A cat with a swollen eye meows at the camera.

Remedies For Cat Eye Infection

By Christian Velitchkov

A cat with a swollen eye meows at the camera.

Eye infections are a pain. They can cause your cat quite a bit of discomfort, and the relating vet bills can be expensive, too. Fortunately, several home remedies offer relief at a fraction of the cost. Whether it's allergies at the root of the problem or dreaded pink eye or worse, here's what to consider when evaluating your kitty's infected eyes.

5 Symptoms of Eye Infection In Cats

Not all eye infections are equal. Nor are their symptoms. Here are the most common signs of eye infections in cats to keep a lookout for. Even if these symptoms develop, many times, they are easily treatable with home remedies. But if symptoms persist, you should always consult a veterinarian. 

Red Eyes

Red eyes are a sure-fire way to know something is up with your pet. It could be as simple as allergies, but it could be a more severe infection like pink eye or an inflamed cornea. Fortunately, there are cat eye infection home remedies that can help.

Swollen Eyes

Swollen eyes indicate something's up with your cat and can also be a sign of pink eye or allergies. It could be a bacterial infection, too. Natural anti-inflammatories like honey can treat the effects of swollen eyes and warm compresses can help reduce swelling and irritation. 

Cat or Kitten Eye Discharge

Discharge typically indicates a reaction to infection and can vary widely in color. Green, yellow, or brown are the most common. A wet cotton ball can help you to clear the discharge. Then a warm compress can help reduce irritation.

Related: Everything You Need To Know About Discharge From A Dog’s Eye

Rubbing of Eyes

Excessive rubbing of the eyes results when the eyes are significantly irritated. Depending upon the source of the irritation, your cat could inadvertently injure the eye further with the rubbing. Therefore, it's best to clear things up as quickly as possible.

Frequent Winking, Blinking, or Squinting

If your cat shows sensitivity to light or blinks excessively, that's a good indicator that something is off. There could be a foreign object under the eyelid, or viral or bacterial infection could be causing eye sensitivity.

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A cat squints in the light.

5 Causes of Eye Infections In Cats

Like humans, cat eye infections can come in many forms, each with its own root cause. The source of the condition will be vital in determining a course of action to relieve the situation. Fortunately, cat eye infections cannot pass on to their human companions.

Conjunctivitis 

Pink eye in cats typically results from a viral infection such as feline viral rhinotracheitis. Feline viral rhinotracheitis is a form of the herpes virus that only cats are susceptible to. Other causes of conjunctivitis can include corneal irritation, tumors, or bacterial infection.

Upper Respiratory Infection

Upper respiratory infections are common among felines and typically stem from bacteria. However, feline calicivirus and protozoa may also cause upper respiratory infections. These can be highly contagious among cats.

Dry Eye

Tear production is essential to lubricating your cat's eyes. If your cat's eyes stay dry for too long, the corneas can become inflamed or even scratched, which can lead to infection and a lot of pain.

Foreign Body

Irritation in the eye can come from a foreign body under the eyelid, damaging the eye itself. An untreated abrasion could lead to infection, so flushing the eye soon after noticing symptoms of a possible foreign body in the eye is important.

Allergies

Seasonal allergies or Food allergies can both result in red eyes and puffiness. Digestive issues or skin problems may accompany them. A warm compress can help with red eyes, while honey can reduce swelling.

Related: The Complete Guide To Dog Allergies

How Can I Treat My Cat's Eye Infection At Home? Here Are 5 Ways

Home Remedies For Cat Eye Infections can be a cost and a time saver, and they can also help you determine the seriousness of your cat's infection. While there is a lot you can do for your pet at home, if home remedies are not effective, be sure to set up an appointment with your vet right away.

Lysine

Lysine or L-Lysine can be purchased at most pet stores and makes a useful weapon against symptoms of Feline herpesvirus. Lysine is an amino acid used in both humans and cats that plays an essential role in the formation of collagen. It can also help the body absorb calcium.

Clean the Eye

Cleaning the eye can be done in a number of ways. Wetting a cotton swab with sterile water can help you wipe the puss out of your cat's eyes. Wiping from the tear duct outward is the best method for getting debris out. You can also use a commercial cat-eye rinse from the pet store to flush the eye out.

Warm Compress

Soak a washcloth in warm water, first, then wring it out, so it doesn't drip. Press the cloth to your cat's eye and hold it for at least a minute. Go to the next eye and do the same. Repeat until you see the redness start to dissipate.

Oregon Grape

Oregon Grape is an antibacterial tincture that can combat pink eye. Apply 2 drops of the tincture to half an ounce of sterile water. Then, after you've mixed it, apply 2 to 3 drops into the affected eye twice daily.

Honey

Honey is a great anti-inflammatory that can reduce swelling and irritation in the eye. Add 2 tablespoons of honey to two tablespoons of sterile water, then shake and stir until the honey disappears into the water. Apply 2 to 3 drops into the affected eye twice daily.

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A kitten with an eye infection.

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Related: Can Dogs Eat Hemp Seeds?

Remedies Work

Eye infections in cats are common and can spread easily. Fortunately, they can also be easily remedied with cat eye infection home remedies that won't require a veterinarian's services to do so. If your cat's condition recurs, however, be sure to consult with a veterinarian right away.

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