How to treat a feral cat's eye infection?

oyster

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We have a feral cat who lives in our yard. She has been with us for about 6 years, responds to her name, sleeps in her hut, and I feed her everyday. However, I cannot get close to her or touch her. I managed to trap her once and get her spayed after she had a kitten in our backyard. Since then, she won't come even near me.
She currently has an eye infection and I can see that her eye is red and cloudy. She must be in pain. I have Metacam from a previous vet visit for our pet cats but I don't want to give it to her as I am conservative about using Metacam.
Obviously, I cannot get her to the vet. How can I help her? I can only add things in her food.
I have called our vet and he says he cannot prescribe anything unless he sees the cat. Well, I cannot take her to the vet because she won't get trapped again. I have tried that in the past and she knows the trap all too well. (She is also the cat who repeatedly brings her kittens to me. I have adopted two of her kittens and they are indoor only cats. The others got into the trap and were taken to the cat shelter).
 

FeebysOwner

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Hi. I am sorry no one has responded to your post yet. But, under the circumstances, I can see why. I honestly hope some members can come along who have experience dealing with ferals who need medical help, as I do not.

I can only suggest that you look in your neighborhood, through the Next Door Neighbor web site to see if you can find some others in your area who might have a stash of meds to suggest. Although, I suspect most eye infections will require eye drops and not just some form of oral meds. Some of the folks in your area might work with you through PMs so as not to 'publicize' themselves. There are others who have built a relationship with some of the vets that might be willing to prescribe something for this cat too. This is all speculative on my part based on what I know of some of the 'rescuers' in my area.

But, if that does not work, I can't appeal to you enough to trap this cat - however you can - and have her eye looked at.
 
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oyster

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Thank you for the suggestion. Unfortunately, I cannot trap her. I have tried it in the past 5 years because the animal shelter wants to redo her spay as our local vet messed it up--obviously. She had a kitten about 3 months ago. I am going to trap that kitten this week but mom will not enter the trap. I do this every year as she brings kittens to us every year. That is why we are on a first name basis at the local animal shelter.
I have contacted the animal shelter and they are willing to give me oral antibiotics. I cannot touch her without her scratching and hissing at me, so I would rather give her something in her food than apply ointment to her eye.
 

Mamanyt1953

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Is it at all possible to sedate her with oral meds? That MIGHT allow you to get her to a vet. On the other hand, there is the danger of her leaving your yard before the meds hit her, and she'd have to be tracked down. I'd talk with a rescue group about this...they may have some ideas.
 
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oyster

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The animal shelter gave me a bottle of Baytril. We had to register our names and call the vet about it. But we have it now. I started her on it last night and it is already looking a little better. I am sure it is bacterial conjunctivitis as she has had this before. I am also using Lysine in her food to help combat it. Now, to trap her kitten...hope I am as successful with that.
 

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Hi, FeebysOwner FeebysOwner is very correct about needing drops or ointment as well as oral meds and unfortunately a broad spectrum anti- biotic ,though better than nothing,is highly likely inadequate

Most adult ferals conjunctiva is caused by a viral flare up (FHV) so many are misdiagnosed when not seen by an opthalmologist , anti viral med along with anti- biotic ( long acting injection is adequate as well).... So you are between a rock and a hard place here as she needs the appropriate meds as this likely will be a recurring issue for her

Would you not consider adopting her and transitioning her to live inside with you? She sleeps inside her hut so you can rig up something to trap her inside her hut ( one door?)or a drop net works well too ....

Since she does go inside a hut I can't imagine she'd be difficult to trap,she's just aware of what traps are- how about a large carrier and familiarizing her with a nice place to eat- it will take a little while but it will be worth it after all is said and done

Also,I suggest you request testing for Feline herpes when you bring her litters to the Vet so future adopters are aware even if they are asymptomatic they are carriers. Blood testing is not accurate so lab testing by swabbing (oral,nasal,ocular); is required👍
 
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Kwik

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Good on the L lysine!It is excellent support for upper respiratory and ocular ( viral support) to help with flare ups.....
 

di and bob

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I explained to my vet that the cat was feral and cannot be caught again, and he gives me antibiotics for them when I explain what is going on. I have given oral antibiotics fro bad eyes and it did clear them up. Try one more time, maybe with the vet that spayed her, or try your local shelter, sometimes they can help. Talk to the vet, NOT the help!
 

Kwik

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I explained to my vet that the cat was feral and cannot be caught again, and he gives me antibiotics for them when I explain what is going on. I have given oral antibiotics fro bad eyes and it did clear them up. Try one more time, maybe with the vet that spayed her, or try your local shelter, sometimes they can help. Talk to the vet, NOT the help!
Most Vets ime understand and are very helpful and you are spot on about not talking to the gatekeepers,I think their primary task is to book appts!

Sadly I've seen a huge shift since private practices are quickly being replaced by corporations- the Vets now at the place I've gone to for over 20yrs has went " corporate'- I couldn't even get a box of Revolution for my cats without being seen by one of their new Vets!!!!Thank God I got in touch with my Vet and followed him elsewhere- they are seen frequently and on Rev their entire lives

- imagine not being able to get an antibiotic for a feral? ITS OUTRAGEOUS imo
 
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oyster

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Thank you all for your help and suggestions.
I cannot trap the mom. She lives in my yard and has been happy there for 5 years. Her firstborn is our pet and an indoor cat. He has been tested for FHV and did not show it in lab tests.
We adopted another one of this cat's foundlings 4 years ago when we lost our precious Biscuit to cancer.
 
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