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Why is my cat's eye watering?

Why is my cat's eye watering?

If you've noticed your cat's eye watering, you may be somewhat concerned. What should you do, what other symptoms may be present and when is a visit to your veterinary ophthalmologist called for? Our South Florida vet team list a few reasons why cats' eyes water in this post. 

Reasons Your Cat's Eyes May Water

Does your cat have watery eyes? This likely means that the eye is attempting to fight off some type of threat to its health, such as a foreign body or virus. In many cases, the culprit for your feline friend's watery eye may be minor and clear up without veterinary care. 

However, there are several potentially serious reasons your cat's eyes could be watering. To discover what's causing your cat's eye issue, we'll need to look at other symptoms. 

Symptoms of Eye Issues in Cats

Here are some common signs of eye issues in cats. 

Watery & Glassy Looking Eyes

A surprisingly common issue in cats, allergies can easily cause watery eyes and irritation. Common allergies that may impact your cat's eyes include mildew dust, mold, pollen, perfumes, some medications and household cleaning products. 

Keeping your cat away from the allergen may help to clear up the issue. That said, if you're unable to determine the cause of your cat's watery eyes, we recommend booking an appointment with your veterinary ophthalmologist near South Florida. 

We can rule out more serious causes for your cat's watery eyes and recommend ways to help make your cat's eyes feel more comfortable. 

Blinking, Squinting or Pawing at Eyes 

Has your cat been blinking excessively along with having watery eyes? They may also squint or paw at their eyes. In this case, we recommend visiting your vet ophthalmologist, as a foreign body may be trapped in your cat's eye.

The nasolacrimal duct (tear duct) may also be blocked. While nasolacrimal obstructions aren't as common in cats as they are in dogs, these can lead to tears overflowing and running out of the eye. 

Red & Inflamed Eyes

If your cat's eyes appear red and inflamed there is a good chance that your feline friend has conjunctivitis (otherwise known as pinkeye). Other signs that your cat might have conjunctivitis include swollen eyes and increased sensitivity to light.

This common eye condition in cats can be caused by anything from an infection or allergy to feline herpes virus, and while conjunctivitis can be easy to clear up, without treatment it could lead to more serious complications.

For that reason, it is always best to see your vet if your cat's eyes have become red and watery. Depending on the severity of your cat's eye irritation treatment may include eye drops or ointment prescribed by your vet.

Sticky, Yellow or Green Discharge

As with people, a goopy or sticky discharge coming from your cat's eyes is typically a sign of infection. A clear discharge often indicates a viral infection whereas green or yellow discharge suggests that your cat has a bacterial infection.

When dealing with eye infections early diagnosis and treatment can help to avoid more serious complications down the road. If your cat has a bacterial eye infection treatment may include ophthalmic antibiotic drops, gels or ointments. In most cases, oral medications are unnecessary unless your cat's eye problem is as a result of a systemic infection.

Obvious Pain or Swelling

If your cat is displaying obvious signs of pain, the eyeball is bulging or there is notable swelling around your cat's eye it's time to get your cat to the vet to check for glaucoma. Symptoms of glaucoma in cats indicate that emergency veterinary care is required. This painful condition can appear suddenly and develop very rapidly. In most cases, by the time symptoms become evident much of the cat's eyesight will be irreparably lost. 

Nasal Discharge and Sneezing

If your cat is displaying typical human cold symptoms such as watery eyes, sneezing and a runny nose, your feline friend is likely suffering from a cat cold or feline upper respiratory infection. Many cat colds will clear up within a week without the need for veterinary care, however, if your cat's symptoms become worse or fail to improve within a couple of days make an appointment to see your vet. 

When To Take Your Cat to the Vet for an Eye Examination

With our veterinary ophthalmology services, we are able to diagnose and treat cats, dogs and other pets in and near South Florida with eye diseases and disorders. 

Working with your primary vet, our board-certified ophthalmologists can provide the most comprehensive and compassionate eye care possible. 

If your cat's eyes are watering for more than a day or two, or if your cat is showing signs of pain or symptoms of infection, it's time to head to the vet.

Your veterinary ophthalmologist (similar to a cat or dog eye doctor near South Florida) will be able to examine your cat's eyes and recommend appropriate treatments to help relieve any discomfort your cat may be experiencing.

Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet's condition, please make an appointment with your vet.

Is your cat's eye watering? Perhaps kitty is squinting or pawing at their eye. If so, book an appointment with our South Florida eye specialist vets today.

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