Cat with a swollen paw: here’s what to do

Finding out if a cat has a swollen paw is a bit difficult if you don’t look closely. This article will help you understand when a cat has a swollen paw and what to do.

Cats are animals that, as we know, walk without problems and without limits, so having a paw problem for them could be quite annoying.

But we also know that micietti know how to hide when they feel pain and discomfort, the only thing to do to realize if there is any problem is to observe them very carefully. We will see together how you can notice if the cat has a swollen paw and what you need to do to help it.

The cat has a swollen paw

As we have already said, one must carefully observe the cat to see if there is something wrong. If you notice that your cat is limping or constantly licking a paw, most likely he may feel pain and have a swollen paw.

The causes for which the cat could have a swollen paw could be many, some are evident like fractures and others less evident, let’s find out together.

Causes the cat’s swollen paw

The causes for which the cat has a swollen paw as we have said can be many, usually it could be an inflammation, but let’s continue by listing the various causes:

  • Trauma: if your cat has a fracture or sprain in the paw, you will surely notice it swollen, as the fracture and sprain can cause inflammation by pressing on the cat’s muscles and injuring them. Even a bruise can cause the cat‘s paw to swell as squeezing its muscles creates inflammation.
  • Ingrown nails: even if as we know cats are very careful about their cleaning, it could happen that their nails grow too much, to the point of injuring the tip of the paw and thus causing the latter to swell. It would be a good idea to cut the cat’s nails.
  • Bee stings: Cat paw swelling could also be caused by a bee sting, as cats unlike dogs tend to be stung on the paws. However, this cause does not cause much pain.
  • Spider or scorpion sting: A spider or scorpion sting leads to cat paw swelling, in which case unlike a bee sting, the swelling is very painful and aggressive and could lead to gangrene. If the poison enters the circulation it could even lead to the death of the cat.
  • Infectious diseases: the most common and serious infectious diseases in cats are Fiv and Fip.
  • Pododermatitis: This type of skin inflammation causes pain, swelling, redness or itching. A biopsy is needed to identify this inflammation with certainty.
  • Abscesses: abscesses in cats are signs of ongoing inflammation and in addition to swelling they cause pus discharge. In this case, avoid that the cat licks in these areas because the infection could spread. In case the bacteria enter the blood the cat could have septicemia.
  • Tumors: they manifest themselves with swelling in the paw very slowly without preventing the cat from being able to walk.


If your cat trusts you and allows you to see if its paw is swollen, the only advice is to take your cat to the vet. The veterinarian through a physical examination is able to verify the cause of the swelling of the cat’s paw.

Treatment alternatives vary depending on the cause of the swelling. If it is an infection, they are often treated with antibiotics or anti-inflammatory drugs to decrease swelling and pain. Surgery is required for torn ligaments.

Once your vet has ascertained the cause of the swelling, they may recommend that you apply ice to your beloved cat’s injured paw once you get home.

If your cat suffers a serious injury or needs surgery to treat her condition, it may be necessary to limit the cat’s physical activity.

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