Appointments: (02) 6251 1444
16-18 Purdue St, Belconnen, ACT
(Parking via Gillott Street)
Mon - Fri: 8:30am - 5:30pm
Saturday: 8:30am - 1:00pm
BOOK ONLINE NOW!

Canberra Cat Vet Blog

Breathing difficulty

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

If you notice that your cat is having any breathing difficulty call us immediately on 6251 1444. Cats hide chest problems until they are verging on life threatening so do not hesitate to make it an emergency.

A cat is having breathing difficulty if she is mouth breathing, and/ or crouched down with elbows out. A blue tongue with laboured or noisy breathing is very serious. Some cats will stick their tongues out in an effort to open up the airways even more.

The cat in the picture is concentrating on getting a breath. He has his elbows out and his mouth is open (although we can't quite see it). His pupils are also widely dilated as he is very worried.

Some chest diseases like asthma, some cancers or pneumonia cause a cough. Others cause a buildup in fluid around the lungs making it difficult for the cat to expand the lungs and get a good breath.

It is vital to keep the cat as calm as possible on the way to the vet and to let the vet know that you are coming so that we have oxygen ready. Keep handling to a minimum and speak gently and reassure your cat as much as possible. Cats with breathing difficulty often get worse when stressed - but will die if not treated.

Young cats are prone to pyothorax and Feline Infectious Peritonitis, which cause a buildup of pus and fluid in the chest cavity. Older cats are more likely to have heart disease or lymphoma cause a build up of fluid in the chest cavity. The fluid must be drained to relieve the breathing difficulty and then treatment targeted at the underlying disease.

Diseases of the nose, mouth, throat and sinuses sometimes cause noisy or open mouth breathing but the cat is not usually unduly distressed by it and will happily eat and run around despite the snuffles and sneezes. However, if you are in any doubt please phone and clarify the situation.

The cat is this video has pyothorax and is having a lot of trouble breathing.

The cat in the next video is not so distressed - but is breathing rapidly and heavily and could become as distressed as the last cat if stressed.


Search Blog

Recent Posts


Tags

vocal tablet rigid head cranky stress appointment off food goodbye abscess,cat fight ulcerated nose rough play sneeze unsociable salivation stiff vomiting hairball training cryptococcosis feline herpesvirus depomedrol check-up ACT indoor cats tick toxic unwell hiding hyperactive signs of pain change behaviour open night photo competition nails cancer sick lump string painful bed vaccine fever blood test open day hunting panadeine senior annual check diuretics thiamine deficiency grass runny nose plaque dental mental health of cats socialisation spray home cat behaviour blindness mouth breathing blood in urine aggression pheromone plants castration breathing difficult hole eyes panleukopaenia diarrhoea kittens cystitis dry food worming fluid pills cage cat worms visit health check seizures senses tartar radioactive iodine heaing meows a lot hunters hypertension euthanasia vision Hill's Metabolic hyperthyroidism urine drinking a lot grooming flea treatment bite headache holiday corneal ulcer kidney disease paralysis sense of smell panleukopenia diabetes dental treatment twitching vet visit poison abscess groom christmas desexing sensitive diet whiskers appetite dymadon pain relief blind urine spraying free marking antibiotics panadol face rub dental check runny eyes slow kidneys weight loss hearing carrier pain fear prednisolone teeth cat enclosures overweight constipation Canberra snuffles jumping pill lilies fireworks urination scale on heat bump panamax straining prey when to go to vet rub cat anaemia sun head sensitive stomach sucking wool fabric sore eyes arthritis fleas skin cancer inflammatory bowel disease pred dilated pupils kidney tumour bladder asthma tradesmen snakes aspirin thyroid polish obese scratching adipokines cat friendly bad breath introductions scratching post snot dementia behaviour change IBD feliway urinating outside litter pet meat lymphoma blood scratch birthday cognitive dysfunction eye infection return home New Year's Eve urinating on curtains or carpet eye ulcer decision to euthanase hunched over skin noisy breathing new cat allergy, blocked cat gasping breeder AIDS crytococcosus itchy pancreatitis hypertrophic cardiomyopathy kitten play sick cat litter box holes introduce eye poisons pica physical activity foreign body tooth gifts collapse information night massage hospital in season blood pressure competition wet litter allergy learning conflict skinny holes in teeth stare into space echocardiography exercise bladder stones xylitol furball catoberfest blockage yowling lilly holidays Canberra Cat Vet obesity paracetamol poisonous tapeworm new kitten rolls renal disease hunter revolution fits strange behaviour weight control microchip rash activity comfortis restless best clinic anxiety best cat clinic permethrin changed virus heavy breathing wool love pet ulcer cortisone blue toxins snakebite paralysis tick enemies FIV pain killer old cat cat containment food puzzles poisonous plants mycoplasma ulcers introduction cat flu kibble intestine sudden blindness petting cat feline enteritis litter thirsty snake spey introducing cat vet desex award flea prevention touch advantage not eating drinking more kitten biopsy cat enclosure kitten deaths worms aerokat mince enteritis vaccination lick African wild cat odour high blood pressure vomit cat fight urinating antiviral attack best vet best veterinarian aggressive ribbon body language spraying brown snake herpesvirus furballs fat insulin cough cta fight pet insurance snake bite fight poisoning calicivirus opening hours train hard faeces wobbles old liver roundworm weight chlamydia hungry mass heart disease nose scabs moving FORLS sore lily computer new year paralysed flu snuffle sore ears checkup lame client night cat history

Archive

A calm, quiet haven for cats and their carers staffed by experienced, cat loving vets and nurses.

Canberra Cat Vet 16-18 Purdue St Belconnen ACT 2617 (parking off Gillott Street) Phone: (02) 6251-1444

Get Directions