Wound Treatment for Cats (Overview)
Cats are just as prone to small injuries that occur on a daily basis as any other animal. Cutting (laceration), bruising (contusion), and scraping (abrasion) are all non-life threatening injuries that will heal with little or no medical intervention. Other wounds may be serious enough to necessitate the use of stitches as well as more intensive emergency treatment.
What to Watch For
Fresh wounds will often exhibit some or all of the following characteristics:
- Skin that has been cut, scraped, or ripped
- Hair loss
- Tenderness or soreness in the joints
If a wound is not seen while it is still new, it has the potential to get infected. The following symptoms, in addition to swelling and discomfort, may be experienced:
- Abscesses (i.e., an accumulation of pus beneath the skin) and the ensuing hole in the skin when the abscess breaks open and drains
- Discharge (pus) from the wound
- Abscesses (i.e., an accumulation of pus under the skin) and the resulting hole in the skin when the abscess breaks open and drains
- A fever (e.g., lethargy and hot to the touch ears)
- Symptoms of a cold.
A variety of injuries can result from bumping or striking hard or sharp items, evading autos, being attacked by animals, or a variety of other threats.
What you may and cannot do at home is ultimately determined by your cat. It is sometimes necessary to wrap your cat in a towel or to place him in a carrier and transport him straight to the veterinarian. If this is the case, call your veterinarian immediately. It is possible, if your cat will let it, to perform a few simple tasks until you can go to your veterinarian. This is especially true if it will be some time until you can see your veterinarian.
- If there is bleeding, direct pressure should be applied to the wound. After the wound has been wrapped with sterile gauze or a clean towel, pressure should be administered to the area. It might take anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes for the bleeding to cease. Once this occurs, tape the gauze in place since removing it may cause the clot to dissolve and bleeding to recommence. Examine the area for any further wounds. Attempt cleansing the wound if there is no bleeding and the cut (laceration) or scrape (abrasion) looks to be of modest severity. Use an antiseptic solution or plain water to carefully clean the area around the wound, and a syringe or other similar instrument to flush the solution over the surface of the wound to prevent infection. Antiseptic solutions are created by diluting concentrated solutions that are purchased from a shop and include either povidone iodine or chlorhexidine diacetate as the active component as described above. It is not recommended to use alcohol or hydrogen peroxide to the wounds because they will really harm the tissue. Povidone should be diluted to the color of weak tea
- Chlorhexidine should be diluted to the color of pale blue
- And other chemicals should be diluted as needed. If the laceration is lengthy or deep, or if it is a puncture wound, you can clean around the margins as indicated above, but you should not flush the wound itself with water. That should be left to the veterinarian. You should take your cat to the veterinarian after you have done everything you can for him.
Diagnosis Your veterinarian will do a thorough examination of your cat and analyze any wounds that are discovered. In addition, your cat will be examined for any signs of any health concerns. The cat’s hair will need to be shaved in order to conduct an accurate examination. Some wounds may need the use of X-rays. It may also be essential to administer sedation in order to complete the test. Treatment The primary aims of therapy are to avoid infection while also expediting the healing process.
To treat your cat’s wounds properly and without giving him any further pain, sedation or anesthesia will be required the majority of the time.
- Small scrapes and wounds are frequently treated with nothing more than a thorough washing and, in some cases, a dab of skin glue to keep the margins of the cut together. Cutting wounds that are both long and/or deep require meticulous cleaning to ensure that there is no debris in the wound and meticulous assessment to establish the degree of the damage. If the incision is less than 12 hours old and is not significantly polluted, it will most likely be sutured closed
- Otherwise, it will be bandaged. Puncture wounds, particularly those caused by animal attacks, are sometimes associated with severe damage beneath the skin that is not obvious on initial examination. Following the removal of any potentially foreign items, these wounds must be thoroughly probed and then meticulously cleansed with huge quantities of antiseptic solution to ensure that they are completely clean. Sometimes it is necessary to open these wounds surgically in order to repair damage that has occurred deep inside the tissues. While this is happening, puncture wounds and/or wounds that are more than 12 hours old, contaminated or displaying indications of infection, abscessed, or losing significant portions of skin are not often sutured. To prevent infection from entering the wound, bandages are applied to it until it heals or the wound becomes healthy enough that sutures will actually aid the wound rather than trap infection within. Large or deep wounds, infected wounds, or repeated puncture wounds frequently necessitate the use of a Penrose drain, which is a soft rubber tube that enables excess, polluted tissue fluid to drain out while maintaining a tiny aperture for flushing antiseptic solution into the wound. Your veterinarian will administer medicine to your cat to treat an infection and, if necessary, discomfort, which you will be responsible for administering at home. Most cats are discharged after 24 hours of being hospitalized
- However, some cats may take longer.
Living and Management
The most essential thing you can do for your cat once he or she has returned home is to give excellent nursing care. Fortunately, this is generally just for 1 to 2 weeks at a time. The following are examples of good nursing care:
- Preventing your cat from licking, gnawing, or clawing at the wounds, stitches, bandages, or drains is essential for his or her health. It is possible that an Elizabethan collar will be required in this situation. Keeping bandages clean and dry, and changing bandages as suggested by your veterinarian are all important considerations. Initially, this may occur as frequently as twice or three times each day. It is possible that you may need to take your cat back to the veterinarian for the adjustments, especially if he is not cooperative. If the bandages become moist, or if you detect an odor, chafing, or an increase in drainage (or if the drainage does not diminish), you should take your cat to the veterinarian for an examination. Place a thin coating of antibiotic ointment over the borders of the wound once or twice a day, but only if the cat is unable to remove it with its licking mouth
- Ensure that your cat receives all of the medication that has been recommended for him. Consult your veterinarian if you are having difficulty giving it
In most cases, unless the wounds are serious or problems arise, the following is a normal sequence of events following the veterinarian visit:
- Penrose drains are removed three to five days after they are installed. Sutures are removed between 10 and 14 days after they have been inserted. Antibiotics are often prescribed for seven to ten days. If pain medicine is prescribed, it is typically administered for 5 to 7 days. In certain cases, bandages may be put on for as little as 24 hours, while in others they may be left on for several weeks, depending on the severity of the wound. Starting with at least once a day bandage changes, greater intervals between changes may be feasible later in the healing process.
It is possible for an abscess to grow in your cat if a wound, particularly a puncture wound, was not seen and if your cat did not receive antibiotics. This will result in the symptoms outlined at the beginning of this article. Abscesses grow over a period of 10 to 14 days, and they are typically not seen until they have ruptured. An abscess will necessitate a second visit to your veterinarian’s office.
Because cats are most likely to be hurt when they are left outside unsupervised, the best approach to prevent damage is to either keep the cat indoors or only allow him to be outside in a safe, limited area when he is let outside. Image courtesy of Shutterstock
How to Clean a Cat Wound: 14 Steps (with Pictures)
In most cases, cats will sustain minor injuries from time to time. The possibility exists that your cat may get into a fight and be clawed at, or that it will just receive some scratches while exploring the area.
If your cat returns home with a fresh puncture wound, a cut, a graze, or a more serious lesion, it is important to clean the area as soon as possible to prevent the danger of infection or the formation of an abscess.
- 1 Locate some sterile saline solution. Sterile saline, such as that provided in first aid kits, is the most effective solution for flushing a polluted wound out of the body. Physical washing eliminates germs and dirt, yet the saline solution is sufficiently comparable to the pH of bodily tissues that it causes minimum tissue harm.
- It is important to use big amounts of saline and to keep washing until the region seems clean while using this solution.
- 2 Bring some water to a boil and use it once it has cooled. If the wound is really unclean and has a lot of mud or grit in it, boiling water and allowing it to cool is an alternate treatment. Make use of this water to physically wash away the dirt in the region.
- Because water does not have the same composition as bodily fluids and so sucks fluid out of injured tissue, there is a minimal danger that it will harm the exposed tissue bed when used in conjunction with other procedures. Medical studies, on the other hand, have demonstrated that using tap water to irrigate a wound has no effect on whether or not the wound becomes infected in the long run.
- 3 Prepare a solution of salt water. When it comes to cleansing a cat’s wound, salt water is an excellent choice because it has natural disinfecting characteristics and is readily available. To produce a salt water solution, first boil the kettle and then measure out a cup of water and add half a teaspoon of salt to the boiling water. Then whisk until the sugar is completely dissolved and let aside to cool.
- Due to the fact that this salt water has a composition similar to tears and bodily fluids, it is less harmful to exposed tissue than commercial disinfection solutions or plain water.
- 1 Purchase a commercial disinfectant that is safe for pets. There are a range of disinfectants available for use on pet wounds that are available for purchase. Povidone-iodine and chlorhexidine are the most often used disinfectants. Make an appointment with your veterinarian if you intend to have one of these products on hand in case your cat becomes scratched up.
- It’s important to remember that not all disinfectants are suitable for cats. These products contain phenol, which is hazardous to felines. To determine whether a product contains phenolic disinfectants, look at the label to see if the product is to be avoided. An other indication that phenol is present in the product is if it becomes murky when water is introduced. If in doubt, avoid the situation and find an alternative
- To use povidone-iodine, dilute it by mixing one milliliter of the solution with one hundred milliliters of water. Wash the wound area with this solution to remove any pollution that has accumulated there. To use chlorhexidine, dilute 2.5ml of chlorhexidine with 100 ml of water to get the proper strength for cleaning a wound or wound dressing. Chlorhexidine is the active ingredient of various surgical scrubs, such as Hibiscrub, that are used in surgery. A pink soapy solution that has to be diluted with water is used to make this product. When it comes to antibacterial characteristics, chlorhexidine is an excellent choice. It also has a minor residual effect, which means it continues to destroy germs for a short period of time after it has dried.
- 2 Dilute a little amount of hydrogen peroxide. Hydrogen peroxide is yet another common wound washing product on the market. However, if this is utilized undiluted, it has the potential to be extremely harmful to the tissue. The’myth’ is that the fizzing that occurs when peroxide comes into contact with wounds is just eliminating the germs
- However, this is really destroying the tissue bed, which must be healthy in order for subsequent healing to take place.
- If you have a 3 percent solution of hydrogen peroxide, you should dilute it one part peroxide to three parts water (for example, 25 mL of peroxide to 75 mL of water) to create a disinfectant solution suited for cleansing wounds.
- 3 Choose the safest alternative that you have accessible to you at the time. Personal choice and the availability of disinfectants determine which disinfectant should be used. Always follow the manufacturer’s directions on how to dilute the product, since using it excessively concentrated might be harmful to the skin and mucous membranes. You should be aware that many household disinfectants, including disinfectant sprays, contain benzalkonium chloride and were not intended for use on live tissue.
- Whenever you’re in question about whether a product is appropriate for use on a cat, try just utilizing saline or salt water solution instead, as this is always safe
- 1 Enlist the assistance of another person to help you hold the cat. After an injury, your cat may be in pain or shaken up, and it may lash out when you touch the painful region. Despite the fact that it is generally mild-mannered, this is nevertheless true. Try to solicit the assistance of a friend or neighbor to hold the cat while you tend to the wound.
- You might try covering the cat in a huge bath towel and leaving only the wound visible. This is a fantastic approach to keep it quiet while also reducing the possibility of fangs and claws being bitten.
- 2 Using a syringe, flush the wound with water. Take your preferred rinse solution and put it in a large mixing basin. Suck up the solution with a syringe, and then spray it over the wound to rinse and disinfect it. Continue to rinse the incision in this manner until you are certain that the wound is clean
- To limit the danger of infection, it is necessary to clean and disinfect fresh bite wounds. It is possible that grit, gravel, and germs will be present in scrape wounds acquired if the cat is struck by an automobile or falls from a tree. Performing a thorough cleaning to eliminate pollution lowers the chance of issues such as poor healing or infection.
- If you don’t have a syringe, you can use a cotton ball soaked in cleaning solution instead. You may also soak clean cotton wool in the cleaning solution and squeeze it so that the fluid flows down over the wound if you don’t have a syringe on hand. If the region is heavily polluted and this is not effectively removing the material, use downward stroking strokes with the cotton wool to clean the area.
- Each downward wipe should be made with a clean piece of saturated cotton wool, so that the dirty piece does not recontaminate the wound on the following downward pass. Continue to clean until the cotton wool comes away clean, and then rinse well
- If your cat has an abscess that has burst, a significant amount of pus may be leaking from the lesion. To remove pus from the wound, use dry cotton wool, gauze, or absorbent paper tissue to wipe it away. Using mild pressure, press inward towards the tooth mark where the pus is flowing from the abscess and away from the surrounding tissue. It is critical to remove as much pus as possible from the wound, else it will serve as a cause of infection for the rest of the patient’s life.
- 4 Disinfect the area with disinfectant. After you have removed all of the gross pollution, you may begin applying the disinfectant to the surface. The instructions on the box should be followed in order to ensure effective application.
- The goal is to wash away illness until you expose healthy, uncontaminated tissue, after which you may apply the disinfectant to it.
- 5 Make a decision on whether or not to bandage the wound. Attempting to bandage or hide a small, minor wound is not recommended because most wounds benefit from exposure to fresh air. If, on the other hand, the cat is attempting to lick or chew the wound, the wound must be covered. The healing of the wound may be jeopardized in these situations.
- There is a popular belief that it is beneficial for a cat to lick a wound. In reality, that abrasive tongue is more likely to cause damage to exposed tissues than it is to aid in their recovery. If an open cut is bleeding, place a piece of sterile gauze on it for at least 3 minutes before determining if the bleeding has stopped.
- 1 Keep an eye out for indicators of injuries on your cat. As a cat owner, it’s critical to be familiar with your cat’s regular behaviors. This will assist you in determining whether or not something is incorrect. Be on the lookout for behavioral changes such as, but not limited to, changes in eating habits, forms of activity, and interest in socializing.
- The presence of these symptoms might indicate a range of conditions, including physical trauma. If your cat’s attitude or behavior has changed dramatically, and you are unable to determine the cause, take it to the veterinarian for evaluation. These changes might be signs of a medical concern
- However, they could also be harmless.
- 2 If you were there or heard a fight, look for signs of injury. If you hear a cat fight or if your cat comes back limping, inspect the cat over for indications of trauma or infection. tufts of hair that have been clumped together are a telltale indicator of a struggle in progress. When you look at the cat, try to see if any portions of the coat are untidy or if any hairs are standing out at an unusual angle. Examine the cat’s body in a gentle manner by dividing the hair and inspecting the flesh beneath it
- Alternatively, you may see an area of hair loss, which indicates that the aggressor cat has ripped the fur out of the region. There may be a wound present, or you may see blood spots or a swollen region in the affected area. Cats with white or light coats are the easiest to detect for this condition. Gently run your hands over it and wait for a reaction to tenderness
- You may also feel for wounds, swelling, or scabs in the case of a black cat.
- 3 Inspect your cat for injuries on a regular basis. A fight may not always be witnessed by you or the symptoms of a fight on your cat’s coat may not always be visible to you. In order to avoid this, it is critical to check your cat on a frequent basis for injuries that you would otherwise overlook. This is especially crucial if your cat is an outdoor cat or if it has a history of fighting with others.
- When you are snuggling and patting the cat, this is an excellent moment to do this. Maintaining the cat’s quiet, softly sweeping your fingers over its body while gazing at the flesh beneath the fur is a good idea. It is possible that older wounds are infected, in which case you may notice swelling, the formation of a scab, hair loss, and the production of a bloody or purulent discharge
- Old abscesses that have ruptured frequently include a large amount of pus, which mats the fur of the animal. Aside from that, skin around the abcesion dehydrates and dies, leaving a large hole in the skin through which you may view muscle or exposed tissues.
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- Minor wounds can be cleansed at home, and then they can be watched for indications of infection. The treatment of larger, more serious wounds, including those that are full skin thickness or that expose the tissues beneath the skin, should be performed by a veterinarian. A puncture wound over a joint, on the other hand, should be treated by a veterinarian since there is a possibility of bacteria being introduced into the joint and a brief course of antibiotics may be necessary to prevent joint sepsis.
About this article
The following is a summary of the article:XTo clean a cat’s wound, first soak a cotton ball in a cleaning solution made consisting of 1 cup boiling water and 12 teaspoon salt, then squeeze it so that the liquid pours over the wound. If this does not completely remove all of the dirt and debris, use more solution-soaked cotton balls to wipe the incision clean. Make careful to wipe with downward strokes and to use one cotton ball every stroke in order to prevent cross-contamination from occurring.
Continue reading for additional advice from our Veterinary reviewer, including information on how to purchase cleaning and disinfection treatments that are safe for your cat.
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Cats are highly active and curious animals. They like playing, exploring, hunting, and tussling with one another. Whether you have an aggressive mouse-hunting cat or a laid-back sofa cat, the odds are good that your feline companion may sustain some minor injuries at some point during one of his or her nine lifetimes. So, what should you do if your cat is scraped, cut, bitten, punctured, or suffers any other form of cat wound? Here’s all you need to know about diagnosing and treating your cat’s illness.
Common Cat Wounds
Your cat is likely to find himself into some sort of difficulty every now and then. All creatures, including humans, are vulnerable to being injured. Furthermore, small injuries in cats are extremely common; the frequency with which they occur varies depending on their activity level and habitat. If you suffer an injury, you should not get alarmed. You shouldn’t just disregard it either. Even the smallest of wounds may become breeding grounds for germs and viruses over time. Untreated, a modest problem might develop into a potentially life-threatening medical condition.
- Hot spots, insect bites, skin rashes, ulcers, cat burns, scratches, cuts, and scrapes, cat abscesses are all possible.
As a responsible cat owner, you should check your kitty on a regular basis for indicators of injury, which include: 1
- Bleeding, swelling, missing hair, torn skin, limping, tenderness or discomfort are all possible symptoms.
Treating Cat Scrapes and Wounds
As soon as an animal has an injury or cat scratch, his or her immune system goes into overdrive to combat infection and aid in the healing process. However, this does not imply that you should let them to recover on their own, particularly if they look to be in pain. It is beneficial to be overly careful and to catch any problems early on by getting your cat to the veterinarian right away. So, if you detect that your cat has an open wound, you should take the following steps:
- Examine the wound for symptoms of infection– Your first step is to discover whether the feline wound is new or an old one. Infection of an old wound is possible and will almost certainly need veterinarian treatment and medication. The following are some of the most common indications of a wound infection: 2
- Pus discharge, abscesses, fever, noticeable pain or discomfort, and behavioral abnormalities are all possibilities.
- Determining the severity of the wound– Once you have ruled out an infection and determined that the injury is new, the following step is to establish how significant the damage is to you. Typically, just an eye exam is required to determine the severity of the condition. Taking your cat to the veterinarian as soon as possible, should the injury necessitate stitches, surgery, or the application of a cast
- Stabilize the blood flow– If your cat is bleeding from a tiny wound, it is important to stop the bleeding. Apply direct pressure to the wound with a clean cloth or sterile gauze in order to achieve this result. It will usually take 5-10 minutes for a clot to develop, depending on the location and depth of the cut. If the wound is not healing correctly, take your cat to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Remove foreign objects from the wound– If the wound is minor and has not been infected, you can gently clean it with a clean moist cloth and iodine or saline solution. It is possible that you may need to initially pull any excess hair away from the wound region, or perhaps cut the hair if required. To the best of your ability, remove any debris from the wound site without rubbing
- Using an antimicrobial hydrogel to expedite the healing process and help prevent a potential bacterial infection is the next step after cleansing. Using a wound and infection antimicrobial therapy solution specifically designed for cats, such as the Veticyn Plus® Feline Antimicrobial Hydrogel, you may achieve this goal. This can assist in cleaning and adhering to the wound site, so adding an additional layer of protection and healing to the wound. Simply spray it immediately into the cat scrape or onto the dressings before putting them to the wound
- It is that simple. Check the wound on a regular basis– Once you’ve done everything you possibly can for your feline companion, you must sit back and let time and nature to do their work. Make every effort to prevent your cat from licking, gnawing, or scratching at the injury site if possible. Maintain the cleanliness and dryness of the bandage, and check the wound on a regular basis to ensure that it does not become infected. Afterwards, replace the bandage and saturate the margins of the cut or wound with more antibacterial solution.
If your cat’s injury worsens or appears to be becoming infected, don’t hesitate to take him to the veterinarian right once.
As previously said, if you don’t take precautions, a cat’s wound can quickly get infected with bacteria.
Why Use Vetericyn For Your Cat’s Wounds?
Vetericyn’s antibacterial liquid and hydrogel are specifically intended to aid in the healing process and the cat’s natural immune reaction to illness. It is the first topical antimicrobial application that is non-toxic, broad-spectrum, non-antibiotic, and non-antibiotic in nature. In recent trials, 3″Wounds treated with Vetericyn® showed a decrease in healing time of up to 60%, according to the researchers. Vetericyn® has demonstrated in vitro that it may safely eliminate 99.9999 percent of the majority of single-cell pathogens in under 30 seconds.” Simply said, Vetericyn is the only safe and natural approach to treat practically every cat’s wound at any point of its life.
Check out our posts on how often you should bathe a cat and how to cure conjunctivitis in cats for further information.
- PetMD. PetHealth Network provides an overview of wound treatment for cats. Vetericyn is used to treat cat abscesses. Vetericyn Inc. introduces a new veterinary wound and infection treatment for cats.
How to Clean a Cat Wound
When a cat owner sees his or her pet bleeding or notices an open cut on their cat, there is nothing more terrifying than the situation. Even if your cat hasn’t been involved in a fight, injuries can occur. It is possible for your cat to injure themselves when scratching an itch if their nails have not been cut lately, or if you have numerous cats, they may become involved in a struggle while playing and injure themselves or each other. In this post, you will discover how to treat a cat wound and how to care for your cat while they are in distress!
- The first step is to clean the wound and bandage it. The next step is to look for signs of infection. A first-aid kit that is well-stocked
First things thirst
Not panicking when you see your injured cat is the most crucial thing you can do for him. Take a few deep breaths and examine the incision carefully. If the wound is serious or if the animal is bleeding profusely, it is recommended to contact your veterinarian. It’s possible that your cat will require sutures. However, if the cut is only superficial, you should be able to treat it at home. If it’s bleeding, the first thing you should do is stop it from bleeding more. Remove the wound from the water and apply pressure with a clean, dry fabric, washcloth, or towel.
It’s possible that yourcat is scared or in pain.
If your cat is afraid and resisting, you can immobilize him or her by wrapping him or her tightly in a blanket or towel.
Cleaning the Wound
Once the bleeding has stopped, you will need to clean the incision thoroughly to ensure that germs does not enter it. Cat’s claws are notoriously contaminated with illness-causing germs, thus if the wound was caused by a cat claw, it is critical to clean it well and keep it clean in order to prevent infection. You may clean a cat wound with a solution of soapy water, or you can use an antibacterial treatment to disinfect the wound. In order to avoid stinging your cat and damaging the skin tissue around the area, you should avoid using hydrogen peroxide to clean his wound.
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Simply ensure that the cat is unable to lick the cream away from the damaged area.
The wound may not require bandaging if it is not particularly deep.
However, if the wound is in a location where the cat is likely to get it dirty, such as on a paw that will come into touch with litter in the litter box or at the base of the tail, bandaging it will assist to keep it clean and prevent infection.
Bandaging a Cat Wound
Vet Wrap is the most effective product for bandaging a cat wound. Vet Wrap is a self-adhesive bandage that may be trimmed to fit over the wound and is made of polyethylene. Various colors and sizes are available in a variety of hues. An alternative “no chew” bandage is available with a bitter taste to discourage your cat from attempting to chew the bandage away. Do not put conventional adhesive bandages on your cat’s fur since they will adhere to the fur and tear the fur out when you remove them.
Make certain that the cat is able to move freely and without discomfort.
Once the wound has healed, the bandage should be replaced on a daily basis until the wound has healed.
Signs of Infection
When your cat is injured, infection is the most serious threat he faces. Therefore, you should inspect the wound regularly to see whether any indications of infection have appeared. If you observe any of these indicators of infection, contact your veterinarian immediately. Antibiotics may be required in order for your cat to fight off an illness. The following are some of the indicators that you should be searching for:
- Tenderness or pain in the area around the wound
- Pus or leaking from a wound is defined as follows: The presence of redness around the wound or in the skin around the wound
- Heat or warmth in the area around the wound
As long as you keep the wound clean and change the bandage on a regular basis, the wound should not grow infected. However, you must check on the wound on a daily basis to see how it is healing. If the healing process appears to be taking longer than expected, or if you observe any symptoms of infection, contact your veterinarian immediately.
A Well-Stocked Cat First Aid Kit
Every home with a cat should have a pet first aid kit on hand for emergencies. Pre-assembled kits are available for purchase, or you may construct your own. If you are putting together your own kit, make sure to replace components as you go through it. You should also check the kit on a regular basis to ensure that the goods contained within it have not expired. Listed below are the necessities that you should have in your cat’s first aid kit at home:
- A pair of cat nail clippers
- Styptic powder (to aid in the stopping of bleeding)
- Make sure you have many different sizes of gauze on hand. An ice pack, vet wrap, and sharp scissors are all recommended. This will make it simpler to handle a scared or injured cat
- A grooming bag for cats Antibiotic cream
- The phone number of your veterinarian, as well as the phone number of an emergency veterinarian nearby in case your veterinarian is unavailable
- Sticky tape, cotton swabs, antibacterial wipes, paper towels, a thick towel, disposable gloves, a pet thermometer, tweezers, and other small tools
Final Thoughts: How to Clean a Cat Wound
It’s terrifying to witness your favorite cat suffering from a wound. However, if you are able to respond promptly, you will be able to save your cat from a great deal of discomfort and the possibility of having to undergo treatment for an infected wound. Make a habit of trimming your cat’s nails on a regular basis. Make sure you have a cat first aid kit ready to go, and you will be able to confidently clean a cat’s wound in the comfort of your own home. As much as we would like our beloved cats to be free of injuries and wounds, they do occasionally find themselves in difficulties.
When your cat suffers a wound, maintain your cool and take action.
An introduction to minor cat wounds
Argos posted this on October 26th, 2013, and it was last updated on October 1st, 2020. Minor cat wounds, such as cuts, rips, scrapes, bites, and punctures, can occur in both active and calm cats, regardless of their activity level.
Depending on whether you witnessed your cat stepping on a piece of shattered glass, you may be able to determine how the wound occurred, or your cat may just have returned via the cat flap with an injury of unknown origin. Regardless of the reason, basic first aid practices may be followed.
How to start
Be mindful that even the mildest of cats may attempt to scratch or bite when faced with a stressful or uncomfortable circumstance before administering any first aid to your cat. First and foremost, you should enlist the assistance of another person to confine your cat while you examine the wound. Wrapping your cat in a towel can be a good strategy, provided that no smothering happens and that someone is around to assist in calming him or her down. It may also be necessary to restrain an upset cat by the scruff of the neck or by placing the cat on the ground to keep them from harming themselves any more.
A wound may be bleeding, which can be either mild or substantial depending on the severity of the injury. In any case, it is critical that the bleeding is stopped as soon as possible once it begins. It is unlikely that a little amount of blood will be life-threatening if the situation is treated with quickly and appropriately. If at all feasible, direct pressure should be given to the wound for a minimum of 10-15 minutes at a time. This is best accomplished with a clean, dry towel or gauze pad.
- It is not recommended that you employ a tourniquet.
- The dressing should not be removed until there is visible bleeding through the fabric.
- Simply place an extra dressing or padding on top of the previous one to complete the look.
- You should remain at your cat’s side and assist him or her in remaining calm and motionless.
Cat wound examination
Cat wounds may be painful, and an inspection should begin with a simple physical examination. Some wounds may be clogged with debris or grit, which should be removed as soon as possible. It is recommended that you leave the removal of any things larger than dirt or grit in the wound to your veterinarian, however. It is critical to be as gentle as possible at all times, and keeping your cat quiet will make the process much more manageable for both of you. Bite wounds from other cats are quite prevalent in cats who live in the wild.
When a cat bites its person, it can produce abscesses, which many owners are unaware of until they erupt and cause serious injury.
It’s possible that you’ve noticed that your cat has been silent and hasn’t been eating for the past several days.
Clipping and shaving
Shave the hair off a wound with hand clippers if possible (if you don’t have any, blunt-ended scissors will work just as well). Because owner-inflicted wounds occur with alarming regularity, exercise extreme caution and refrain from cutting if you have any reservations. Attempt to shave/trim away the hair from around the wound to a distance of no more than 2 or 3 centimeters. When the hair has been removed, it is possible that more injuries will become visible, such as bruises. Keeping longer hairs away from the lesion is also beneficial since they are more likely to fall onto the wound and create contamination.
Because the skin around the wound is typically delicate and easily injured, it is important to be careful. A small amount of Vaseline applied to the incision before to shaving can aid in catching any stray hairs, which can then be carefully removed after the shaving session.
Cleaning the wound
Following that, the wound should be cleansed to ensure that no impurities remain. If you happen to have any chlorhexidine or povidone-iodine on hand, you can use it instead. Dilute in water with only enough to cause the water to have a discolored hue, and no more. Alternatives include the use of one teaspoon of salt mixed with one pint of boiling water that has been allowed to cool before use. Keep human goods such as lotions, ointments and disinfectants such as Savlon away from your pet’s wounds since they can be itchy and poisonous if the animal licks the wound.
Remove any antibacterial wash or saline that may have accumulated on the wound and its environs by gently “blotting dry” the area.
As a result, make sure the area is well cleansed and attempt to keep the cat from licking the area as much as possible.
In most cases, a tiny wound should be left untreated, but bigger wounds may require a dressing, such as a gauze pad applied to skin that has been cut of its hair. The’micropore’ type of tape is the best to use because the ‘Elastoplast’ type will adhere too firmly to the cat’s skin and may cause injury when removed off the animal. After the wound has been cleaned, it can be dressed. In most cases, a tiny wound should be left untreated, but bigger wounds may require a dressing, such as a gauze pad applied to skin that has been cut of its hair.
In the case of any wound that your cat may be able to access and lick, it may be wise to invest in an Elizabethan collar for protection (make sure this is fitted correctly according to instructions).
Please keep in mind that if bleeding continues to wick through your first dressing, you should not remove the dressing since you may dislodge any clots that have developed.
For the first several days, wound cleaning should be done at least 1-2 times per day, or more frequently if the site looks to be healing. Ensure that the wound is properly examined and is followed on a regular basis. If your cat develops any swelling, heat, discomfort, or gets ill, this might be an indication of an infection, and you should seek veterinarian care immediately to avoid further complications. Owners should keep an eye out for signs of pain caused by the bandage, such as excessive chewing.
Other small wounds may be treatable at home, however there are some wounds that should be treated by a veterinarian only. As a result, Argos Pet Insurance, supplied by Pinnacle Insurance plc, is highly recommended for protecting your cat. Take a look at our cat insurance products right now.
When to Use (and NOT to Use) Hydrogen Peroxide for Cleaning Pet Wounds
Many pet owners are concerned about how long it will take their cat or dog’s wound to heal, as well as what they may do to make the healing process go more quickly. Neither of these concerns can be answered in a generalized manner, however there is one substance that you should avoid applying on your pet’s wounds if you don’t want to slow down the healing process — hydrogen peroxide. If you have any questions, please contact your veterinarian.
Why Hydrogen Peroxide is NOT Ideal for Cleaning Pet Wounds
In our childhood, the vast majority of us recall our mother or father going to the medical cabinet and getting the hydrogen peroxide to clean up our injuries and abrasions. You might be able to recall how it would bubble up. The blood and other living cells used the catalase enzyme to go after the hydrogen peroxide and break it down into basic water-wash and oxygen, which resulted in the bubbling process. The bubbling motion is responsible for removing debris from the wound as well as killing germs in the wound.
- No, not entirely!
- It is important to note that although peroxide is killing off the germs, it is simultaneously destroying the same cells that your pet’s body is depending on to repair the wound.
- Because of this, ongoing wound treatment with hydrogen peroxide is not the best option in most cases.
- However, the way in which you accomplish this is as crucial.
- First and foremost, flushing eliminates harmful material and filth that might interfere with healing and is therefore necessary.
- Finally, disinfectants are unable to function on organic substances (dirt, grass, other particles, etc.).
Alternatives to Using Hydrogen Peroxide to Clean a Wound
You’re probably wondering what to do if you can’t utilize hydrogen peroxide for whatever reason. In an emergency circumstance if you have absolutely nothing else to use but hydrogen peroxide, a single initial flushing with it is OK, merely to get a sense of how bad things are going. However, please do not apply hydrogen peroxide on your pet’s wound on a regular basis or for an extended period of time.
Simple pressurized saline is one of the best options for an initial flushing of a wound.
Saline has a pH that is similar to that of the skin, and it will not burn or aggravate an open wound. This is good since your pet will be less likely to object to what you are doing in this situation. I strongly recommend that you keep some on hand at home (really, many bottles since you would be astonished how much it takes to fully flush a wound!) and in your pet’s first-aid box at all times (here is agood wound flush). If you don’t have access to pressured saline, a normal saline eyewash can suffice in this situation.
Apart from that, the use of soap and shampoo will demand additional washing and handling of an already sore area.
I’ve seen pets with wounds from climbing under cars or inside engines, and they’ve been smeared with grease and/or oil, which is awful.
This will help to protect the wound and keep the soap from hurting the skin around the wound. Immediately after cleansing and rinsing, remove the bandage and use the saline to thoroughly rinse the location to eliminate any remaining lubricant.
When is it OK to Use Hydrogen Peroxide in Cleaning Pet Wounds?
If your veterinarian determines that hydrogen peroxide is required in the care of your pet’s wound (see, you didn’t have to throw away that bottle after all! ), you should use it. In order to get the most out of it, I urge that you carefully follow the recommendations provided by your veterinarian. When they use it in the manner that they recommend to speed up the healing of the wounds, they will have particular reasons for doing so.
Some reasons for using hydrogen peroxide include:
- Drains that need to be flushed or cleaned: Your veterinarian may have put a drain at the surgical site of your pet’s wound for drainage purposes. You may clean the holes where the drain is pushing through the skin with hydrogen peroxide and water (approximately 50/50), which will disinfect the area. This assists in preventing fluid from accumulating beneath the skin. Also, if the drain is of the solid kind (a tube), you may use this procedure to flush the inside of the drain using a syringe if the drain is of the solid type. Cleaning:Cleaning the fur around the area where the drain has been draining or leaking is necessary. Wet the fur with the hydrogen peroxide and allow it to sit for a minute or two before gently wiping or combing the crimson discharge out of the fur with your fingers. In some cases, leaving wound fluid drainage on the hair might cause skin irritation if it is not removed immediately.
Other uses for hydrogen peroxide:
Here are some alternative applications for hydrogen peroxide that are not connected to wound healing:
- The most effective method of removing blood from cloth or your pet’s collar is to soak the fabric (try a hidden location first) or your pet’s collar in warm water for a few minutes at a time. My scrubs always looked fantastic when I was at work because, let’s face it, customers didn’t want to see me go into an exam room with blood on my shirt. Dogs that have been poisoned or harmed: You should keep Hydrogen Peroxide on hand in case you need to force your dog* to throw up at home (which may be necessary if your dog consumes an unsuitable food or poison). However, do not use anything stronger than 3 percent Hydrogen Peroxide for this purpose, and be cautious when using “Food-Grade” Hydrogen Peroxide (which can be toxic).
Caution should be used when inducing vomiting in your dog since, in certain cases and with some chemicals, it can be more deadly for your dog than whatever they have taken in the first place (e.g., burning again on the way back up through the esophagus, or getting into their lungs and causing pneumonia). If your pet is suffering from a poisoning emergency, call your veterinarian, your local Animal Emergency Room, or a specialized pet poison control hotline before attempting to induce vomiting in your pet.
*CAUTION: Please do not attempt to induce vomiting in your cat at home by using hydrogen peroxide.
- In the event that you ever need to de-skunk your pet, hydrogen peroxide is a fantastic element for the job. Check out our de-skunking recipes for more information.
How to Monitor Your Pet’s Healing
I’d want to conclude by providing you with some suggestions on what to look for in your pet’s wound to determine whether or not it is infected while it is healing, as well as an estimate of how long the healing process will take. Wounds are difficult to maintain, and good care and management are essential for both preventing infection and assisting in the speedy healing of wounds. I urge that you consult your veterinarian for any wounds (unless they are quite small, like as an abrasion). It is common for antibiotics and even pain relievers to be prescribed in many situations, particularly when the reason is unknown.
How to Tell if Your Pet’s Wound is Infected
Even if your pet’s wound is carefully cleansed and treated, there is still the possibility of an infection developing in the wound. You may wonder why this is the case. There are a variety of reasons why this could happen. Even with the most advanced approaches, total purification (i.e., removal of the ‘trash’) may not be achievable in some instances. It is possible that the bacteria present are resistant to the antibiotic that has been selected. Finally, pets don’t always abide by the guidelines and will lick, gnaw, or otherwise contaminate their wound in order to get it dirty.
It is possible that an odor may emerge in the region – it might be a moderate odor or a terrible and disgusting odor.
In the end, you may detect a yellowish, greenish, or even grey discharge or substance accumulating on your skin. Make an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible if you observe any of these indicators or if anything appears to be changing unnaturally.
How to Tell if Your Pet’s Wound is Healing
Possibly, you’re asking how you’ll know whether the wound is healing properly. It is likely that the wound was surgically closed since the incision will seem clean (redness and discoloration will progressively reduce, and swelling will subside), and the discharge (if a drain was put) will become less noticeable with each passing day. The formation of granulation tissue (formation of tissue that appears as rounded masses of tissue), wound contracture (which causes the wound to become smaller and smaller over time), and smooth pinkish’skin’ around the margins will all be signs that the wound had to heal without surgery due to contamination or a lack of skin to close it will all be signs that the wound had to heal without surgery.
There will very certainly be some bleeding when the bandages are changed and the incision is flushed, and this is totally normal.
How Long Does it Take a Wound to Heal?
Finally, I understand that you are interested in knowing how long this entire procedure will take. After surgery is conducted, if the incision is still fresh and well cleansed, the healing process should take no more than two weeks. That is, of course, providing that there are no secondary infections and that the incision does not get reopened. If the wound is older, the veterinarian may decide to treat it as a “open wound” for a week or two (essentially flushing it and bandaging it frequently) until there is a healthy bed of tissue, after which he or she may surgically seal it.
The latter two scenarios will most likely take the longest to resolve.
Due to the large number of variables that might influence or hinder the healing process, it is difficult to place a date on this issue, which is unfortunate.
Please be patient if you find yourself in this final predicament, and be sure to properly follow the directions of your veterinarian.
Wound Care for Pets
If a wound is bleeding, the first step is to stop the bleeding. For a few minutes, apply pressure to the affected region using a thick cloth. Use warm water and mild antibacterial hand soap to clean any wound or sore. Be careful not to get the soap into the wound or sore since it might cause discomfort if it goes into that area. Also, make sure to thoroughly clean the area. After the initial cleaning, hydrogen peroxide should not be used again since it has the potential to impede the healing process.
Moisture is the enemy of a wound, so keep it clean and dry at all times.
Any bandage you apply to your pet should be applied with extreme caution, especially if the bandage is made of a flexible material.
Remove the bandage on a regular basis so that you may examine the wound.
Whenever your pet goes outdoors or when a cat uses the litter box, make sure to check the collar. If it’s raining, place a plastic bag over the bandage or wrap it in self-clinging plastic wrap to keep it from becoming wet. When you enter the house, remove the plastic wrap.
How To Clean A Cat Wound
When skin is damaged, germs and other debris can enter the wound and pollute the region. This page was last updated on March 23, 2021 by The management of the wound is therefore critical in order to limit the likelihood of an infection taking hold. When a cat is wounded, it might be difficult to control him or her. If your cat is demonstrating indications of fear or violence, it is best to get him examined by a veterinarian for diagnosis and treatment. Treatment should be limited to tiny wounds that are less than 1 inch in length.
- Hands should be washed thoroughly with warm soapy water before dealing with any injuries. If you have disposable gloves, put them on first. Put a stop to the bleeding. Fresh wounds will bleed profusely, and in some cases, quite a lot. Take a piece of clean, sterile gauze and apply it over the injured area. Ensure that the bandage is tight. If you don’t have any gauze on hand, you can use a sanitary pad to cover the cut. Remove the hair that is around the area, being cautious not to drop any hair into the wound itself. To keep fur away from the wound, you can use a water-soluble lubricant such as KY jelly to apply to the fur around it
- Otherwise, you can use an alcohol-based lubricant such as Vaseline to keep the fur away from the wound. Fill the wound with clean tap water or saline solution and inject it using the needle removed from the needle syringe
- Followed by a thorough flushing of the wound with an antiseptic solution such as Betadine It should be diluted one to ten times. Application should be made with the use of a spray bottle, but if you don’t have one, you may apply it on cotton wool balls and dab them onto the wound. After disinfecting the wound, dab it dry using gauze pads to prevent infection.
When to see the veterinarian
- If the wound is a puncture wound, the following rules apply: There is a lot of bleeding
- Inflammation, pus, or seeping from the wound Cat that is difficult to manage
- A wound that is more than 1 inch (2.5 cm) long
- If your cat stops eating, you should contact your veterinarian.
What not to do
On open wounds, avoid using bleach or Dettolor hydrogen peroxide. There is a list of antiseptics that are safe to use here.