Conjunctivitis in Cats – How Long Does it Last?

Conjunctivitis is an eye disease that causes inflammation of the mucous membranes lining your cat’s eyes. Depending on the underlying cause, conjunctivitis may require antibiotic eye drops or ointments for treatment.

It is essential that you complete the treatment as prescribed by your vet. Otherwise, the infection could return.


Conjunctivitis is an eye condition that causes red, itchy and painful eyes. It may be caused by bacterial infection, allergy or some other medical issue.

It is essential to make an appointment with your veterinarian as soon as possible if you suspect that your cat has an eye issue. Doing so will guarantee they receive the best care and help save time, stress and money in the long run.

Some of the symptoms you may observe in your cat include a red, itchy and sore eye. They may also rub their eyes, squint or blink excessively. They may develop an eye discharge that is white, green or clear.

No matter the cause of your cat’s conjunctivitis, there are various treatments to reduce inflammation and pain. Antibiotics may be prescribed in order to combat bacteria that is causing their eyes to become inflamed.

Topical medications such as lubricating drops or ointments can also be applied directly onto the affected area or sprayed into your cat’s eyes to relieve discomfort and pain.

If your cat’s conjunctivitis is caused by bacteria, your veterinarian will prescribe antibiotics to help reduce the risk of complications and give your pet’s eyes a chance to heal. These antibiotics work against the bacteria causing infection in cats’ eyes and can be administered as drops, injections or tablets for easy administration.

These drugs can usually help alleviate your cat’s conjunctivitis symptoms and make them feel much better. However, some cases of conjunctivitis may require further medical treatment from an eye specialist; your vet can advise you accordingly.

Other conditions that could cause your cat to experience conjunctivitis include eyelid disorders and allergies. Your veterinarian needs to know if you observe any other issues with your cat’s skin or behavior before they can accurately diagnose the issue.

Maintaining a low cat population at home and practicing good environmental hygiene can help prevent recurrences of viral conjunctivitis. For more severe cases, your veterinarian may suggest antiviral eye medications or other medications to keep your cat’s immune system strong.


Conjunctivitis can be caused by a variety of things, such as bacteria, viruses and immune-mediated diseases. Once your veterinarian diagnoses what’s causing your cat’s eye discomfort, they can begin treating the source.

Viral infections are the leading cause of conjunctivitis in cats. Your cat could become infected with one of many herpesviruses belonging to the feline virus family, leading to this infection.

Feline herpesvirus-1 (FHV-1) is the most prevalent of these infections in cats and highly contagious. Not only does FHV-1 cause an eye-infection in cats, but it has the potential to spread to other parts of your pet’s body as well.

FHV-1 symptoms include a sore or red eye, watering, excessive tearing and squinting with or without discharge that could be cloudy or yellow in color. Your cat’s eyelids and third eyelid may become swollen and red as well.

Herpesvirus infections usually clear up with treatment within a week or two, but you should continue taking your veterinarian’s prescribed medication until no longer needed. Furthermore, try to protect your cat from spreading the infection by keeping her away from other cats and washing her hands thoroughly after contact with an infected cat.

Conjunctivitis may also be caused by allergic reactions to allergens or airborne irritants, such as pollen, dust, fleas or other environmental elements.

Allergies can cause mild to moderate conjunctivitis in cats that don’t already have other medical issues, but some allergic reactions may be more serious and lead to immunomediated conjunctivitis – an allergic reaction with no other known causes.

When your cat’s immune system is compromised, inflammation of the eyelids and other areas of the eye can occur. Your veterinarian may suggest applying topical cream for healing to help speed up this process.

Rarely, your cat may develop chronic inflammatory eye disease. These conditions are difficult to treat and in some cases may even cause permanent damage to their eyes.

Your veterinarian can diagnose a bacterial or viral eye infection in your cat by examining their eyes and running tests to confirm the diagnosis. Depending on how severe the symptoms, they may need to administer anti-inflammatory drops or ointment into their eyes for pain relief and reduced swelling; additionally, they may need to drain any pus-filled eyes.


Conjunctivitis can present with various symptoms depending on its cause, so it’s essential that your pet get evaluated by a veterinarian as soon as possible. Early treatment helps minimize the chance of long-term eye damage or blindness in your feline friend.

Your veterinarian will first review your cat’s medical history to identify the source of their itchy, red eyes. This helps them determine if an infection or allergy is to blame for the issue and requires special treatment options.

Once they’ve determined the underlying cause, your vet will prescribe medication to treat it. Some treatments are applied directly onto the affected area while others must be taken orally. Your veterinarian also performs several tests to guarantee there are no other eye issues present.

Some of the most common causes of conjunctivitis in cats include viral infections, allergies and trauma. It’s also wise to monitor your cat’s diet closely since some foods may trigger allergies in cats.

Other causes of conjunctivitis may be bacterial and fungal infections, which require more extensive testing for diagnosis.

Conjunctivitis caused by infectious agents is typically treated with antibiotics. Antibiotics eliminate bacteria and reduce inflammation in your cat’s eyes. You may also apply antiviral eye drops or ointments directly onto their eye.

However, these medications will only treat the infection; they cannot cure or prevent relapses. To further reduce the risk of spreading infection among other cats, keep your cat away from other cats.

Tests to confirm the diagnosis of infectious conjunctivitis include special eye stains and tearing tests. Your vet may also take a culture sample from around your cat’s eye to identify which bacteria is causing the issue.

Once your cat has been diagnosed with infectious conjunctivitis, it’s important to bring them regularly to the vet for treatment and to help speed their recovery process and avoid future relapses.

Fortunately, most cases of conjunctivitis resolve on their own within one week. However, if your cat’s symptoms don’t improve or are still causing pain, then it is best to bring them back for medical attention. Ignoring this condition could only exacerbate it and potentially result in permanent eye damage.


The conjunctiva is a layer of tissue covering the eyeball that shields it from infection and keeps it clean. Additionally, it plays an important role in blinking, which releases tears.

Cataracts can be caused by a number of things. An allergic reaction to food or pollen, for instance, or it could be due to a bacterial or viral infection are all potential culprits.

There are a few steps you can take to prevent your cat from developing conjunctivitis. For instance, keeping them indoors and reducing stress levels are two effective methods for avoiding this condition from developing.

Another way to prevent eye infection in your cat is by not using any cleaning products around their eyes that could be detrimental for their wellbeing. Before using any eye-related cleaning product, consult with your veterinarian first and ensure it’s safe for your furry friend.

Viral and bacterial infections are the leading causes of conjunctivitis in cats, affecting both cornea and conjunctiva.

If your cat suffers from an immune-related disorder such as autoimmune diseases or allergies, their immune system could be compromised and their eyes more susceptible to damage. In such cases, your vet may suggest medication which helps boost their immunity.

Antibiotics can be effective in relieving symptoms caused by bacterial infections and help prevent disease spread within the body, when taken alongside topical or oral antiviral medications.

Other treatments that may help reduce the frequency of conjunctivitis episodes include immune-boosting supplements and steroids. Combining them with topical or oral antibiotics for chronic or recurrent cases of conjunctivitis may be effective.

Once you suspect your cat may have conjunctivitis, it is essential to have them evaluated by a veterinarian immediately. Doing this will guarantee they receive effective and expeditious care, helping the problem to clear up faster.

Conjunctivitis is most often caused by either feline herpes virus or bacterial infection, and the most effective treatment for these conditions involves a combination of antibiotics and antiviral medication.

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