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Dr. Lee
Dr. Lee, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 5355
Experience:  8 years of experience in veterinary medicine and surgery
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4 week old kitten has very bad URI congested and eyes swollen

Customer Question

4 week old kitten has very bad URI congested and eyes swollen shut. Have given .1cc Amoxicillan 2X daily for five days. Kitten is eating when force fed and pooping in a litter box on her own.

I have found some albuterol in 2.5 cc vials and am considering renting a nebulizer. Looking online for dosage and how to treat. Can you help me with this?

My vet says she "doesn't do" nebulizers or albuterol and won't tell me why. She said it "could help." Yesterday she upped the dosage of Amox to .2cc 2X day.

Should I take these measures (renting the nebulizer, getting the albuterol) or just keep treating her with the antibiotic and eye ointment?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

Hi. I'm Dr. Lee and will do my best to help.


Is she having difficulty breathing?

Any wheezing or coughing?

Any sneezing?



Customer: replied 7 years ago.
She is completely congested. No sneezing, wheezing or coughing. She has a brother who was found with her (under a house, feral mom) and he's doing fine, just had one eye infected which has almost heeled with the ointment.

She is not eating on her own, as she can't see or smell but will take the gruel on finger and KMR in a syringe.

My main question is whether I should get the nebulizer and if I do, how much albuterol is appropriate
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
She is completely congested - not sneezing, coughing or wheezing. We are force feeding her gruel and KMR every 3 hours.

My main question is whether I should go the step of the Nebulizer and how much Albuteral do I use (never done this before). She probably weighs 5-6 ounces.
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

Thanks for the update.


With these clinical signs, I also agree that nebulizer is not necessary, though it wouldn't hurt either. If you do want to use it, the problem is that albuterol usage requires a special adapter to use for cats, in order to dose it properly. The device usually takes a couple days to order as well. Having said that, I would suggest to ask your veterinarian for the following two medication instead of the current ones you are using.


1. Clavamox in place of Amoxi drops. Clavamox is a broader spectrum antibiotic and works better and gets more bugs.


2. Neo/Poly/Dex ophthalmic suspension. Eye drop suspension is easier to get into an eye that is shut vs a gel or ointment. As well, the dex in this preparation helps to get the inflammation/conjunctivitis down quickly so the eye can be open quicker.


Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks.


Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I called my vet about the Neo Poly Dex and the vet tech said they don't prescribe cortisone for babies this young. What is your view on that?
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

I would respectfully XXXXX XXXXX that. Kittens do use steroids, no matter what age. But that depends on what the situation is. With these topical drops, we can using it locally. Granted, there will be a very little amount being absorbed systemically when applied topically, but it is not enough to affect the body especially when using it short term. If they do not like using Neo/Poly/Dex, then ask for flurbiprofen ophthalmic suspension. This is a eye non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug that will help with decreasing inflammation (conjunctivitis) as well. If they don't have that, they can write a prescription for it as it is a human prescription item as well.

Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks.


Customer: replied 7 years ago.
The vet tech called back and said the vet will give me another eye treatment in drop form. If this kitten is not better soon, is there anything else you can recommend I do (the nebulizer? Is there a better way than the albuterol?)

Do you think I need to get up and feed her every four hours in the night to feed her? She's four plus weeks old and has been eating for a week.
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

If they are willing to get you another eye drop, use that.


Again, I don't think nebulizer will help too much. But I would definitely recommend to ask for Clavamox oral suspension in place of Amoxi oral suspension. It is a much better broad spectrum drug.


As for feeding, every 4 hours is good. I would suggest to do that since she is still young. If you can get her onto the clavamox to help with the nasal problem/infection, and the eye drop (whatever they give) and if it works, you should see improvement in 3 days.


Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks.


Dr. Lee and 2 other Cat Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
I got the Clavanox and gave the kitten .2 ml at 3 p.m. and another .1 at 8 p.m and another .1 at 4 a.m. and then at 9 a.m. She seems a little better this morning. But I am concerned about overdosing her? She is about 7 oz. Please advise dose amt and timing.

I got Tobramyacin Ophthalmic Solution and have put in her eyes often - they are still covered with membrane with just a tiny pinhead of eyeball showing. I just went online and saw a warning not to overdose. Should I be concerned about this? I also have some Vetropolycin

Her brother shows absolutely no signs of URI and is eating and playing like a normal kitten. Should I give him Clavamox as a precaution.
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

Yes. That is definitely too much. Clavamox is only a twice a day medication which means every 12 hours. For your kitten of 7 oz, give only 0.05 ml every 12 hours. That is more than enough. The amount you have been giving is way overdosing your kitten. Please give 0.05 ml starting at 9PM tonight, every 12 hours.


Tobra ophthal is fine to use, but again, there is no anti-imflammatory so it will take a while for that to work. You can put 1 drop to each eye 3 to 4 times a day. That is every 6 to 8 hours.


There is no need to give medication to other kittens if they are normal.


Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks.


Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Actually, I think I meant 0.1ml and 0.2ml instead of cc - I have the 1.0 ml syringe and go up one or two of the notches - I got a good scale from my neighbor and she weighs 9.3 oz much more than my estimate. Knowing that, how much and when should I give her next dose?

Her brother was sneezing when I got him Sunday and has a week of antibiotic. I heard him sneeze once today. He is 14.3 oz. I just gave him (before I got this) 0.1.5 ml of clavanox as the foster forgot to return the amoxi.

Just in the last hour or so, she seems better. You can see both eyeballs and I think she is actually able to see. She was playing with her brother a bit and I think her nose might be clearing up. One person suggested online to get saline drops for babies and put in her nose with a tiny syringe...

I am feeding her high quality food mixed with warm water and syringing KMR about every 2-3 hours. Since I work at home, I'll be able to do that all this week and have much more faith now that she will make it.

Thanks for your help. Please clarify the doses of the Clavanox - .05 doesn't make sense to me, given the size of the syringe I have - how many notches? Not 0.5 right?
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

Actually the dose is correct. Dosing for a cat is 1.0 ml per 10 pounds.


For 9.3 oz, you should give Clavamox at 0.06 to 0.075 ml every 12 hours.

For your 14.3 oz kitten, you can give 0.09 to 0.1 ml every 12 hours.


I would not suggest giving saline into the nose. Same idea as nebulizer, not needed, but probably wouldn't hurt.


Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks.


Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Is it possible I have hurt them by giving so much? She is actually doing a lot better. I have a "kitten room" and had cordoned a section off for her with a little box. She climbed over the pillows and went all the way across the room to the big cat boxes. Her poop was nice and firm and she covered it up.

But her eyes seem more clouded over than even 2 hours ago. I gave last dose of Tobra about 4 hours ago. I will wait another two hours because there is danger of overdose on that? (But not the other ointments I have?) Is the Tobra the best choice.

Thank You. I'm pretty sure this is all I need to know for this kitten.
Expert:  Dr. Lee replied 7 years ago.

It should be ok for the Clavamox. Just stay with the above recommended dose.


As for the tobra eye drops, don't worry about overdosing. It's ok with the topical drop. It is simply another antibiotic drop, but again, does not contain any anti-inflammatory. But as long as she is doing better, that's good news. You can give this eye drop every 6 hours. The other ointment is the same, you can give it every 6 hours as well. Again, Tobra is a good drug, but I would prefer Neo/Poly/Dex.


Please let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks.