Has your cat suffered a minor accident? Have they hurt themselves? Have they cut themselves? Generally speaking, small superficial injuries do not imply an emergency; however, they do need you to spring into action. Firstly, ensure that this is not something more serious that requires a vet’s attention. Then, clean and disinfect the injury and be watchful over the coming days to make sure that it does not get infected or become more complicated.
IS IT MINOR?
If your cat appears with a cut, injury or scratch that appears to be fairly minor, check that it is not actually anything more serious. If the injury happened to a leg, the neck or another joint area, make sure that your cat can walk, move and behave normally and painlessly. If this is not the case, or if the injury is bleeding or deeper, or if you perhaps notice a strange colouration or discharge, it would be most advisable to take them to see the vet immediately.
Once you have ruled out the need for a vet’s help, disinfect the wound, washing it with soap and water, and apply a gentle antiseptic, such as iodine.
If there is too much matted fur around the wound, you can cut it from around the injured area to be able to work on it more easily and to avoid the risk of infection. If the injury is minor and does not get infected or more complicated, this should be enough to heal it.
However, it may be that in spite of everything the wound gets infected or does not heal, or that it worsens as the days go by, swelling up to the point of forming an abscess (an accumulation of pus in the wound). In this case, you should definitely take your injured cat to the vet. But if for some reason you cannot do that, try to do it yourself: carefully cut the fur around the inflamed area whilst someone else holds the cat. Next, bathe the area with a solution made by dissolving a little salt in a glass of water. Repeating this process and keeping it wet for a 24 hour period, the abscess should burst. Lastly, clean the area and keep watch to check that a new one does not form.
If the injury happened to a leg, the neck or another joint area, make sure that your cat can walk, move and behave normally and painlessly.
If the injury is not very deep but is bleeding a lot, first clean the wound with a wet piece of cotton wool, applying pressure for a few minutes, and then use soap and water and an antiseptic.
If it keeps bleeding or there is considerable blood loss, and for some reason you do not have the help of a vet, stem the bleeding by covering and pressing on the wound with a gauze pad or compress soaked in cold water. If the bleeding does not stop, secure the compress with a bandage and put a new compress on top of the first one, wrapping a new bandage around the second one.