thistle can help to promote liver and kidney health, and can encourage liver regeneration.

    For more on Milk Thistle, click here:

    We hope this information helps, sending all our love and well wishes your way.

    Yours in wellness,
    Team NHV

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