Abscesses are simply buildups of pus that typically form as a result of puncture wounds inflicted during cat fights both real and play. There can be causes of abscesses other than cat fight wounds such as foreign bodies like grass seeds, splinters and such. It may not always be obvious what has caused an abscess until the contents have been released and the cavity in the tissues inspected.
A cat's skin has the ability to heal very speedily. When a claw or tooth from another feline punctures the skin it inserts bacteria into the underlying tissues. The small puncture wound then swiftly heals over giving the bacteria a balmy and humid environment to flourish and grow.
Three to five days later the abscess can be felt or s4een as a soft painful swelling beneath the skin. However, not every wound will abscess. Development depends on the scope and the deepness of the bite, the number and kind of bacteria present in the wound and, most prominently the ability of the victim's immune system to battle off the infection.
Apart from local tenderness your cat may not show ill effects from the bite wound for several days. Nevertheless, as the infection gets worse, lethargy, fever, and loss of appetite may be manifest. These are the symptoms of discharge of bacteria toxins and by products of dying tissue into the blood stream. The cat can become very ill.
If your cat has an abscess he will be in immense pain. Deduce your cat has an abscess if he/she is far less active, there is a an abrupt loss of appetite, hunching over for long amounts of time, an unwillingness to play or even move, avoiding your touch, when you do stroke your feline, he/she feels warm—a sign he/she has a fever, a lump or hot inflamed area and combined with the warning signs mention, there is a limp. Remember too, a cat’s fur may hide an abscess.
The abscess may rupture unexpectedly releasing thick brownish or yellowish foul smelling pus via a hole in the skin. The cat may then feel much better and start eating again. If the cat is accommodating, clip away the fur neighboring the wound. Clean up any discharge and any scab that has been produced. Wash with balmy salty water--the more discharge that runs off, the better.
If the abscess does not burst within a day or two it is wise to have it opened and drained surgically by your veterinarian. Your veterinarian will drain the pus and eradicate dying tissue which encourages more rapid healing and resolution of the infection. Your veterinarian will typically insert a surgical drain in the abscess site to let further discharge take place over the next few days. As a rule, antibiotics will be given and the drain eliminated a few days later.
If you know your cat has been bitten it is worthwhile to take him/her to your veterinarian for examination. Probable serious wounds can be treated with antibiotics long before they extend into abscess. Early treatment can often evade abscesses and expensive complications.
After a cat fight, look over your cat for any painful areas and puncture wounds. Above all search around the forelegs, head and neck and on the lower back at the support of the spine. Often the wound can be someplace to the rear of your cat. This ensues because your cat is running from his/her attacker. Feel for clumping together with tufts of hair or blood at the puncture location. Don’t discharge small holes as inconsequential. Apply gentle pressure at the location and critic the cat's reaction for pain. Reiterate this test the next day. Mounting soreness is a cause for concern.
Neutering male cats is the most effectual method of reducing the occurrence and severity of fights. Keeping your cat inside at night will also help put a stop to fighting.