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

Canberra Cat Vet Blog

Training your asthmatic cat to the Aerokat

Friday, May 02, 2014

The dust over summer and then the flowering grasses this autumn have exacerbated the symptoms of many asthmatic cats. Coughing and wheezing are the main signs of asthma in cats, and sometimes a strong bronchospasm causes breathing distress, anxiety and occasionally death.

Cats with asthma squat with their necks extended and their elbows out and cough. They are not bringing up a hairball. They are trying to breathe through narrowed airways. This is what a moderately asthmatic cat looks like:

If asthma is not treated the lung becomes more and more inflamed and infection is likely. A bad attack can cause death.

Cortisone in the form of tablet initially and through an inhaler/spacer like the Aerokat eventually is the foundation of asthma treatment in the cat. Some cats also need a drug like Ventolin to open up the airways.

Many videos on giving your cat the Aerokat are available on the internet. This is one we liked with a more subtle asthma attack:

Training your cat to the Aerokat requires patience and a sense of humour...

Cough or vomit?

Saturday, February 08, 2014

Siamese like Nicholas commmonly suffer from asthmaIt's easy to confuse coughing with retching or vomiting in cats. A coughing cat crouches, sticks her elbows out and opens her mouth to get more air. A vomiting cat sits with the front legs straight, her abdomen contracts and she produces fluid or food.

Many coughing cats have asthma or chronic bronchitis. Like human asthmatics cats with asthma react to something they have inhaled like pollen, cigarette smoke or dust mites. We saw several asthmatic cats during the recent bushfires when the smoke hung low around Canberra.

Cats with bronchitis have long term inflammation of the airways causing thickening of the small airway walls and reduced airflow.

Asthma and bronchitis often overlap in cats. In general, asthmatics have sudden episodes of difficult breathing, wheezing and coughing, while cats with bronchitis have more chronic but less dramatic coughs.

Infections of the bronchi and lungs make asthma and bronchitis suddenly worse.

Other causes of coughing in cats include inhalation of foreign material, such as grass or cigarette smoke, flu virus infections, lungworm, heartworm or lung cancer.

Once we sort out the cause of the cough with X-rays, bronchoscopy or other more specific tests, we target the treatment. For asthma and bronchitis treatment can be lifelong or as necessary.

Search Blog

Recent Posts


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


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