How To Treat Pillow Foot In Cats
Do you see your cat with a swollen paw? Is your cat limping? Swollen foot pads and mobility issues may be due to feline plasma cell pododermatitis. Conventional veterinary care for pillow paw often relies on steroids and antibiotics, providing temporary relief. This autoimmune condition can respond very well to home remedies for pillow foot in cats. Combining holistic pet care (diet changes and immune support supplements) with your vet's pillow paw in cats treatment can give your cat the best chance to get better. At Ask Ariel, we have helped thousands of pets with autoimmune diseases to manage their conditions and lessen the severity and frequency of flare-ups.
"I just had to write and tell you what your Power Probiotic did for my cat, Frederick. Frederick came into our lives as a stray. Frederick developed an autoimmune issue which was eventually diagnosed as “pillow paw” by the vet. His front paws would swell and bleed and looked so painful. Frederick went out on what I thought was just a curious stroll and did not return home...in 2014! Now comes the wonderful ending to this story, just last November 2017 Frederick returned home! I could not believe my eyes and honestly wasn’t sure it was him when I saw him sitting on the porch as I arrived home. He came up to me so happily and I noticed that his paws were bleeding and I knew immediately it was Frederick... After a trip to the vet for a checkup, he was prescribed a round of antibiotics, ear mite medication and a wormer. I read about the Power Probiotic and that someone else had posted about their cat's pillow paw. I ordered a bottle and Frederick’s paws finally healed after so many years of him suffering with pillow paw. I am most certain that the Power Probiotic is what cleared up the pillow paw and continues to help him out with his digestion and immune system today as I still put some in his food daily. His little paws are perfectly healthy and pain-free, and this makes me so happy! I just wanted to let you know that you are a blessing and I am so thankful." - Dawn, North Carolina
What Is Feline Plasma Cell Pododermatitis?
“Pillow Foot” or “Pillow Paw” (Feline Plasma Cell Pododermatitis) is an autoimmune condition that can cause cats to develop painful, swollen cracked paw pads on one or more of their paws. The exact cause is unknown, but like other autoimmune conditions, it is the body’s response to an antibody or infection that causes an inflammatory response. Autoimmune conditions can affect different parts of the body when they flare up.
Pillow Paw in cats is a foot pad disease. Excess plasma is produced and the padding of the paw becomes soft, swollen and inflamed. Cats of any age, gender or breed can develop pillow foot. It is a progressive condition and early treatment can help to prevent the pain and secondary infections that are common with the advanced stages.
Stages of Pillow Foot in Cats:
- Stage 1: The paw pad may be slightly puffy and tender.
- Stage 2: Pads will eventually become purple and appear bruised.
- Stage 3: The pads become increasingly mushy and your cat will begin to “favor” the affected paws. Often, more than one paw is inflamed and causes cat limping.
- Stage 4: Sores will develop and in severe cases may split open.
Many cats with pillow foot will have multiple autoimmune conditions, such as IBD and stomatitis. These are all inflammatory conditions that can weaken the body’s natural immune response. Allergies are also common in cats with pillow paw. Some researchers believe there may also be a link between pillow foot and Feline Immunodeficiency Virus (FIV). Supportive care through immune modulating supplements can help to balance the immune system and prevent flare-ups and inflammation.
"Our Toby is a six year old cat who started bleeding from his paws and was diagnosed with Pillow Paw. We were nervous to start the Power Probiotic as it is a little pricey with a no refund policy but we owed it to Toby to at least give it a try. We started with many speculations since Toby is such a sensitive, one of a kind cat. We read the reviews & thought they were too good to be true. Within 4 weeks, Toby’s paws had completely healed & the swelling was gone and it has stayed that way. There were also quite a few unexpected benefits. Toby has always bathed nervously to the point where he had furless patches & he has always been a small cat who weighs next to nothing. After starting him on the Power Probiotic, he has grown all his hair back, bathes more like a normal cat, instead of nervously & has even gained a few pounds. He has also been an avid puker, we’re talking daily, and that has stopped almost completely as well. If you’re like us and think this product is too good to be true, please give it a try I promise it’s worth it. We would rate this 10 stars if we could. Thank you Ask Ariel for giving our sweet Toby a better life." - Noah, Ohio
What Does A Cat Paw Pad Infection Look Like?
Your vet may be able to diagnosis feline plasma cell pododermatitis by the initial physical exam and the classic physical symptoms. An affected paw pad will feel mushy and balloon out from swelling. The cat’s paw pad surface may become purplish or have white striations and it can crack or ulcerate. Pillow foot in cats can affect one or all four paws. Typically, a cat will appear to be lame on the affected paws.
To confirm pillow paw, your veterinarian may need to run blood tests. Cats with pillow foot may have elevated lymphocyte levels. Stress or allergens can trigger the immune system to overproduce lymphocytes and they pool up in the paw pad tissue causing a swollen cat paw. The cat’s body responds by producing antibodies which attack the healthy cells. This results in additional pain and swelling.
How To Manage Autoimmune Conditions In Cats
Using holistic care for autoimmune conditions can greatly reduce the need to give your cat medications and better regulate their immune system. When cats have an autoimmune condition, the cat's immune system is so overloaded that their body forms antibodies to its own tissues and attacks itself. Autoimmune disease can be very challenging for veterinarians to treat. Conventional veterinary plasma cell pododermatitis cat treatment typically includes antibiotics to clear infection and steroids to calm the inflammation. These may provide temporary relief but over time with continued steroid use, will lose their effectiveness. Since the onset of the attacks are often associated with triggers such as stress, exposure to vaccines, environmental chemicals, or food allergens, it’s important to provide your cat with immune system support. To learn more about how to help your pet with an autoimmune disease, click here.
"This is Eddie showing off his lovely paw. He has been taking Power Probiotic and Immune Harmony since he had a terrible reaction to vaccinations which apparently made his immune system go haywire. He initially had a high prolonged fever and was on pain medication, fever reducer, and antibiotics. I started giving him Quent Drops & NOT Drops and within a week the fever was gone. Then he developed pillow paw and winky eye and could barely walk so we started the Power Probiotic and Immune Harmony and again within the week his eyes were clear and paws back to normal. He’s a very special boy. He was found as a kitten injured and on the center stripe of a lonely two lane blacktop. He’s been with me now for close to 10 years and thankfully back to his healthy and charming self. Thanks so much!" - Melinda, Texas
Home Remedies For Pillow Foot In Cats
You can give your kitty fast relief with Ask Ariel’s all-natural pillow foot in cats treatment protocol. Each of these home remedies for pillow foot in cats works in different ways.
Immune Support Kit - The Immune Support Kit Is An Effective, Easy To Use Home Remedy For Pillow Foot in Cats. Contains three tasteless, natural remedies that are easy to administer. They provide relief by modulating your cat’s natural immune response (rather than overstimulating it) which reduces inflammation. These tasteless drops can be mixed into a little bit of soupy food making them easy to administer. These items work synergistically to calm the inflammatory response and support your kitty's immune system. The Immune Support Kit is one of our most popular pillow paw home remedies. Save money by purchasing the three products together at our reduced Kit price. The items in the Immune Support Kit can also be purchased individually. Please click on the links below for more detailed information about each product.
NOT Drops - Natural homeopathic remedy that fights infection and supports your pet's immune system. Controls harmful bacteria and restores gut flora balance, improving symptoms and immune function. Helps to relieve symptoms such as redness from inflammation and helps prevent infections from recurring. These drops act like “natural antibiotics” and are easy to administer. They are very important for the treatment of autoimmune disease as they gently reduce infection and inflammation. Gentle, easy to administer and safe for long-term use.
QUENT Drops - Natural homeopathic remedy that fights viruses and infection. Autoimmune disorders in cats especially often involve underlying viruses so using the NOT Drops and QUENT Drops together is very effective in treating autoimmune disease in pets.
Silver Support - Silver Support is an all-natural, easy to use anti-microbial supplement to help your pet recover from a bacterial infection or viral flare-up. It is a broad-spectrum germ-killer that is well tolerated even by tiny pets.
Power Probiotic - The best probiotic for pets! Backed by scientific research, this powerful multi-strain formula promotes the growth of healthy bacteria in the digestive tract - critical for your kitty's immune system. If your cat has been on antibiotics or steroids, the friendly bacteria are killed, further weakening your cat's ability to handle the pillow foot infection. That is why at first when steroids and antibiotics are given, your cat's paws get better but eventually the infection returns. Probiotics are essential for your pet's good health because they support digestion, help fight infection and enhance overall immunity. Autoimmune conditions occur due to an overactive immune system, so using supplements to modulate and support the immune system are helpful. Power Probiotic is safe and natural. Most cats love the taste. It can be sprinkled in food or some cats like to eat it by itself. Made in the USA.
Immune Harmony - Veterinary recommended plant sterol supplement. The plant sterols and the potent antioxidants found in Immune Harmony can help keep your pet's immune system in balance and improve the inflammatory response associated with pillow paw. This wonderful product helps to modulate immune function. You will see improved results over time as Immune Harmony slowly builds in your cat's system and helps it feel better overall. Immune Harmony does not treat symptoms immediately but instead works over time. Helpful for cats with pillow foot. Very well tolerated by cats. Use with other supplements that help to readily relieve autoimmune symptoms, while this remedy helps to support the long-term health of your pet's immune system. One bottle lasts most cats for several months. NON-GMO, No Gluten, No Fillers. Made In A Canadian GMP Compliant Facility.
Happy Paws Hemp Extract - Organic anti-inflammatory drops for cat limping, pillow paw and feline plasma cell pododermatitis. Can help to decrease the swelling in the paw pads and reduce pain. Anecdotal reports highlight reduced pain, inflammation and discomfort. The World Health Organization (WHO) has found no adverse health effects from the use of hemp extract. Professional veterinary strength. Each 1oz bottle contains 550mg of full spectrum hemp extract in an unflavored all-natural coconut oil base. 100% organic. Made in the USA.
"Marzipan was two years old when she came to us. She started showing signs of illness right away. One paw at a time would develop painful-looking swelling and blistering that would crack open and become infected. Our vet eventually diagnosed Marzipan with Pillow Paw, but encouraged us that in most cats, it only shows up a few times a year and we could treat with occasional steroids. Marz is not most cats, and her sweet little paws did respond to steroid treatment initially, but eventually she needed treatment almost once a month. At this point our vet recommended a specialist. Having recently lost two pets to long-term illness, we knew how expensive a specialist would be and that we would probably be taking her to appointments the rest of her life. My husband came across Ask Ariel and the Power Probiotic in a Google search, read the reviews, and decided to order a bottle before we resorted to calling the specialist. We were honestly not super optimistic, knowing how severe her case has been - but it was worth a try! Within a few weeks, Marzipan’s paws were clear...and then we started counting the months that we didn’t have to call the vet. It has now been almost 8 months since she’s had a flare up (unthinkable!!), and we are SO incredibly grateful for an affordable solution that keeps our Marz feeling great!!" - Hailey, Michigan 2024
"Our feral feline, Romeo, has been living in our basement since right before COVID hit. We have been unable to get him to the vet's office because of COVID, and most recently because they are only seeing patients in the parking lot! We are afraid we will lose him forever because he is so scared. That's when I found Ask Ariel! Several months ago, we noticed he developed a slight limp in his left paw. As the weeks went on, it was clear that he was getting worse and was suffering from Pillow Foot. I knew we needed to get him treatment but how? I started researching Pillow Foot and came across Ask Ariel's website. Their excellent advice regarding the "true" cause of Pillow Foot led me to try their protocol. WOW!!! After just one week, we were able to notice a marked improvement in his mobility. Now after three months, his little paw looks almost back to normal with NO limp. He also seems much happier and more content now. I can't thank Ask Ariel enough for providing safe, effective remedies to address the "root cause" of these diseases rather than just putting a bandaid on it!" - Dawn, Pennsylvania
Diet For Cats With Pillow Foot
Autoimmune diseases can be managed holistically by feeding your pet a low carbohydrate, anti-inflammatory diet and using supplements that help modulate the immune system. Diet can play an important role in supporting your cat’s immune system. Even "healthy” or “organic" premium brands can be problematic if they contain ingredients that can cause inflammation, thereby flaring up the autoimmune disease. Food allergies and intolerances are the single biggest trigger for autoimmune conditions.
A cat doesn't have to be sneezing or vomiting to have a food intolerance. The food may be causing inflammation and in the early stages, you may not make any connection that the flare-ups are connected to the food. Dry kibble can be a problem because the foods are very high in carbohydrates, which turn to sugar. Cats are carnivores and feeding them a hypoallergenic novel protein diet will go a long way in helping to control pillow foot.
Ask Ariel is dedicated to helping pets with autoimmune conditions. Please be sure to include your cat’s diet on the order form at checkout. Our nutritionist will include diet tips for pillow foot in cats on the packing slip that comes with your product directions.
"Just am so happy to tell you how well Boo is doing after 3 days of treatment (Immune Support Kit). She is more energetic, comfortable, walking easily and most important her front left Pillow Paw is already healing. Amazing." - Sue, Pennsylvania