Skip to Content

Why Your Cat Is Licking Its Nose Raw!

The popularity of keeping pet cats is continuing to increase with each year that goes by and although cats are still no where near as popular as dogs, they are comfortably the second most commonly kept pet in the western world by far.

Due to so many people having a pet cat, we often see people reaching out with various questions about the behaviors of their pet cat with a cat licking its nose raw being a very common question that we see people asking about.

There are a number of reasons that your cat may constantly lick its nose until it is raw ranging from the cat’s nose being sunburnt and licking being a way to ease the pain to your cat being stressed as the licking being a coping mechanism.

Although rare, there are also a number of different parasites and bacterial infections that are able to take hold and encourage a cat to lick its nose raw.

In some situations, your pet cat may stop licking its nose and the condition may get better by itself but in other situations, you may have to get a vet to check your cat over.

You can usually book a cheap video call with a vet to have them assess your pet cat via the camera on your smartphone and offer you the same professional advice you would get from your local vet’s office for a cheaper price tag to help offer you peace of mind.

Can Cats Lick Their Nose Raw?

Cats can and will lick their nose raw with this being a more common behavior than many cat owners initially realize.

Due to a raw nose of a cat causing a constant sensation that can range from a slight tingle all the way up to outright pain, once the cat’s nose is raw, it can often encourage the cat to continue to lick it and keep making the situation worse.

If you do notice areas of your pet cat’s nose that have scabbed up or have lost the top layer of skin then this is becoming a serious problem for your cat.

In addition to the wound being painful, it also poses a very real risk of infection too so in these more advanced situations, it is almost always better to book a video call with a veterinarian to get professional advice.

The most common appearance of a raw nose on a cat due to excessive licking is just a pink or red inflamed nose but keep in mind, depending on the color of your cat’s nose, it may be difficult to gauge the exact extent of the problem.

Unfortunately, it can be difficult to get a cat to stop licking its nose at these early stages meaning that it can be common for the situation to progress and develop to scabs and raw skin in the coming weeks.

Why Is My Cat Licking His Nose So Much?

The most common causes of a cat licking its nose excessively is due to the cat’s nose being sunburnt, the cat’s nose having a bacterial or parasitic infection on it or due to the cat being stressed and the nose licking being a coping mechanism.

Some cats will also constantly lick their nose if it is injured due to being scratched by another cat during a fight or if they scrape it while out and about.

Some cats can develop the habit to obsessively lick their nose too and this is generally due to issues as a kitten or trauma as a cat and is similar to a cat that licks its nose excessively due to stress or anxiety.

If this is why your cat is licking its nose constantly then it can be very difficult to break the habit in a cat and the common methods to stop your cat from licking its nose will probably not work due to the compulsion of the habit often being too strong, especially in older cats who have licked their nose like this for a couple of months or longer.

In rare situations, a dehydrated cat may lick its nose in an attempt to moisten it but this really is rare, especially with domesticated cats that are kept as pets.

The majority of people will usually find that they are able to just provide their cat with clean drinking water if they do suspect that this is the problem.

As we covered in this article, you really should be changing your cat’s drinking water at least twice per day, this can be why some people who have cat’s with water in their bowl will refuse to drink it and become dehydrated and then start excessively licking their nose raw.

What Can You Do For A Cat With A Raw Nose?

If your cat is excessively licking its nose because of it being stressed, anxious or due to previous mental trauma then plenty of love, care, and time may be able to discourage the behavior.

If your cat is licking its nose due to an infection be it parasitic or bacterial then you can usually apply a topical treatment to treat the issue.

Sunburn can be a problem to treat as there really aren’t many suitable, effective aftersun treatments on the market for pets that actually work.

You may see people on social media saying that they have been using after sun treatments designed for humans on their pet cats but this really isn’t recommended.

Cats have a far more sensitive sense of smell than humans and some of the popular after sun products can cause issues with their respiratory system.

If your cat is licking its nose due to a cut or scrape on its nose then this will often heal within a week or two at maximum without you having to take any action.

A cat licking its nose if it has a deep scratch or scrapes on it is considered a normal behavior and although the cat may lick its nose raw initially, it is usually not a long-term behavior and should not last long enough for a solid habit to develop.


That brings our article going over your pet cat licking its nose raw to an end. We hope that we have been able to help you understand the more common reasons that your pet cat may lick its nose raw as well as how to stop the licking. If the nose of your cat does develop to the stage of having open wounds or scabs on it then we would highly recommend that you see advice from a professional veterinarian though as the risks of infection drastically start to increase.