A quick lesson from our volunteers. The name is a misnomer - there are no worms involved. Ringworm is a fungus - actually, athlete's foot for cats. The cat is so called for the shape that he/she causes on the site.
Reference the website: http://www.marvistavet.com/ They have some good info on ringworm, but don't let him/her scare you. There are other steps you can take to help the process along.
Medicated shampoo is one option for your cat. You may purchase some through your vet - whether they recommend Malasab shampoo or CholorhexiDerm. We do not recommend internal medicines for the cat (just our opinion). They take too long to work systemically (6-8 weeks) and they are costly. We recommend the following:
Go to your local drug store and buy an athlete's foot cream containing the active ingredients of TURBINAFINE or TURBINAFINE HYDROCHLORIDE (such as Lamisil). These are fungicides -- fungus killers. Other, cheaper products, are only fungicides (Tinactin or Clotrimazole)which only prevent the fungus from reproducing, they don't actually kill the fungus.
Most websites say to keep treating the ringworm for a few days after the ringworm seems to have cleared, or else the cat could come back even stronger and more drug-resistant.
One doctor recommends washing yourself with a shampoo containing selenium (like Selsun Blue) to prevent spreading the ringworm to others. To keep from spreading the ringworm to other cats, change clothes after leaving the affected cat's or kitten's room and then spray yourself down with a DILUTED bleach mixture, somewhere between 1 part bleach and 6 parts water or 1 part bleach and 10 parts water. Then rinse off with water. DO NOT PUT STRAIGHT
BLEACH ON YOUR SKIN!!! IT WILL BURN YOU!!!
Vacuum up any stray fur, spray the bleach solution into your vacuum where it has touched the floor (you can also spray brooms and mops). Bleach the infected cat's area and wash any fabrics or bedding for the cats in bleach and dry them in a hot dryer.
We know - you are afraid of bleaching. Honestly, if you are careful, you won't ruin your carpets or furniture.
Take a spray bottle and add about 1 inch of bleach to the bottom and then fill with water. Wrap a towel around the bottom, so you don't have any accidents and maybe once a week, after a thorough vacuuming, take the spray bottle and spray all your floors AND carpets. Spray into corners where mops can't reach. Trust us - we've done this to our own homes dozens of times and have not ruined any carpets. The fine mist will work its way into the carpet fibers and into the corners of the room and
kill the fungus. Spray into corners and directly onto wood and other flooring. Leave for a few minutes, then mop up. This is the
best way to combat other cats and people in the house from getting it.
The mantra in animal rescue is "Bleach kills everything", thus this recommendation.
And remember - ringworm NEVER killed anyone. Do not panic. Just be careful.