Does my cat have an infection after cat declaw operation?

My cat was recently laser declawed. She is coping well after one week. However, she has licked her back paw to the point where she has tremendous hairloss on the top of her paw and now it is inflamed and red. What COULD be the cause of this? What are some important red flags to look for?

  • Vetinfo

    By: Rebecca Osterfund El Segundo, CA

    Replied on 04/19/2011

    Infection following any surgery is always a possibility. The risk of infection following declawing tends to be a little higher than some other surgeries due to the location of the incisions- the pet is constantly walking on them and the incisions come into contact with urine and feces when the pet uses the litter box. It is always a good idea following a declawing to use paper litter in the litter box for at least 2 weeks following surgery for the grains of granular litter tend to get trapped between the skin edges of the incisions which leads to infections. Classic signs of a declaw infection include swollen painful digits and sometimes a foul yellow discharge will be seen oozing from the incision edge. Your pet may be licking her paw excessively due to the discomfort of an infection and she may be licking at the abnormal discharge. Some veterinarians will prescribe 1-2 weeks worth of antibiotics following this surgery to decrease the chances of an infection occurring. Have your pet re-examined by the veterinarian who performed the surgery. Rebecca, DVM

More Questions on Infections / Disease

  • How can I treat my cat's mastitis at home?

    I just found out my nursing queen has mastitis in one of her glands. It is just firm, not quite hard, and slightly tender to her. I know it requires treatment but what can I do at home until I can take her to a vet?

  • Can group g strep infection in cats can be passed on to humans

    I was wondering if group g strep infection in cats can be passed on to humans, and if so is it transmitted via saliva? I was wondering if group g strep infection in cats can be passed on to humans, and if so is it transmitted via saliva?

  • Cat spine infection, what is this?

    My cat has been dragging his hind legs for a few weeks. This has now spread to his left front leg. The vet has checked him and said he has a very high temp and it might be an infection in his spine. He has antibiotics, will this clear up?

  • I have a 4 year old cat with constant nail bed infections

    I have a 4 year old cat with constant nail bed infections (paronychia) Initially he was given antibiotics, which did not clear it up. He had x ray's of his toes and his chest to rule out cancer, my vet said that a certain type of lung cancer can show up as paronychia. X rays were clear. My vet then wanted to do biopsies, but due to the condition of the skin, he could not really do it, so instead he opted to declaw 2 toe nails. Samples were then sent out to determine what could be causing it. I am currently waiting for results. My cat is otherwise extremely healthy, is an indoor cat, gets his vaccinations yearly also. What are your opinions on this issue? Thank you

  • Found small hard yellow grains covering my kittens blanket

    I recently adopted a 4 mo old kitten from a shelter. This morning, I found approximately 50? small, hard yellow "grains" covering his favorite blanket. They appeared literally overnight. They do indeed resemble grains of rice, but a bit smaller. Neither of our cats has any sign in their fur, and neither is outwardly sick. What could these be? Thank you so much for your help!

  • Does my kitten have an infected nail?

    Hi i have a female kitten who is around I think 8 weeks old. I figured it was a female, though it was hard to tell because its sort of young! I was looking at its paw and underneath it it looks like the pink part has black on it? Is that normal? And also on 1 of the back ones I think she has somehow lodged a piece of rubbish next to her nail.

  • My kitten may have a infected paw??

    hi i have a female kitten who is around i think 8 weeks old.. it was given to me and i know absolutely nothing about it. more to the point.. i was looking at its paw well rather underneath it, and it looks like the pink part has black on it?? is that normal? between 1 of the nails it has lodged rubbish there, i would have took it out but it looks infected? what to do? oh and it seems extremely healthy and stays mostly indoors, thanks miss confused ?_?

  • How does a cat react to being biiten by a black widow spider?

    How does a cat react to being biiten by a black widow spider? Can't fleas cause massive swelling on a cat? found a cat under my porch, young maybe 6 months. Started feed it 2 days ago noticed a bump on it's shoulder. Can't find any scratches or bite marks, but yesterday it had grown to the size of the palm of my hand. Noticed bumps on the lump and hair starting to come out. This morning it had spread across it's back and it is running a fever and having balance problems. I treated it for fleas because it was covered in them. There are spiders under the porch do you think it bitten by one?

  • Can a cat get mange from fox droppings?

    A fox with mange has being spotted in my garden, now my cat is shedding lots of fur, could my cat get mange from fox droppings in the garden?

  • Cat lump, bump on shoulder. What could it be?

    My cat had a small bump just over her shoulder blade. It's been there for at least a week, it was mobile just under skin and when petting my cat you could pinch the skin and lift the bump away from her body. I was petting her today and barely applied pressure and out oozed a thick white pus. It seemed to be very thick, with small almost hard balls in it. I have another cat, but they get along. I don't know if it was just a wound from the other cat or if it's more serious.

  • Is it a cats eye infection? Eye is cloudy.

    I have a 13 year old cat who has always had a clouded eye. My Veterinarian at the time I got him (abandoned and about 11 weeks old) said he had the feline herpes (he was never tested). Is it possible the eye was caused by another condition? Also if I brought a kitten(s) into the house and vaccinated, would they be protected and if a vaccinated female had kittens would they have the virus if they were quarantined from my exiting adult cat?

  • Can a pregnant woman come in contact with a cat with Feline Infectious Peritonitis?

    My sister's cat has been diagnosed with Feline Infectious Peritonitis. I am pregnant. Is it dangerous for me to come in contact with the cat?

  • Why is white blood cell counts low in my cat?

    I have a dsh 10 year old spayed female cat. During her yearly checkup, it was discovered that her white blood cell count was low. The vet tried Baytril and it only raised her count to 3.0 from 2.5 after being on it for 2 weeks. We're now using Interferon 1cc every day. She has tested negative for feline leukemia. All other aspects of her health are good. What might be some of the other causes of such a low white blood cell count?

  • Could Bartonella be one of hypercalcemia causes in cats?

    My cat has idiopathic hypercalcemia & Bartonella. He was started on Zithromax & Hill's Prescription W/D to lower his Ca++. 6 weeks later, his ionized CA++ is down. Could the Bartonella cause high Ca++? Could his old food (Natural Balance Light dry food?) Our other cat now has hypercalcemia as well. Bartonella pending. Could Natural Balance have caused the hypercalcemia in both? Could Bartonella cause increased Ca++? Or is it a huge coincidence? They haven't been exposed to excess Vitamin D, etc.

  • See all questions in Infections / Disease

Please do not use our site to attempt to diagnose or treat your pet. Your veterinarian is the best source of health advice for an individual pet.

Please do use our site to become better informed about the medical problems your pet may have. We will do our best to ensure that information presented is accurate and up-to-date. The most current information will be at the top of each page. Remember that veterinarians often disagree about the best treatments for pets. There are often several perfectly acceptable ways to treat the same condition. Just ask a lot of questions!

For all emergency situations, please contact your local Emergency Pet Clinic or on-call Veterinarian. Answers are not provided in real time. We can not guarantee an answer to every question, nor can we provide timely responses to urgent questions in many instances.