©2006 Publications International, Ltd. Method A, Step 2

An important part of cat care is knowing how to tend to a bleeding cat. The main purpose of providing first aid to a bleeding cat is to prevent excessive blood loss that can lead to shock. Pressure applied to the wound allows the normal clotting mechanism of the blood to stop the leak. This is a complex process, but basically the blood cells form a fine screen over the wound and thus prevent further loss of blood. That is why it is important not to remove the dressing once it has been applied.

If your cat has suffered from internal bleeding, it may go into shock and you may not be able to tell just by looking at the cat. Some of the signs of shock to watch for include pale or white gums or rapid heartbeat and breathing. If any wound is spurting blood, it means an artery has been cut. This requires immediate professional attention.

How you tend to your cat will depend on the location and extent of the bleeding. The following cat care tips will help you apply first aid to various body areas.

Cat's Bleeding Head or Torso

Method A

Step 1: Approach the cat; if the cat is anxious or scared, restrain the cat if necessary.

©2006 Publications International, Ltd. Method A, Step 3

Step 2: Cover the wound with a clean folded towel, sterile gauze pad, heavy cloth, or sanitary napkin.

Step 3: Wrap torn rags or other soft material around the dressing and tie or tape just tightly enough to hold in place.

Step 4: Transport the cat to the veterinarian immediately.

Cat's Bleeding Leg, Paw, or Tail

Method B

Step 1: Approach the cat; if the cat is anxious or scared, restrain the cat if necessary.

Step 2: Clip the hair around the injured area.

©2006 Publications International, Ltd. Method B, Step 3

Step 3: Examine the wound for glass or other foreign objects. If visible, remove the glass or object with fingers or tweezers. If the tissue under the wound appears to pass by when you move the skin, the wound will probably require stitches.

Step 4: Flush the wound thoroughly with clean water. Avoid home antiseptics, which the cat will lick and which may cause pain when applied.

Step 5: Cover the wound with a clean cloth, sterile dressing, or sanitary napkin.

Step 6: Place your hand over the dressing and press firmly.

Step 7: Keep pressure on the dressing to stop bleeding. If blood soaks through the dressing, do not remove. Apply more dressing and continue to apply pressure until bleeding stops. If the bleeding does not stop within five minutes, continue to apply pressure on the wound while transporting the injured cat to the veterinarian.

Step 8: Wrap torn rags or other soft material around the dressing and tie or tape just tightly enough to keep it in place. Start below the wound and wrap upward.

Step 9: If the wound is deep enough to require stitches, keep the cat off the injured leg and transport to the veterinarian immediately.

Cat's Bleeding Ear

Method C

Step 1: Approach the cat; if the cat is anxious or scared, restrain the cat if necessary.

©2006 Publications International, Ltd. Method C, Step 2

Step 2: Cover the wound with a clean cloth, sterile dressing, or sanitary napkin. Cut ears may bleed profusely. Place dressing material on both sides of the ear flap and hold firmly to control bleeding. Cats' ears will usually stop bleeding within five minutes after pressure is applied.

Cat's Bleeding Nail

Method D

Step 1: Approach the cat; if the cat is anxious or scared, restrain the cat if necessary.

Step 2: Do not try to cut or remove the broken nail.

Step 3: Unsheathe the claw on the cat.

Step 3a: Place your thumb on top of the paw, close to the nail, and your index finger on the large pad on the bottom of the paw.

Step 3b: Press your thumb and finger together. This will expose the nail for examination.

Step 4: With the nail exposed, hold a clean cloth, sterile dressing, or sanitary napkin against the nail. Bleeding will stop in a few minutes.

Step 5: If cat seems to be in severe pain, or if bleeding does not stop in a few minutes, transport to the veterinarian as soon as possible. Continuous bleeding indicates a bleeding disorder that should be treated promptly.

Cat's Bleeding Nose

Method E

Step 1: Approach the cat; if the cat is anxious or scared, restrain the cat if necessary.

©2006 Publications International, Ltd. Method D, Step 2

Step 2: Apply an ice pack to the top of the cat's nose between its eyes and nostrils.

Step 3: Cover the bleeding nostril with a clean cloth, sterile dressing, or sanitary napkin.

Step 4: Hold the cloth or dressing firmly on the cat until the bleeding stops.

Step 5: If the nostril was not cut, a bloody nose in a cat could indicate a serious disorder. Transport the cat to the veterinarian as soon as possible.

©Publications International, Ltd.