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Home care for a stray cat with a bleeding bump

By: Dr. Debra Primovic

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Our question this week was:

There is a stray cat that lives outside my condo, who I've taken under my wing. I'm pretty allergic to cats, so I can't let him in, but I've been feeding him and brushing him regularly.

Anyways, for the past 3-4 days, I've noticed he has a spot on his head that looks like scab or something. I've been keeping an eye on it to see if it gets better. Today, I noticed that it's turned into a bump and it looks like there is some bleeding (maybe he has been scratching at it or something).

I want to take him to a vet, but being an outdoor stray, he is too scared to get into my car. What should I do? Is it ok to put something on it like Neosporin or Hydrogen Peroxide?

Thank you,

Andrea Marra


Answer

Hi – thanks for your email Andrea. Bless you for caring about this stray. You described that this stray has a spot on his head that turned into a bump and is bleeding some.

It sounds to me like it could be a bite wound abscess. The fact it is draining is good.

You can try to get the cat into a cat carrier and taking him to your vet. That would be the ideal. If that is not an option, then you can try to clean it with some warm water and clean the debris off the skin. If it is an abscess – you will probably see pus mixed with some blood. Be careful not to get bit or scratched when checking the wound.

You can use a little peroxide and antibiotic ointment as well. The most important thing you can do is to make sure the cat keeps eating. Offer canned food if he won't eat dry food. This will help keep his hydration and strength up while he is trying to heal. If you can clean the wound, that would be great as well.

If he doesn't want to eat or drink, acts depressed, I'd definitely try to get him to your vet. Alternatively, you can call your local animal shelter or humane society and see if they have any local aid or suggestions. He may need some proper wound care and antibiotics.

An article that might be helpful to you is Bite Wounds in Cats.

Best of luck!


Dr. Debra




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