How to care for a kitten with an eye infection
Ali is a 3 month old kitten with a severe eye infection. She was found in an industrial area known for its a feral cat colony. Kittens with eye infections are a common sight when the colonies are not TNRed and properly cared for.
Ali was malnourished and one of her eyes was completely sealed. She would most likely die if she wasn’t lucky enough to meet an empathetic man, who noticed that she needed medical care. We promptly took her to a vet and she was prescribed an antibiotic ointment, a standard treatment for eye infections. Since her eye was critically injured, she was also given an oral antibiotic and pain medication. Her health improved after a week of treatment but there is still a chance that she may loose her eye.
Ali is just one of many kittens with eye infections that you may find on the streets or in your feral cat colony. It is crucial that they get help as soon as possible. You may be their only chance of survival. Even if you do not plan to adopt, there are others who will. Knowing you saved a kitten and found him a good home is one of the most rewarding feelings you will ever experience.
Here are some tips and a video that will help you care for a kitten with an eye infection:
- In general, eye infections are not difficult to treat. Sometimes, all you need is to clean the eye with warm water and give the kitten proper nutrition. More often than not, you will need antibiotic ointment to help fight the infection. In the most severe cases, the kitten can loose an eye or die. It is always advised that you see a vet as soon as possible if the eye infection does not improve.
- Use lukewarm water and a clean gauze and gently clean the eye, working from the inner corner out. Do not put pressure as eye infections are painful.
- If you plan to use the same ointment on more than one cat, do not apply it straight from the tube. Put it on a clean finger and then apply it in the eye. Germs can spread easily if you use the same tube on more than one kitten.
- Place a small amount of the ointment into the eye and then press the eyelids together gently, mimicking blinking. This will help the ointment spread and penetrate the eye.
- Cat eye infections are not transmitted to humans so you can safely treat your kitten. Wash your hands before cleaning the eye and applying the antibiotic ointment. If you have other cats, wash your hands after treating the sick kitten so that you do not spread the infection to other felines in your home.