If you notice that your sweet kitty has an adorable little sprinkling of "freckles" on her nose, she is not alone. Many felines, especially orange tabbies, are prone to the development of these wee little black spots. For the most part, these freckles are totally benign, so breathe easy.
The black spots you see on your kitty's nose are not actually freckles, but rather a kind of hyperpigmentation known as "lentigo simplex." As mentioned before, these spots are especially prevalent in orange tabbies. Grayish "Mackarel" tabbies also often have these wee markings. If your pet has the discoloration, thankfully, they won't hurt him or make him feel itchy -- your fluffy buddy won't even know they are there! The spots are relatively common on cats of all ages, from little kittens to sweet seniors.
Peppered noses are not the sole incidences of lentigo simplex in felines. Cats also often have these spots on other parts of their faces, including inside of their mouths, on the gums, on the lips and between the eyes.
In some less common instances, these spots may be a sign of something more serious, including cancer and various autoimmune diseases. Pay attention to signs that the spots may be something other than simple lentigo simplex. If the spots appear to be elevated and sore to the touch, schedule an appointment with your cat's veterinarian. The sooner you get Kitty's nose checked out, the better you may be able to manage it in the event that it is related to something else.
Lentigo simplex spots generally are on the tiny side, usually less than 1 mm in diameter. The flat spots usually are packed tightly together into a dense clump, not spaced out far from each other . Redness is not associated typically with lentigo simplex. Examine your cat's nose, and if the spots don't seem to be anything like this, seek veterinary help immediately. Your cat will thank you for it!
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.