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Jeez--So Now I'm Doing Housecalls....

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
I got an e-mail earlier today from a fellow trapper whose neighbor has an injured housecat but cannot afford to take it to a vet. I'm not a vet, I'm more of self-trained medic with some clinical hands-on experience, but I went over and had a look at the cat. I was not very happy with what I saw.

The cat had a fairly deep puncture/gouge wound on its side. My friend had initially cleaned the wound with peroxide and applied a topical antibiotic--best that could be done at the time. There was some festering tissue inside the wound that had turned greenish and smelled bad, but no suppuration of pus.

The story was that the cat had been shot by either a BB or pellet gun, and the wound looked consistent with that. At Sunday's clinic a cat who had been similarly shot was brought in to PACCA; it had a flesh wound to the tail but the projectile may have broken some pelvic bone--I don't know anything more about that cat.

The cat I examined looked like he had been shot, but an examination of the wound showed that the projectile was neither lodged nor that it had fractured any rib bones--this was a good thing.

I used a pair of tweezers to remove the infected tissue and recleaned the wound and reapplied the topical antibiotic. The cat was less than happy with the procedure but seemed to have recovered quickly. I'll go back in a day or so to check on him; I have some Clavamox on order and have instructed his owner on the treatment regimen with that antibiotic.

My concerns here are twofold: I want the wound to heal from the inside out without prematurely closing and possibly creating an abcess. I also want to find out who the sick SOB in our neighborhood is doing this.

We are in the process of trying to determine the geographical boundaries of what appears to be at least three overlapping stray/feral colonies within a 5-6 city block area; once this is done we will be better able to manage that population with TNR and feeding stations. We were trying to do this quietly and unobtrusively, but I don't think that's an option any longer.

We will need to make our presence known and notify the neighborhood that the cats there are now under our supervision, care and protection. Some of them will not be happy to learn this, but the reality they need to get used to is that in Philadelphia stray and feral cats have advocates all the way up to the mayor's office. And in the neighborhoods they have ground-level advocates. We've been invisible until now, but if some decide on shooting or poisoning cats (as has been reported) we can no longer afford that luxury. Stay tuned....
post #2 of 6
Good luck in catching the perpetrators and may such cruelty to ferals end as they should. You are lucky to have a strong advocacy for the protection of the ferals and strays.
post #3 of 6
Hey, don't forget about using FISH ANTIBIOTICS for oral use!!

You can use this safely - you need to get the dosage right, based on cat's weight. FishFlex is what might work best.

I get my info from the Terrier Man -


On the Terrier Man's site under "Antibiotics for Less"
post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 
You have a point there--the basic antibiotic is amoxicillin, and it can be safely used on cats. The key is to figure out the dosage, and one does have to take the cat's size and weight into consideration. In this case the cat is an adult and weighs approximately 3-4 lbs. If you have access to a dosage/weight chart, please post it....
post #5 of 6
For Dogs:

15 mg per pound of body weight, given every 8 to 12 hours depending on the severity of the problem. If you are using a maintenance dose, give it every 12 hours. If the dog has an infection already, use it every 8 hrs. Either Cephalexin or Clavamox (see below) are “must have" drug for your vet kit. The fish-version of cephalexin is called cefalexin (Fish-Flex) and can be ordered in 250 mg capsules without a prescription. The 250 mg capsule is a perfect dose for a 15 pound dog.


Cephalexin10-30 mg/kg, PO, tid- qid
--from MVM

This means split the 10-30mg/kg(of body weight) 3 or 4 ways and give orally. A 5 kg cat would get, then, 50-150 mg. Be very sure to give it on a regular schedule so that your cat has the minimum effective concentration for the maximum length of time. If you only gave one big dose a day then it would be much less effective than the same amount split up 3 ways and given every 8 hours.

OR: Cephalexin administered per os at a dosage of 15 mg/kg twice daily for 5 days in the treatment of cutaneous and subcutaneous infections in the cat.

You can figure the cats' weight and dose accordingly...

Amoxi tabs (amoxicillin) for cats dosage info 2nd page: from this website/Adobe document from Phizer:


amoxi and clauvmate (sp?) commonly known as Clavamox:


Hope all this info helps. I use it. I can't do otherwise with all the
ferals have. Vet care has become outrageously expensive in our
area. I love my pets, but I can do alot of this stuff myself.
(Intravenous IV fluids for hydration, for example. Pills, nail clipping,
simple wound cleaning/treatment. Etc etc.) I only pay for the really
big stuff now.
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
I did a house call yesterday--the cat's wound is closed and is healing nicely; nothing else will be required. The local paper this week reported that a 16-year-old kid was arrested in the neighborhood for shooting at people with a BB gun; probably the same jerk who shot the cat. All's well that ends well, as The Bard would say....
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