Swollen cheek

by Alissa Rios
(Selma ca )

QUESTION About A Cat's Swollen Cheek

My adult cat has a swollen right cheek. He has
had it for 2 days and it seems to be getting worse. If I touch the swelling on my cat's face, it seems to be soft, like liquid, and it does not bother him. What is it and do I need to take my cat to the veterinarian?

ANSWER to Cat Swollen Cheek Question

You absolutely need to take your cat to the veterinarian right away. The most likely cause of a soft swelling on your cat's face is a cat abscess.

The two most common causes of feline abscesses on the face are:

(1) an abscess due to feline dental disease that is occurring secondary to an infected tooth or

(2) a feline abscess occurring secondary to external trauma to your cat's face, most likely trauma from a bite wound from another cat or other animal.

If a cat's teeth haven't been checked regularly and cleaned as necessary, it is very possible for a kitty to develop feline dental disease.

A cat's teeth are just like our own in the sense that they eat food, need to brush their cat teeth (and most owners still do not do that), need regular feline dental cleanings by the veterinarian, and need kitty dental check-ups at least once yearly, more often if they have prior cat dental disease or are older.

If this is not done, a cat's teeth can develop a large build-up of plaque and they can develop feline gingivitis. A tooth root abscess can also result.

If the problem is not the result of cat dental disease, the other possibility is a bite from another cat or other animal. Feline abscesses often develop secondary to bite wounds. A cat's abscess can take several days to a week or more to develop to the point that you notice it.

In either case, or if it is something else less common, your cat needs to be checked by a veterinarian right away.

Kindest Regards,

Dr. Neely

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