Conjunctivitis in a cat: home treatment
A pet is 100% dependent on its owner. He does not know how to get food himself and cannot use natural “medicines” if he gets sick. That is why it is necessary to closely monitor his health and time to respond even to minor symptoms. Cat lovers often notice that their pets start watering eyes. This is not a small thing. The disease is called conjunctivitis. In a cat, it occurs quite often and can cause irreversible effects.
Description of the conjunctiva
On the surface of the eyeball and the inner part of the eyelids there is a very thin mucous membrane. It is called conjunctiva. The shell secretes a liquid mucous substance, in addition, there are several lacrimal glands. All this helps protect the cat's eyes from drying out and microtraumas. In the upper eyelid, the conjunctiva is thickened, which makes it possible to distribute the tear fluid during blinking.The third eyelid of the cat is also part of the conjunctiva. In a healthy state, this is a subtle fold. During illness, it increases dramatically and can close the pet's eye.
What is called conjunctivitis?
Conjunctivitis in a cat (and not only in it) is an inflammatory process in the mucous membrane of the eye. It can be caused by parasites, fungi, bacteria, viruses, allergies, foreign bodies, irritants, injuries, and so on.
Doctors consider conjunctivitis as a symptom of more complex diseases. Therefore, treatment is always taken very seriously. Having found conjunctivitis of the eyes in cats, the veterinarian always carries out an examination in order to understand what problem it is necessary to fight. Most often, it is possible to get rid of conjunctivitis only when the underlying disease is cured. It takes time and effort from the doctor and the owner of the animal.
How to diagnose?
First of all, the veterinarian will examine the animal and prescribe tests. This is the only way to determine the reasons why a conjunctivitis occurred in a cat. Most likely, a blood biochemistry test will be taken, in addition, a sample of eye discharge will be sent for analysis.
When making a diagnosis, the doctor can visually determine the nature of the discharge, it also helps to identify the original cause of the disease. Discharge from the conjunctiva are:
- purulent species, then the probable cause is a bacterial infection;
- serous species (cloudy liquid) - accompanying viral infection;
- mucous type - appear during allergic reactions.
It is especially important to analyze the discharge in chlamydial conjunctivitis. Because chlamydia can be cured only with specific antimicrobials.
Form of conjunctivitis in cats
Conjunctivitis of the eye in cats, the treatment of which we are considering, differs in the form of the course of the disease:
- acute form - the symptoms appear suddenly, the clinical signs of inflammation are bright, abundant discharge;
- subacute form - the clinical signs of conjunctivitis are noticeable, but they are somewhat weaker than in the acute form;
- chronic form - the development of the disease is delayed, the clinic is mild for a long time.
Diagnosing conjunctivitis in cats, treatment is correlated with the form of the disease.
Symptoms of the disease
There are a number of common symptoms characteristic of conjunctivitis of all kinds:
- The cat's eye mucous membranes are inflamed and reddened.
- Increased tearing.
- Observed discharge of different types (depending on the type of conjunctivitis).
- The cat often washes, trying to clean its eyes, or rubs them with its paws.
- After sleep, the eyes "turn sour."
- The animal squints and is afraid of bright light.
- In some cases, the cornea is covered with a cloudy film.
Types of conjunctivitis in cats. Catarrhal acute
Depending on the clinical manifestations, veterinarians secrete several types of conjunctivitis. To understand how to treat conjunctivitis in cats, you need to figure out what the difference in species. Let's start with the catarrhal type, which flows in an acute form. One or both eyes in a cat will be swollen, with copious tearing. Gradually, lacrimation will be replaced by a thick and cloudy exudate, which will begin to accumulate in the corners of the eyes. There will be lumps that will dry out during sleep and glue the eyelids.
Catarrhal chronic conjunctivitis
Launched catarrhal conjunctivitis in a cat from acute becomes chronic. Ocular discharge becomes less abundant, but persistent. Often they accumulate in the corners of the eyes with dried lumps.Well-marked swelling and inflammation of the eye, which due to prolonged discharge can go to the eyelid. Sometimes hair falls around the eye.
Purulent conjunctivitis in cats always affects both eyes. The clinical picture is classic, but additionally there is a lack of appetite, a sluggish state of the muscles of the animal, rare blinking, as this process becomes painful. In a cat, the temperature may rise and the orbits become very swollen, the conjunctiva and the eyeball become red. There is pus with an unpleasant odor.
The most difficult type of disease is follicular conjunctivitis. In this case, there is a narrowing of the eye and severe swelling of the eyelids. The mucous membrane and eyeball become red. Purulent secretions flow from all sides of the eyeball and accumulate under the lower eyelid. The eye area of the animal is very painful, there is a muscle spasm of the eyelids.
The process covers the eye socket completely. Observed swelling, redness and conjunctival bleeding. Parenchymal conjunctivitis in a cat can lead to loss of vision. The animal must be shown to a doctor as soon as possible.
The clinical picture of allergic conjunctivitis is somewhat different from other types of the disease. Edema is almost imperceptible or completely absent. But tearing is abundant, but the discharge is completely transparent. If the animal is not prescribed antihistamine therapy in time, allergic conjunctivitis can turn into any of the above listed diseases.
Drug treatment may be prescribed only by a veterinarian after an examination. It is necessary to treat both eyes at once. The general principle of treating all types of conjunctivitis is similar:
- local antimicrobial agents in drops or ointment;
- retrobulbar blockade of Aurorov.
However, chlamydia, purulent and follicular conjunctivitis require additional prescription of antimicrobials.
If it is established that conjunctivitis is a symptom of another disease, then first eliminate the main problem.
Help your pet at home
It is unlikely that the owner will agree to leave the pet for a long time in a veterinary clinic to cure conjunctivitis.In cats, home treatment should be given with drugs prescribed by a doctor.
The condition of the animal greatly facilitates eyewash, but the procedure must be as carefully as possible. The clinic prescribed washing with a weak solution of potassium permanganate, a solution of furatsilina or boric acid. Traditional medicine offers a wash with a decoction of chamomile or calendula. In any case, the animal must be held on the hands, first with a swab or cotton pad to soften dried crusts, then rinse the eye with a new swab, removing the selection.
Some owners use for washing and compresses decoction eyebright, which is prepared from three teaspoons of herbs and 0.5 liters of water. The tool is boiled over low heat and infused for half an hour.
It is important to understand that conjunctivitis is a difficult problem. You cannot change the treatment prescribed without permission. It is permissible only to supplement it with folk remedies, and then it is advisable to consult with a specialist. And if the animal is not treated, it can lose sight.
Both a purebred animal and the usual "noblewoman" (yard cat taken into the house) can become ill with conjunctivitis.But there are several breeds that suffer from this inflammation most often. These are Persians, sphinxes and British cats. Animals of these breeds should be monitored with special care and turned to veterinarians at the first signs of inflammation.
Can a cat infect a host?
Conjunctivitis is contagious. And the owner, and other households, and guests, and other pets - all are at risk of infection. Therefore, the animal should be temporarily isolated, and all medical procedures should be performed with gloves. After contact with a sick cat, be sure to wash your hands with soap and water.