Treating A Cats Eye Infection
The right cat eye infection treatment ultimately depends on the root cause of the infection. There are various ways you can go about treating a cats eye infection, such as:
- Cleaning your cats eyes
- The best cat eye infection home remedy is to just clean your cats eyes yourself to get rid of eye discharge. Eye discharge can accumulate in your cats eyes and be quite uncomfortable for them, so its important to do this regularly if your cat is experiencing any eye discharge. You can do this with a cotton ball to wipe away the discharge. Gently wipe starting from the outside of the eye and make sure to use a fresh cotton ball on each eye. Never touch the eyeball itself. If the discharge is not easily cleared away, then do not wipe harder and seek care from a veterinarian.
- Topical treatments, including ointments or drops, should be applied directly onto a cats eyes. You may need a second person to help to properly apply the medication to your cats eyes.
- Oral antibiotics, which are usually only prescribed if an infection is present.
- Treating root cause
- If your cats eye infection is a result of an underlying condition, your vet may prescribe oral antibiotics, which may also clear the eye infection.
How Cats Get Eye Infections
There are four infectious organisms that are common causes of primary conjunctivitis in cats: two bacteria , and two viruses: Feline Calicivirus and Feline Herpes Virus .
Each of these organisms passes from cat to cat, both by direct contact and by aerosol transmission.
Secondary eye infections start with the initial primary cause, which broaches the eyes natural defences, and then the secondary bacterial infection starts with contamination with bacteria that are ubiquitous in the environment, but it cannot normally cause infection in a healthy eye without the primary cause setting up the initial damage.
Symptoms Of Cat Eye Infection
Conjunctivitis is defined as inflammation of the conjunctiva. The universal signs of inflammation are redness, heat, loss of function, swelling, and pain/ discomfort.
So when the conjunctiva is inflamed, the symptoms reflect these changes:
- Red eyes or pinkness of the eye
- Heat around the eye
- Loss of function
- Swelling of the conjunctiva
- Pain/discomfort which may be seen as itchiness, with the cat rubbing at the eye with their paw, or rubbing their head along the ground
- Watery eyes, sometimes with yellow or green discharge, may be noticed
If the cause of the eye infection is a virus such as Calicivirus or Herpes virus, there may be other signs of an upper respiratory infection such as sneezing and/or nasal discharge. Sometimes the eyeball itself may appear abnormal, with cloudiness or increased pigment on the surface of the eye.
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Causes Of Eye Problems In Cats
There are a variety of reasons that could be causing your cats eye problems, and red, swollen eyes dont necessarily indicate infections. Typically, the causes of eye problems in cats are broken up into two categories: an infectious disease or a non-infectious underlying condition. Well get into more detail about the various causes below:
What Are Some Common Antibiotics Used To Treat Cat Eye Infections
Antibiotics are a common prescription from veterinarians to treat eye infections in cats. Amoxicillin is a commonly used antibiotic and can be purchased over the counter at your local pharmacy. Clindamycin and gentamicin sulfate are two other common antibiotics that are also available to buy over the counter.
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Effects Of Antibiotic For Cat Eye Infection
Antibiotics are a class of drugs that kills or stops the growth of bacteria. They are used to treat different types of infections caused by bacteria. The antibiotics will help in reducing inflammation and pain, as well as reduce discharge from your cats eye.
You should ask your veterinarian about the best type of antibiotic for your pets condition based on their age and other medical conditions.
What Will Happen At The Vet
Once youre able to take your cat to the vet, theyll be able to determine the culprit behind your cats eye infection. Two of the most common causes of cat eye problems are:
Feline conjunctivitis is very common, and many cats will experience at least a mild infection at some point in their lives. During a conjunctivitis infection, the conjunctiva, or the thin membrane that coats your cats eyeballs and the insides of their eyelids, becomes irritated due to a bacterial or viral infection.1
You may recognize conjunctivitis by its more common name: pink eye. Humans can get it, too and, while your cats conjunctivitis cant infect you, the symptoms are very similar. So if you were wondering, Why are my cats eyes red? Conjunctivitis is one of the probable causes. However, if you notice other symptoms along with cat conjunctivitis, they might indicate another condition, such as feline upper respiratory infection . The other clinical signsof this condition include cat eye discharge, nasal discharge, mouth ulcers, lethargy, and loss of appetite.
But what if my cats eye is swollen? If you see this symptom, its a possible sign of congenital allergies. Congenital allergies, on the other hand, simply refer to allergies that your cat is born with. Like some humans, some cats are hypersensitive to pollen, fragrances, or ingredients in their food, and exposure to these allergens can cause watery or swollen eyes.2
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When To Take Your Cat To The Vet
Its important to familiarize yourself with your pets eyes to have a baseline of your kittys ocular health.
Understanding what is normal in your pet helps you identify symptoms of potential health problems.
A sudden change from the normal, no matter how minor it is, should be considered as a dangerous sign.
If your furball suddenly squints or rubs its eyes more frequently, as usual, there must be something wrong with its eyes.
Alternatively, if you notice your pets eyes are getting more watery than usual, you need to take immediate action.
Dont wait for the condition to get worse. Start with the gentler home remedies for eye infection in cats such as tea eye drops and honey solution.
The symptoms should be cleared after four days of continued medication. If symptoms persist or if the condition gets worse, you can switch to stronger formulations.
Administer any of the stronger home remedies for eye infection in cats for another four days. However, if your kitty still doesnt recover after four days, you should take your pet to the vet.
How Do Cat Eye Drops Work
Cat eye drops are much like human eye drops for cats, except that they are specially formulated for the cats’ eyes. They help make your cats’ eyes feel comfortable and free from symptoms of eye infections, allergies, inflammation, or conjunctivitis. With proper usage, this type of medication may alleviate symptoms like watery eyes, redness, itchiness, dry eyes, or stinging eye pain.
They work by flushing irritants out of your cats’ eyes. Think of this product as a way to clean and lubricate your cat’s eye to free it from any foreign material like dirt or allergens.
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What Are The Symptoms Of An Eye Infection
If your cat is suffering from an eye infection you may notice one or more of the following symptoms:
- Whites of your cat’s eye may turn red
- Clear, yellow or green discharge from the eye
- Winking or squinting
- Rubbing or pawing at one or both eyes
- The third eyelid may be protruding and covering part of the irritated eye
Your cat’s symptoms may affect one or both eyes. Often a cat will only show symptoms in one eye but the infection then spreads to the other eye.
Upper respiratory infections frequently cause eye irritation. Symptoms of URIs in cats include sneezing or nasal discharge.
If your cat is displaying any of the above symptoms book an appointment with your primary care veterinarian as soon as possible in order to prevent the infection from spreading to the other eye, becoming more severe, or being spread to other pets in your household or neighborhood.
Can Eye Infections In Cats And Dogs Be Cured
Yes, most types of infections can be cured. A veterinarian will often prescribe eye drops or topical creams such as ointments. Sometimes eye drops will be used to reduce pain and irritation while the vet will treat the underlying condition that caused the eye infection. Sometimes the underlying infection is treated with antibiotics. In some cases, surgery may be needed for an eye infection to completely heal.
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Is Cat Amoxicillin The Same As Human Amoxicillin
Amoxicillin comes in a liquid suspension, tablet, and capsule forms. The most common form given to cats is the liquid suspension or the tablets, both in specific veterinary preparations.
While human amoxicillin is actually the same medication, the dosage forms available for people may be problematic for use with cats. The lowest tablet dosage for people of 125mg will be much too high for most cats.
The generic human liquid suspension could be used, however the volume of medication in some available preparations may be far more than what is needed for a cats typical dosage period, making them less practical.
What Is The Prognosis For A Cat Diagnosed With Conjunctivitis
The prognosis depends on the specific diagnosis. With some non-infectious causes, if the underlying cause is not removed the conjunctivitis will recur. Some of the viruses that cause infectious conjunctivitis are incurable and may persist in a hidden form , with flare-ups from time to time, especially during periods of stress or illness. The therapeutic goal for these patients is to minimize the frequency and severity of recurrences through optimum nutrition, appropriate vaccination against preventable causes of disease and medical management when indicated.
|Contributors: Tammy Hunter, DVM Ernest Ward, DVM|
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Side Effects Of Cat Eye Drops
When using medication including antibiotics there is always the risk of side effects. Some side effects that may occur when treating with antibiotics cats who have eye infections are:
- increased irritation of the eye
- build of mucous with in the nostrils leading to a runny nose
- possible difficulty in breathing
How Can I Tell If My Cat Is Suffering From An Eye Infection
There are many ways to recognize if your cat has an eye infection. Some telltale symptoms are:
- Watery eyes with red, green, yellow, gray, or clear discharge
- Red eyes
- Signs of upper respiratory illness, such as nasal discharge or sneezing
- Rubbing the eyes
- Obvious pain
Since some of the most common signs of infection can simply be symptoms of allergies, its important to speak with your veterinarian if you suspect that your cat is having trouble with his or her eyes. Left untreated, eye infections can lead to much more serious complications, including glaucoma or even blindness. Dont worry, though Allivet carries all of the best medications to treat your cats eye infection!
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Thomas Labs Terra Septic Dog & Cat Eye Drops
If you find your cat with symptoms of eye infections, a medication like the Thomas Labs Terra Septic Cat Eye Drops will help alleviate any discomfort or irritation. A sterile eyewash that may also be used as eye drops, it would get a thumbs up from your cat’s veterinarian as a home remedy for minor eye issues.
Designed for easy usage, the 1 oz bottle design of these eyedrops allows simple and direct applications to a cat’s eye. Cat owners may also control the solution’s flow rate by applying varying pressure to the dropper.
It utilizes silver solution to combat bacteria and works in a targeted manner to help bring back normal functions. Firstly, wipe away excess stuff surrounding your cat’s eye. Then use these eye drops to flush the affected cat’s eye.
However, unlike the eyewash mentioned above and eye drops for cats, this particular sterile wash does not remove tear stains.
Key Features and Benefits of Thomas Labs Terra Septic Cat Eye & Ear Drops:
- These sterile eye drops from the Thomas Labs brand are high-quality products made in a state-of-the-art facility.
- It is designed for easy application and use.
- Can be used either as eye or ear drops.
- It is safe and non-toxic.
- It can be used to help keep your cat’s eyes clean and free of any irritant.
- This product effectively removes foreign debris from the eyes of your pet cat.
- This eyewash is formulated to have similar pH as natural tears .
- It is also suitable for kittens.
Is Neosporin Safe For Cats
Human medications are often toxic or otherwise dangerous for animals, especially cats. Their compact size means that even the tiniest amounts of a toxic substance could put your cat’s life at risk.
Neosporin is a staple found in many people’s first aid kits. This topical antibiotic ointment can work very well on humans but it not recommended for cats. Cases have been reported of cats having life-threatening anaphylactic reactions to some of the antibiotic ingredients in Neosporin’s ophthalmic preparations which include neomycin and polymyxin B.
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S To Administer Cat Eye Drops
Start with a wash and brush up. Remove any grot from around the eye with a cotton wool dipped in warm water.
Choose how you are going to hold them. The best options are sideways on your lap or on a table top. From personal experience the table is more of a two-man job, so if you can get a restraining assistant, do!
Check the bottle for dosage instructions and shake if necessary.
Open the bottle then hold the bottle in one hand, use the other to gently grip the cats head.
Tilt the cats head back and, to prevent blinking, use your fingers to keep the eyelids open. Dont pull too hard. If you not sure the right amount of pressure, pull your own eye lids about to get a sense of how much is too much. Try to hold the bottle of drops close to the eye but dont touch it. Touching runs the risk of contamination and causing damage if/when the cat wriggles.
Squeeze the drop briskly onto the eye and once the drops are in, release their head. Dont try to squirt all the drops in one splurge as youll lose count. If you take too long between drops your cat will become uncomfortable as they desperately try to blink.
The drops will cause your cat to blink, which spreads the medication over the eyes surface.
Really get the feel for the drops or ointments you’re applying. It is all too easy to be distracted by a wriggling cat and to squirt out the lot in one single dose
Cat Eye Infection Medications
Eye medications may initially involve antibacterial drops or eye ointment, applied three or four times daily for most drops, although there is one type of antibiotic ointment which only needs to be applied once daily. Treatment is usually given for five days but may be for longer in some cases.
If a confirmed diagnosis is made of Chlamydia or Mycoplasma, systemic treatment with a specific oral antibiotic such as doxycycline may be recommended. If a diagnosis of Feline Herpes Virus is made, topical antiviral medication may be suggested, as well as the possibility of systemic antiviral medication.
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Side Effects Of Amoxicillin For Cats
The side effects of amoxicillin are usually mild and infrequent, involving gastrointestinal upset like vomiting and diarrhea.
Oral amoxicillin, like many broad-spectrum antibiotics, can alter the normal, beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract, which is often a cause of digestive upset if it occurs.
Giving amoxicillin to your kitty around the time of a meal can help to offset these possible effects. If side effects like these continue, its important to ask your vet for further advice.
While discontinuing an antibiotic may relieve the side effects, this will also leave the original bacterial infection untreated. If your kitty is dealing with a very concerning infection, your vet may, for example, recommend starting a probiotic as opposed to discontinuing an antibiotic.
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Severe allergic reactions to amoxicillin are extremely rare but can include rashes, hives, fever, and changes to red and white blood cell counts. To the rare kitty this might happen with, these effects would occur with even a very small dose. In other words, if your kitty is doing well at a prescribed dose, an accidental extra dose or overdose would not cause these effects.
Is It Safe To Give Cats Homemade Antibiotics
The fact that most homemade antibiotics, being natural, have little to no side effects does not mean that they can be given whenever you feel like it. They too, like their synthetic medications, have side effects due to an overdose.
While it is safe to give cats these products, a proper diagnosis needs to be carried out to know exactly what the cat is suffering from and the best solution to the issue. Otherwise, you may be treating a nonexistent problem in your cat.
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