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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16214
Experience:  Small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats, happy to discuss any questions you have.
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My cat has conjunctivitis and it will not clear up

Customer Question

Hi - my cat has conjunctivitis and it will not clear up completely.
Submitted: 11 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 11 months ago.

Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian & I would like to help you with your wee one today.

Now it does sound like you were on the right track with Leo.

Still if you were taking the cone off (or did just do so 2 days ago without it being 100%) when he wasn't under close supervision, then that can cause us to struggle to clear these kinds of infection. This is because cats will groom /wash their eyes without hesitation but do so with bacteria filled saliva. So, if he has any access to this, he can end up re-infecting himself or adding in new bacterial agents to cause infection.

With this in mind, we have 2 options. Since a culture has been done, you can speak to his vet about treating a bit longer or using a third antibiotic based on the culture results. Or since we have a risk that Leo may have added another bacteria to the mix, you could consider a re-swab to see what is there and what it is not sensitive to (since sometimes we even see bacteria develop resistance as we treat).

In either case, I would suggest also considering flushing his eyes with sterile saline (ie OTC first aid eye wash or plain contact lens solution).These are eye safe and can help just flush out some of the irritation and bacteria present to give his treatments a helping hand.

Finally, if you think he relapses with irritation as opposed to persistent snotty discharge, he may have an underlying allergy to something in his environment. In that case, we'd want to speak to his vet about cat safe anti-inflammatories (ie Metacam) +/- antihistamines (ie Benadryl - More Info/Dose) to cover that base and help get him settled.

All the best,

Dr. B.

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Customer: replied 11 months ago.
I'm not sure exactly what information got sent through with my initial question but in any case. Once my cat's vet scolded me about the cone I was very diligent had him in it non-stop over the course of giving him the oral antibiotic and eyedrops. He isn't sneezing or coughing or anything and doesn't have any discharge from the nose so I am pretty sure we are just dealing with just the eye.I still have Diclofenac sodium drops (0.1%) and Ofloxacin drops (USP 0.3%) and Terramycin ointment left. I really want to try to resolve this without going back to the vet at this point but will do so if this doesn't improve. What combination of the drops/ointment above would you recommend? and how much time should I give it?
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 11 months ago.

Hi again,

Your history suggest that you were scolded once but that you may have taken this off in the past 2 days (and are seeing recurrence). My apologies if that wasn't quite the case.

In any case, you don't necessarily have to rush back in. Since he has been seen recently for this, you could ring the vet about a 3rd antibitoic option if you wished. Otherwise, we'd want to use the drop that the culture supported as being effective for the bacteria present. Therefore, it will likely be the most recent one he has been on. As well, we can use the Diclofenac drops since they are the anti-inflammatory and should keep irritation in check (and will help if we have eye based allergy issues, even without airway signs). And I would consider using them for another 3-5 days but advise re-swabbing if we aren't seeing this settle.

Take care,

Dr. B.

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If you have any other questions, please ask me – I’ll be happy to respond. Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is how I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )

Expert:  Dr. B. replied 11 months ago.
Hi Kristin,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr. B.
Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Hi Dr. B,I have been diligently applying both types of eye drops since last Friday and Leo (the cat) has been wearing the cone the entire time but his eye still doesn't look 100% better. I've attached a couple of photo. What do you think? This morning I ran out of the antibiotic drops so have just been putting in the other drops + terramycin ointment today.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 10 months ago.

Hello again,

The lighting is quite poor in your photos, but from what I can see Leo's eyes look a bit inflamed but not infected. So, as long as you are seeing no snotty discharges, I'd try just the anti-inflammatory drop. Or we can try giving his eyes a break (so keeping the cone on but giving a day or 2 without treatment) to see if that settles. If it doesn't, then we may need to go to an oral anti-inflammatory just in case he is having an odd inflammatory reaction to an ingredient in one of the drops he is on.

Take care,

Dr. B.

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Customer: replied 10 months ago.
Thanks Dr. B. I tried to take a couple of better photos (attached).
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 10 months ago.

Thank you,

The better lighting does confirm that mild inflammation still remaining but still the bacterial conjunctivitis looks to have settled down. So, I would again either only use the anti-inflammatory drops or try giving him a break to see if can reduce that for him. Though if you think he is sore and might be sensitive to the drop, then we may be best to swap to oral cat friendly ant-inflammatory like Metacam.

Take care,

Dr. B.

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** Please remember to rate my service once you have all the information you need as this is the only way I am credited for assisting you today. Thank you! : )