Burns and scalds in cats: recognize, prevent and treat them

Cats are very curious and risk getting hurt precisely because of this aspect of their character: let’s find out how to prevent and treat burns and scalds in cats.

Anyone who has adopted a cat knows very well how these beautiful animals are also very curious and incredibly nosy: they jump, hide and slip into the most unexpected places, including those that sometimes hide dangers to their health.

Among these, it is impossible not to think about the risk of burns and scalds that the cat runs every time he jumps on the kitchen stove: to know what is cooking in the pot, in fact, the cat climbs into what is probably the most dangerous place in the house, where the lit fire or the hot plates become real traps that burn his skin, his pads or his fur.

The cat can get such wounds also in other ways, for example by coming into contact with stinging substances that cause chemical burns of the first, second or third degree: in this article we will find out how to recognize and cure them, with treatments and precautions for prevention. essential to safeguard our feline friend.

Burns and scalds in cats: everything you need to know

We have already mentioned that the most common burns in cats usually occur in the kitchen: other sources of possible burns and scalds are also the iron or hot liquids (water, coffee and oil are just some examples).

As well as in the kitchen, a cat can burn its paws or other parts of the body even outside the home: for example in the summer months, when a cat climbs on cars or tin roofs that become hot in the sun and cause dangerous burns to their delicate pads.

If the cat finds himself with a burn, a burn or a sunburn it is essential to know how to intervene, but first of all we need to recognize the type of burn we are dealing with.

Burns in cats: how to recognize first, second and third degree burns

First, if your cat is burned, pay attention to how you approach and interact with him: the cat will surely be scared and in pain, so treat him very calmly and carefully.
To understand if burns and scalds in cats are more or less serious, it is necessary to observe the appearance of the lesion: here’s how to learn to recognize them.

First-degree burns in cats

Together with second-degree burns, they are the least severe type of burn that your cat can suffer from. Symptoms of a first-degree burn are light or no patching of hair, painful lesions, and red skin.

Second-degree burns in cats

If the burn is slightly more severe, it is possible that the hair is burnt, the skin is very red and you may notice the presence of scabs or fluid-filled blisters.

Third degree burns in cats

They represent the most serious form of burn that the cat can suffer and can be recognized by the white or black lesion, but above all by the fact that the hair falls off easily at the first touch. In severe cases, the cat may also have other symptoms such as a rapid heartbeat, difficulty breathing, and pale or whitish gums.

How to prevent and treat burns in cats

In the case of a first or second degree burn, you must first of all be very careful to recognize the lesion in good time: usually the hair is not visibly damaged, but the skin is reddened and this is precisely what needs to be checked.

Minor burns can be treated with ice packs and cold water on the affected area, to be kept on the feline skin for about 15 minutes.
To prevent the cat from licking the injured part, it is important to cover burns and scalds with sterile gauze to be fixed with fabric bandages.
Once the dressing has been applied, it is recommended that the cat be examined by the vet as soon as possible.

For third degree burns the situation is more risky, so it is important to immediately cover the affected area with sterile gauze and take the cat to the vet immediately, especially in the presence of further symptoms of shock such as those previously reported.

Chemical burns: how to prevent and treat them

If your cat comes into contact with a dangerous chemical substance, it could get a bad burn: the best thing is to prevent the problem by keeping paints, insecticides, turpentine, gasoline and other potentially dangerous substances out of reach of the cat.

Chemical burns are made even more dangerous by the correlated risk of cat poisoning: the animal, in fact, will tend to lick the hair and ingest increasingly large quantities of the toxic substance in question.

If your cat suffers a chemical burn, it is essential to wash the affected area thoroughly with mild soap and water or cat shampoo. Rinse well and repeat several times, if necessary, until completely eliminating residues and odors. Afterwards, a soothing antibiotic ointment can be applied on the advice of the veterinarian.

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