cat boil n [Engl dial (EDD at cat sb.1 1.(4)); also found in Caribbean English (cf DCEU)]
A small boil or similar swelling on the skin.
1859 Amer. Homœopathic Rev. 1.377 Chicago IL, Was his health poor at the time the fistula appeared? . . No. He called the first appearance a little “cat-boil.” 1871 Brooklyn Daily Eagle (NY) 27 Feb /1, [Advt:] “Cat Boils,” as they are called, are little black-end worms which burrow beneath the skin, and give a dark and dingy expression to it. 1877 Macon Telegraph (GA) 10 Oct /4, We may be jeered at for taking this position by Young America and the “eleven able” and one disabled (Harris has a cat boil) editor of the Constitution. 1903 Philadelphia Inquirer (PA) 5 Apr 13/4, [Advt:] All skin eruptions, from the sometimes fatal carbuncle to the spiteful little cat-boil, are caused by bad blood. [DARE Ed: From an advertisement, which appeared in newspapers throughout the country, except for NEng, from 1903–1905, for a patent medicine made by the Swift Specific Co. of Atlanta GA.] 1913 Lexington Dispatch (SC) 17 Sept /3, Mr. Robert Earl . . has painfully suffered a few days from a cat boil on his neck. 1950 WELS (A swelling on the skin) 2 Infs, WI, Cat boil. 1960 Bailey Resp. to PADS 20 KS (A swelling on the skin that comes to a head), Cat boil. 1966–68 DARE (Qu. X59, . . Small infected pimples . . usually on the face) Inf LA25, Cat boils; (Qu. BB33a, . . A swelling under the skin, bigger than a pimple) Infs MS71, SC4, 24, Cat boil. 1982 DARE File SC, Cat boil—a hickey, a small boil. 2003 Times & Democrat (Orangeburg SC) 21 Oct sec C 2/1, Impetigo, commonly referred to as cat boils, is the most common contagious illness during the summer months, Kilgore said.