What to Do With Sick or Injured Stray Cats
If you find a stray cat and want to help it, you’ll need to know how to spot if it’s injured or sick. Then, you can decide what kind of care it will need, whether that be taking your new friend to a vet or finding an alternative remedy. In this guide, we’ll cover all the steps you need to take if you find yourself in this situation!
What to do if you find a sick or injured stray cat
If you find a stray cat that looks injured or ill, it’s important not to touch it. If you do decide to approach the cat, keep in mind that your scent may be more threatening than you realize. Though you may think that cats are naturally curious and friendly, most cats prefer not to interact with humans. Keep your distance and call animal control or a local rescue organization instead of trying to pick up sick or injured strays yourself.
If the cat has been injured, take care not to further injure them by moving them without first seeking veterinary attention; catching them would be best left up to experts who know how much force is appropriate for each situation (which will vary depending on what type of injury they have). Also note: Do not attempt this if there are any wild dogs in the area!
Spot any sign of injuries and sickness
Check for signs of injured and sick cats.
- Look at the cat’s face, ears, and mouth for any cuts or sores. These might be a sign of an injury caused by fighting or other trauma. You should also check the cat’s paws for any cuts or scrapes that may have happened while it was wandering around outside. If there are no obvious injuries, continue to check its entire body since cats can hide injuries well even when they’re sick or injured.
- Check your stray cat’s coat for fleas, ticks, and other parasites that could cause irritation and pain when biting into their skin (and sometimes even disease). Pull back its fur around the neck and tail to see if these areas contain parasites as well.
- Smell your stray cat’s breath if you notice a foul odor like vomit or feces coming from its mouth then this could be an indication that something is wrong internally with either digestion problems (vomit) or urinary tract infections (feces).
Checking for common health issues in cats
Cats are prone to many different health issues. Some of the most common cat health issues include:
- Fleas and ticks, which can lead to skin irritation, anemia, and tapeworms
- Ear mites, a common parasite that is easily treated with drops or oral medication
- Stomach problems such as diarrhea and vomiting
- Worms like roundworms and hookworms; typically cause no symptoms but can be fatal if left untreated for too long. If you notice your cat scratching less than usual or losing weight despite an appetite, it could be due to worms!
Other common illnesses include bacterial infections (such as feline flu) or fungal infections (such as ringworm).
Examining the cat for injuries
You should also check for any visible signs of trauma, broken bones, open wounds, and bruising. You should carefully inspect the cat’s body to make sure it is not injured anywhere.
- Check for signs of injury to the eyes by lifting or gently pulling back their eyelids. If you see any redness or pus in their eyes, this could be an indication that they have an eye problem and need medical help.
- Check for signs of injury to the ears by lifting or gently pulling back their ears to look inside them. If you see any redness or pus in their ears, this could be an indication that they have an ear problem and need medical help.
Plan how to fund any needed care
The cost of caring for an injured or sick stray cat can be quite high. A hospitalization may cost several hundred dollars, and in some cases, thousands of dollars. If you have the funds to care for this cat in the short term, great. But if you don’t have that kind of money on hand and need to find a low-cost veterinarian, there are some resources available:
- The ASPCA recommends calling local animal shelters and animal control departments to see if they can help with any cat’s essentials like food and biodegradable cat litter.
- You can also call city hall or your town’s health department to see if they offer any programs that provide financial assistance with veterinary bills.
- Make sure any vet who treats your cat is licensed by your state’s board of veterinary medicine so that he or she is legally allowed to practice veterinary medicine in your state (and hopefully not just claiming they’re a “vet”).
Remember that sometimes even the best intentions go awry. It’s always better safe than sorry when it comes down to taking care of an injured or sick stray cat so make sure you’ve got all those bases covered before jumping into action.
Check its eyes
The first thing you should do is check the cat’s eyes. It is important to look for a discharge from its eyes, redness or swelling, any discharge from its eyes, and any signs of infection.
You can also check for any signs of injury or trauma as well as pain.
Use the kind of suitable traps
Use a cat trap like this cat trap in Victoria, you’ll need to decide on the kind of trap that will work best for your situation. You can use a cage trap or a box trap, which are both tools you can buy at hardware stores and home improvement centers.
Cage traps are enclosed in wire mesh and allow cats to enter but not exit on their power. They can be baited with food or catnip and then secured shut until you’re ready to release them back into the wild. The downside of cage traps is that they may injure your cat if she tries to claw her way out while trapped inside one (which could happen if she gets nervous during transport), so make sure you’re prepared for this possibility before using one.
Another option is a box trap: these are made from plastic or metal frames shaped like cubes with doors on each side so cats can enter through one opening but not exit again without help from humans who know what they’re doing. Box traps come in different sizes depending on how many cats need catching at once (usually two will suffice).
Check its ears and nose
Next, move on to the ears and nose. Look for any signs of infection or injury, including discharge from the nose, swelling or inflammation around the eyes (or anywhere else), bleeding, etc. If your cat seems healthy otherwise but has an itchy skin condition that wasn’t there when you first met him/her (or if its skin is red), he/she may have fleas—a common problem in cats who live outdoors. You can use special shampoo regularly to treat this problem by bathing your cat at least monthly with anti-flea shampoo containing pyrethrins or other insecticides; this will help kill pests before they bite your pet and lay eggs on its body.
Check its mouth
- If the cat is drooling, it could have a dental problem. This can sometimes be treated at home with food such as canned pumpkins.
- Check the mouth for signs of injury or infection. If there’s an injury in his mouth, he’ll need to go to the vet immediately (whether you will stay with him or not).
Check its fur and skin
The first thing you should do is check the cat’s fur and skin. Cats can have several problems that will show up as lumps or bumps under the skin, so it’s always a good idea to feel around your cat’s body for any unusual growth.
If you find anything, don’t panic! You can probably treat most of these conditions at home with over-the-counter medication from the pet store. But if it looks like something is seriously wrong with your kitty, bring him or her to the vet immediately so they can see what it is and tell you how to treat it.
You should also be on the lookout for fleas and ticks—another common problem among stray cats (and all cats). If you don’t know what either one looks like, they’re small little bugs that live on animals’ bodies and suck their blood! To prevent this uncomfortable situation from happening again: brush your cat regularly; try putting flea powder on him/her before letting him/her outside; put sticky tape around his/her bedding where he/she sleeps inside; wash bedding frequently.
Check the cat’s breathing
To check the cat’s breathing, watch its chest. If it is breathing deeply and regularly, the cat may be okay. If it is breathing shallowly or irregularly, or if there are no breaths at all, this could mean the cat is in distress or dying from illness or injury. You can also check for a pulse by placing two fingers on either side of the neck where you feel a heartbeat.
Check the cat’s stomach and intestines
A stray cat’s stomach and intestines are the first places to look for abnormalities.
If there are any signs of worms or parasites, it’s important to treat them immediately with medication prescribed by a veterinarian.
Also check for signs of infection in the cat’s stomach and intestines, which may indicate that you should contact your local animal shelter or rescue organization as soon as possible.
Decide whether to bring the cat home with you
The first thing to do is decide whether you can afford to pay for the cat’s care. If the answer is yes, then congratulations! You are now responsible for your new friend and should try your best to look after them. But what if it turns out that you don’t have the time or money needed to look after a sick or injured stray cat? In that case, don’t worry; there are still ways you can help by taking it to a shelter when it gets better.
How much does it cost to have a vet check out a stray cat?
The cost of having a veterinarian examine your cat depends on the severity of the injuries. If your cat is suffering from a minor injury, then it might only cost $50 or so to have them examined and treated. On the other hand, if your cat has a serious injury like broken bones or internal bleeding, then you can expect to pay anywhere between $200 and $400 for treatment alone.
If you don’t have that kind of money lying around just waiting for something like this, there’s still hope! You may be eligible for free clinics in your area that offer discounted rates on medical treatments as well as special discounts on pet food/supplies (but be sure to call ahead before visiting these places). You can also look into help from local rescue groups – they might know how much it costs at their vet’s office because they use him/her all the time!
Finding alternatives if you can’t afford a vet visit
If you don’t have the money to take your cat to a vet, consider the following options:
- Contact a local shelter and ask if they can help. Many shelters have staff members who are trained in basic animal care and can provide advice on what else you can do for an injured cat until you’re able to get them into a shelter or rescue. If that’s not possible, go ahead and take them there yourself! Most shelters will be happy to help find homes for stray cats—they’re just like any other animal lover when it comes down to it.
- Find out if there are any local cat rescues in your area that might be able to help with providing food and comfort while your kitty is healing up from his injuries. Some rescues may also be able to spay/neuter injured strays before adopting them out so that others won’t fall victim as well!
After reading this article, you should feel confident in knowing how to help sick or injured stray cats. Remember that if you do find a cat in need of medical attention, call your local vet to see if they can refer you to a clinic that can help. If not, search online for other options such as free clinics or animal shelters near your home where they may be able to assist. Also, remember that some veterinarians offer discounts for low-income individuals who cannot afford expensive treatments for their pets; so keep an open mind about what options might work best for both parties involved.