How To Heal A Cat Scratch

How to Treat Cat Scratches at Home

David F. Kramer is the author of this piece. More than merely painful, getting scratched by a cat can cause bleeding, stinging and swelling as well as the development of an infection and, in certain circumstances, the transmission of disease. Minor cat scratches are normally treatable at home, but some wounds may need specialized attention and treatment. Dr. Patrick Mahaney, a holistic veterinarian in Los Angeles, has dealt with his fair share of violent cats and is well aware of the devastation they can bring with a swipe of the paw, as have many other veterinarians.

He goes on to say that the larger the amount of trauma, the greater the likelihood of swelling, exposure to the blood supply, and the likelihood of infection.

Matthew Levy of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine points out, there are a number of considerations to consider following a cat scratch.

Treating Cat Scratches

It is permissible to bathe the wound with soap and water for treating minor scrapes, according to Levy’s advice. According to him, if the wound is bleeding, apply pressure on it with a clean, dry gauze pad. “If the bleeding does not cease while exerting pressure, medical help should be sought immediately.” The author cautions that wounds on the hands and feet are more susceptible to infection than other parts of the body and that scratches on the face or other parts of the body can cause aesthetic harm in the form of scars.

  • People who have impaired or compromised immune systems, according to Levy, are at greater risk of contracting infections.
  • The wound must be monitored closely, he says, and any warning signals that it is time to see a doctor should be taken seriously.
  • Fever, chills, body pains, weariness, and swollen glands are all signs of a broad body infection, as are other symptoms.
  • If you are scratched by an unfamiliar or feral cat, Levy suggests that you use the same first aid treatment as described above, but also seek the assistance of animal control or your local health department.
  • Your treating physician may offer rabies prophylaxis (antibody and vaccination injections) if the animal is unable to be trapped as a prophylactic step if the animal cannot be captured.

For those who haven’t gotten a booster injection in more than 10 years, Levy recommends that you speak with your doctor about the possibility of getting one.

Other Risks Associated With Cat Scratches

It is normal to bathe the wound with soap and water while treating superficial scrapes, according to Dr. Levy. The doctor advises applying pressure with a clean and dry gauze pad if the wound is bleeding. “If the bleeding does not cease while applying pressure, then medical treatment should be sought immediately.” The author cautions that wounds on the hands and feet are more susceptible to infection than other parts of the body and that scratches on the face or other parts of the body can cause aesthetic harm in the form of scars.

  1. People who have impaired or compromised immune systems, according to Levy, are at greater risk of contracting illness.
  2. It’s critical to keep an eye on the wound’s growth, he says, and to be on the lookout for symptoms that it’s time to see a doctor.
  3. Fever, chills, body pains, weariness, and swollen glands are all symptoms of a broad body infection.
  4. If you are scratched by an unfamiliar or feral cat, Levy suggests that you use the same first aid treatment as described above, but also seek the assistance of animal control or your local health department as needed.
  5. Your treating physician may offer rabies prophylaxis (antibody and vaccination injections) if the animal is unable to be captured as a prophylactic step if the animal cannot be caught.

Cat-Scratch Disease: Causes, Prevention, and Treatment

Cat-scratch illness is an infection that can be contracted after being scratched, bitten, or licked by a cat. It is caused by bacteria that may be found in cat saliva. Fleas are most likely the source of the bacterium in cats. Cat-scratch sickness is sometimes referred to as cat-scratch fever in some circles. In healthy individuals, it is not a life-threatening sickness. However, it can be a concern for young children and those who have weakened immune systems because of the bacteria. People suffering from cancer, diabetes, or acquired immunodeficiency syndrome fall into this category (AIDS).

Symptoms of cat-scratch disease

In the case of a cat biting or scratching you, a red mark, sore, or blister may appear. This might occur anywhere from three to ten days following the bite or injury. It is possible that the sore or blister could take a long time to heal. Fever (less than 102°F), headache, exhaustion, and a loss of appetite are all possible symptoms of the illness. It is also possible to develop an infection of the lymph nodes. This occurs more frequently in the glands nearest to the site of the scratch or bite.

It is possible that the glands in your armpit or around your elbow will become sensitive and swollen as a result of the scrape. If you experience any of the following symptoms, contact your family doctor right away:

  • A scrape or bite from a cat that is not healing
  • For more than 2 days after the injury, a red patch around a cat scratch or bite will continue to grow in size. Inflammatory response to a cat scratch or bite that lasts for several days
  • Lymph nodes that are painful and swollen for longer than 2 or 3 weeks
  • Ache in the bones or joints, stomach pain (without fever, vomiting, or diarrhea), or severe weariness that lasts for longer than 2 or 3 weeks.

What causes cat-scratch disease?

Cat scratch illness is caused by germs that cats carry in their saliva and spreads through the cat’s scratching post. Fleas are most likely the source of the bacterium. When they lick themselves, they might transfer the virus to their paws or fur. Cat-scratch illness is caused by a cat biting, scratching, or licking you on the face or body. In addition, rubbing your eyes after caressing a cat that has the germs on its fur increases your chances of getting the bacteria in your eyes. People who have cat scratch sickness frequently report that they were never scratched or bit by a cat.

How is cat-scratch disease diagnosed?

Your doctor will check the bite or scrape and inquire as to the nature of your complaints. He or she will examine your lymph nodes to see if they are swollen or sensitive. A blood test may be ordered if the diagnosis is not obvious at the time.

Can cat-scratch disease be prevented or avoided?

Prevention of cat scratch illness can be accomplished in the following ways:

  • After handling your cat, make sure to thoroughly wash your hands. Playing softly with your cat will prevent them from scratching or biting you. You should avoid allowing your cat to lick you, especially around your mouth and nose as well as your eyes and open wounds. Fleas must be controlled in order to reduce the likelihood of your cat contracting the bacterium. It is not acceptable to taunt or provoke a cat. It is best not to pet stray or wild cats.

After handling your cat, wash your hands thoroughly. Playing softly with your cat will prevent them from scratching or biting you if they do. You should avoid allowing your cat to lick you, especially around your mouth and nose as well as your eyes and open wounds, and To reduce the likelihood of your cat contracting germs, keep fleas under control. It is not acceptable to tease or irritate a cat; instead, Try to stay away from cats that are stray or wild;

Cat-scratch disease treatment

For the most part, cat scratch illness goes away on its own without the need for therapy. You can use an over-the-counter pain killer to assist alleviate pain and discomfort while you are recovering from surgery. Ibuprofen (two brands: Motrin and Advil) and naproxen (one brand: Aleve) are both effective pain relievers. It may also be beneficial to provide hot compresses to the afflicted region. If a lymph node is very big or painful, your doctor may recommend that it be drained to alleviate the discomfort.

Occasionally, the infection might spread to your bones, liver, or other organs, although this is extremely unusual.

Should cats be treated?

The majority of cats infected with the bacterium do not become ill or require treatment. They may, on rare occasions, develop inflammation of the heart, which may make it difficult for them to breathe. If you are concerned that your cat may be developing symptoms as a result of the bacterium, you should consult your veterinarian.

Living with cat-scratch disease

Cat scratches and bites should be washed away with soap and water if you have been scratched or bitten. Over the next two weeks, keep an eye out for indications of infection. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, contact your doctor. You can treat your symptoms at home with pain medications and warm compresses in the majority of instances.

Questions to ask your doctor

  • My cat scratched me on the back of the neck. Is it necessary for me to be seen? If my cat has cat scratch illness, is there any way to tell if he contains the bacterium that causes it? My youngster is suffering from a weaker immune system. I’ve been bitten by a cat, and I’m not sure whether I should get rid of my cat. Are there any preventative measures I can take to avoid contracting cat scratch disease?

The American Academy of Family Physicians retains ownership of the copyright.

This material is intended to offer a basic overview and may not be applicable to all situations. Consult with your primary care physician to determine whether or not this information applies to you and to obtain further information on this subject.

Cat Scratch Disease

a cat scratch wound on the hand that has partially healed and a swollen lymph node in the armpit region of a person with cat scratch illness Cat scratch disease (CSD) is a bacterial illness carried by cats that causes scratching and biting. The disease is transferred when an infected cat licks an open wound on a human, or when a person is bitten or scratched hard enough to break the surface of the skin by an infected cat. A minor infection can develop at the site of a scratch or bite anywhere between three and fourteen days after the skin is damaged.

  1. A person suffering from CSD may also have symptoms such as fever, headache, low appetite, and tiredness.
  2. Cat bites and scratches should be thoroughly cleaned with soap and running water.
  3. If you see any signs or symptoms of cat scratch illness or infection, consult your doctor immediately.
  4. Approximately 40% of cats have B.
  5. Kittens under one year of age are more susceptible than older kittens to get B.
  6. As they play and learn how to assault prey, kittens are also more prone than adults to scratch and bite at their opponents.

How cats and people become infected

Kitten playing with a person’s index and middle fingers. Flea bites and flea filth (droppings) can cause cats to get infected withB. henselae if the bacteria gets into their wounds. Cats acquire up contaminated flea filth beneath their nails and between their teeth as a result of scratching and biting at the fleas on their coats. Fights between cats that are infected can also result in the transmission of the virus to uninfected cats. People become infected with the pathogen when an infected cat bites or scratches them hard enough to cause their skin to tear.

Serious but rare complications

CSD can result in major difficulties in some persons, despite the fact that it is infrequent. CSD can have a negative impact on the brain, eyes, heart, and other internal organs, among other things. Those between the ages of 5 and 14 years old, as well as those with compromised immune systems, are at greater risk of developing these unusual consequences, which may need extensive medical intervention.


While most cats withB. henselainfection do not exhibit any indications of sickness, this disease can cause inflammation of the heart, which can cause cats to become quite unwell and have hard breathing on rare instances.

Infections caused by B. hensela can also occur in the mouth, urinary system, and eyes. Your veterinarian may discover that some of your cat’s other organs are inflamed as a result of the inflammation.

My Cat Scratched Me Should I Be Worried? Risks, Treatment, Prevention

When you’re playing with your cat, it’s not uncommon to receive a scratch every now and again. However, it is critical that you take good care of your wound and keep a close eye out for any consequences. Despite the fact that not all cat scratches are harmful, some situations may raise your chance of getting certain diseases and other health hazards. Continue reading to find out more about some of the potential hazards linked with cat scratches, as well as whether or not you should seek medical assistance for them.

Kittens under one year of age are especially prone to scratching, according to Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Cat scratches, no matter how old you are, may cause more than just discomfort and temporary red or discolored markings on your skin.

Cats, both wild and domesticated, have the potential to spread viruses and pathogens to humans when they scratch their victims’ skin.

  • Cat scratch fever (also known as cat scratch sickness), tetanus, and rabies are all possible complications.

First and foremost, every cat scratch should always be cleaned with soap and warm water. Even if it’s your own cat scratching you, follow this guideline for all scratches. Using a clean cloth, pat the skin dry on the affected region. If your scrape is bleeding, gently press on it with a clean gauze pad to stop the flow. Additionally, you may want to apply a little quantity of over-the-counter antibiotic ointment before wrapping with a sterile bandage to help prevent further infection. Over the next several days, keep an eye out for any signs of infection, such as the following:

  • Increased swelling
  • Pus or drainage from the scrape
  • Red or discolored streaks emanating from the initial scratch
  • Flu-like symptoms such as a high temperature, headache, and chills

If you are suffering any of the symptoms listed above, you should get medical attention. When a cat that isn’t your own has recently scratched, bited, or licked an open wound on you, you should seek medical attention right once.

Treating eye scratches

A cat may accidently scratch your face, especially the region around your eyes, from time to time. It is important to promptly flush the damaged eye with either clean water or an eye drops solution in the event of this happening. You should avoid rubbing the corners of your eyes in case something gets caught in them, such as claw fragments from your cat. In the following step, you should contact your doctor so that they may properly inspect your eye for signs of injury. If the scrape on your eye becomes infected, your doctor may also prescribe medicine.

But if left untreated, they can lead to the following complications:

  • Eye discomfort, copious tears, a headache, light sensitivity, and blurred vision are all possible symptoms.

Cat scratch fever is a bacterial ailment caused by the bacterium Bartonella henselae that affects cats. Felines may carry the bacteria in their saliva, according to the CDC. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), up to 40% of cats will contain this bacteria at some time in their lives, although the vast majority will not exhibit any signs of illness.

Originally, this bacteria was thought to be acquired by cats through fleas. During cat fights, the bacteria can be passed from one cat to another by the other cats. The bacteria may then be spread to people by the scratching, biting, or licking of an open wound by the infected cat.

Symptoms of cat-scratch fever

If you have cat scratch fever, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reports that you may have the following symptoms between 3 to 14 days of the original incident:

  • Rashes on the body, enlarged lymph nodes, and severe weariness and weakness are all indications of Lyme disease. Fever, pains, and other flu-like symptoms are also common.
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Treatment for cat-scratch fever

It is feasible to treat cat-scratch fever with medicines and wound care at home to help alleviate your symptoms and avoid any problems from arising. Some of the symptoms of cat-scratch fever are similar to those of other illnesses, and it is crucial to understand this. This includes tetanus, which is caused by the Clostridium tetanibacterium, which is present in the environment. It is critical to get medical attention if you are experiencing any signs of an infection so that you can be treated appropriately.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, problems from cat scratch fever are more likely to occur if you are under the age of 14 or have a weaker immune system.

  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Internal organ damage
  • Bacillary angiomatosis, a progressive skin illness that involves elevated lesions that are red or pigmented and have scaly outer rings
  • Red, itchy eyes with flu-like symptoms
  • And other symptoms

When a person is bitten by an infected animal, he or she contracts rabies, a dangerous viral infection that can be fatal. While rabies is not frequent in domesticated cats in the United States, feline rabies cases are recorded at a higher rate than those reported in other household pets. An infected cat may exhibit unexpected behavioral changes, such as extreme hostility, when first diagnosed. Another symptom is a loss of appetite, as well as a loss of muscular control and even paralysis. Rabid cats are more prone than non-rabid cats to transfer the virus to people through their saliva, which they do by biting.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the flu’s initial symptoms in humans are similar to those of the flu, and symptoms might manifest themselves weeks or months later.

It is possible to prevent life-threatening complications from rabies by receiving prompt treatment with antibodies and immunization.

  • During all sorts of encounters, washing and care for any unintentional wounds is essential. staying away from physical play, especially with kittens, who are more prone to scratching
  • In order to avoid eye damage, it is recommended that you keep your face away from your cat during playtime. concealing any open wounds you may have so that your cat will not be able to get to them
  • Making your cat’s surroundings one that is only available inside
  • Taking caution when dealing with feral cats or other felines that are not your own
  • Making sure your cat has all of the necessary vaccinations, such as rabies injections maintain current vaccinations, including tetanus boosters, on a personal level
  • Ensuring that your cat receives a sufficient flea treatment, as suggested by your veterinarian

Although occasional scratches may appear to be a normal part of being a cat lover, you should always make sure to cleanse any inadvertent wounds you may receive after playing with your feline friends to avoid spreading infection. Because some instances may progress to infection, it is critical to be aware of any suspicious signs and to get medical attention as soon as possible. While it might be impossible to completely eliminate cat scratches when you have an active kitty in your house, there are certain precautions you can do to help prevent issues from occurring.

Cleaning properly, avoiding wild animals, and keeping up with prescribed vaccinations are just a few examples.

Cat Scratch Disease

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What is cat scratch disease?

Cat scratches and bites can result in cat scratch illness, which is a bacterial infection carried in cat saliva and spread by contact with the cat. According to research, fleas may be the source of these germs in cats. Infected cats can transmit germs to humans by licking an open wound or biting or scratching human flesh hard enough to break the surface of the skin, or by licking an open wound. Kittens under one year of age are more likely than older kittens to scratch, increasing the risk of infection.

What causes cat scratch disease?

Cat scratch illness is caused by a bacteria that is carried about in the saliva of the cat. Infected cats can transmit germs to humans by licking an open wound or biting or scratching human flesh hard enough to break the surface of the skin, or by licking an open wound.

Who is at risk for cat scratch disease?

Cat scratch illness can be caused by a number of factors, the most significant of which are as follows:

  • Being in close proximity to cats on a regular basis, particularly kittens who are more lively and prone to accidently scratching you
  • If you do not clean cat scratches or bites right after after receiving them, you may get a serious infection. You should let a cat to lick any open wounds that you may be suffering from
  • Being in the presence of a flea infestation

What are the symptoms of cat scratch disease?

The following are the most often seen symptoms of cat scratch disease:

  • When a cat bites or scratches you, the bite or scratch gets reddish or inflamed within a few days and does not heal or worsens with time
  • Scratches on the arm or hand can cause pain or swelling in the glands under the arms, or scratches on the foot or leg might cause pain and swelling in the groin. There are flu-like symptoms, including nausea and vomiting as well as tiredness, joint discomfort and fever. Rashes on the body

The symptoms of cat scratch illness might be confused with those of other medical disorders or problems. Always get medical attention if you suspect a medical problem.

How is cat scratch disease diagnosed?

The diagnosis is made on the basis of a thorough history, which may include a history of being scratched by a cat or kitten, a physical examination, and, in certain cases, blood testing.

How is cat scratch disease treated?

Your healthcare professional will determine the most appropriate therapy for you based on the following factors:

  • What your age is
  • How long you’ve been alive. Your general well-being and medical background
  • What kind of illness you’re suffering from
  • Your ability to tolerate particular medications, surgeries, or therapies
  • How long it is projected that the situation will persist
  • Your point of view or choice

The following treatments may be used:

  • Medicines to treat the infection
  • Treatment of the symptoms that arise as a result of the illness. In the majority of instances, antibiotics are not required, and the infection will resolve on its own.

What are the complications of cat scratch fever?

The majority of healthy persons do not experience any difficulties as a result of cat scratch fever. People with weakened immune systems (such as those with HIV/AIDS, those undergoing chemotherapy, or those who have diabetes) may experience consequences such as the ones listed below:

  • This condition is known as bacillary angiomatosis. Red, raised lesions on the skin’s surface, encircled by a scaly ring, describe this skin ailment. Parinaud’s oculoglandular syndrome, which is a more widespread illness that affects internal organs, may develop as a result of this ailment. On the same side, there is a disorder that involves a red, itchy, and painful eye comparable to conjunctivitis (pink eye), fever, and enlarged lymph nodes in the area in front of the ear.

Can cat scratch disease be prevented?

Cats and kittens should not be scratched or bitten on the face. If you have been scratched or bitten, wash the affected area with soap and water straight soon. Cats should not be allowed to lick any wounds you may have.

When should I call my healthcare provider?

Consult your healthcare practitioner if a cat scratch or bite becomes red or inflamed and you have flu-like symptoms such as headaches, decreased appetite, lethargy, joint pain, or fever thereafter.

Key points about cat scratch fever

  • Cat scratch disease is an infection caused by a bacteria found in the saliva of cats
  • It is contagious. Inflammation and swelling at the location of a cat scratch or bite, as well as flu-like symptoms, are all signs of the condition. If you have been scratched or bitten by a cat or kitten, it is critical that you wash the area with soap and water as soon as possible. Antibiotics are effective in treating cat scratch illness.

Next steps

Tips to help you get the most out of your appointment with your healthcare practitioner include the following:

  • Know why you’re coming and what you hope to accomplish while you’re there. Prepare a list of questions you’d want to have answered prior to your appointment. Bring a friend or family member with you to assist you in asking questions and remembering what your provider tells you. Write down any new diagnoses, medications, treatments, or tests that you learn about during your appointment so that you can remember them later. Also, make a note of any new instructions you get from your provider. Understand why a new drug or therapy is being suggested, as well as how it will benefit you. Also, be aware of any negative effects that may occur. Inquire as to whether your problem may be handled in a different method. Understand why a test or treatment is advised, as well as what the findings may indicate
  • Understand what will happen if you do not take the medication or undergo the test or operation. Keep track of any follow-up appointments you have by writing down the date and time of your visit, as well as the reason for your visit. Know how to get in touch with your service provider if you have any questions

default – Stanford Children’s Health

When your child gets bitten or injured by an animal, be cool and promise your child that you will assist him or her. After an animal bite has occurred, your child’s healthcare professional will select the appropriate therapy for him or her. The following may be included in your treatment. Small bites from a domestic pet that is inoculated and in excellent health are treated as follows:

  • When your child gets bitten or injured by an animal, be cool and promise your child that you will assist him or her. The particular treatment for an animal bite will be determined by your child’s medical professional. The following are examples of possible treatment. A family pet that is inoculated and in excellent health will bite you if it is shallow.

For deeper bites or puncture wounds caused by any animal, or for any bite caused by an unknown species, consult your doctor.

  • The bite or scrape should be applied pressure with a clean bandage or cloth to halt the bleeding
  • Otherwise, let it alone. For at least 5 minutes, wash the wound with soap and water from a faucet that is running at high pressure. Avoid scrubbing since this may cause the tissue to bruise. Dry the wound thoroughly and apply a sterile dressing on it. Closing the incision with tape or butterfly bandages is not recommended. This has the potential to trap dangerous microorganisms in the wound. Call your child’s healthcare practitioner for assistance in reporting the attack and determining whether additional treatment is necessary. The treatment may involve antibiotics, a tetanus booster, a rabies vaccination, or a stitched-up wound to close the wound. For bites on the face or bites that result in deeper puncture wounds of the skin, this is extremely crucial to remember. It is critical to inform your child’s healthcare practitioner of any cat bites, particularly those that occur around the hands and wrists. These injuries are well-known for frequently resulting in infection
  • If at all feasible, track down the animal that caused the injury. Some animals must be trapped, confined, and continuously monitored for the presence of rabies. Never attempt to capture the animal on your own. If the animal cannot be located or is a high-risk species (such as a raccoon, a skunk, or a bat), or if the animal attack was unprovoked, your kid may require a course of rabies vaccinations.

If your kid exhibits any flu-like symptoms following an animal bite, contact your child’s healthcare practitioner.

Fever, headache, sick feeling, loss of appetite, and enlarged glands are some of the symptoms that might occur.

5 Home-Remedy Ideas for Cat Scratch Treatment

The likelihood is that if you have ever owned a cat, they have scratched you. Their temperaments may be cantankerous, and even the tightest tie of affection will not be enough to keep them from lashing out when they are startled or get overly aggressive when you are playing with them. It goes without saying that if you have any worries about your scratch, you should seek medical attention. However, there are certain home cures that can help you stay fit and healthy after your cat takes a swipe at you.

Why Might Your Cat Scratch You?

A cat striking out at you may appear to have sprung out of nowhere, but there is nearly always a valid reason for this behavior on the part of the cat. Aggression and fear are the most common reasons for your cat scratching you, and they are both understandable.

  • When your cat acts on their predatory impulses, this is referred to as aggression. This can happen during play, when they come into contact with another cat, or when they encounter something unfamiliar. When someone is afraid or feels threatened, they experience fear. Something as simple as sudden loud noises, the presence of strangers, or a trip to the veterinarian might trigger this reaction.

In the event that you are confused as to why they assaulted you, you should stare into their eyes if it is safe for you to do so. Large pupils may indicate fear, whilst tiny pupils may indicate concentration and anger. If your cat is demonstrating aggressive behavior on a regular basis, you may want to try behavior training for him. You may not have realized it at the time, but when they were kittens and the sight of them nibbling at your toes was adorable, you may have inadvertently taught them that your hands and feet are toys that should be attacked.

  • In addition, if your cat is needlessly worried and nervous, you might want to think about taking this approach.
  • It is possible to change their habitat to include extra perches and hiding spots if this is the case, which will help them feel more at ease.
  • Declawing an outdoor cat may not be a good choice because you are removing its natural protection against any possible aggressors they may come into contact with.
  • They can, for example, scale trees in order to escape.
  • The Best Cat Scratching Tower is a related post.

Why Should You Treat a Cat Scratch?

Cat scratches may appear to be little, but it is still a good idea to think about prophylactic treatment for them. This is due to the fact that cat scratches might grow more dangerous than you might anticipate. Many complications can arise from a single cat scratch, and many of these are prevented if you clean and treat the wound as quickly as you can after it occurs. If you put it off until later, bacteria can spread and you could become extremely ill as a result of your neglect. As a result of an open wound, the most obvious risk is infection.

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Due to the fact that your cat is likely to be coated with bacteria, cat scratches have a higher risk of infection than a simple paper cut.

Every year, around 12,000 new instances of cat scratch sickness, often known as cat scratch fever, are detected.

It is possible to become infected when a cat scratches you, licks any open wounds you may have, or bites you. You can become infected when a cat scratches you or licks any open wounds you may have. It might take up to 14 days for symptoms to appear, so keep an eye out for the following:

  • The presence of a fever, fatigue, and a reduction in appetite Symptoms of an infection

Cat scratches on your hands and feet are also something to be cautious of, especially if you have a lot of them. Even while you are more likely to get scratched there since there is where you connect with your cat the most, it is also the location where you are most likely to become infected because it is where you interact with the rest of the world the most. Additionally, you should be cautious about scratches to, or near, the eye, as these infections may result in blindness in the affected eye.

Those that fall under this category include newborns, the elderly, and those who have an autoimmune condition.

How do You Treat Your Cat Scratch?

Most of the time, if you catch your cat on a bad day and they cut you with their claws, nothing awful happens and it is as harmless as having a paper cut. For those who want to be on the safe side, or who just wish to alleviate some of the natural side effects of a tiny cut, here are five simple home treatments that you may try. 1. Keep it as clean as possible. Although it might seem simple, the first step should always be a thorough cleaning of the wound. In some cases, a small amount of water may not be sufficient, particularly for a deep cut, thus warm water and soap should be used instead.

  1. Overscrubbing can exacerbate the damage and worsen the wound, and it does little to help the body’s natural defenses against infection.
  2. While you wash the wound, sing a nursery rhyme like ‘The Wheels on the Bus’ to ensure that the soap gets the two or three minutes it needs to eradicate any germs on the wound.
  3. Take efforts to clean the wound, even if you are out and about, such as taking your cat for a walk, to ensure that it is as clean as possible.
  4. 2.
  5. Honey is an excellent alternative antiseptic if you are seeking for a non-prescription option.
  6. Honey may be used to replace them by just applying it on the wound and let it to do its job for a few minutes.
  7. Honey provides a plethora of health advantages.

It is also a natural antibiotic.

In addition to drawing water out of your incision, honey dehydrates microorganisms and keeps your wound dry enough so that it may heal with the least amount of scarring possible.

Sugar and corn syrup substitutes do not provide the same therapeutic advantages as sugar and corn syrup.

Baking Soda (Sodium Bicarbonate) Fresh wounds are typically uncomfortable and inconvenient, but scratching them can delay healing and increase the risk of infection.

The itching sensation associated with a wound is caused by your body’s attempt to begin the healing process.

Baking soda, commonly known as sodium bicarbonate, can be used to treat wounds by making a paste consisting of one part baking soda and three parts water and applying it directly to the lesion.

Vitamins and minerals are also important.

If you can get your hands on some of these vitamins in the form of ointments, you may apply them directly to the wound. Taking the vitamins orally may be an option, although it may not be essential for a minor scrape in this situation. The following are some of the advantages of each vitamin:

  • Vitamin A, like histamines, is beneficial in the treatment of inflammation. Aside from that, vitamin D has anti-inflammatory properties and can fight allergies and other bacterial invaders. In addition to being an antioxidant, vitamin E may be used to soothe a wound and may speed up the healing process by up to 20 percent.

Check out Vitamins For Cats No. 5 for more information. Pay a visit to the pharmacy There are a variety of over-the-counter medications that can alleviate cat scratching. It is recommended that you have your preferred over-the-counter medicines readily available in your medicine cabinet if you have a large number of cats or if you have a particularly agitated cat who is prone to scratch you on a regular basis. Antibiotics and vitamin therapies are examples of such medications. Hardcore therapies, such as antibiotics, should be reserved for life-threatening situations, such as getting scratched by a wild or unfamiliar feline.

  1. It is worthwhile to examine the fact that the misuse of antibiotics may be extremely harmful to society.
  2. It happens when your body gets vaccinated against the advantages of antibiotics, similar to how your body may become resistant to the benefits of medicines.
  3. Obviously, if you have a serious infection and your doctor recommends antibiotics for you, you should follow his or her instructions.
  4. Consult with a physician.
  5. There are numerous situations in which you may require true medical treatment, such as with cat scratch illness or infection, therefore our bonus, sixth piece of advise is to see a doctor if you have any fears that you may be suffering from an infection or anything worse.
  • Swelling, as well as a ring of redness surrounding the wound It smells like it’s coming from the wound. Any discharge that may come from the wound
  • The presence of a fever
  • Fatigue

These home treatment suggestions are effective for minor wounds and can help prevent issues such as pain and infection; but, they will not help heal anything that has already taken hold of the wound. Always use caution, which most likely entails speaking with a specialist.

Getting Scratched by a Feral Cat

Another small additional advice we’d like to offer with you is what to do if you’re scratched by an unknown cat, especially if the scratch ends in infection or swelling. A relatively little scratch caused by understandable anxiety may not be a big source of concern, but an aggressive or ill cat is likely to be a risk to other animals and people in the area, and should be avoided at all costs. In order for professionals to analyze the issue, you should contact your regional health department. They may determine that the animal must be located, tested, and quarantined in order to prevent the spread of rabies or other diseases.

If the cat cannot be located and, as a result, cannot be tested, you may require a rabies vaccination as a precaution.

Toxicity to tetanus is also a risk if you have not received a tetanus vaccination within the past ten years. The basic conclusion is that if you are bitten, or even merely scratched, by an unknown feral cat, you should seek medical attention immediately.


  1. Cats: Destructive Scratching, by Matt Wildman, published by The Humane Society.

Cat Scratch Disease (for Parents)

Bacteria are responsible for cat scratch illness (a type of germ). It may be contracted by humans if an infected cat or kitten scratches the orbitesthem or licks an open wound. The majority of instances in the United States occur during the fall and winter months, and they disproportionately affect children, maybe because they are more prone to play with cats and get bitten or scratched.

What Causes Cat Scratch Disease?

Microorganisms are to blame for cat scratch illness (a type of germ). It can be contracted by humans if an infected cat or kitten scratches or licks an open wound. Children are more prone than adults to be bitten or scratched by cats, which may explain why the majority of occurrences in the United States occur throughout the fall and winter.

What Are the SignsSymptoms of Cat Scratch Disease?

Cat scratch infection symptoms include a blister or a tiny lump that appears many days after the scratch or bite was sustained. It can seem to be an insect bite. Within a couple of weeks of a scratch or bite, one or more of the tissues near the scratch or bite will swell up and become sensitive. The underarm and neck regions are the most common locations for these enlarged lymph nodes. They range in size from around 12 inches to 2 inches in diameter, and they may be surrounded by a greater region of swelling beneath the surface of your skin.

The predominant sign of the condition in most children is enlarged lymph nodes, and the sickness is often minor in nature.

The enlarged lymph nodes normally dissolve within 2 to 4 months, however they can sometimes linger for considerably longer periods of time.

How Is Cat Scratch Disease Diagnosed?

Doctors often identify cat scratch illness based on an examination of the youngster and a question about whether or not the child has been around a cat or kitten. Swollen lymph nodes and symptoms of a cat scratch or bite will be checked for by the doctor during the examination. In some situations, doctors will request tests to determine whether or not a patient has cat scratch illness.

How Is Cat Scratch Disease Treated?

For the most part, there is no need for any specific therapy for cat scratch illness. Antibiotics are occasionally prescribed by doctors to treat serious cases. If your doctor has ordered antibiotics, make sure to give them to your kid on time and for the whole amount of time indicated. Children who have cat scratch sickness do not need to be separated from their siblings or other family members. Allow your youngster to take as much rest as he or she requires. If your kid wants to play, encourage him or her to do so quietly, taking care not to injure the enlarged lymph nodes in the process.

Is Cat Scratch Disease Contagious?

In contrast to cat scratch illness, cat scratch disease is not infectious from person to person. The infection is conveyed by the scratch or bite of an infected animal, which is most commonly a kitten. If the animal’s saliva (spit) comes into touch with a person’s eye or via damaged skin, the virus can spread as well as by inhalation.

It is possible for more than one case to occur within a same family, generally as a result of interaction with the same diseased animal. People who have had only one episode of cat scratch sickness are typically immune for the rest of their life after that.

Can Cat Scratch Disease Be Prevented?

If you’re concerned about cat scratch illness, you don’t have to get rid of your beloved family pet right now. The condition is uncommon and typically minor, and there are a few things you can do to protect your children against it:

  • Instruct children to stay away from stray or unknown cats. In order to avoid getting scratched or bitten by a family pet or a familiar cat, children should refrain from rough play when playing with them. After handling or playing with a cat, instruct children to wash their hands. Maintain a flea-free environment for yourself and your pets.

If your kid has been scratched by a pet, thoroughly clean the damaged area with soap and water. If you suspect that someone has contracted cat scratch illness from your family pet, you shouldn’t be concerned that your cat will have to be put down (put to sleep). Consult your veterinarian for advice on how to deal with the situation.

When Should I Call the Doctor?

When your child’s lymph nodes become swollen or painful in any part of the body, take him or her to the doctor right away. In addition, if your child is attacked by an animal, notify your doctor immediately, especially if:

  • The bite or scratch was caused by a cat, and the wound does not appear to be healing well
  • The region of redness surrounding the bite is becoming increasingly large. The scratch or bite caused a fever in your youngster, which lasted for a few days following the incident.

You should seek medical attention if your kid has a high temperature, severe pain in a lymph node, appears extremely unwell, or develops new symptoms after being diagnosed with cat scratch disease. Date of last review: January 2021

What Is Cat-Scratch Fever? What Causes It?

Scratching fever is an ailment caused by a kind of bacterium known as Bartonella henselae (it is also referred to as Bartonella henselae infection in rare cases.) The germs can be spread to you through contact with an open wound on your skin or by bites or scratches from a cat carrying this type of bacterium. Cat-scratch fever, also known as Cat-scratch disease (CSD), is a viral infection that most commonly affects children and teenagers.

Cat-Scratch Fever Causes

Approximately 40 percent of cats and kittens have Bartonella hensela in their mouths or behind their claws, according to research. Scratching or biting at infected fleas causes them to get the disease. They can also get the disease by fighting with other cats who are infected with it. The majority of sick cats do not exhibit any signs of illness. However, in severe situations, kids may experience breathing difficulties or develop infections in their mouth, eyes, or urinary tract. If you are bitten or scratched by a cat that has Bartonella henselae and the bacterium gets into your body through the wound, the germs can enter your body.

Cat-Scratch Fever Symptoms

Not everyone who has been licked or scratched by a cat is required to visit the veterinarian. In the event that you have contracted CSD, you will experience symptoms. These things don’t happen overnight. The majority of the time, they develop many days after you have been in the presence of a cat. The initial symptom of a scratch or bite is generally a red lump, sore, or blister at the location of the injury. This may not be painful, but it frequently develops a crust and may include pus. Within the next 2 weeks – and even after the bump has healed – you might experience the following side effects:

  • Fever (which might be “low grade,” meaning less than 102 F)
  • Headache
  • Nausea
  • Vomiting
  • Headache
  • Exhaustion (feeling really exhausted)
  • Having a bad appetite
  • Glands (lymph nodes) that are swollen

The lymph nodes that enlarge are frequently seen in close proximity to the diseased region. Consider the following scenario: If a cat bites your arm, the glands in your armpits may enlarge and fill with pus.

Only in the most extreme situations does CSD create major difficulties that impact your bone and joint health, eyesight, brain, heart, and other organs. These are especially likely to occur in children under the age of five or in persons who have a weaker immune system, among other groups.

Cat-Scratch Fever Diagnosis

If you inform your doctor that you have been scratched or bitten by a cat, he or she may be able to diagnose you based on the symptoms you are experiencing. If this is the case, you may need to have a blood test done. A tissue sample from your lymph node may be taken by your doctor in order to check for CSD.

See also:  How To Keep Cat Litter Off The Floor

Cat-Scratch Fever Treatment

CSD will most likely go away on its own in persons who are in good physical health. While you wait for the swelling to subside, you can take an over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medication such as ibuprofen(Advil,Motrin,Nuprin) or naproxen(Aleve,Anaprox,Naprosyn) sodium to relieve the discomfort. A hot compress might also be beneficial. Your doctor may use a needle to gently insert into particularly tight, painful glands and drain the fluid from them in order to reduce the discomfort. It is probable that your doctor would prescribe antibiotics if you are suffering from immune system difficulties or if your symptoms have not improved after two months.

It is possible that you will need to take this medication for several months.

Cat-Scratch Fever Prevention

You are allowed to retain your family pet. Taking a few basic precautions now can help you prevent contracting CSD later.

  • If you come into contact with or pet stray cats, use caution. Because they spend so much time outside, there is a greater likelihood that they have come into touch with fleas and contracted CSD. Keep “rough play” with your cat to a minimum. Scratches and bites are more likely to occur as a result of this. Take good care of your companion. Trim your cat’s nails and apply a flea prevention solution to keep him safe from fleas. Consult with your veterinarian about the best sort of product to use, since not all over-the-counter products are suitable to use on animals. Soften your hands after washing them. After caressing or playing with your cat, wash your hands with soap and water to remove any remaining dirt. If you’ve been scratched or bitten, you’ll want to wash the affected area with soap and water as soon as possible. The same is true if your cat occurs to lick an open sore, scab, or wound
  • However, this is less often. If you have health problems, consider adopting an older cat. Choosing a cat that is at least a year old is important if you have a weaker immune system and wish to adopt a cat. CSD is more common in kittens under the age of one year.

How to Deal With a Cat Scratch

Documentation Download Documentation Download Documentation The behavior of cats may range from playful to eccentric to aggressive at times. If you spend a lot of time with cats, it’s very likely that you’ll get a cat scratch at some point throughout your lifetime. Cats have razor-sharp claws that they employ to protect themselves, and they are capable of inflicting a significant amount of damage. It is possible to avoid consequences from an injury if you provide proper care for your cat’s scratches.

  1. 1 Identify the cat by its markings. It is critical to know as much as possible about the cat that has scratched you on the back of the neck. “Household cat” is a term that can be used to refer to your cat or the cat of a family member or close friend who lives with you. If the wound is not too bad and you are certain that the following information about the cat is correct, you should be able to treat it on your own.
  • The cat has received all of its vaccinations. The cat appears to be in good health overall. The cat spends the most of its time indoors
  • Nonetheless,

2Seek medical attention for scratches on your skin caused by an unfamiliar cat. Due to the possibility that unknown cats might not have immunizations, you may need to seek prophylactic treatment for bacterial illnesses, tetanus, or rabies before interacting with them. When a scrape is accompanied with an insect bite (which has an approximately 80 percent probability of becoming infected), you should seek medical assistance from your doctor immediately. Advertisement 3 Evaluate the injury. The right therapy will be determined by the severity of the scratch-induced wound.

  • A superficial wound is one that affects only the uppermost layer of skin and results in minimal bleeding
  • It can be defined as follows: Seriousness should be assigned to a scratch injury that penetrates multiple layers of skin and bleeds considerably.

4Make a decision on the most appropriate therapy. Wounds that are superficial in nature and caused by well-known domestic cats can be treated at home. In contrast, every scratch from an unfamiliar cat, as well as major (deep) scratches from family cats, should be assessed by an appropriate healthcare practitioner. Advertisement

  1. 1Wash your hands thoroughly. Make sure that your hands are clean and disinfected before you begin working on the scratched part of your body. Using soap and warm (or hot) water, thoroughly wash your hands for at least 20 seconds. Clean in between your fingers and under your fingernails if you have long nails. After that, thoroughly wash your hands with clean water
  2. 2rinse the wound. Rinse the cat scratch and the area around it with clean running water from your kitchen sink or bathroom faucet. Avoid using excessively hot water, as this may exacerbate any bleeding that is already present
  3. 3 Scratched skin should be washed. Gently wash the scratched area with a mild soap after it has healed. Make an effort to wash the areas around the scratch as well as the scratch itself (for example, if the scratch is on your forearm, it may be helpful to wash your entire forearm, not the scratch alone.) Washing should be followed by a thorough rinsing with clean water from the faucet.
  • It is important not to scour the affected region when washing it since this might cause more injury (bruising) to the afflicted tissues.

4 Apply ointment to the scratch and let it dry.

You should apply an antibiotic ointment to the scrape to prevent infection. Use of a triple antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin is recommended; these ointments contain neomycin, which is an antibiotic that is particularly helpful in helping cut injuries to heal more quickly and completely.

  • Three times daily application of triple antibiotic ointment to the wound is recommended. The antibiotic bacitracin is a viable choice for those who are allergic to the commonly used triple antibiotic ointments. The administration of oral antibiotics for a superficial scrape caused by a housecat should be avoided if possible.

5Do not conceal the scratch with tape. If you are treating the scratch wound at home, the scratch wound should be quite shallow, and there should be no need to wrap the area. Keep the scrape clean as it heals, but allow it to be exposed to fresh air to speed up the healing process even more. Advertisement

  1. First and foremost, seek medical attention. The use of oral antibiotics to prevent infection, even in the case of a fully vaccinated cat, may be necessary for deeper wounds that are accompanied by excessive bleeding. It is common for doctors to give Augment 875/125 mg, which should be taken twice daily for 7 to 10 days.
  • It is possible that you will wish to begin therapy at home before obtaining professional medical attention. If you haven’t already, make an appointment with your doctor after doing the following wound-care procedures:

2Put a stop to the bleeding. The region should be compressed with a clean cloth if there is a lot of bleeding from the cut. Using a strong pressing motion, apply pressure to the bleeding region and maintain it in place until the bleeding stops. It is possible that you may need to raise the incision above your head. 3Wash the scratched area with soap and water. After properly cleansing your hands, gently wash the injured area with soap and then rinse with clean water. While you are washing, avoid scrubbing since this may cause the bleeding to resume.

Apply a second clean towel to the wound and the area around the scrape to ensure that they are totally dry.

Deep wounds should be covered (or closed) with an adhesive bandage (such as a Band-Aid), a butterfly bandage, or clean gauze dressings to prevent infection.

  • A butterfly bandage should be used if the wound is large enough to require one. If the wound is large enough, draw the edges of the wound together so that there is no space between them. Apply as many butterfly bandages as necessary to bind the edges of the wound together, which will aid in the appropriate and expedient healing of the wound. You can use gauze dressing to cover the wound if you don’t have any adhesive bandages on hand
  • Medical tape will hold the dressing in place.
  1. 1 Do not become infected. Some scratch wounds, as well as the majority of cat bite wounds, can develop infectious. Cleaning the wound thoroughly and applying an antibiotic ointment such as Neosporin or Bacitracin can help to minimize the risk of infection significantly. Oral antibiotics may also be required in the case of an infected wound. The following are signs of an infected wound:
  • Pain, swelling, redness, or warmth surrounding the site are all signs of infection. In the presence of crimson streaks that extend from the wound
  • Pus is being drained from the wound. Having a high temperature is present

2 Keep an eye out for cat scratch sickness (also known as cat scratch fever). Infection with the bacterium Bartonella henselae leads to cat scratch illness, which is the most frequent disease carried by cats. Cats serve as a reservoir for the illness, which is particularly frequent among young cats and cats that have been exposed to fleas. Approximately 40% of cats will contain the bacterium at some time in their life, but will not exhibit any signs of having the condition when tested.

  • Some cats suffering with cat scratch illness may develop heart disease, ulcers in their jaws, or eye infections as a result of the condition. A minor swelling at the site of the cat scratch or bite is the first indication of cat scratch illness in humans, and this is followed by enlargement of the lymph nodes in the armpits, groin, or neck. The condition is contagious. Next comes a fever, exhaustion, a red eye, joint ache, and a scratchy throat
  • And finally Cat scratch illness in humans can cause significant damage to the eyes, brain, liver, and spleen if left untreated. People who have impaired immune systems are at greater risk of developing complications or even dying as a result of cat scratch fever. Cat scratch illness is often diagnosed by the use of B henselae serology, however it may also be detected through the use of culture, histology, or polymerase chain reaction. Antibiotics such as azithromycin, rifampin, gentamicin, ciprofloxacin, clarithromycin, or bactrim are used to treat it.

2 Examine your skin to determine whether or not you have ringworm. Ringworm is a fungal illness that causes circular, swollen, and scaly patches of skin to appear on the skin’s surface.

  • Ringworm is frequently accompanied by a strong itching sensation. In some cases, antifungal ointments such as miconazole or clotrimazole might be used to treat ringworm.

4 Determine your level of risk for toxoplasmosis. Toxoplasmosis is a parasite that cats carry and excrete in their feces, causing illness. The toxoplasmosis parasite, Toxoplasma gondii, can be transmitted to humans by scratching a cat’s back, particularly if the cat’s claws include traces of excrement.

  • Humans who have been infected may develop fever, bodily pains, and swollen lymph nodes. The brain, eyes, and lungs can all be damaged in severe cases, and an infection can be especially deadly for pregnant women who are carrying a child. As a result, pregnant women should refrain from tending to the litter box or cat excrement while they are pregnant. Toxoplasmosis is treated with an antiparasitic medicine such as pyrimethamine, which is administered orally.

Five, look for signs of other illnesses. Cats are known to carry infections that are potentially fatal. Immediately seek medical attention if you have been scratched by a cat and experience any of the symptoms listed below:

  • Fever
  • Swelling of the head or neck
  • And other symptoms Patches of skin that are red, scratchy, or scaly
  • Headaches, lightheadedness, or dizziness that are severe
  1. If a cat scratches your leg, don’t reprimand him or her. It is natural for cats to scratch in order to defend themselves, and punishing a cat for scratching might result in increased aggressiveness in the future. 2Cut the claws off of your cat. With a pair of standard nail clippers, you may easily trim a cat’s claws at home. Cutting a cat’s claws once a week can help to reduce damage from future scratches
  2. 3Avoid rough play with your cat. Try not to be harsh or violent with your cat or kitten when you are playing with them. This may lead to their biting and scratching you and other humans
  3. 4Adopt an older cat to reduce the risk of this happening. Most cats outgrow severe biting and scratching once they reach the age of one to two years old, when they transition from being a juvenile to an adult cat. Instead of adopting a kitten if you are allergic to cat scratches or have a damaged immune system, you should consider adopting an older cat as a companion. Advertisement

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  • Flea treatment should be administered to your cat. Even if this does not affect scratching habit, it can reduce your chance of developing symptoms such as cat scratch fever if you have a cat. Consult your veterinarian for the most effective method of keeping your cat flea-free. Remove your cat’s claws with caution as it might cause injury. Some people compare it to plucking the fingers from a human’s hand, and your cat may become despondent or afraid as a result. Avoid cutting your cat’s claws using human nail clippers since the angle of your cat’s nails is different from that of a human, and this might cause damage to your cat’s nails. Seek advice from a specialist when it comes to trimming your cat’s nails, as proper understanding of the angle, kind of clippers, and length of time you may cut is required to avoid discomfort and injury.


  • If the cat was unfamiliar to you, the cut was serious, or you were immunocompromised, you should always seek medical assistance for a cat scratch. If at all possible, avoid coming into contact with feral or stray cats.


About This Article

Summary of the ArticleXIf you have been scratched by an unfamiliar cat, get medical assistance as soon as possible because the cat may not have been vaccinated. If the scrape has penetrated multiple layers of skin and is causing moderate bleeding, you should seek medical assistance as well. A minor scratch caused by a domestic cat, on the other hand, may be treated at home without the need for medical attention. To begin, gently cleanse the wound with a light soap and rinse it well. After that, put an antibiotic ointment to the scrape and keep it exposed for a few days to allow it to recover.

Follow the links below for further information from our Medical co-author, including how to spot issues caused by a cat scratch. Did you find this overview to be helpful? The writers of this page have together authored a page that has been read 641,575 times.

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