If your cat has gotten into a fight with another cat or animal or been injured in some other way, you must understand the basic process for treating cat injuries. From identifying the site of the wound to proper and safe cleaning and treatment, your kitty’s comfort and safety need to be considered. Some serious injuries require veterinary care.
Caution with your cat
Remember that your cat has been through trauma, not only in the body but also in the mind. This means that the cat you snuggled in bed with last night may not want anything to do with you today. You must be careful when approaching him and handling him so as not to alarm him. Your cat will be frightened and distressed, as well as in pain, so talk to her quietly and keep your movements slow and smooth. You want to help him feel comfortable, treat his injury as quickly and thoroughly as possible while minimizing the risk of being injured by your cat’s fear.
How to treat wounds on cats?
Healing a cat wound is not an easy task. Injuries and cuts in felines are not uncommon, especially if they can be in the street or fight with other expenses. The fix is subsequently vital because it forestalls potential contaminations and different risks.
Wounds need to heal well because if they become infected they can lead to more serious problems.
Steps to follow to heal wounds to a cat
1-Clean the wound. For this, it is advisable to cut or separate the hair around the wound. Subsequently, clean it with physiological serum and clean gauze, until there is no trace of dirt left.
2-Disinfect the wound. To do this we are going to mix water with diluted iodine in a gauze. Iodine can be used by anyone, yes, diluted in water. The proportion to use is a container full of water and a plug of iodine. A solution of hydrogen peroxide with the same proportions can also be used to disinfect a cat’s wound.
3-Heal the wound with ointments. Healing ointments are always under the prescription of a veterinarian. These speed up healing. After disinfecting the wound with iodine, we take some latex gloves and apply the ointment to the cat’s wound. Allow the wound to air heal.
4.-Protect the wound with an Elizabethan collar. The Elizabethan collar is used to protect wounds. Cats are very neat animals and tend to lick their wounds with their scratchy tongue and drag the new skin. The collar is a plastic screen that is put around the head, it is very uncomfortable. At times they must be removed, making sure that those lapses do not lick their wounds. They should not be in contact with other cats, nor go outside during the healing process.
Most common causes of wounds in cats?
Cats can be injured during fights with conspecifics or other animals, especially those that have access to the outside and are not neutered, as they will confront other males for territorial reasons and access to females.
On the other hand, a hit or fall can also be responsible for injuries. Likewise, cats can suffer burns and, in addition, we may have to heal wounds in some cats due to excessive scratching or licking, behavior that is related to stress. Next, we will explain how to clean and apply home remedies for wound healing in cats.
What to do if it is a very serious injury?
If at first glance you can see that the wound is very serious, the ideal is to go quickly to a veterinarian. The most serious injuries are those that do not heal or those that occur in the eye. For this reason, it is better that you get examined soon and receive proper care from professionals.
Steps to follow to treat your cat’s wound
If you’ve never tried to care for a cat wound before, it can be very intimidating. Take a deep breath and stay as relaxed as possible to keep your cat calm, and follow each step of the process from start to finish.
find the wounds
If the wound is not too serious, you can usually take care of it at home before having to take your cat to the vet. Your first step is to examine your cat carefully for wounds.
- Punctures can be found around the mouth, ears, or neck, and on the legs or butt.
- Look for any sign of blood on his fur. Blood can indicate an area where a bite may have occurred which may be more difficult to see with longer-haired cats.
- Although only a few bites or punctures can be found, it is possible that more trauma to the muscles or other tissues may have occurred.
- If the nibbles are profound, they might require a join. If this is the case, you should take your cat to the vet as soon as possible so that he can be stitched up.
Gather your supplies
Gather all of your first aid supplies before you tackle the cat. A bathroom is usually a good place for this because there you can confine the cat with you in a small area with no escape route. You must have the following:
- Your cat’s favorite treats or something super tempting like tuna chunks
- Pair of scissors
- Several large towels
- You can prepare a playlist of relaxing music in the room with a player or a smartphone. This can help your cat relax a bit more while you tend to his wounds.
- A small cat carrier can be very handy to have on hand to transport your cat.
lock up the cat
Next, you have to take the cat to the bathroom.
1. Call your cat with a treat in hand and praise him if he comes to you.
2. Wrap him in a towel, bundle him up in the bathroom, and close the door.
3. If your cat doesn’t want to come to you, you’ll need to approach him cautiously. If he won’t let you in, keep that towel handy. You may need your spouse or a friend to help you because the cat will get very upset if this is the case. Wrap the cat carefully but firmly in the towel and take him to the bathroom behind a closed door before you examine him.
4. Another option that may be less frightening for the cat is to place a cat carrier near her with the top or door wide open. Put something very tempting inside, like wet cat food or small pieces of tuna, and then walk away. If your cat gets into the crate, you can rush over while he’s eating and close the crate, then take him to the bathroom. This method takes more time, but it can also prevent you from injuring yourself by trying to pick up an injured, scared, and stressed cat.
examine your cat
Try to cut any hair around the puncture or wound, so you can see what kind of damage was done.
- If the wound is bleeding lightly and freely, not slowly, this is a good sign. It means that the blood is cleaning the wound to some extent.
- Wash the wound with warm soapy water and rinse well.
- Don’t use an antiseptic like antibiotic ointments; this just seals up anything nasty that your wash missed.
- Look closely at the bite or wound. If the muscle under the skin seems to move in a different direction than the skin, the bite may need stitches or drainage for deep wounds.
- Don’t use a bandage on the wound because you want it to drain as much as possible. If the bite continues to bleed profusely, cover it with a sterile gauze dressing or a clean piece of cloth.
- Put your hand on top of the gauze and press down firmly and gently, but not hard. Keep strain on the dressing, and this should assist with halting the dying. If it doesn’t stop, don’t remove the gauze; just keep adding more sterile dressings until the bleeding stops.
- If the wound is serious enough to require stitches, take your cat to the vet immediately.
Examine the fight scene
If your cat was injured in an animal fight and the animal that bit her died or was euthanized, you should take her to the vet for a rabies test.
- Do not pick up the deceased cat with your bare hands; wear gloves or a tool like a shovel and wrap it in a cloth or garbage bag.
- If the animal that died in the fight was one you knew, such as a neighbor’s pet, you can try talking to the owner to ask for evidence of rabies.
- If your cat hasn’t been vaccinated against rabies, it will probably need to be quarantined, so contact your vet immediately.
Take your cat to the vet
Once you’ve examined, cleaned, and dressed the wound, you should take your cat to the vet, regardless of whether or not she needs stitches.
- If your cat hasn’t been vaccinated against rabies, she may be seriously at risk, and your vet should be able to advise you on what to do, which may include quarantining.
- Your vet may also want to prescribe your cat antibiotics, as even scratches that don’t require stitches can become infected.
- You can also ask your vet about your cat’s pain and anxiety medications if you both feel your cat is traumatized and need additional medication to feel better.
- Lastly, ask your vet for an Elizabethan collar so your cat won’t lick or bite at his wounds until they heal.
signs of infection
Monitor your cat and her injuries for the next few days. If you see any signs of infection, contact your vet immediately. These signs include:
- Red, swollen skin around the wound
- Any discharge from the wound such as pus
- Abscesses, which appear as an open hole in the cat’s skin and are often filled with pus.
- Lack of appetite and vomiting
Some cat owners worry that injuries will permanently mar their cat’s appearance. It is normal for your cat to have scars from wounds or deep punctures. These will be visible for a while as your vet will need to shave the area to clean the wounds and treat them thoroughly. Over time, your skin should grow back, making any scars less visible. With longer-haired cats, you may not be able to see them at all once the hair has grown back.
Caring for an injured cat
It is a scary situation for a cat owner to find their feline injured and in pain. Having a first aid kit in your home ready can go a long way in keeping you calm in the situation and ready to tackle wound care. Always move slowly and gently around an injured cat and be sure to take it to the vet, even if you feel like its scratches are minor, as a fight with another cat or an unvaccinated wild animal can lead to serious infections if left untreated.
Tips for treating cat wounds
As a pet owner, there may come a time when your knowledge of cat wound care comes in handy. Fortunately, cats take good care of themselves and avoid unnecessary conflict. However, the curious cat or outdoor pet can sometimes run into trouble.
Cat wound care
It is best to err on the side of caution when it comes to healing your pet. Treat any wound as a possible source of infection. Any contamination can potentially cause infection and increase the severity of the wound.
Priorities for treating cat wounds
1. Your priority in treating a wound is to make sure bleeding is controlled while taking steps to prevent infection.
2. Your safety is a concern when helping an injured cat. A cat will revert to “survival mode” and may be reluctant to accept treatment due to fear and stress.
Treatment of serious injuries
1. If the wounds are extensive or there are obvious signs of infection, such as swelling, redness, or pus, take your cat to the vet or an emergency room immediately.
2. Your cat is likely to be in a lot of pain and may need sedation to receive proper treatment.
stop the bleeding
1. If you can’t get to the vet right away, controlling the bleeding is a serious concern.
2. Bleeding can occur from arteries or veins, depending on which one was damaged.
- Arterial bleeding is bright red because the blood is oxygenated. It’s under high pressure and will squirt out of the wound.
- Venous dying, then again, is more obscure. The flow is more uniform in these types of wounds.
3. No matter what the source, pressure on the wound will slow bleeding and help the natural clotting process. You will need to restrain your pet during this time to treat the wound and prevent activity that can accelerate blood flow. It may take up to 5 to 10 minutes for the bleeding to stop because of the pressure.
4. If you can’t control the bleeding, you may need to apply a tourniquet between the wound site and your cat’s armpit or groin. You can hold it in place for 30 minutes and then loosen the tourniquet for two to three minutes to allow some blood to flow. This will help the body heal the wound by allowing white blood cells to reach the site of injury and begin the first line of defense.
Treatment of minor injuries
1. For minor wounds that are not seriously bleeding, your first task will be to clean the immediate area around the wound to give yourself better access.
2. You can gently clip the hair around the wound and follow up with an antiseptic soap or water to clean it.
3. Prepare an antiseptic solution with povidone-iodine or chlorhexidine diacetate and water. You can use a syringe or a sterile syringe to wash the injured area with the antiseptic solution or water.
4. Avoid using alcohol or hydrogen peroxide to clean the injured area.
5. Clean the wound and surrounding area with sterile gauze, then pat the area dry.
6. Further treatment will help prevent infection. You can apply an anti-microbial salve to the injury. Contact your veterinarian to obtain the appropriate medication.
7. Additionally, your vet may prescribe oral antibiotics to speed healing.
How to keep wounds clean
Whether it’s a minor or serious injury, once it’s been treated, you’ll need to keep the area clean. Some portion of the trouble in treating wounds will hold your pet back from licking the injury site. You can apply a bandage or purchase an Elizabethan collar at your pet store to prevent it from reaching the wound.
types of wounds
Identifying the type of injury can help you decide what course of action to take. Most of the time, you can treat minor injuries at home while putting your knowledge of cat wound care into practice.
Simple abrasions and scratches
Your cat can get an abrasion from rubbing against something rough, which can lead to hair loss. Your cat can easily scratch itself with any sharp object at home or outside. Both abrasions and scratches are superficial but can be painful for your cat. You can put an antibiotic ointment on them to help the healing process and make sure they don’t get swollen or infected.
If your pet has gotten into a battle, there might be stabbings present. Due to the pressure of the bite, there may also be bruising at the site of the injury. You can clean the affected areas around the puncture but do not clean the puncture. Bacteria can easily get trapped in a puncture wound and lead to a serious infection. Take your cat to a vet who will take care of puncture wounds and can install a drain to help them heal properly.
If your cat has received puncture wounds from a fight, you should take it to your vet immediately. In addition to the need for an experienced veterinarian to clean these types of wounds, the uncertainty about the type of animal he fought adds to other concerns about caring for cat wounds. You may not know if the other cat or dog was properly vaccinated or if they encountered a potentially rabid animal while outdoors.
Owning a pet is a responsibility that requires you to know basic care and treatment of injuries such as wounds. Approach care cautiously knowing your pet is under stress and possibly in pain. Your job as a pet owner is to care for your pet when you can and to seek veterinary help when complications are likely to arise.