February 2013 Issue

Supracaudal Gland Hyperplasia

But you can call it stud tail, a condition that develops when grooming stops.

In teenagers, the sebaceous glands contribute to the development of acne. In cats, these glands can cause a similar problem at the base of the tail, an accumulation of scale (flakes) and yellow-to-black waxy debris (blackheads) along the dorsal, or top, surface of the tail. Although it can affect any cat who doesn’t groom the tail, the condition was once thought to affect only intact male cats, hence the name stud tail, says dermatologist William H. Miller, Jr., VMD, Medical Director of the Cornell University Hospital for Animals. Medically, the condition is known as supracaudal gland hyperplasia or tail gland hyperplasia. It’s caused by hypersecretion of the glands in the supracaudal organ on the base of the tail.

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