How to help my cat's bleeding sinuses
April 5, 2010 7:57 AM   Subscribe

My twelve year old cat with a chronic upper respiratory condition/sinusitis just sneezed on my desk letting out a spray of blood.

I know she must see a vet, but the problem is she is absolutely feral when anyone attempts to pick her up or get close to her and has always been this way. She has never been to a vet because of this problem. Is it possible that the blood just appeared because her sinuses are so raw and this will heal itself when she goes into one of her remission stages? Or must she be sedated and then brought to the vet immediately?

I’m interested in veterinary homeopathy but I don’t know much about it. Is there anything that can be done for her at home?
posted by ranunculus to Pets & Animals (12 answers total)
IANAV, but I had a cat with a cold who sneezed bloody snot (ew) for a week or so, but it eventually cleared itself up. The vet did say that if we had a humidifier, it might help to keep that on since dry air makes things worse. But my cat didn't have anything chronic, and didn't go feral when we tried to pick her up, so this advice is mostly just anecdotal.
posted by egeanin at 8:10 AM on April 5, 2010

Blood coming out of a bodily orifice generally signals that a checkup is warranted. I'd sedate and then get the kitty to the vets, just to be on the safe side.
posted by Solomon at 8:39 AM on April 5, 2010

I’m interested in veterinary homeopathy but I don’t know much about it.

There's nothing to know. It's bogus. Bullshit. Fakery. Quackery of the highest order. If it worked, it would violate the laws of physics. No study has ever proven homeopathy effective. You need to get this cat under the care of a veterinarian who practices science-based medicine.
posted by Inspector.Gadget at 8:43 AM on April 5, 2010 [18 favorites]

Consider homeopathy (veterinary or otherwise) the equivalent of doing nothing.
posted by sanko at 8:51 AM on April 5, 2010

IANAV; your cat must see a vet.

However, yes, it's possible that the blood has appeared because her sinuses are raw. I have a cat with a chronic sinus condition and he has been doing much better since we made sure to keep the house nice and humid in winter. Fastest way to begin to ease the problem - shut your kitty in the bathroom with you while you take a shower.

But a cat with a chronic condition needs regular vet care.
posted by different at 9:41 AM on April 5, 2010

Can you use a baited trap (of the sort used to capture actual feral cats for transport) to catch the cat? Alternately, heavy mitts and an equally heavy towel?
posted by thomas j wise at 9:43 AM on April 5, 2010

Throw a blanket over her, put her in a soft laundry bag that smells like you (minus the blanket), put laundry bag on the FLOOR of your back seat, take cat to the vet.

Have you ever had a sinus infection? It feels awful. She may be mostly okay, she may be very sick. She needs to go to the vet.
posted by oneirodynia at 10:46 AM on April 5, 2010

Many vets do house calls because of pets that are difficult to transport. Call around to see if there are any vets who can come to your house to check out the kitty. They are trained in catching and restraining the animals so you do not have to hurt yourself in the process.

Note, it will cost more than a regular trip to the vet and will often occur after hours. Blood from orifice is vet time, hands down.
posted by tastybrains at 10:53 AM on April 5, 2010

In the meantime, here are two things that might help a little:

1) a humidifier. Keep her in a room with moist, soothing air, especially if you are somewhere cold with central heat running, or where it's dry for whatever reason. This definitely isn't a cure, but people sometimes don't think of humidifiers in a cat context, and they do help.

2) if she's sneezing because of an ongoing herpes virus condition, then you might want to know about l-lysine. Apparently it's been shown to be helpful for this kind of thing in cats, it's available over the counter, and it's not too expensive. We're giving it to our foster kitties basically for as long as we have them, and they may get it as a supplement forever or whenever they're under stress. I'm not a big advocate for nutritional supplements, but the foster agency is convinced enough of l-lysine's effectiveness to supply it to us for the cats (both of whom had long-term colds as kittens).
posted by amtho at 11:26 AM on April 5, 2010

It could be anything---irritation to a tumor (my dog had the latter). I would sedate and bring to the vet.
posted by stormpooper at 11:39 AM on April 5, 2010

Suggestion for catching your cat to take it to a vet (which needs to be done): Place open cat carrier on floor, put food or treat in back, wait for cat to go in carrier, slam and latch door.
posted by bolognius maximus at 12:42 PM on April 5, 2010

Our cat had an upper respiratory infection when we first got her, so we made her a cozy spot in the bathroom and ran steamy showers for her periodically.

This was also accompanied by several trips to the vet, though - if you have trouble getting your cat into a carrier, try borrowing an extra-large carrier (like those for dogs). Those work wonders for the grab and pop in technique.

And yes, our vet recommended l-lysine as well - it worked wonders.
posted by HopperFan at 7:06 PM on April 5, 2010

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