Q. Wheezing

Mon, Jul 17, 2023

Everyday for a moment she starts wheezing. It sounds like she has a hairball but nothing ever comes up. But she licks herself quite frequently.
Is this issue normal or not?

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Dr. Brown

Hello! I understand that your 10-year-old female cat is experiencing wheezing symptoms.

One common reason for wheezing is the presence of a hairball in the respiratory tract. Although your cat may sound like she's trying to cough up a hairball, it's concerning that nothing ever comes up. Additionally, frequent self-licking can be an indicator of underlying skin or allergy issues.

However, it's important to note that wheezing can also be a sign of more serious conditions, such as feline asthma or respiratory infections. Feline asthma is a chronic condition that can cause wheezing, coughing, and difficulty breathing. Respiratory infections, such as bronchitis or pneumonia, can also lead to wheezing in cats.

Now, let's focus on what you can do at home to help her. First, it's crucial to ensure a clean and dust-free environment for your feline friend. Regularly vacuuming and dusting can help reduce potential allergens in the air. Additionally, avoid exposing your cat to smoke, strong fragrances, or other respiratory irritants.

You can also try providing her with a humidifier or using steam therapy in a bathroom. These methods can help alleviate respiratory congestion and soothe the airways. Just make sure to keep her at a safe distance from the hot water or steam to avoid any accidents.

Furthermore, grooming her regularly can help prevent excessive hair ingestion, which can contribute to hairball formation. Brushing her fur daily can remove loose hairs and reduce the chances of hairballs causing respiratory issues.

However, considering that your cat's wheezing persists despite these home remedies, it's essential to seek veterinary attention. Wheezing can be a sign of an underlying condition that requires proper diagnosis and treatment. A veterinarian will be able to perform a thorough examination, potentially including X-rays or other diagnostic tests, to determine the cause of the wheezing and provide appropriate treatment.

If you have any additional questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to come back to us! Thank you for reaching out, and I hope she feels better soon.