Conjunctivitis in Cats: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Every owner understands that you need to monitor the condition of the cat’s eyes. And of course, he is wary if his pet’s eyes “flowed”. This phenomenon causes conjunctivitis — an inflammation of the eye mucosa caused by an infection or an allergic reaction.

Causes of the disease

In people, conjunctivitis is called “acidification” of the eye. This pathology among Pets is not uncommon and it can not be ignored, as it can have serious consequences for the health of animals. The basis of treatment is the elimination of the factor that provoked mucosal inflammation.

Among the causes of conjunctivitis, the most common are the following:

  • bacteria, parasitic and fungal infections, viruses, staphylococci;
  • allergies to food, detergents, plant pollen, etc.;
  • mechanical damage to the visual organ;
  • radiation exposure;
  • foreign bodies in the eyes;
  • infection with parasites;
  • weakening of the immune system;
  • cold;
  • chemical vapor poisoning.

Conjunctivitis is more often diagnosed in kittens, but this does not mean that adult animals are not susceptible to this pathology. The disease can occur in any cat, regardless of age and breed.

If you do not attach importance to the inflammation of the conjunctiva, the disease can take a chronic form, which, in turn, is fraught with a decrease in vision.

The main symptoms

Determine conjunctivitis in a cat is simple. The animal has increased lacrimation, which gives it considerable discomfort. The pet constantly squints, avoids bright sunlight, washes its face, trying to clean its eyes.

At the same time, you can see that the cornea is covered with a cloudy film, the eyelids are swollen, and the eyes are red. Discharge of various types — from transparent to purulent, depending on the form of conjunctivitis. In the morning, the eyelids are glued together.

Diagnostics in the veterinary clinic

Diagnostics in a veterinary clinic is aimed at identifying the cause of conjunctivitis. In addition to visual examination and anamnesis, the veterinarian conducts a number of diagnostic studies to differentiate conjunctival inflammation from other diseases of the visual organ.

Necessary diagnostic measures include taking samples of secretions from the conjunctiva, and a biochemical blood test.

Determining the nature of eye discharge is of great importance. So, purulent means the development of a bacterial infection, mucous — an allergic reaction, serous — a virus that has developed in the body.

Treatment method and prognosis

There is no single treatment regimen for conjunctivitis. Therapy depends on the type of disease and is complex. In this case, you should treat not one eye, but both.

Drug therapy includes washing the conjunctival organ, the use of antibiotics, corticosteroids, painkillers, special drops and ointments that relieve inflammation.

Eye washing is a mandatory procedure that is performed before each application of ointment or use of drops. Well-proven drops “diamond tear”, which contains taurine, succinic acid, chlorhexidine.

After washing, special ointments are used. Apply the drug not with your fingers, but with a glass stick, which is pre-doused with boiling water. An ointment the size of a match head is applied under the eyelid twice a day.

Cats, as a rule, experience resistance, so you can apply a little ointment on the lower eyelid and wait for the animal to blink properly. Thus, the drug is evenly distributed in the desired area.

Effective ointments-antibiotics for conjunctivitis:

  • Tetracycline;
  • Erythromycin;
  • Levomycetin;
  • Sofradex;
  • Mitten;
  • Optimun.

Many pet owners believe that drops are much more convenient to use, as they are well distributed over the mucous membrane. However, this form of medication has a drawback: eye discharge. The ointment, which has a denser structure, undoubtedly wins the effect.

The course and dosage is set by the doctor depending on the stage and form of the disease.

As a rule, the specialist prescribes:

  • Dexamethasone;
  • Bars;
  • Iris;
  • Conjunctivitis;
  • Lacritin;
  • Lotrimin aseptic;
  • Ciprovet;
  • Decta;
  • Barrier.

Important: cats are forbidden to dig in the human eye drops Sulfacetamide (sulfatsil sodium). They can cause severe irritation and corneal burns! Of the drugs intended for people, it is allowed to use drops of Ciprolet, Floxal, Levofloxacin.

For chlamydial conjunctivitis, Ciprovet is used, which is administered intramuscularly.

The purulent form of the disease usually occurs either due to allergies or worm infestations. In such cases, a course of antihistamines or treatment against parasites is necessary, respectively. If conjunctivitis has an infectious origin, treatment is aimed at eliminating the pathogen with antibiotics.

In case of complications and damage to the eyeball, novocaine should be used.

What to do at home

The owner must create the most comfortable conditions for the sick pet and strictly follow the instructions of the veterinarian. In no case should you self-medicate, as it can aggravate the situation.

Some folk methods take place for conjunctivitis, but they should not replace conservative treatment. It is acceptable to use them in combination with medications.

Most often, at home, a decoction of chamomile and calendula is used to wash the eyes. You need to take 1 teaspoon of dried plants, pour boiling water, cool and let it brew. Wipe the eyes with a disinfectant decoction at room temperature 2-5 times a day. Black tea has a similar effect. A good effect is given by instilling a decoction of willow. Willow is an antibiotic of natural origin. To obtain a medicinal infusion, take 2 tablespoons of dried and crushed twigs, pour a glass of hot water, and boil for 5 minutes. Then cool and insist. To relieve inflammation and eliminate germs, instill or wipe the eyes 3 times a day.

You can also wipe your eyes with a solution of Chlorhexidine. The medicine is well tolerated by cats, does not give such effects, effectively disinfects and destroys some types of fungi.

A good result is given by a solution of Furatsilina. However, the correct dosage for a small volume is difficult to calculate correctly. Veterinarians do not recommend using a solution of potassium permanganate, as it strongly dries the mucous membrane and can provoke a burn.

A cat with conjunctivitis should be isolated from other Pets. The disease is contagious, transmitted to humans. When caring for a four-legged pet, you need to observe personal hygiene, wash your hands with soap or treat them with a disinfectant solution.

It is advisable to perform all procedures in disposable gloves.

Possible complications

It is important not to allow conjunctivitis to flow into the chronic stage, especially for pathologies of infectious origin. Over time, pathogens adapt to antibiotics and it is very difficult to destroy them.

Timely treatment of conjunctivitis allows us to hope for the absence of complications. Advanced stages of the disease lead to ulcerative lesions of the cornea, keratitis, partial loss of vision, glaucoma.

Prevention measures

Like any disease, conjunctivitis can be prevented. It is enough to follow the simplest prevention measures known to each owner:

  • do not allow hair to get into the eyes when combing;
  • keep household chemicals out of reach;
  • timely treatment against parasites, vaccination;
  • restrict your pet’s free range and contact with stray animals;
  • keep a four-legged pet in a warm room without drafts;
  • visit a veterinary clinic once a year for a routine check-up;
  • boost immunity with the help of multivitamin complexes;
  • more often carry out wet cleaning, airing the room.

If a pet has received a wound near the eye, it should be immediately treated with a disinfectant solution. If this is not done, the infection can affect the visual organ. At the first sign of conjunctivitis, you should not postpone a visit to the veterinary clinic. The earlier treatment is started, the higher the chances of a favorable prognosis.