Cat scratches will sting and hurt a lot because your cat must have sharp claws or it might have scratched too deep inside.
Though it also depends where your cat scratched you.
Yes, you should consult your vet immediately if possible or else within four to five days if the wound has not healed.
To know more about the effect of cat scratches let us read the article further.
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Why Does It Itch After My Cat Scratches?
The brain processes itching very similar to pain and so even surface-level injuries. These injuries will cause the body to repair the injury by itself.
Itching is of low intensity and so the body does not release the pain-reducing endorphins. Hence the brain will not pay heed to the discomfort until it is severe.
Your body will itch only for one to two days, though it can even take longer to pass because of the fungal or bacterial infection.
Many would feel the itchiness due to the allergic reaction.
If your cat scratches you on the face, finger, hand, or arm you are likely to feel itchy and even if your cat’s claws just swipe through quickly, you could experience cuts, itchiness, bleeding, bacterial infection, etc.
So when your cat scratches you, it depends on your cat’s claws that have hurt you whether you would catch an infection or it is just a simple wound with some itchiness.
The feeling of itchiness after the scratch indicates that the wound is healing. Though if you are itching intensely then you might have caught an infection.
It is better to check with your doctor as soon as possible.
Why Do I Feel A Burning Sensation On The Cat Scratch?
The scratches of your cat might burn because of the sharpness of the nails of your cat or if your cat has scratched a very sensitive part of your body.
Though the scratch might also burn if you are transmitted with a cat scratch disease.
Though a cat’s claw is usually very sharp and causes a traumatic experience sometimes.
This would add up to the sense of burning with a greater chance of infection.
The Scratch Of My Cat Is Hurting A Lot, Why?
1. Sharp Claw
The sharper the claws of your cat more trouble it shall cause to you.
It can harm not only you but also everyone around you. You should take a lot of precautions.
2. Not Deep Scratches
Even if your cat has sharp claws their scratches do not cut very deep. The scratch can burn intensely even if the scratch is not that deep.
This is because of the lack of blood. The shallower the scratch deeper is the pain. This is because the tissue that is harmed is exposed to the air.
The blood is like a buffer to the tissues, and nerve cells, and air.
3. Scratch On The Sensitive Area
Certain areas of the body are sensitive for individuals and if scratched there then it will hurt and burn more.
The sensitive areas of the body like the face, hands, and arms could ache more than the other parts of the body, as there are pain receptors there. Though a scratch on other areas wouldn’t pain as much.
4. Cat Claws Containing Foreign Materials
The foreign materials, debris, and dirt get collected in its paws as your cat goes around everywhere.
So when these claws scratch you the foreign materials and dirt get passed on to that area of your body that is scratched.
These scratches cause more pain because of the foreign materials that get transferred.
What Should You Do If Your Cat Scratches And Draws Blood?
Things you can do at home after you are scratched.
- The wound should be washed with water and soap softly.
- To stop the bleeding from the wounded area, you should press the would gently with the clean towel.
- The wound should be covered with a sterile bandage.
- To prevent swelling and infection elevate the wound above your heart.
Though sometimes extra medical attention is required, in situations like:
- If you feel you have damaged a bone. Nerve or caused any injury to yourself.
- If the bleeding does not stop in 15 minutes after home remedies.
- There is an infection caused.
- There is redness, warmth, swelling, or pus.
- If you have fever.
- If you face diabetes or have a weak immune system.
- If you have a lung disease or cancer.
- If your vaccination of tetanus was 5 years ago. You need to take one soon.
How To Remove The Sting Out Of The Cat Scratch?
When you are stung, try and flush out as much as bacteria you can remove and then wash the wound with water.
Then you should wash the wound again with soap and water. Try and stop the bleeding with a soft and clean cloth and apply the medical cream suggested to you.
Then wrap the wound with a sterile bandage and then see your doctor as soon as possible so that you can make sure you do not have an infection.
The infection is more likely to happen if the wound is on the hand or feet. If you are scratched on parts like the face there can be cosmetic damage in the form of a scar.
If the scratch is on the eye then immediate action needs to be sought. If you have a weak immune system then there is a higher chance for you to get infected.
Keep your wound covered until it heals completely. Keep checking if your wound is healing or is getting worse.
You will know if you have to call a doctor.
Is Getting Scratched By A Cat Something To Worry About?
Yes, it could be something to worry about if you are scratched by your cat.
This is because if your cat has been out daily and has a lot of dirt and foreign substances in its claws, then it could enter your body too.
It can cause cat scratch fever and other diseases.
The cat scratches and bites can lead to infections. So it is better not to ignore the scratches caused by your cat.
Make sure you train your cat to not scratch and not appreciate this kind of behavior.
The cat scratch disease that you may get is a disease that is caused by scratches and bites by the cat.
This disease is caused due to saliva which may contain bacteria. This bacteria that gets transferred to you come to the cat from fleas.
This disease causes fever and hence is also called cat-scratch fever.
This infection is likely to happen to children or ones with a weak immune system. This includes all people who have diabetes or cancer.
Though you need to take care of the wound for a long time. At least for 3-10 days after the scratch.
There could be a blister or soreness on the wound. This may take time to heal. You could have a fever or fatigue.
You should immediately see a doctor if you are scratched and show your cat too so that you can check out if the cat has an infection or bacteria in its claws.
You code develop an infection in the lymph nodes or in the glands that are closest to the scratch.
Call your doctor immediately.
How Can You Prevent A Cat-Scratch Disease From Developing?
- A cat-scratch disease can be prevented in the following ways-
- You should keep washing your hands after you have spent time with your cat.
- You should always play gently with your cat so that they do not need to bite or scratch you.
- Make sure you prevent your cat from licking your open wounds or sensitive areas like the face.
- To avoid your cat from getting bacteria make sure you control fleas.
- Make sure you do not provoke or irritate your cat.
- Keep yourself away from stray cats.
If you have a kitten the then chances of your kitten having an infection and it passing the infection to you are high.
You should try and adopt a cat that is at least one year old.
Can I Get Rabies Through A Cat Scratch?
Yes, there are chances that you can get rabies through a cat scratch.
When cats are younger they can get infected easily and spread the diseases. The scratches can easily pass on the bacteria to you.
The scratches that may break the skin can easily transmit diseases like rabies.
Rabies enters your body through a scratch by your cat and then the infection travels to the central nervous system.
The virus would then affect the brain. After which the virus would travel down the nerves and then affect different parts of the body.
The most important part that is affected in rabies is the salivary glands in animals. This way the rabies pass from one animal to another.
One cat infected with rabies bites your cat or any other cat the rabies virus will also be transmitted along with the saliva.
When To See A Doctor For A Cat Scratch?
Things to consider would include the location of the wound, the depth of the scratch, infections in your cat, and your health and immune system.
- If the scratch of your cat swells up or turns red and does not heal soon or gets worse then you should see your doctor.
- If the glands are swollen or it gets painful, considering if your cat scratched under your arms or in the foot or leg then you should consider visiting your doctor.
- If you have symptoms like headache, fever, fatigue, pain, etc.
- You should even see your doctor if you develop rashes.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is A Tetanus Shot Required After A Cat Scratch?
Not really, tetanus shots are not required for a cat scratch but for precautions, it is suggested.
If An Indoor Cat Scratches, Do You Get Cat Fever?
No, it is in rare cases that an indoor cat scratching could cause cat fever.
Though it is better to take precautions as it can cause people to go to hospitals if scratched and caught cat fever.
Will The Allergy Caused By A Cat Go Away?
Not completely. The allergy would not go away completely but they are not that severe either.
A cat allergen is small and so it is suspended in the air for longer.
There are always chances that your cat’s scratches can infect you and so you should take several precautions.
Sometimes the symptoms of a cat scratch disease might seem like some other medical problem.
So make sure to consult a vet soon to confirm if you and your cat both are safe.
For more queries, you could ask us in the comment section.