Thermal Burns Average Cost

From 232 quotes ranging from $500 - 4,000

Average Cost


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What are Thermal Burns?

If your cat has suffered from a thermal burn, the first step is to get your cat away from the source of the burn and examine it. Do not apply ice, ointments, or extreme temperatures to the affected area, such as ice or cold water; these may exacerbate tissue damage and cause your cat to go into shock. Thermal burns should always be treated as an emergency that warrants immediate veterinary attention.

Thermal burns are one of the most common types of burns in cats. Thermal burns occur when cats come into contact with sources of extreme heat – these may include fire, hot or boiling liquids, or other hot objects. Thermal burns are a traumatic type of injury and are usually accidental in nature.

Symptoms of Thermal Burns in Cats

Symptoms may vary depending on what caused the burn. Typically, there will be immediate evidence of a thermal burn. Take your cat to the vet as soon as possible if you notice any of the following symptoms:

  • Signs of pain, such as yowling
  • Red, swollen, inflamed skin
  • Blackened skin
  • Pus-filled or draining blisters
  • Limping or lameness


Thermal burns range in severity. However, any and all thermal burns should be treated as an emergency as there is no way for an owner to know the extent of tissue damage resulting from a burn.

Superficial Burn

This the least severe type of burn in cats, and is commonly known as a first-degree burn. Superficial burns affect the surface of the skin, and are characterized by red, swollen blisters.

Partial Thickness Burn

The partial thickness burn extends into the dermis, the second layer of skin, and is commonly known as second-degree burn. These burns are similar in appearance to superficial burns and will bleed when pricked.

Deep Partial Thickness Burn

This type of burn, which is also classed as a second-degree burn, is characterized by a blotchy appearance with red and white blisters that are typically filled with fluid.

Full Thickness Burn

This is the most severe type of thermal burn. The skin turns black and feels like leather. Full thickness burns result in complete destruction of the nerves as well as the top two layers of skin.

Causes of Thermal Burns in Cats

The primary cause of thermal burns in cats is traumatic, and usually accidental, injury.

Diagnosis of Thermal Burns in Cats

Call the vet as soon as you can to let them know what happened and notify them that this will be an emergency case. Do not attempt to clean or wash the burn; your cat will be in pain, but you may make it worse by touching or otherwise irritating the affected area.

Your vet will be able to make a diagnosis based on presentation of symptoms and appearance of the burns. Be sure to tell your vet how your cat was burned and when. During the appointment, your vet will clean the skin, evaluate the type of burn, and assess the tissue damage as best they can. However, it should be noted that the full extent of tissue damage may take several days to manifest.

Treatment of Thermal Burns in Cats

Treating thermal burns will depend on the severity, location, and size of the burn. Burns involving less than fifteen percent of the cat’s body are typically treated with antibiotic topical treatments and pain management medication. Burns affecting more than fifteen percent of the body are treated more aggressively, through medication and/or surgery. If more than fifty percent of the body is burned, the prognosis is typically very poor. Your vet will be able to advise you on a treatment plan based on your cat’s specific needs.

During treatment, the vet will clean the affected skin and remove any dead tissue from the burn, as this is a breeding ground for bacteria. They will then apply the most suitable topical treatment and bandage the burn. Oral antibiotics are usually also prescribed. For severe burns, hospitalization, coupled with intravenous fluid and nutritional therapies, may be required. 

Recovery of Thermal Burns in Cats

Recovery and prognosis will depend on the severity, location, and size of the burn. Always follow your vet’s post-treatment and/or post-operative instructions carefully. Never administer any burn ointments made for human use as these may worsen the condition. Administer all medications exactly as directed.

Superficial burns generally take a week to heal. Partial thickness and deep partial thickness burns may take two to four weeks to heal. Full thickness burns will take more than four weeks to heal.

Upon your cat’s return home, you may need to limit outdoor activity if they require an extensive recovery. Ensure they have a safe place to rest. You will likely need to apply topical antibiotic ointments and bandages every twenty-four hours, as directed by your vet.

If you have any questions, or if the burn does not seem to be healing with treatment, contact your vet immediately.

Thermal Burns Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

6 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms


My cat got into our wax melter and had wax stuck to her fur on belly. Under the fur looks red and scabbed. I'm unsure on what to do. She seems to be fine until I try to examine her belly.

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Maine Coon
11 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms


My cat mittens fell from the top of our refrigerator into a pot of water I had been previously boiling. It had been off for approximately 10-30 minutes. I don’t see any blood, scabs, blisters, hair loss etc. but it does appear swollen and she’s been hiding all day and doesn’t want to be touched or pet. Is there anything I should be aware of as far as serious concerns or alarming symptoms? I’m a few days from PayDay and unfortunately can’t bring her in at the moment.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
A scald can be worse than a burn, you should have made sure to rinse over Mittens’ entire body with cold water immediately afterwards to help keep the skin cool; at this point do not rinse Mittens as her skin would be cool already. Secondary infection is the most concerning aspect of these types of injuries and I would recommend you seek Veterinary attention; charity clinics, nonprofits etc… may be able to assist you with at least checking Mittens and starting basic care. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Orange tabby
2 Years
Fair condition
0 found helpful
Fair condition

Has Symptoms

Burn-like patches

So Sammy seems to have a history of getting out, and he suddenly stopped appearing around the house. We found him under a bed curled up like a ball. He has what seems to be burn marks or scabs on his paw pads, likely from escaping on the roof. They don't seem to be too bad though, but how long should it take for him to heal, given it likely happened two days ago? And if needed, what would be recommended for him to be treated with?

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
If Sammy is otherwise okay, and is eating and drinking and acting normally, and the wounds on his feet aren't getting infected, it may take a few days for his feet to heal, and no treatment may be needed as cats will lick any ointment off. If he is not eating and drinking, or seems lethargic or painful, it would be best to have him seen by a veterinarian to make sure that he is okay and see if he does need any treatment.

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Half Persian
1 Year
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms


Hi my cat had some hot tea spilt on his back at the time he ran around like crazy I then put cool water on area and held him in a cool towel which he seemed to appreciate he was fine within 15 mins. it’s been a week and he’s playful with his brother and cuddly as always but I’ve noticed just below his shoulder blades and above his hips just on the spine area under his fur u can feel what seems to be some scabbing or thick hardness that’s developed any advice? When you part his fur you cant see his skin generally so hard to see only feel. Should I put any type of cream /ointment or oil on it to soothe? Is there anything I should look for and will he loose the fur on that area of his back?? He’s not in pain when u stoke it still purrs and rolls on his belly for tummy rubs and eating well

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1607 Recommendations
That skin may have been scarred, but if you aren't noticing any odor or loss of skin, you may be fine to monitor him. It is possible that the skin will die and slough, in which case he will need veterinary care to help heal that area.

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Gray Shorthair
3 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

matted eyes

Medication Used


Hello Ma'am. I have a cat that we found on our front porch that's severely emaciated, her eyes are matted shut, she has blisters on the pads of her feet. Her ears also look slightly melted, and her upper lip doesn't quite meet the bottom anymore. She's lost her whiskers and her fur was singed. Would you be able to tell me how much it would cost to have her treated?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
3317 Recommendations
It is not possible to give a quotation since there are too many variable to consider, mainly you haven’t mentioned where you live since veterinary care varies from country to country and even city to city; also the severity of the injuries and additional care would also have an impact on the price. You should visit a local Veterinarian or a charity clinic for a consultation to get an accurate quotation. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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