Modern Veterinary Care

How To Put Antibiotic Gel On Your Cat's Eyes (Safely)

When cats have a problem with their eyes that calls for antibiotics, vets often prescribe an antibiotic gel. This product can be a little intimidating for you to use since you have to directly apply it to your cat's eye. The good news is that most pet parents can master this easily if they know how to go about it. Here's how you can apply antibiotic gel to your kitty's eyes without hurting them or getting hurt yourself.


The first thing you'll need to do is prepare. Consider setting up this entire process in your bathroom. It will provide an enclosed area so your cat can't run away, and you'll have direct access to a sink.

Carry your cat to the bathroom and bring in a large towel, the medication, and preferably a second person. Shut the door.

If you have a second person with you, ask them to start securing your cat by using the towel. Wrap the towel over the cat's legs so that they're not able to reach out and scratch you. If you're solo, do this step after thoroughly washing your hands. Follow the recommended 20-second washing by the CDC to ensure that there isn't anything stuck to your fingers.

Steady Cat

Now that your cat is secured, you'll need to adjust your cat's head so that you can easily apply the medication. Lightly grasp the scruff of the neck and pull back slightly and gently. Your kitty should become a little stiff; this is what you want. Once your cat's head is tipped back, reach down with your spare hand and open the kitty's eyelids. Practice this a couple of times and then let your cat relax for a minute.


Get your antibiotic gel and put the strip length your veterinarian prescribed onto the pad of your index finger and quickly go back to your cat. Scruff them again, open up the eyelid with your middle finger and thumb, and apply the gel gently to the surface of the eye. Under no circumstances should you press down, as you could hurt your cat. Just come close enough that the medication makes contact with the surface of the eye and comes off of your finger. Then, release your cat's eyelid and gently open and close it a couple of times to spread the medication. Repeat this process on the other eye.

This should allow you to apply your cat's medication easily. Make sure to wash up thoroughly once you're done to prevent the spread of bacteria, and do something fun with your cat to help soothe them.

For more information, talk to a local animal hospital such as Animal Emergency Clinic.