Like any other animal or person, cats also cough, although they can do so for natural reasons with a sporadic cough or for specific reasons, such as when they are sick or trying to expel a hairball.
Knowing how to differentiate a cat’s cough makes the difference between having to worry and going to the vet urgently or treating our cat ourselves knowing that he will be fine. Our little felines are all experts when it comes to coughing, and it’s strange the day they don’t cough at least once.
We are going to explain what are the main reasons and causes why a cat has a cough, how to identify the type of cough and what we should do about it. Some will need treatment while others will only need a few strokes and / or home remedies.
Different types of coughs in cats
The first thing we must do is remain calm, we must not get nervous because we have heard our cat cough, even if it does it several times. The fundamental thing is to identify the type of cough that our cat has to know what is the origin of it.
There are many types of cough in cats, there is the dry and severe cough similar to that of a smoker, the soft and almost imperceptible cough, the cough with mucus, the cough accompanied by sneezing and even the cough accompanied by strange noises similar to small beeps.
Paying a little attention, we can quickly identify the type of cough that our cat has. We can even use a mobile application to record your cough and analyze it over and over again, if necessary.
Knowing what our cat’s cough is like, we will be able to know what is happening to it and how to solve it. In some cases it will be necessary to go to the vet while in most, it will simply be enough to solve the problem from the source.
My cat has a cough and snot, with occasional sneezing
If our cat has a constant cough accompanied by sneezing and sometimes mucus or phlegm, it is more than likely that it is a viral or bacterial infection . Be careful, we should not be alarmed if he coughs a few times … but we should be more attentive to him in case the cough is chronic.
In these cases, the ideal is to go to a veterinarian to check our cat and diagnose it, it can be a simple cold or a cold that is too strong, which can lead to pneumonia.
It can also be a seasonal virus or bacterial disease , but only by performing certain veterinary tests can it be known exactly what is happening to it and therefore, give it an appropriate medicinal treatment.
The main symptoms of a viral or bacterial infection in cats are:
- Continuous cough
- Possible sneezing.
- Appearance of mucus or phlegm.
- Watery eyes or the appearance of greenish or dark rye.
- Febrile states.
My cat has a dry and severe cough, like a smoker
When a cat has a constant harsh hacking cough, similar to that of a person who has smoked for many years, it is a problem with the bronchial tubes. Cats can also get bronchitis even if they don’t smoke, as there are several types of bronchitis, including viral.
A harsh cough in cats is a clear symptom of feline bronchitis , usually contracted by a virus or self-generated due to sudden changes in temperature or excessive air pollution.
The symptoms for this type of disease are very clear:
- Dry and harsh cough, constant.
The treatment for this type of cough is, however, very variable, depending on the state of irritation of the bronchi and the general condition of the cat, our veterinarian will prescribe a more or less intense, powerful medication. There is no home remedy to cure bronchitis in cats, it is mandatory to go to the vet.
My cat has a bad cough and seems to be choking
This type of cough is more complex to detect since it is not always accompanied by other lung sounds such as beeps, or rather, it is always accompanied by that type of beeping but we are not always able to hear them.
When a cat has a cough and when we cough we appreciate strange sounds that come out of its body, such as high-pitched beeps, it is very likely that it is asthma. This cough is often quite exaggerated and gives the impression that the cat is suffocating , choking because it cannot breathe.
We should not be alarmed, keeping calm we will call our vet and explain what is happening. He will probably give us an urgent appointment to check the cat and make sure it is feline asthma.
Asthma in cats is much more common than people think, due to excess dust or environmental allergies, cats end up acquiring an increasingly persistent and strong chronic cough. Asthma is nothing more than an allergic derivation, so a cat with asthma can carry a normal visa as long as it is treated with the necessary medications.
My cat has a cough and vomits
This is another of the most common situations in cats, the typical cough accompanied by vomiting or an attempt to vomit. It is a very characteristic cough since the cat, in addition to coughing, adopts a very specific posture, similar to as if it were stretching its neck horizontally.
The most normal thing is that it is a ball of hair that is trying to expel itself causing vomiting. We all know what cats are like, licking and swallowing hair all day… it ‘s only a matter of time before they get a hairball in their throat or stomach and they try to expel it.
Most likely, after a few attempts, you will vomit a little hair with some bile, we should not worry if this is the case since the problem will have been solved. But if we see that it persists over and over again and cannot vomit the hairball … in some cases it is necessary to go to the vet.
And it is not always about hairs, sometimes the most mischievous cats try to swallow or swallow poorly digestible objects, causing them to suffer from a stomach ache or even get stuck halfway in the throat.
That is why we insist that if after several attempts he does not manage to vomit and you end up with his strange cough, we must go to a veterinarian just to make sure that it is nothing more serious.
My cat has a cough and is very weak
When weakness accompanies a cough, nothing good is happening to our poor kitten. Sometimes we can confuse the type of cough with another more or less similar and think that it is nothing serious, however when the cough is accompanied by weakness or weight loss, we must take it very seriously.
The main reason for this type of cough accompanied by weakness are internal parasites , which absorb all the nutrients from the food that the cat eats causing a very considerable lack of energy . That is why it is so important to always keep our cat well dewormed, to avoid such problems.
Another common reason is fungi, many of them will irritate our cat’s throat and weaken its immune system, making it appear sick and down. Whether they are parasites or fungi, only a veterinarian can solve the problem with the right medication.
Home remedies to cure a cough in cats
Do not be so naive thinking that with a little of this and that you can cure your cat if it is sick. While it is true that there are some basic recommendations for treating a cat’s cough, it is also true that there are no magic home remedies that prevent a visit to the vet.
If our cat is sick and we start fooling around with home remedies that we have read here and there and that claim to work … most likely his illness will get worse and then it will be much more difficult to cure it. We must take special care if it is a puppy, since small / baby cats have a very weak immune system.
Having a cat is a great responsibility, and that responsibility means having to go to a vet when you are sick. If we do not have the financial means, we can go to an animal shelter and explain the problem.
Basic tips for treating a cat’s cough, recommendations:
- Always put fresh and clean water at your cat’s disposal.
- Avoid that your cat breathes dust or smoke, do not clean the house in front of him or smoke.
- Avoid sudden changes in temperature, especially outside the house it is very cold or hot and inside the opposite.
- Brush your cat daily to avoid swallowing excess hair when licking, do not buy toys that can be swallowed.
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