Did you know that Cats can suffer from allergies and asthma? Funny we usually think how they can cause these reactions not suffer from them.
Common symptoms in asthmatic cats are wheezing and coughing. It’s often misdiagnosed as having hairballs and sound like a dry hacking cough often confused with gagging or throwing up. As in humans, episodes can be related to allergens in the area. Some allergens are grass, tree pollen, cigarette smoke, fireplace smoke, hair sprays, deodorants, flea spray, and dust from cat litter.
Diagnosis and Treatment of Asthma
Diagnosis isn’t always easy, as other diseases need to be ruled out. X-rays need to be taken to rule out pneumonia, cancer and bronchitis. Another test called broncho-alveolar lavage or BAL can help pinpoint the cause of infection or inflammation. This test is performed under anesthesia, a scope is inserted into the lungs, injecting saline and removing it for diagnosis.
Upon diagnosis, treatment is similar to human’s. Most are prescribed an inhaler with a spacer which delivers medication to relieve airway inflammation. Oral medication may also be prescribed.
Preventative measures can also help alleviate symptoms. Reducing irritants that may be causing issues like aerosols, second hand smoke, and changing from a clay-based litter to a silica based. Using an air purifier in your home can also help remove toxins in the air and help the entire family breathe easier.