Cat Bite Abscess

  • Cat bite abscesses often develop when cats have been in a fight. 

  • Cat claws and teeth are covered in bacteria and if your cat is scratched or bitten, they can develop an abscess 

  • Contact your vet if you think your cat has a cat bite abscess 


Signs your cat may have an abscess 


  • Your cat may seem off colour

  • They can be off their food

  • They may be lethargic 

  • They may have a temperature. 


Always take your pet to the vets if they seem unwell.


You may see a wound, the area may be swollen, red and painful. If the abscess bursts, you may also see blood or discharge. 


Your vet will make a thorough assessment of your pet. Treatment may include:


  • Anti-inflammatories: anti-inflammatories will provide instance pain relief for your pet and will also help to bring their temperature back to normal. This will make your cat feel a lot better in themselves. 

  • Antibiotics: antibiotics are generally indicated for cat bite abscesses, depending on their location, how long they have been there and other factors which your vet will take into account. They may be given in the form of injections or tablets. 

  • Cleaning or lancing the cat bite abscess: lancing an abscess which has not yet burst will provide instant relief for your cat. Generally, the vet will be able to do this with the use of local anaesthetic, but this may depend on the cat’s temperament. 


Cats generally recover well from cat bite abscesses; they are common in outdoor cats. Neutering entire male cats is highly recommended to help prevent them getting into fights. 

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This advice is for UK pets only.Written by vets. Please always seek advice from your own veterinary surgeon if you have concerns about your animal, never try to treat an animal yourself or give any medication without veterinary supervision.