Boils are infections under the skin; they are also known as abscesses. These painful blister-type bumps fill with bacteria and pus, which eventually come to a head. Several types of boils can appear on a cat's lower stomach. Boils may require professional drainage or may clear on their own.
A boil is an infection under the skin that can occur if a cut or break in the skin becomes infected. It begins as a tender, red area and develops into a more firm bump filled with pus. The pus later comes to a head and can either open on its own, or may need to be surgically drained. A boil can appear anywhere on the body, including the groin and lower stomach area.
Causes and Risk
Boils sometimes appear after cat fights, according to WebMD. Others are a result of infected hair follicles, diseases or acne. The cause is not always known or determined. Any cat can develop a boil, however cats with certain diseases or those on certain medications -- particularly diseases or medications that impair the immune system -- are more at risk of developing boils. Illnesses that may negatively affect the immune system include kidney failure, diabetes and auto-immune diseases.
There are several types of boils. Furuncles are caused by staph infections and often are accompanied by fever and usually located within a cat's hair follicles, some of which are present on the lower stomach. Hidradenitis suppurativa boils are localized to the groin area, including the lower stomach. Folliculitis is an infection of any hair follicles, including those on the lower stomach. Aardora Veterinary Health has a section on its website about cat folliculitis, noting it can cause one or several lesions.
Aardora notes boils like folliculitis are painful and should be treated promptly. They suggest employing anti-inflammatory and anti-itch creams, along with skin protectants to protect the area from additional bacteria. Antibacterial medication can help kill bacteria and prevent the growth of new bacteria. They also suggest offering a nutritious diet to optimize the body's function. Warm soaks can help bring blood and pus to the surface, expediting a boil's drainage or rupture. Antibiotics are often used; consult with your vet on the best treatment protocol for your cat's boil.
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.
Sarah Whitman's work has been featured in newspapers, magazines, websites and informational booklets. She is currently pursuing a master's degree in nutrition, and her projects feature nutrition and cooking, whole foods, supplements and organics. She also specializes in companion animal health, encouraging the use of whole foods, supplements and other holistic approaches to pet care.