Antibiotics for Cats

Antibiotics for cats function in much the same way that human antibiotics do. Feline antibiotics fight off bacterial infections by either attacking the harmful bacteria or suppressing the reproduction of the bacteria. Antibiotics may be effective against cat eye infections, cat ear infections and feline urinary tract infections, among other conditions of various types. Read on to learn more basic information about antibiotics for cats.

What Are the Most Common Feline Antibiotics?

The single most common feline antibiotic is amoxicillin. It is a powerful antibiotic that is effective against bacteria that cause ear, eye and urinary tract infections. Additionally, it is beneficial over other antibiotics because it produces only minor side effects in most cats.

Some of the other most common feline antibiotics include:

  • Tetracycline, used primarily for cats suffering from ehrlichiosis, an infectious disease transmitted by ticks.
  • Rrythromycin, used to treat skin infections.
  • Zithromycin, prescribed to treat a variety of respiratory and other infections.
  • Feline antibiotics are not interchangeable, and consequently certain antibiotics will be effective against only very specific conditions. Because administering antibiotics to your cat improperly may decrease his immune defenses against bacterial infections, it is crucial that you not mix antibiotics without first consulting a veterinarian.

The Benefits of Using Feline Antibiotics

Feline antibiotics are effective against a variety of common and uncommon cat diseases and conditions. Although bacteria is constantly developing and growing resistant to antibiotics, these drugs are nevertheless able to control many different bacteria-based infections.

The Risks of Using Feline Antibiotics

Feline antibiotics carry a large assortment of negative side effects, the scope and severity of which depends upon the specific drug and on your cat's medical history, breed and other factors. Some of the common side effects of feline antibiotics include the following:

  • Vomiting and diarrhea
  • Swelling of various parts of the face and body
  • Arrhythmia
  • Blood in the stool
  • Jaundice
  • Kidney or liver damage
  • Weight loss or loss of appetite and thirst

In general, most antibiotics are not associated with severe side effects, as this would outweigh any benefits of the medicine itself. However, individual cats react differently to the same drugs, and it is vital that you be aware of the possible negative effects of any antibiotic before beginning a treatment program for your pet. Additionally, watch your cat closely for signs of potentially serious side effects, and take him to a veterinarian upon any indication.

Do not stop or interrupt a program of antibiotics before your pet has completed the treatment. This may cause additional negative effects, and it may also increase bacterial resistance to the antibiotic.

Antibiotics are potent medicines that can help to cure your cat of a wide variety of diseases and infections. However, they are not without risks, and incorrect administration of an antibiotic may be as or more harmful than the condition it is designed to address. For this reason, it is crucial that you consult with a veterinarian before and during an antibiotic treatment program for your cat.