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Lesions can eventually become ulcerated and

crusty. Extensive lesions often require surgery

- other forms of therapy like radiation and

photodynamic therapy (using light sensitive

medication) may be more appropriate for

early disease. Squamous cell carcinoma does

not tend to spread to other parts of the body

but it can return locally, causing destruction

of the local tissues. In some cases lesions can

take years to progress.

We all know cats are sun seekers, so it

may not be possible to stop white cats

from sunbathing - but to try to prevent

lesions from developing, pet friendly sun

cream can be applied to the nose and

ears of white cats, particularly during

the summer months. Owners of white

cats should also seek early veterinary

attention if they notice any changes to

the skin on the nose, ear tips or eye lids.

Slap on the sun cream!

Spotlight on

Squamous

cell carcinoma

in cats

Squamous cell carcinoma is the most common form of skin cancer seen in cats (representing up to 50%

of skin tumours). The occurrence of this form of skin cancer increases with ultraviolet light exposure (for

example higher altitude increases risk). Cats with white coats also have

13 times the risk

of developing

squamous cell carcinoma than any other coat colour and older cats tend to be affected.

Squamous cell carcinoma on the ear tip of a white cat

Squamous cell carcinoma on the nose

Willows recently hosted a feline themed continuing professional

development (CPD) day for veterinary surgeons and

nurses.We

were

very honoured to have Dr Andy Sparkes and Claire Bessant,Veterinary

Director and Chief Executive of International Cat Care discussing the

aims of International Cat Care and raising awareness in how veterinary

practices can ensure that our feline friends and their owners enjoy their

visit to the vets. Several members of theWillows Specialist team also

presented lectures on the day. The subjects covered were clinically varied

and were thoroughly enjoyed by all who came.

International Cat Care (iCatCare) is a charity that is passionate about

improving the provision of care given to cats. The charity has been

established for 50 years and has helped many veterinary practices

(including ourselves), catteries, rescue centres and individual cat owners

improve the way they care for cats.

As a result of our commitment to excellence and the five star facilities

and care we provide to both cats and their owners,Willows has been

officially accredited as an iCatCare Cat Friendly Clinic at the gold level.

Cats are unique in many ways and as a veterinary practice, it is important

to be able to care for our feline patients and reduce stress to the cat

and owner. At Willows we understand that cats are not just small dogs,

they can have a range of diseases that are different to dogs (this was

represented with the subjects covered during the day of lectures). They

also have behaviours and temperaments unlike dogs and need to be

handled in a different way.Willows staff are trained to recognise and

understand such needs, allowing them to provide the best possible care

from the time they arrive at the practice until the time they leave.

Here at Willows, we have cat advocates who are happy to discuss

our cat friendly facilities and help to ensure that whether the visit

is for an annual booster, a short or long stay in hospital we can fully

accommodate individual needs. Our reception team are also trained to

give advice on how to reduce stress to your cat whilst travelling and are

happy to answer any questions regarding this.

We are very pleased to say that a donation of £1,000 from the

proceedings of the day

have been donated

to the iCatCare’s

charitable foundation.

P U R R - F E C T C P D F O R U M

To find out more about our cat friendly facilities here at Willows follow this link:

www.willows.uk.net/cat-friendly-clinic

For further information on the work of iCatCare and cat friendly clinics follow this link:

www.icatcare.org/about-us

DrAndy Sparkes (Veterinary

Director at iCatCare), Stephanie

Lalor (European Specialist in Small

Animal Medicine atWillows and

CatAdvocate) and Claire Bessant

(Chief Executive at iCatCare) in

Willows cat waiting area.