Facial Swelling Average Cost

From 449 quotes ranging from $200 - 3,000

Average Cost

$850

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What is Facial Swelling?

Some of these causes of swelling are incredibly serious and need to be treated immediately to protect your cat. It doesn’t matter whether the swelling is only occurring on one side of the face or affecting the entire face, you should bring your cat to a veterinarian as soon as possible if you spot any symptoms.

If you notice your cat’s face looks puffier than usual, he could be suffering from facial swelling. It may be difficult to spot swelling at first, but as it worsens, your cat’s eyes may begin to close as the surrounding area swells. The symptoms of facial swelling can come on suddenly or develop over time, depending on the underlying cause. Swelling can be caused by a variety of conditions, including exposure to allergens or toxins, dental abscesses, trauma, and insect bites. 

Symptoms of Facial Swelling in Cats

It’s much easier to spot facial swelling in short haired cats than in long haired cats. Facial swelling is characterized by a puffy, abnormal facial appearance. Depending on the cause, the swelling could affect small areas, one side of the face, or the entire face. You may also notice your cat’s eyes appearing smaller than usual because of the swelling.

Causes of Facial Swelling in Cats

A number of different factors can cause facial swelling in cats, some which are more severe than others. To ensure your cat is properly treated, take him to an emergency vet as soon as possible. Some of the causes include:

  • Allergic reaction
  • Dental abscess
  • Facial trauma
  • Insect/snake bite
  • Muscle inflammation
  • Inflamed salivary glands
  • Acetaminophen poisoning
  • Cancer
  • Hematoma
  • Infection

Diagnosis of Facial Swelling in Cats

Bring your cat into a vet as soon as you see signs of facial swelling. Provide as much information as possible to your vet regarding your cat’s diet and medical history. If your cat has any known allergies, make sure you mention this to the vet. You should also let your vet know if you have an outside cat, as snakes or insects can easily come into contact with outside cats.

Next, the vet will begin a physical examination of your cat. He will look for signs of insect or snake bites, wounds, infection, and hives, which are often present during an allergic reaction. Vets will also check the skin to look for signs of hematoma, which is characterized by skin discoloration. The vet may also look inside your cat’s mouth to determine if a dental abscess could be causing the facial swelling.

If the swelling is localized, the vet may be able to conclude it is caused by muscle or salivary gland inflammation. However, localized swelling can also be caused by tumors, which the vet may be able to feel during the physical examination. If no cause is determined after the physical examination, the vet may perform X-rays or an ultrasound to check for tumors in the head or neck. Biopsies may need to be performed on any tumors that are found to determine if they are cancerous.

Treatment of Facial Swelling in Cats

The treatment plan will depend on the cause of facial swelling. Allergic reactions will usually be treated with corticosteroids and antihistamines. If the swelling is caused by an infection, the bacteria may need to be cultured to determine which antibiotic will be the most effective. Muscle or salivary gland inflammation is usually treated with anti-inflammatory medication and steroids. 

Vets may recommend letting hematomas clear up on their own, but in extreme cases, they may think it is best to drain the hematoma before sending your cat home. 

If your cat has been diagnosed with cancer, the treatment will depend on the severity of the disease. Your cat may require surgery to remove the tumor, along with radiation and chemotherapy.

If your cat has ingested acetaminophen, the vet will administer acetylcysteine, which will protect the liver from serious damage. Cats suffering from acetaminophen poisoning may need to stay with the vet overnight so the vet can closely monitor the cat’s vital signs while he recovers.

Recovery of Facial Swelling in Cats

Most cats will fully recover from facial swelling, especially if the cause was an allergic reaction or infection. However, if the swelling was caused by cancer or acetaminophen toxicity, your cat’s recovery will depend on the severity of his condition.

Be sure to administer medications to your cat as advised by the veterinarian. If the swelling was caused by an allergy, try to remove any potential allergens from your cat’s environment. It’s recommended that you keep your cat indoors to limit his exposure to potential allergens, insects, and snakes.

The vet may ask that you bring your cat in shortly after your initial visit to ensure the swelling has gone down and the underlying cause is being properly treated.

Facial Swelling Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Rode
Unknown
3 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Leaking cut

My cat face was swollen it has went down but now looks like a wound leaking puss what can I do I saved her from living in the streets I cannot afford a visit to vet

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1191 Recommendations
It is important to keep the wound clean and to flush it out with some sterile saline solution; regular bathing with diluted chlorhexidine should be done as well, you may also apply an antibiotic ointment to the wound like Neosporin. I would recommend you contact a charity clinic to have a look at Rode so that any antibiotics or other treatment may be given. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Truman
Tonkinese
14 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Lethargy
Swelling

Last night I noticed my cat's face was swollen on his left cheek close to his nose. He is indoor only, has a brother who he fights with, but in case it was an allergy or a spider bite I took him to the vet hospital. They immediately recommended a CT scan, x-rays, rhino endoscopy and a battery of other tests to the tune of $3,000+...just for a diagnosis. Is this a reasonable recommendation?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1191 Recommendations
It depends on the type of swelling; if the swelling felt like an allergic reaction then it would be unnecessary but if the swelling felt like it was due to a mass or tumour, then other diagnostic tests may be required. I wouldn’t see the value in an x-ray if a CT scan was being done, but if it feels like there is a mass or tumour in the area then a CT scan may be justified. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Bella
domestic short hair
7 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

I noticed this afternoon my kitten had a little bit of a swollen bottom lip. Around noon I didn't notice it, but upon arriving back home 3hrs later her lip was definitely swollen and made her mouth look a little lopsided. I'm wondering if she could be allergic to a new flavor of wet cat food I started giving her this morning or if she got a bacterial infection from her plastic food dish (although she's eaten out of plastic for two weeks now). It being a Saturday night and not wanting to pay an emergency fee, could I wait to take her in on Monday and just monitor it tomorrow?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1191 Recommendations
I prefer stainless steel food bowls over plastic, but I doubt at two weeks old the bowl has something to do with it; a swollen lip may be due to allergies or trauma in most cases. If you have given a different food today, clean the mouth thoroughly and switch back to the old food and keep an eye on the lip. Make sure that Bella can drink and eat, but if she is having trouble drinking you should visit an Emergency Clinic before Monday. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Bubbas
Manx
13 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

My cats whole face is swollen on the left side his eye is almost indented in completely to his face he looks as if his eye is gone and we are very worried. His eye is collecting mucus and blood and gunk in it but he has no pain to it please help us.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1191 Recommendations
Face swelling on one side of the face is usually attributable to a reaction to some type of bite; bathing the side of the face and giving Benadryl may help at a dose of 0.5mg/lb every twelve hours but can be difficult to effectively split the tablet. Given the severity of the reaction, you should visit your Veterinarian or an Emergency Veterinarian to be on the safe side especially if she may have been bitten by something. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Snicklefritz
Tabby
3 Months
Mild condition
1 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Swollen Jaw
Lethargic

My cat fell last night while I was giving her a bath. She hit her jaw and was stunned for a moment. After drying her and resting I noticed no signs of swelling. It is currently the morning after and her jawline has swollen to almost triple.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1191 Recommendations

Swelling at this level would be best to be checked by your Veterinarian, since if there are fractures or any other problems, they may be complicated if left for sometime. Administering baby aspirin at a dose of 5 mg/lb every 24 to 48 hours for pain may make Snicklefritz more comfortable; but bear in mind it may affect treatment given by your Veterinarian later. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

my cats fight and it's really distressing. i have three and none of them get along. his face was swollen today and i realize that they've obviously had a fight. its not serious enough for my parents to take him to the vet but i still would like to know what i could do to make the swelling go down.

My cat Snowball started sneezing (clear spray) and coughing. Brought him to the Vet, she noticed a slight and intermittent squint in left eye. Stain test was negative. Erythromycin ointment was Rx'ed twice a day for a week for treatment of possible conjunctivitis.

Eye has gotten worse and is mostly red and swollen shut when I return from work and upon waking in the AM (pre-ointment application).

It's been 8 days and it's worse not better.

I subcutaneous administration of Convenia .45mls was given 8 days ago as well.

Do cats ever show allergic reaction to Convenia that manifests itself in one single red, puffy, swollen eye tissue cells surrounding the eye with redness spreading slightly into surrounding scalp?

Wish I could upload or email a photo.

~ Jonathan
Snowball's Owner

I found a 4 weeks old stray kitten that has swollen face and paws.. she has good appetite but suddenly died after 1 week.

Had a stray kitten that has swollen face and paws.. still had good appetite despite the swollen face. But suddenly died after one week.

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Snowball
Himalayan
2 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Sneezing, Coughing

Medication Used

Erythromycin
Convenia

My cat Snowball started sneezing (clear spray) and coughing. Brought him to the Vet, she noticed a slight and intermittent squint in left eye. Stain test was negative. Erythromycin ointment was Rx'ed twice a day for a week for treatment of possible conjunctivitis. Eye has gotten worse and is mostly red and swollen shut when I return from work and upon waking in the AM (pre-ointment application). It's been 8 days and it's worse not better. I subcutaneous administration of Convenia .45mls was given 8 days ago as well. Do cats ever show allergic reaction to Convenia that manifests itself in one single red, puffy, swollen eye tissue cells surrounding the eye with redness spreading slightly into surrounding scalp? Wish I could upload or email a photo. ~ Jonathan Snowball's Owner

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
1191 Recommendations

The symptoms you are describing may be caused by infection, allergy (usually both eyes are affected) or irritation from a chemical. If there has been no response to treatment, I would be more inclined to think that the cause may be due to contact with some irritant; try to clean the eye by dribbling lukewarm water over the eye and revisit your Veterinarian (or another) for another examination. A picture usually tells a thousand words, but in some cases the angle, lighting and resolution of the camera can tell different stories. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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