In this article we are going to find out everything you need to know about hiccups in cats, why cats hiccup and what to do if a cat’s hiccups won’t stop . Let’s find out at ParaGatitos !
Can Cats Hiccup?
Of course! Like people, dogs, horses, and many other animals, cats and kittens can develop hiccups.
Why do cats hiccup?
Unfortunately, to date scientific researchers do not fully understand what causes hiccups, regardless of the species that suffers from it.
To be clear, researchers do understand the mechanism by which hiccups occur. When the diaphragm contracts sharply, the result is a hiccup .
But what scientists still don’t understand is precisely what causes the diaphragm to contract.
Reasons for hiccups in cats
In both dogs and cats, veterinarians say that there can be different causes of hiccups :
Immobilizing medications such as anesthesia.
Central nervous system alteration (neurological spasms, seizures, diaphragmatic flutter).
Anxiety or stress in cats .
Eat or chew quickly.
Until science provides a precise explanation, what we do know is that a setback occurs when the diaphragm contracts and the glottis (opening between the vocal cords) closes.
This sudden force of contraction of the diaphragm pushes air into the closed vocal cords, which is what produces the hiccuping sound.
How does hiccup sound in cats?
Cat hiccups don’t always sound like human hiccups. Some cat owners describe it as more of a “screeching” sound than a hiccuping sound .
It is important to listen carefully when your cat makes an unusual sound, if necessary, you can describe it as accurately as possible to your veterinarian.
If possible, try to get a video or audio recording of your cat making the hiccups sound for your vet.
Hiccups in cats after eating
Sometimes a kitten or adult cat may start to hiccup after eating.
The most likely cause is swallowing air with food . This is more common with kittens, especially when they are still nursing, as the effort of nursing can sometimes draw in extra air.
Another explanation could be that what your cat is eating causes gas to form in the stomach . The presence of this gas is causing the hiccups as the air tries to escape and out of the mouth.
If your cat’s hiccups become common after eating, and changing her diet doesn’t fix it, it’s time to look for a deeper cause.
Your vet may want to run tests to rule out hairballs , allergies, respiratory problems, parasites, infections, etc.
Hiccups in your cat when he purrs
It can be easy to assume that if your cat hiccups while purring, the hiccups were caused by the purr. But actually, the purr and hiccups come from different areas of the body .
Contrary to popular belief, purring is not always a sound cats make when they are happy. Sometimes nerves or fear can make them purr .
Make sure to write down anything that seems unusual that may be related to purring and hiccups. Even problems with the litter box , food or water.
Hiccups in elderly cats
The aging process is generally no more comfortable for felines than it is for people. Your cat’s immune system can become more susceptible to allergens and disease.
In general, the reasons for hiccups in older cats do not differ from the reasons for hiccups in younger cats.
But because your cat is later in life, it’s doubly important for your vet to check for potential underlying causes of the hiccups.
How to remove hiccups in a cat
As with all feline ailments, figuring out how to get rid of hiccups in a cat depends on identifying the cause of it.
Try to write down the events that occurred before the hiccups started. Your notes can help your vet solve the mystery so that your cat feels better.
For example, if your cat is eating too fast and swallowing too much air, invest in a slow feeding container to help him slow down at mealtime.
Similarly, if the food you’re feeding him may be causing gas, it may help to talk to your vet about trying a limited ingredient diet.
If your cat hiccups while purring from time to time, remember that this can be indicative of stress or discomfort . When in doubt, go to the vet.
Can hiccups be prevented in cats?
Every time you’ve had the hiccups, you’ve probably wished you knew some way to prevent it … or at least stop it.
Sometimes hiccups start from something as simple as swallowing air at the wrong time .
Just as there is no known way to completely prevent human hiccups (at least not yet), there is no safe method to prevent hiccups in cats at this time.
Help! My cat has hiccups!
Most cat owners have at least one story about “that time” their cat hiccupped. But if the issues are not resolved, it’s time to get serious and call your vet.
Since the research on feline hiccups is so incomplete, it’s best to call your vet. You should describe the problem, how long it has been going on, and what happened just before the hiccups started.
Hiccups in Cats: Conclusion
As a result, hiccups in cats are just another of the many things that our precious feline companions share with us.
With us you have learned how to remove a cat’s hiccups and to recognize the different types that exist.
While some evolutionary biologists theorize that modern hiccups in any species date back to the time when we had fins instead of legs, the truth is that we still don’t know everything there is to know about hiccups in cats or people.
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