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cat has swollen tail

November 30th, 2003, 12:40 PM
cat has been hiding last few days. Inspection this AM revealed her tail is swollen at her butt. It is also tender - she complains when it is touched. Otherwise, she seems "normal". No indication of external damage. She has been going outside once or twice a day for the last month or so. I have another old cat in the house and he is fine and they get along well.

She is about 15 mo old, spayed and has her shots - a long time ago.

any ideas?

Lucky Rescue
November 30th, 2003, 01:15 PM
This could be an injury or sprain, but it sounds like an abcess to me. Cats are very prone to abcesses resulting from bites, and the base of the tail is a popular area for other cats to bite.

The skin heals quickly over a bite wound, but cat's mouths are rather dirty, so the bacteria is trapped under the skin.

Your cat needs to go to the vet to have the abcess drained and be given antibiotics. If you don't do this, it will rupture on it's own, but may continue to drain and refill. It's also extremely painful!

To avoid this, and the resulting expense, in the future it's better to keep cats indoors.

November 30th, 2003, 02:59 PM
a closer inspection reveals something dark matted in the hair, which she is REAL touchy about, about the size of pencil lead and 3/8" long. I can't see if there is any bite wound. It may be a week old now.

Lucky Rescue
November 30th, 2003, 05:51 PM
The actual bite wound is often difficult to see - as I said, the skin does heal quickly.

The dark matted stuff means the abcess has ruptured and your cat will need antibiotics to fight off the infection.

If your cat continues to go out, this will probably be a regular occurance, so next time you can take her to the vet right away to save her days of suffering.