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Avatar universal

Eye problem in neighborhood cat and other issues

Greetings all,

I apologize for the long post..

My neighborhood has about 5-6 cats(that I've seen since moving here a year ago) living outside.. Most won't let me near them, so probably feral.. In the past few weeks(we have had TONS of rain) one little tomcat has taken residence in a box on my deck. He is a big mush, making me think he is probably a neighbor's pet.. Unfortunately, the people on this block care more about paying the bills and feeding their families than caring for the cat..

He is not that old judging by his teeth, size, and attitude-probably around 1 1/2-2 years. He's intact and a good weight, good eater.. The skin stays tented when I pinch it, so a little dehydrated. He comes around every day for a pet, and when it rains he's in the box on the deck.. In the last three weeks since he decided to adopt me, I've noticed one eye progressively get worse. The discharge started clear, now there is some yellow mixed in. His conjunctiva has some inflammation, progressively worse in the past few days and he squints a bit from it. He allows me to get a good look and swab daily, and I do not see any debris, ulcers,scratches, punctures or other abrasions on the cornea. As a side note I have also heard him sneeze about 3 times in the past two weeks.

Now my dilemma is whether to take him to a vet.. He is super friendly, yet obviously cautious with me and other humans, is not comfortable being picked up, and I honestly don't know how he will handle a crate, car ride, and the vets office. Even once there I'm not sure how he will react to an exam, and once I get him home, he may never come back to me after the stress of it all, so the whole point of bringing him for some treatment would be moot.

I'm guessing his eye and sneezing is indicative of herpes virus or respitory infection, and I was hoping to get your opinions on what it may be and whether I should take him in or if any of you know any treatments I could try at home without stressing him.. What can I use to flush? Which ophthalmic ointment is usually used and obtainable? Can I get clavamox anywhere besides a vet and would it help? I can try to call the vet, explain, even bring pictures in, but I doubt they would give me treatments without an exam.

ALSO, I have been vigorously washing my hands after handling him as I have an indoor kitty that I do not want infected, but she does sit at the window screen by the deck-I'm not sure they actually get that close to each other(she growls like crazy and he ignores her), but it is still close enough for me to wonder if airborne transmission is a concern??

Thanks in advance
Jess
4 Responses
Avatar universal
I also wanted to add that after the eye has healed, I DO want to bring him in anyway for fiv/felv testing, vaccinations, and neutering... But I want to make sure the eye has cleared up before I do it, in case the stress of it all scares him off for good and his eye never gets treated. I also want to canvass the neighborhood to see if he belongs to anyone, so that I can yell at them :(
587315 tn?1333552783
I would just go ahead and take him to the vet now, since you were planning on taking him anyway.  From the symptoms that you described, it sounds like a simple respiratory infection that needs some clavamox.  You're also right about him being dehydrated.  When the skin on the nape of the neck stands up or goes down slowly, they are dehydrated.

Good luck!
Avatar universal
yes, but do you think once I bring him back after that ordeal that he would stick around? I would think after that stress he would never come back or trust me to treat the infection...

Which is why i was hoping to clear up the eye first while i have his trust.. Do you know if its even possible to get clavamox anywhere without a vet? Its a pretty common first response treatment, so I'm hopeful.. are there any vets that give meds out to stray caretakers?

Thanks again
587315 tn?1333552783
I understand why you're worried now.  I don't think that he'll wind up distrusting you, if you've been petting him and feeding him for a couple of weeks.  A couple of weeks is plenty of time for you to gain his trust.  

I've got a couple of ideas for you to try!  You can always take him to the vet and then bring him in and isolate him in one room of your house.  That way, you can treat him and visit him every day to gain his trust.  Another, maybe you can talk one of your current vets into giving you some clavamox.  You could also try calling a cat rescue organization-they might have some clavamox on hand, too.  I honestly don't know of anywhere that will give you some clavamox without a script.  Boy, I wish I did!!!  =D

I hope one of these ideas will work!!  

Please come back with an update.
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