Cats' abscesses: They really bite
Q: Our cat got into another fight, and that meant another abscess - and another vet bill!
How can we prevent another round of these? It's getting too expensive.
A: Nearly every free-roaming cat will one day need to see a veterinarian to have an abscess treated - surgically opened, flushed of debris and sometimes temporarily held open by drains to let the wound heal with the help of time and some strong antibiotics. This common feline health problem is usually the result of a puncture wound, specifically a bite from another cat during a fight over territory or mates.
A cat's mouth is a nasty mix of bacteria, and once that bacteria gets punched into another cat's body, the result will probably be an abscess. Think about it - bacteria are basically injected by two hypodermic needles (the cat's fang teeth) into a perfect incubator (another cat's 101-degree-plus body). The only possible outcome is infection.
The only surefire prevention strategy that I know is to keep cats indoors. If you can't do that, you'll likely be back at the veterinarian's again after the next fight. Once a bite wound abscesses, there is no DIY solution: Your cat will need to see your veterinarian.