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My Cat's Been Bitten...

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I've never been particularly keen on feline health... I just make sure my cat has plenty of food and clean water, and lots of toys and attention and all the other stuff I guess the "layman" figures is the best way to take care of a cat. Though I love my cat more than I love most human beings, I'm not big on going to the vet unless I'm fairly sure there's some threat of imminent danger - my local vet is horrendously expensive. They all are, doubtless. I'm too poor of a student to be spending thousands on medical solutions that may or may not work... other than having my cat spayed, getting shots, and such.

So I really have no background on any of these things.

But a buddy of mine got bit once (by a stray), and he cleaned the wound and bandaged it and what not, and ended up nearly dead within days from what I think was called... "Cat Fever?" Don't exactly remember. But he was ill to a horrific degree, and I'd never seen or heard anything like it before. But I always kept it in the back of my mind.

Well, my little black manx, Poco, is a feisty one. She likes to roam about people's backyards, jumping up and running along the fences to who knows where. There are a few strays in our neighborhood, a pathetic black little thing that I always leave food and water for, and a tabby which seems to be finding food just fine on its own. I know there have been a few stand-offs with these two, as well as with other assorted pets wandering the neighborhood, and I've broken up as many as I can. Many times though, I'm sure, battles are unavoidable.

Two or so years ago I got new neighbors. They have a big, fluffy, gray cat named Cosmo. Poco and Cosmo are always going at it, skulking around each other's respective front yards, obviously looking for trouble. I try to stop them from fighting when I can, but I know that, largely, I'm failing because I can see the cuts on Poco's ear or hind legs, or feel the scabs or scars beneath the fur on her side, or her head. But when these injuries crop up, there are usually massive tufts of gray fur littered about the driveway. So I know my cat's dishing as well as taking.

No matter how grievous her cuts seemed, Poco took them in stride and none ever became infected. She always recovered fully.

Apparently earlier today, she and Cosmo were at it again. My sister went to break up the fight, but not before Cosmo pounced my little cat, sending her rolling and reeling and "flipping in the air," as my sister put it, and then running back to our front door. My sister then found what appears to be a pretty clear hole in her neck earlier tonight - a puncture wound - with blood around it, not in huge quantities but the blood was still gleaming so I think it was still fresh and slick, though the fur didn't appear matted. So I'm not sure how much she's bleeding, but I've personally never seen blood of any kind on Poco's cuts - they're usually red and the fur's fallen out, but the wound's never been actually bleeding.

I'm a bit worried, though my cat appears fine - though she always does after a fight, and I know she's got to be hurting SOMEWHERE. Thus, I feel I cannot trust my cat's actions and behaviors to convey the status of this bite wound which likely came from the conflict my sister saw earlier. I highly doubt anything else gave my cat this injury, especially

What should I look for, then, to ensure my cat doesn't get sick - and potentially die - from some microorganism in the wound like my buddy did a while back? Characteristics of the wound, dilating pupils, tongue color, whatever - like I said, I have zero feline medical know-how. Other than limping/stumbling about, not eating, being extremely lethargic, and all the other horrible symptons I've seen in past cats as their last days come about, how will I know if this thing becomes severely problematic and/or life threatening? She's always recovered in prior occurences, but as far as I know she's never been bitten - at least, I've never seen the bite itself. Just scratches and slices.

I apologize for being long-winded for a question as simple as "My cat got bitten on the neck by another cat, how do I make sure it doesn't kill her?" It's in my nature, as I write and as I speak, so it cannot be helped.

Thanks in advance for any help.

-Tom Williams
post #2 of 6
First of all, Tom, welcome to TCS!

These bites should not be taken lightly. I would definitely recommend that you call your vet for Poco to be seen as soon as possible. Please keep us posted as to her condition!
post #3 of 6
Welcome to our board

I also recommend that you get Poco to the vet as soon as possible. As with humans any puncture on an animal can get infected. Vet bills are never cheap but our babies health is the most important thing.

I wish you and Poco the best of luck, and please keep us updated.
post #4 of 6
I second everything that has been said before me.

I understand that money is tight and vets are expensive - but its better off getting him there earlier rather than later - the earlier you catch anything that could have resulted from this bite the better it will be

keep us posted

post #5 of 6
to TCS. I also would take your cat straight to the vet. Hope Poco is OK.
post #6 of 6
If it were mine, I would call the vet for an appointment immediately. I, too, have a cat that used to fight any other cat he would see. I didn't take him to the vet for every little scratch or I'd be bankrupt. But when injuries like what you are mentioning took place, I'd spend the money for a vet call. By the time more symptoms appear, the problems are greater and more expensive and a greater hassle to correct, as well as putting the cat to greater risk.
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