My kitten is not quite 3 months old and not vaccinated yet. He recently bit me and broke my skin, are there any medical concerns I should have, for myself, as a result?


It's a rare cat owner that hasn't gotten their skin broken by their pet, and in the vast, vast majority of cases, nothing much comes of it. However, it's not without some risks.

In rough order of concern, cats can transmit rabies, but if your kitten is healthy, acting normally, and is an indoor cat, that's highly unlikely.

The most common infectious result of a cat bite is a soft tissue infection with a bacteria called Pasturella multocida.1 For some reason, the infection is more common after cat bites than dog or other bites.

The signs of infection are pretty alarming and if you have it, you'll likely go to the ER despite what anyone here says. It's a rapidly progressing swelling and redness, but very easily treated with antibiotics. Usually it's seen with deep bites, both fangs in. If the kitten just broke your skin, such an infection isn't likely. Wash it with plenty of soap and water and keep an eye on it.

Kittens can transmit something called cat scratch fever (or cat scratch disease).2 It is more common in young people (it happens in adults, though), and it is mostly benign. You might want to read the article.

Cats bite. Often. Now is a good time to learn how to discourage it.

Pasteurella multocida infections. Report of 34 cases and review of the literature.
Cat Scratch Disease

  • Cat bites infect more often than dog bites because cat teeth are structured more like needles; it's easier for them to puncture deeper. Also, I recommend putting lime juice on your finger and holding it to the kitten. Works for cats, dogs, lizards, and children. Nov 2 '15 at 19:30

If the kitten is ill, you could potentially become sick. But at that age he hasn't been exposed to a lot of disease, so it isn't likely.

I wouldn't worry about it, care for it like any other puncture wound -- clean it, cover it until the skin heals, and watch for signs of infection.

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