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Dr. Brian
Dr. Brian, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 1231
Experience:  34 years in private practice, 2008 WA State Vet of the Year
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My cats lower jaw is really swollen this morning. I am wondering

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My cat's lower jaw is really swollen this morning. I am wondering whether to take him to a vet or wait to see if it gets better. I didn't notice it being swollen last night. It is sensitive to the touch. He is walking and moving around.
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. Brian replied 8 years ago.

Does he go outside?
Is he eating normally?
Is he lethargic or sleeping more?
Customer: replied 8 years ago.
Thank you. He is an indoor/outdoor cat. no litter box inside. He is a 5 or 6 year old neutered male. He looks and acts like Garfield so it is hard to tell whether he is any more lethargic; however, he is eating normally. He has been running inside and outside today like usual, but he looks like he knows something isn't right. He looks like he is hurting some, just by the way he seems uncertain, and he'll sit with his eyes squinched up (like tightly closed). The kids are worried about him, but my husband thinks it's a snakebite. A couple of years ago a stray/pet that we were feeding had a mouth problem and ended up dying of cat AIDS. So I am hoping it isn't that.
Expert:  Dr. Brian replied 8 years ago.
<p>Thanks,</p><p> </p><p>The most common cause is an abscess, etiher from a cat bite, an abscessed tooth, or a penetrating wound. Snakebites will also cause sudden and extreme swelling of the tissues where the bite occurs. If this is a rapidly worsening situation as you would see with a snakebite the cat should be seen immediately as these are life-threatening. Abscesses are painful and will also get worse but the veterinary care could wait until tomorrow. In either case you kitty will need to be seen, it is just a matter of how rapidly the tissue is swelling which you are in a better position to judge. These are painful, but do not use human pain relievers as most are toxic to cats. Best wishes.</p>
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