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Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 10438
Experience:  I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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My cat has burns on his face and eyes from getting into some

Customer Question

My cat has burns on his face and eyes from getting into some spilled drain opener with sodium hydroxide, he is in a lot of pain and is pawing at his face. I may not be able to get veterinary care until tomorrow as I live in a rural area.
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 2 years ago.
Hello, I'm Dr. Deb. I'll do my best to help you today.

I'm so sorry that Griffin has gotten into this drain cleaner; I can just imagine how painful he must be.

The vinegar was a good idea but I'm assuming you're taking care to avoid getting it into his eyes which can cause more burning and stinging.

1. I would attempt to gently clean his face 2-3 times a day with either just warm water or very dilute Betadine or Iodine (to the color of weak tea).
2. I very much doubt if you'll have access to Vetericyn but this is a spray which would be quite helpful in this situation. It's available at many pet or grain stores in the pet section.
3. You can also try to apply a very small amount of antibiotic ointment to his skin but he shouldn't lick it off (if he gets it on his paws) since it may cause more harm (cats are very sensitive to many over the counter products.

4. He may also need to wear a cone to prevent more damage to his face and eyes if he's rubbing at them excessively.

5. The eyes can be flushed out with sterile saline if you have it; many human eye ointments are also acceptable to use. If you have any, let me know and I can tell you if it's ok to use in a cat.

6. I don't typically recommend Aspirin since it can be toxic to cats at high doses but in this situation, it may be helpful with pain and inflammation. Just be careful with the dose which is 81 mg (low dose) every three days.
Be sure to tell your vet that you gave him this drug (if you do) so that it won't interfere with what they may use to treat him.

I hope this helps and that he'll be ok. Deb
Expert:  Dr. Deb replied 2 years ago.
Hello again,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your cat. How is he doing? Deb