How to Care for Your Cat’s Eyes

Cats have unique and fascinating eyes. They are also the source of many infections. There are easy ways to stay on top of your cat’s eye health and hygiene...

If you have a cat, there’s no doubt you’ve been fascinated by its eyes. Cats have captivating and uniquely shaped pupils and interesting eye colouring. It’s also amazing how can they stare at you so intently without a hint of expression.

Hopefully, you’ll be staring back into healthy eyes: moist, clear and without any redness, swelling, discharge, or tearing – all which could be signs of irritation or infection. To keep your cat’s eyes in good shape, there are a few things you can do.

First up, it’s always a good idea to make sure you clean away any mucus or build-up around your cat’s eyes. Serious infections are often caused by bacteria that grow on this mucus. Gently wipe this away with a soft cloth and warm water, or you could use vet approved sterile eyewash or wipes to keep the area clean.

Some cats require more regular eye cleaning than others. Persians, for example, tear more than normal and these tears don’t always drain away through the tear duct. This can lead to ‘tear stains’ which can be easily cleaned away – either with water on a cotton ball or a special product that removes these stains.

Keeping track of your cat’s eyes can also mean infections are caught early and treated, so they don’t lead to more serious conditions or even result in blindness. If you notice any abnormal build-up of mucus, tearing, discharges, dull eyes, or cloudiness it’s a good idea to take them to the vet.

If you are going to clean your cat’s eyes yourself, or need to administer eye drops or ointments as a treatment for an infection, here are some tips from CareVets to get you started

  • Gently clean discharges or tear stains away with a soft, damp cloth. A cotton ball softened with water works well.
  • If you’re administering eye drops, hold the eyelids open, squeeze the drops into the eye and then let your cat’s head go so it can blink and spread the drops over the eye surface.
  • If you’re administering eye ointment, squeeze the ointment onto the edge of the lower eyelid and then gently massage the upper and lower lids together to spread the medication.
  • Avoid touching the eye itself – whether with the cleaning cloth or the medicine bottle.

So, next time you find yourself staring intently into your kitty’s eyes, trying to figure out what they’re thinking, take a bit of time to look for signs of irritation or illness so you can treat it before it turns into a serious problem.