Amoxicillin For Cats – How Does It Work?

Amoxicillin may be one of the oldest antibiotics in the world; its status as one of the most prescribed won’t wane anytime soon. This drug was first discovered at Beecham Research Laboratories in the United Kingdom back in 1972. Afterward, the Beecham Group would merge with Glaxo Wellcome, thus, becoming the pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline.

When it comes to antibiotics, they all work to fight against bacteria regardless if it is found in a human or an animal. While there are antibiotics that work better for humans than animals, amoxicillin is one of those that are safe to be used on animals. If you’re planning to use amoxicillin on your pet cat, here’s how it works.

sign of cat veterinary

How Amoxicillin Works?

Amoxicillin is a broad spectrum penicillin antibiotic used to treat bacterial infections. It is exceptionally popular for human consumption because of its quick absorption qualities. In humans, amoxicillin is used to treat a number of conditions such as cystic acne, bronchitis, gonorrhea, throat infections, and urinary tract infections, among others.

For cats, and even dogs, amoxicillin is used to treat similar health conditions. If you’re wondering how this works, the mechanism of action for amoxicillin is basically this: the antibacterial drug inhibits bacterial cell wall synthesis. Because cell wall formation and integrity is jeopardized, the lack thereof would result in lysis and eventually the death of the bacteria.

It is safe to say that amoxicillin would not work on non-actively growing and cell wall synthesizing bacteria.

Uses of Amoxicillin for Cats

The same amoxicillin used by humans can also be taken by cats to treat various conditions and infections caused by bacteria. Some of these would include urinary tract infections, old wounds, injuries, skin infections, bladder infections, and tooth abscess. Not only that; amoxicillin can also be used to treat pneumonia, parasitic infections, mouth infections, and bone infections for cats.

Amoxicillin can also be used alongside other drugs as prescribed by veterinarians. It is also available as an oral tablet in various sizes (50 mg to 400 mg) or a liquid oral suspension.

cat sick and sad

Dosage for Amoxicillin Use in Cats

When it comes to using amoxicillin, or “Amoxil” as it’s often called, never self-prescribe. It is important for your cat’s safety that you see a veterinarian first.

While the basic equation for calculating the proper dosage of amoxicillin is 5 to 10 mg per pound of the cat’s weight, it would be better to have a vet compute for the dosage. This is because certain factors would also need to be considered when administering amoxicillin to your cat:

  • The type of bacteria present.
  • The severity of the infection.
  • The period in which the bacteria have been present.
  • Where the infection is located.
  • The state of health of the cat.

With these considerations, the vet would come up with a proper treatment plan for the cat which would include the right dosage of amoxicillin, how many times should it be administered per day, and how long the treatment will last. Giving the proper dose is important to ensure that there is a sufficient amount to fight against the bacteria while also preventing overdose.

Possible Side Effects of Amoxicillin to Your Cat

Amoxicillin is relatively safe to use for cats. But like people, there are some felines that might have an allergic reaction to it. If your cat has exhibited a reaction towards a drug in the past, like penicillin or even amoxicillin itself, your vet should be informed of this so that he or she could test out whether or not the antibiotic would be an appropriate choice for your pet.

Another side effect that may come from the use of amoxicillin concerns the gastrointestinal tract. Your cat may experience symptoms like vomiting, diarrhea or even a reduced appetite due to some changes that may occur in the gastrointestinal tract causing an upset stomach.

Most of the time, there is nothing to be concerned about. But when your cat can’t seem to eat or hold food down, you should check with your vet.

Furthermore, the amoxicillin will not be able to distinguish the good bacteria from those that are bad. Unfortunately, the good bacteria responsible for helping with the digestion of food may also get attacked by the antibiotic. Thankfully, it will not take long for these good bacteria to recover especially when you give your cat a probiotic meal.

Avoid giving other antibiotics or drugs to your cat unless prescribed by the vet.

If you think about it, though, the side effects of using amoxicillin on your cat is nothing compared to the damage your cat might get if you let its infection persist.

Where to Buy?

Amoxicillin is a prescription drug and you cannot purchase one without being prescribed by a veterinarian. For this reason, it is important that you avoid buying it online where it tends to become non-prescription and administering antibiotics without the guidance of a knowledgeable professional may cause even more serious issues.

Veterinary medicine and human medicine are common in many ways and given that they are both complex, it would be good to seek the aid of the people who bear the right knowledge in helping you with your pet dilemma.

Word of Caution

Amoxicillin should only be used on cats that have been proven to have bacterial infections and with the guidance of the vet. Cats that are sensitive to antibiotics should also stay away from amoxicillin.

What’s more is that amoxicillin may have a reaction when taken with antacids, neomycin sulfate, aminoglycosides, and bacteriostatics or those drugs that inhibit bacterial growth. Always check with your vet before you jump into action in order to ensure the safety and well-being of your feline pet.

Miranda LaSala
Miranda LaSala

My destination ever since I was born was to be a cat person. When I had the chance, I took the course on Veterinary Tech from Pima Medical Institute, Seattle. For the last 5 years, I've worked as a kennel assistant, veterinary nurse, and a surgical nurse.

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