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What's wrong with him?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
First, I'll introduce myself since this is my first time posting. My name is Alicia and I have a wonderful cat named Sylvestor which is why I am here.

A few days ago, I noticed this odd bulge on the top of his leg. It appeared to be fluid filled, and it bothered me. I went out for the night and came back, and a hole had formed in it, and is leaking this yellow/clear fluid out of it. He's constantly licking it, but I am afraid of infection and I have no idea what it is or what I can do about it. I can't afford to take him to a vet, so I was wondering if anyone could help me with some information, and if I should really be concerned.

On a side note, my pup had the same type of thing on her ear. It never got a hole in it, but it just disppeared, so I was thinking maybe a spider bite or something similar. I really don't know. I just want him better, and it to go away. He's eating and whiney like his usual self, so I don't believe it is bothering him.

Thank you so much for those that answer and can offer any help. I appreciate it greatly.
post #2 of 21
Hi alikatt,

Welcome to the group.

It sounds like Sylvester has an abcess. Is he in inside only cat or does he also go outside? The most common causes of abcesses on cats is getting clawed or bit by another cat. The initial wound is very small but deep and it closes over quickly, allowing bacteria to grow. The 'lump' is the body's response to the infection caused by the bacteria. Does the lump feel warm to the touch? Is Sylvester acting a little less active? His body is trying to fight off the infection, and abcess draining like that will help, but he really should see a veterinarian for antibiotics. If it is deep-seated enough, the infection may not be able to heal without medical intervention.

If he will let you, you can apply moist heat to the site as well by taking a cloth wrung out in almost hot water (it has to be comfortable enough for both of you to handle) and holding it over the area to help draw out more of the infection. This will help - and there is the possibility that the abcess will heal on its own - but far more likely that it will become a chronic condition unless it is treated with systemic anti-biotices. (Systemic means that it comes from within the animal such as an oral anti-biotic rather than an ointment being put on the outside).

I am sure one of the vet techs on the site will respond to your inquiry and may be able to provide you with the name of a topical antibiotic that is safe for cats and can be purchased over the counter.

Good luck

Kathryn
post #3 of 21
Try and stop him licking it as it will make it bigger and possibly infect it, if it is not already. He really does need to see a vet but in the meantime my vet told me to treat an abscess by putting cotton dipped in a dilute antiseptic like iodine solution (be careful not to make it strong or it will burn) on the site and holding it in place with a long cotton bandage. That will keep it clean. If it on his leg you may have to wind hte bandage round his body as well to keep it in place. I was amazed how quickly my cat got used to it. But please, as soon as you can, go to the vet - it probably will need antibiotics too.
post #4 of 21
You should be concerned about abscesses - they can become infected. Antibiotics are very useful and effective for abscesses and the only way you can get the right one is to take your cat to the vet.

As mentioned above, you need to keep the wound clean and it helps to apply warm compresses to help it keep draining.

You really should get him to the vet to make sure that it is in fact an abscess. Your cat needs to have an annual exam too, so you should start to find a vet who is competent and with whom you're comfortable.

Good luck - please let us know how things are going.

PS- Take a look at the "sticky" (permanent message) at the top of this forum. It says "Health & Nutrition Articles". Click on it and you'll see the General Health heading. Under that heading is the question "what if I can't afford a vet?" Maybe one of those suggestions will help.
post #5 of 21
In addition to the warm compresses, you can ask your vet about flushing the area with saline solution. Definitely keep the cat from licking it or biting it, as it will make it more infected. If not treated, abscesses can get worse and become life threatening as they contain bacteria that will eventually travel to the bloodstream.
post #6 of 21
ditto!! to what everyone else said, been there! Belly rubs to Sylvester! and hugs and hello to you.
post #7 of 21
Thread Starter 
In response to your questions Kathryn, he is his normal self. He's also an indoor and outdoor cat. I'm so nervous having him outside at night, he's always in here with me. The lump has grown significantly smaller over the past 24 hours than what it was. It doesn't appear to be bothering him at all, and I'm constantly cleaning it with just a washcloth and warm water, and throwing a sock at him when I see him licking it. I was hoping very much for some type of OTC type medication that I can use to help treat him with. I have yet to go check the article about not being able to afford a vet, but after I post this I am heading that way. *looks back through* The lump does not feel warm at all and he is no less active. There is absolutely no change in his behavior which is why I didn't know if I should be alarmed. I am doing everything I can, so thank you for all the help and advice everyone has offered, and I welcome anymore help and best wishes.
post #8 of 21
Ok I am not trying to gross you out, but are there by any chance any legs waving around in that abscess? There is a fly that can get into an open wound and create the type of situation you are talking about, and you can see the fly if you look closely.

If there is no movement, the abscess needs a vet. The vet is going to have to open the wound, and drain it, apply anibiotic powder and give the kitty a shot or pills. Otherwise the cat is going to get sick quite quickly.

One way to find out if there is infection is put your hand over the top of the wound without touching the wound, or skin. If heat rises up to reach your palm you need a vet quickly. No ifs ands or buts about it, unless you yourself are skilled in debreeding abscesses.
post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by hissy
Ok I am not trying to gross you out, but are there by any chance any legs waving around in that abscess? There is a fly that can get into an open wound and create the type of situation you are talking about, and you can see the fly if you look closely.

If there is no movement, the abscess needs a vet. The vet is going to have to open the wound, and drain it, apply anibiotic powder and give the kitty a shot or pills. Otherwise the cat is going to get sick quite quickly.

One way to find out if there is infection is put your hand over the top of the wound without touching the wound, or skin. If heat rises up to reach your palm you need a vet quickly. No ifs ands or buts about it, unless you yourself are skilled in debreeding abscesses.

There are no legs, just fluid. There is no heat that rises from the wound, and it feels no different temp. wise than any other part of his body. It is already draining. I am going to contact some various vet offices, and the humane center near me tomorrow and see what my options are. I'll wear a sign that says "Will work for kitty"
post #10 of 21
You may want to take your kitty into see the vet just to be sure everything is ok. Sounds like an abcess to me....they can give medication to clear that right up. Please do keep us posted!
post #11 of 21
The only thing that makes me think this isn't an abcess is the "yellow/clear fluid" draining from the lesion ... that almost makes me think it may be a sebaceous cyst. Best to let the vet have a look-see.
post #12 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by gayef
The only thing that makes me think this isn't an abcess is the "yellow/clear fluid" draining from the lesion ... that almost makes me think it may be a sebaceous cyst. Best to let the vet have a look-see.
Really? I though that abcesses do drain a yellowish clear fluid? I have a horse that caught Strangles. The abcess under his chin got huge. I got a syringe and pulled the fluid out. I got so much yellow fluid out of that thing! Maybe it's different for a horse, I don't know.
post #13 of 21
Poor Sylvester! Hugs to both of you, hope you can get him feeling better quickly.
post #14 of 21
Thread Starter 
Well, I've waited and waited. I saw signs of improvement, and once again, I go out for the night, and I come back, and there's something new.




In that picture, the huge bottom red thing formed. This occured Saturday and I became worried once again since I had seen improvement. I stayed up with him most of the night last night and fell asleep around 6 this morning. I woke up around noon, and the spot, and all the other little ones had ruptured, and I have to admit, it was probably one of the most gross things I have ever seen. I'm out of a job, so I have no money, but I buckled. I called a vet and they said they could get me in at 3 today, so as much as it was going to hurt me, I used my credit card and took him in. The nurse said it was gross, the doctor said it was gross, so in the end, it was pretty gross. They shaved the whole area and flushed it out. The doctor told me I was lucky that it ruptured on it's own because otherwise they would have had to sedate him and drain it. They gave him a painkiller and Clavamox that I have to give him twice a day till it's gone.

I cried. She told me since he doesn't have his shots (bear in mind, he was a stray) that if he bit anyone, animal control would have to take him and he would more than likely be put down. I cried and cried, and they brought him back to me, and said he did a wonderful job and he was fine, just a little woozy. In about 3 weeks or so, I am going to take him to get his shots. After this, he's my baby, and noone is going to take him from me.

I just wanted to thank everyone for the advice you gave me and the you offered. Thank you!
post #15 of 21
Oh bless his (and your) poor little heart!! While I can so totally relate to the money thing (in the past now - hubby is a wonderful man who assists me with the financial needs of my cats and their care) it is a good thing you decided to bite the bullet and take him in on your card. If no one else has said this to you, please allow me to be the first ... thank you for doing the right thing even when it is painful to you to do it.

I sincerely hope you will keep us updated on his progress and that you will enjoy being a member of our cat community here. I look forward to hearing more about you and your sweet Sylvester. Let us hear from you soon!

Chin scritches and belly rubs to Sly and welcome hugs to you,

~gf~
post #16 of 21
Thread Starter 
I meant to ask this, but does anyone know about Clavamox? It appears to be a pill, but can anyone recommend a way for me to do this? I've never had to administor anything like this to an animal. Can I just put it in his food? I was so distraught by the time I left that I forgot to ask, and they have since closed.
post #17 of 21
Clavamox is an antibiotic - it also comes in a liquid form, but I would think a pill will be easier for you with your fella. Some folks just gently open their cats mouth and pop the pill along the side, and make sure they swallow it without spitting it out. Some make a little meatball in wet food and hope the cat eats the meatball without chewing up the pill.

Others use a pill gun (device with usually a rubber tip that holds the pill, and uses a plunger, so you place the the rubber tip towards the back of their mouth, entering via the side of the mouth, then push the plunger and in goes the pill and they swallow it.

I was so glad to read in this thread that you got him to a vet and that all is going better now
post #18 of 21
I am so glad that you didn't let lack of funds stop you from seeking advice. I had to laugh at your statement of sitting on a street corner with a sign "will work for kitty" LOL Thank you for being a loving and caring caretaker of this stray-

Here's hoping he gets better quickly! And clavamox comes in liquid which I find easier to give then the pill. But keep it away from light as it will spoil quickly and keep it in the fridge.
post #19 of 21
I am glad you were able to get Sylvester to the vet and he is on antibiotics. I too had to chuckle at your 'Will work for kitty' sign:-).

If you have the pills and need to give them to Sylvester, here is something that I find works for me.

I sit down on the floor on my heels so that I can brace my cat between my knees and body. I use a tea towel and wrap it around the front of him tucking it between my knee and his body so he is snugged in tight to my body and he can't lift up his paws. I am cuddling and petting him through this and he enjoys this part of it. I have the pill handy - and I have dipped it in butter - and am holding it in my right hand (if you are left handed, use your left hand). With my left hand I put my hand over his face so my thumb is on one side and my fingers on the other side of his mouth, then lean back his head towards my chest and opening his mouth. I quickly tuck the butter coated pill into the back of his throat and use my right hand to close his mouth, still holding his head up. I stroke his throate all the way down until I see him 'gulp' - usually it happens pretty quickly - and then I let him lower his head and cuddle and pet him. It works pretty well as long as he isn't able to get a paw up and dislodge my right hand as it puts the pill in his mouth:-). The butter is there to disguise any taste he might get of the pill - his tongue is less likely to push it out if it tastes something good like butter. If the pill is bitter tasting (I don't believe clavamox is particularly bad in this regard), then they can really start to drool buckets of slimy drool in response to the bad taste:-).

Good luck with your cat and I hope both of you are feeling much relief very soon.

Kathryn
post #20 of 21
Hi Alicia -

I also have to pill my cat now and was so intimidated by the idea at first. I never did it before and thought I would hurt her. The alternative was to leave her there (boarded with meds) but didn't want to do that, first because I don't want her there and second because of the expense.

It makes it easier for me to get her pilled when she's sleeping. Find a spot, put the pill on the floor to have it all ready first. I do the same thing that Kathryn does, put her on the floor between my legs. It should be easier when she's still not quite awake. I'm left handed, so if you're right handed do the opposite. With my right hand I put her right ear between my pinkie and ring finger and the other 2 fingers under her cheekbone. My thumb is under her left cheekbone. You have to lift her head up, making sure her chin is all the way straight up. My cat resists, but keep trying. If you're holding her correctly, her mouth should open alittle. With my left hand, I hold the pill between my thumb and index finger and my middle finger is used to open her mouth down (put your middle finger on her small teeth in the front). Her tongue will come to the front and her throat will be open. While still holding her mouth down, I either drop or push the pill down alittle into her throat. Take your middle finger off her mouth, her mouth will close but you have to keep her mouth closed. I also gently rub her throat or gently blow in her nose, that will cause her to swallow. While I'm doing all this I speak gently to her, praising her or I sing to her. When it's over I give her a kiss and pet her, and a treat might be nice. I think it's most important to make sure her chin is all the way straight up.

The quicker it's done the better, and with experience you will be quicker.

If you can't do it, take your cat back to the vet (but call first to make sure it's okay). He/She can show you how and watch as you try it. That's what my vet did. I had to take her back because I couldn't do it at first, and they showed me again, which helped me a great deal and they didn't charge me for it. I was able to do it because they took the time to help me and because I knew my cat needed it to be done. Although I have trouble still once in a while, I am able to do it, and you will too. If I can do it, anyone can. Don't worry, you'll get the hang of it.

I hope Sylvester gets better real soon. My thoughts are with you both. I too had to use my credit card because the bills are for hundreds of dollars, but she's worth it.

Jill and Candy
post #21 of 21
Thread Starter 
To all the advice offered on the pill aspect, thank you so much! However, I just did what first came into my head , and I coated it in the broth of what canned food he eats for dinner, and place it on a spoon. I bring the spoon to him, and he just licks it off, I give him the whole bowl of food, and he chows down not thinking twice. I'm happy it's been going down that way simply because I don't know if I could do what everyone is/was saying, lol. I guess I am lucky, or he just loves me that much to just take his med's and make my life easier. Thought I would also say all this incase it might help anyone else out who is in the same boat I was in. Thanks again!
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