Cats are strange little creatures. They have all sorts of bizarre mannerisms and can make sorts of odd noises. They meow, chirp, cry, and squeak. But, when you have a coughing cat, it’s a very unpleasant sound. If you are a new cat parent in White Bear Lake, MN and are trying to figure out what’s going on with your new friend, we are here to help! There are a few reasons for the new cough noise and some are more serious than others.
Reasons for Your Cat’s Coughing in White Bear Lake, MN
The first thing you need to ask yourself is if the noise you’re hearing is an actual coughing cat or if your cat is retching and coughing up a hairball.
Cats ingest hair while they groom and then they’ll vomit it back up. To reduce the amount of hairballs, you should brush your cat’s fur daily and you can even try a hairball reducing food. This kind of coughing is not serious and is a normal behavior for cats.
A second reason for a coughing cat is asthma which is the most common feline respiratory disorder. Around 1% of all domestic cats in America have some form of asthma, totaling to about 800,000 cats. Your cat is more likely to get it if they spend any amount of time outdoors in White Bear Lake, MN. Asthma is caused by something getting into your cat’s airways causing them to become inflamed and then shrink up. It makes breathing hard for them and they could come down with an ongoing cough. Some of the causes are pollen, mold, cat litter dust, cigarette smoke, perfume, obesity, and even stress. Once you notice an ongoing cough that doesn’t result in a hairball, you should call your vet.
There are other reasons that your cat could be coughing as well. Allergies, fungal lung infection, heartworms, lung cancer, system diseases, tight collars, and worms could all cause your cat to cough.
When To Take a Coughing Cat to the Vet
Deciding when to go to the vet is personal. You know your cat. The occasional cough with no other symptoms is not probably something that you need to worry about. However, if the cough is persistent for a few days or is severe, produces phlegm, or if your cat appears to be losing weight or seems sick or “off” you want to call the vet.
When you take your cat to the vet in White Bear Lake, MN, they will either be able to figure out what’s wrong or they’ll ask for a full diagnostic work-up. Make sure to take note of any behavioral changes in your cat so that you can discuss details. A full work-up will include blood tests, heartworm antigen tests, cultures of a wash sample from the lower respiratory tract, endoscopic examination, and radiography.
The reason that so many tests are required is because there are so many underlying conditions for the cough. In the same way that there are many reasons for the cough, treatment varies vastly. You have to treat what’s causing the cough and not just the cough itself. Decongestant medicines could help in mild cases but if the reason is a viral infection or more severe, then antibiotics might be necessary. The key with antibiotics is that you absolutely have to make sure you give your cat the full dose for two weeks. Your vet in White Bear Lake, MN will be able to guide you through all of the treatment options to make sure your kitty is as comfortable as possible.
Keep an Eye on Your Coughing Cat in White Bear Lake, MN
A constant coughing cat can add stress on your life as well as your cat’s. Take the time to pay attention to how your cat if feeling and acting to see if it could be a mild cold or if it’s something more serious. The sooner you catch something, the better chance you have of nipping it in the bud and getting your kitty back to feeling like their old, finicky self.
About Birch Lake Animal Hospital
The staff at Birch Lake Animal Hospital seeks to provide the best possible medical care for our highly-valued patients and clients.