Is Your Cat Sneezing Here Are A Few Potential Causes
A cat sneezing here and there is no big deal. Its cute, even! But if Mittens is constantly sneezing and has watery eyes and a runny nose, it may be cause for concern. Excitement, seasonal allergies, and upper respiratory infections can all be behind those seemingly adorable kitty sneezes. Keep reading to find out what has your kittens nose all over the place.
Other Signs Of Eye Problem In Cats
When it comes to your cats health, its important to keep tabs on the health of her eyes as well. Eye problems in cats should be addressed by your veterinarian as soon as possible because infections, trauma, viruses, and metabolic conditions such as diabetes can cause permanent damage to the eye. Dont let it go untreated if you notice other signs such as redness of the sclera , inflammation and swelling of the conjunctiva or eyelids, or green, yellow or goopy discharge.
How Do Cats Catch Colds
These pathogens are usually airborne but can also be spread through water. Most cats catch colds by being close to a cat that is already sick. This makes places with lots of cats in close quarters, such as a shelter, boarding kennel, or cattery, prime spots for transmitting colds. Cats living indoors in family homes are not protected from catching colds, however. Your cat can still be exposed to viruses and bacteria from cats who hang out outside your home, or even if you pet a sick cat elsewhere and then come home and interact with your cat.
Poor air quality and ventilation can increase the risk of catching a cold. Cats who have a weakened immune system due to other issues are also at increased risk. Systemic illnesses such as kidney disease, asthma, allergies, or even stress can all put your cat at increased risk. For cats with asthma and allergies, forced air heat in the winter can cause an increase in symptoms and potentially predispose them to getting a URI, especially if the vents are not well-maintained.
Some viruses can also stay in your cat’s body long term even after the initial illness has resolved. These viruses remain latent until stress or another illness triggers them to recur later in the cat’s life. Feline herpes in particular tends to do this.
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How To Treat Respiratory Infection In Cats
You should contact your veterinarian at the first signs of a respiratory infection in your cat because feline viruses can lead to pneumonia and other serious problems. Early diagnosis and treatment are important.
The virus is also contagious to other cats in the house, which Ill get into more detail shortly. If you recognize that your cat is sick and begin treatment sooner, you can have a better chance of preventing it from spreading to other cats in the home.
As mentioned, viruses are the cause of most feline upper respiratory infections, and unfortunately, viruses dont respond to antibiotics. Antibiotics are only effective for treating bacterial infections, typically indicated by yellow or green discharge from your cats nose.
Although viruses cant be cured with antibiotics, your veterinarian can still help when your cat has a viral infection by treating the symptoms. For instance, your veterinarian may prescribe medication to reduce fever or administer fluids to treat dehydration. They can also make sure there arent any other conditions that could prevent or delay recovery from the virus.
In some cases, a cat’s upper respiratory infection will run its course in about two to three weeks. During that time, you should follow your veterinarians recommendations and do your best to keep your cat comfortable. Here are some suggestions that can help:
How Can I Treat My Cats Cold Without Going To The Vet
You can help your cat by relieving the symptoms of the cold. The cold itself will go away on its own as your cats immune system fights it off.
Try using a humidifier to make the air more moist that will help your cats nose pain and make breathing a lot easier. Make sure your cat eats that is crucial.
Your cats immune system needs to be strong in order to fight, so fueling up is very important.
Use a warm cloth to wipe the nose and/or eye discharge from your cats face. Make sure your furry friend is warm and comfortable and then all you can do is wait it out.
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Reasons Why Cat Eyes Water
If you notice that one of your cat’s eyes is watering, this generally indicates that their eye is attempting to fight off some kind of threat to their health. This can range from a virus to a foreign object.
In many cases, if one or both of your cat’s eyes are watering, the cause will be minor and should clear up on its own without veterinary intervention. That being said, there are a number of more serious causes and symptoms associated with your cat’s eyes watering that could require more intensive care.
Why Are My Cat’s Eyes Watery
The moist outer layer on your cat’s eye protects it by washing away dirt and debris. If your kitty’s eyes have started to water excessively, or if your feline friend is squinting, it could be a sign that there is a more serious issue. Today, our Gaithersburg vets explain a few reasons why cats’ eyes might water.
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Nasal And Sinus Issues
Cats can also suffer from inflammatory conditions like rhinitis and sinusitis. Rhinitis is the inflammation of the mucous membranes of the nose, which we all know as a stuffy nose, and sinusitis is inflammation in the lining of the sinuses.
These two conditions often occur together in cats, termed rhinosinusitis, and are common complications of upper respiratory infections.
In addition to frequent sneezing, signs of rhinitis and sinusitis in cats include:
- Clear nasal discharge in mild cases OR yellow, green or bloody in severe cases
- Labored breathing, snoring and/or breathing through the mouth
- Pawing at the face
- Tearing and discharge from the eyes
- Reverse sneezing
- A lump on the bridge of the nose
Diagnosing rhinitis and sinusitis involves an evaluation of your cats medical history, along with a thorough physical examination. A rhinoscopy, which involves inserting a small endoscope into the nose or mouth for better visualization of the nasal structure, may also be needed along with a nasal wash to collect samples.
Treatment may include a nasal flush and broad-spectrum antibiotics to treat or prevent bacterial infections, along with a dose of steroids to open up the nasal and sinus cavities. Intravenous fluids and nutritional support may also be needed in severe cases.
Talk To A Veterinarian About Your Cats Sneezing
Now that youve learned more about sneezing in cats, you can learn how to recognize when sneezing is a cause for concern and when its simply business as usual for your feline friend. Pay close attention to your cats health and wellbeing when she has been sneezing, and see if you notice any other symptoms that might be related as well.
Of course, if your cat is sneezing for a long time or if she shows any other signs of illness, you should take her to the veterinarian as soon as possible. She probably does not need to see an emergency vet, but her regular vet should be able to help. Its important to find the underlying cause for why your cat keeps sneezing so you can know for sure if theres anything that needs to be done to help treat it.
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When To Take Your Cat To The Vet For An Eye Examination
If you notice that your cat’s eyes are watering for longer than a day or two without any change or if their symptoms are growing worse, it’s time to take them in for a veterinary appointment. A veterinarian or specialist will be able to provide an in-depth diagnosis of your cat’s eyes and create a treatment plan. With proper veterinary care, Your feline companion’s discomfort or pain can be relieved and more serious conditions may be prevented.
Note: The advice provided in this post is intended for informational purposes and does not constitute medical advice regarding pets. For an accurate diagnosis of your pet’s condition, please make an appointment with your vet.
What To Do If My Cat Is Sneezing And Has Watery Eyes
Try answering these questions:
Is there something in your cats eye?
Is it allergy season or was your cat exposed to something it is allergic to?
Does your cat have symptoms of feline upper respiratory infection? Was your cat around any other cats? This is the most common way of contracting this disease, as it is very contagious.
Does your cat have any symptoms of rhinitis, conjunctivitis, or feline glaucoma?
Based on your answers to these questions, you can decide what the right thing to do is. Try removing potential allergens and harsh chemicals, and if you think your cat has feline URI, rhinitis or conjunctivitis then try treating it at home. If at-home treatment is not working, go to the vet, especially if you suspect feline glaucoma.
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A Cat Runny Nose Is Not Good
You need to pay special attention to kittens who have a cold. Because theyre young, their immune system isnt as tough as that of an adult cat. Thus, theyll have a harder time fighting whatever infection is making them sick. On top of that, because they arent eating as much as before, they could lose too much weight, which can be dangerous.
What Can I Do For The Staining
There are many remedies that have been recommended for removing or eliminating the facial staining associated with excess tears. None of these has proven to be 100% effective. Some over-the-counter treatments may be harmful or injurious to the eyes.
Low doses of some antibiotics are no longer recommended due to the risk of developing bacterial antibiotic resistance rendering these valuable antibiotics worthless for human and veterinary use. Some over-the-counter products have been suggested but have not been proven to be effective in research trials.
Do not use any product without consulting with your veterinarian. Avoid using any product containing hydrogen peroxide near the eyes, since these products can cause severe damage if inadvertently splashed into the eyes.
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What Is Cat Sneezing
Sneezing is an explosive expulsion of air from the mouth and nose. Sometimes a shower of discharge is also sprayed out. This can be clear, or it may be bloodstained or even yellow or green if an infection is present.
Cat sneezing is usually a minor occurrence it should expel the irritant in their nose. However, sometimes repeated sneezing may be accompanied by other symptoms which could mean a bigger health issue.
Excessive discharge from the nose or eyes, coughing or wheezing, reduced appetite and fatigue all may be seen in a sneezing cat.
Cat Diseases Spread By Carriers
Have a look at these diseases of cats carried by asymptomatic spreaders:
- Plus many more gut and respiratory infections
As you can see, nearly all of the important pathogens of cats are here. And I suspect there are others we havent found yet.
Take for example, this very common new kitten scenario. Tiger might be living the comfortable life of a middle-aged house cat, but hes in for a shock. Within a week of a healthy new kitten arriving, hes got a fever, wont eat and stays curled up on the bed.
Whats he got? Most of the time it doesnt appear on our tests, but it certainly came from the kitten, who never looked sick at all. Tiger will get better, but no one saw it coming.
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Weepy Runny Watery Eyes In Cats: Causes And Treatments
Your cats eyes are not only pretty but also amazingly complex. Unfortunately, they can be fragile too and need to be taken care of. So, if your cats eye is watering, you shouldnt ignore it. Why? Because runny eyes in cats can be the first sign that your feline has an eye problem, and you should seek veterinary care.
Cats eyes make tears constantly. Tears protect the eyes from damage and keep the surface of the eye wet. So, it is normal for the front of your cats eyes to look shiny but not too watery. The eyes dont just make tears but drain them too, so they dont flow down your cats cheeks. If your cat has runny or watery eyes, they may be making more tears, or the tears are not draining normally.
So, what could be causing the problem? Unfortunately, there are many possible causes. But, by the end of this article, youll hopefully feel reassured that with the right veterinary treatment, your cats eye problem can be solved.
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How Cat Pathogens Differ
Cat diseases needed to be trickier to survive. They evolved back when cats might have been at a density of only one per square kilometre. Under these circumstances, the fast burn of dog diseases would have fizzled out long before they found another host.
To survive, feline pathogens needed two new skills:
And there you have it: the asymptomatic carrier. A cat that looks OK, even feels OK, but carries and passes on pathogens to other cats.
What Should I Do If My Cat Has A Cold
If your cat has a cold, you can help them feel more comfortable by gently wiping their runny nose and eyes with a clean cloth dampened with a saline solution. You can also run a humidifier in any rooms that your cat particularly enjoys spending time in, so that the air isn’t too dry.
If your cat seems to be stuffed up, making breathing a little difficult, secure them in their pet carrier, put a bowl of hot water in front of the cage, and cover both with a blanket for about 15 minutes.
It’s important for your cat to continue to eat and drink so they can get better quicker. Food that is warmed up and easier to swallow might make this process more appealing for them. They also need to stay warm, so place an extra blanket in their bed or favorite area to curl up.
Do not ever give human cold medication to your cat. Always speak with your vet to see what they recommend for your pet.
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Feline Upper Respiratory Infection
Feline URI is very similar to the common colds that humans experience. Feline URI is an infection of the lining of the nose, throat and sinuses.
It can be caused by either a virus or bacteria.
When it comes to bacteria, Bordetella and Chlamydophila felis are the likely culprits. As for viruses, feline herpesvirus type-1and feline calicivirus are known to be the most common causes of URI. These two viruses are behind 90% of all cases of cat URI. This is why you need your cat vaccinated against these two viruses!
Both the bacteria and the viruses that cause URI are highly contagious. They are found in nose and eye secretions. Your cat can get it from close contact with another cat, or by eating or drinking from the bowl of an infected cat.
Symptoms Of Feline URI include the following:
Rhinitis is the inflammation of the mucous membrane that lines the nose.
It is accompanied by:
swelling of the nasal passage making breathing difficult,
nasal congestion due to increased nasal mucus.
What Causes Rhinitis?
In the case of nonallergic rhinitis, causative agents include feline herpesvirus, feline calicivirus, bacterial infections, fungal infections, and in rare cases cancer.
How Long Does It Last?
Rhinitis can be acute and chronic. If it is acute, it will last a few weeks. If its chronic, it may last for a number of years.
When Should I Take My Sneezing Cat To The Vet
Herpes in adult, fully immunized cats usually presents as a mild case of sneezing with runny nose and runny eyes. Its no big deal, and in fact, if there is no colored eye discharge or colored nose boogers, and theyre eating and drinking and pooping and peeing, and your sneezing cat is otherwise and acting mostly normal, we dont treat them at all.
On the other hand, if your sneezing cat has a compromised immune system, or is feeling physical or emotional stress, the Herpes outbreak may be more severe. Consider taking your cat to the vet if:
a) Clear eye discharge turns into yellow green eye boogers with squinting and rednessb) Clear nose discharge turns into yellow green nose boogersc) Nasal congestion causes a drop in appetite d) Other symptoms develop that may suggest pneumonia coughing, lethargy, fevere) Other symptoms develop that may suggest sinusitis lethargy, fever, headache cat is scrunched up in a little ball with her head in her paws, not socializingf) Dehydration develops refer to our blog post on how to tell if your cat is dehydrated.
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