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July 1, 2021

10 First Aid Tips to Keep Your Cat or Kitten Safe

  • Tips
  • Tricks
  • Cat
  • First Aid
Bengal cat on blue couch looking at camera

Are you a cat lover? If so, you're certainly not alone.

That's because cats have a way of providing warmth and companionship while also maintaining their sense of independence. 

There's nothing better than cuddling your kitty and enjoying her presence over the years, no matter if you have a large family or live alone. They have a special way of providing love and affection that can fill your heart and make you smile.

This article takes a look at cat and kitten first aid tips that will help keep your cat healthy and happy, even when minor emergencies occur. Keep reading to discover insight into how to protect your cat from life's unexpected surprises. 

1. Choking

If you've ever owned a cat or kitten, then you know how easy it is for them to get choked on an object. This could be from chewing food or any other object of interest they pick up.

The solution to this problem is to clear the windpipe as quickly as possible. The best way to do this is by using your finger or tweezers. If this doesn't work, you might need to perform the Heimlich maneuver by placing your hands on either side of her rib cage.

Once the object is removed, the cat should be able to breathe freely. 

2. Poisoning

Cats can easily be poisoned by ingesting toxic substances. The first thing to do in these situations is to call your vet or the ASPCA Animal Poison Control Center.

It's also important to retain the labels of any products that the cat ingested. 

Next, attempt to induce vomiting unless your vet instructs you otherwise. Please keep in mind that many home remedies can actually be dangerous to your cat. 

3. Seizures

It's not uncommon for cats to experience seizures as a result of certain health conditions. This can be a dangerous situation if you aren't prepared to act quickly to stop the seizure.

First of all, it's important to protect your cat from hurting herself during the seizure. Thus, you need to keep her from falling and prevent her from drowning in water.

Keep in mind that seizures lasting less than 3 minutes aren't considered an emergency. Once the seizure has ended, go ahead and contact your vet for instructions. But if a seizure lasts more than 3 minutes, you should contact your vet immediately to find out how to proceed.

4. Burns

There are plenty of ways for a cat to sustain a burn around the house. This type of injury requires quick action in order to minimize the extent of the burn. 

First, remove the cat from the immediate area and put out the flame. If the burn was caused by an electrical source, unplug the appliance if possible.

For chemical burns, flush the contaminated fur and skin with lukewarm water, and flush the eyes with saline eye rinse if necessary.

Keep in mind that you should never apply ice or ointments, and never pop blisters on the animal's skin or yourself.
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5. Trouble Breathing

Have you ever noticed your cat having trouble breathing? This is obviously not a good thing.

Sudden breathing problems can be caused by a number of things, including choking, heat stroke, or serious respiratory issues.

First, clear the airway if necessary. This is especially crucial when your cat has swallowed anything that's become lodge in their windpipe. As stated earlier, you need to use your finger or tweezers to remove the obstruction.

If the problem is heat stroke, you'll need to remove the cat from the heat and take her rectal temperature. Try to cool her off as quickly as possible, and then contact your vet immediately to get instructions.

And if your cat has stopped breathing for no apparent reason, attempt to perform rescue breathing by clamping your lips over hers and exhale with enough force to expand her chest. Repeat this as many times as needed, until she is able to start breathing on her own again.

6. Bee Sting

Cats love to play with bees, which often results in painful bee stings. 

When this happens, you first need to locate and remove the stinger. The best way to do this is by gently scraping her skin with a credit card or your fingernail. This should flick the stinger out.

Next, you'll need to apply ice to the wound for a few minutes. Then apply a paste made of water and baking soda. This will help neutralize the pain of the sting.

Keep in mind that you shouldn't use tweezers or pull it out with your fingers. Why? Because this could actually discharge more venom into her wound.
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7. Open Wounds

Now let's talk about open wounds. After all, cats get hurt in a million different ways. They are curious and stubborn, and it only takes a second for them to get into trouble.

When your cat has an open wound from a cut, it's crucial to address the wound right away before it sets in. Clean away any debris and apply gauze, and then visit your vet as soon as possible.

8. Bleeding

For serious bleeding, hold a large gauze to apply pressure until clotting forms. Remove debris, clean the ear with water, and then apply a bandage with clean gauze underneath.

Keep an eye on the wound and then contact your vet if it doesn't appear to be healing.

9. Broken Bones

Broken bones are incredibly painful for anyone, especially your small pet. 

When a break occurs, you should immediately create a splint to hold the bone together until you can get proper medical care. Then load your pet in a well-padded carrier to transport them to your vet as quickly as possible.

10. Eye Injuries

When an eye injury occurs, it's important to keep your cat from rubbing its sore eye with its paw. Flush the eye with water if possible, then immediately take her to the vet.

A Pet Lover's Guide to Cat First Aid Tips 

Keeping your favorite feline happy and healthy is important. Fortunately, these useful cat first aid tips will help prevent small injuries from becoming life-threatening.


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Go! Solutions Team

A Team of Dedicated Pet Parents + Nutrition Experts

We all want our cats and dogs to lead happy, healthy lives. We’re here to help you, with easy-to-understand information about your pet's daily care and feeding.