Cat Coughing – Causes, Treatment and More

A cat’s purr is the loveliest voice on Earth for all cat lovers. “If there were to be a worldwide sound symbolising serenity, I would absolutely vote for the purr,” Barbara L Diamond commented.

Similarly, there would be a slew of additional fans of cat sounds. What if this lovely voice is occasionally broken by a coughing sound? Of course, cats, like humans, cough, and hearing those coughing sounds may be both alarming and uncomfortable.

It should be mentioned, however, that while their coughing is not usually a cause for concern, it is sometimes important to provide medical assistance to your cat.


Do you want to learn more about Cat Coughing, its causes, treatments, and other crucial details that you may not be aware of? Then you’ve arrived to the right place! So, grab a pen and paper and start taking notes while reading along!


What Causes A Cat To Cough?

What happens if you inhale smoke and your airways become clogged? When you feel dust particles in your throat, what do you do? Cough, obviously!

Similarly, cats cough as a reflex action to clear irritants such as dust, mucus, and other foreign objects from their airways. It is a vital procedure for removing foreign particles from the airways and facilitating breathing.

True, coughing is a reflex activity, but that doesn’t mean it should always be disregarded. Coughing can indicate a variety of issues in your cat’s body, including some dangerous ones!

Causes of Cat Coughing

Coughing is usually caused by inflammation in the respiratory system. However, the causes are not as straightforward as you might believe. Aside from breathing issues, there are a number of other factors that might be linked to the same.

In fact, because cats are unable to explain their concerns through writing or speech, it is much more difficult for owners to identify the fundamental cause. So, here’s a list of causes to assist you choose the best one for your furry friend. Take a peek around.

1. Hairballs

We’re all aware that cats lick their fur to keep it clean. During this procedure, a clump of hair may form in their stomach. ‘Hairball’ is the name given to this ‘ball of hair.’

To get rid of them, cats make a nagging sound, which we all know is quite annoying, and then puke the hairball out. Coughing, in this scenario, could be an indication that you should get up and walk away from your cat!

2. Infections 

In cats, upper respiratory infection is a common viral infection. It has a negative impact on their airways and nose, and is commonly accompanied by a quick onset of coughing in cats.

Check if your cat’s coughing is accompanied by sneezing, running nose, congestion, nasal discharge, decreased appetite, retching, or choking to be sure of the cause.

The presence of these symptoms raises the likelihood of your cat contracting an upper respiratory infection. If that’s the case, get her to the vet right now!

3. Asthma

Yes! Asthma affects cats just like it does humans. Be wary if your cat has been coughing nonstop for a long time. Asthma can have a negative impact on their immune system, causing inflammation in cats.

The inner lining of cats’ airways may expand and generate mucus, making it harder for them to breathe. Their airways are likewise more delicate than ever before. In the worst-case scenario, your sweet Kitty’s life could be jeopardised.

4. Worms in the Heart

These are thread-like worms with symptoms that are quite similar to those of asthma (to the point of maybe fooling you!). Heartworms are transmitted from host to host by mosquito bites, which is just another reason to despise mosquitos.

Vomiting, loss of appetite, weight loss, and other symptoms are prevalent in cats with heartworms.

5. Cancer of the Lungs

Is your cat having trouble breathing in addition to coughing? Is she suddenly losing weight? If that’s the case, be on the lookout right away! It’s almost certainly a symptom that your cat has lung cancer.

When coughing is paired with difficulty breathing, rapid breathing, tiredness, coughing up blood, and sudden weight loss, it raises the possibility of lung cancer in your cat. The only way out is for a veterinarian to administer suitable treatment.

6. Heart Failure with Congestive Heart Failure

The heart’s job is to pump blood around the body. What if the heart doesn’t pump blood as well as it should? Congestive heart failure causes this. This ailment can occur in cats as well, due to thickening of the heart walls, high blood pressure, congenital abnormalities, or thyroid disorders.

The fluid builds up in the lungs as a result of the heart’s failure to effectively circulate blood. This causes the cat to cough a lot, get short of breath, lose weight and appetite quickly, and even die!

When Should You Be Worried?

Take a look.

1. Your Cat Coughing But There Is No Hairball

If your Cat Coughing without a hairball, there could be a significant problem. Coughing is a symptom that something else is causing it, such as feline asthma, respiratory infections, respiratory tract disorders, parasite ailments, and so on.

If your Cat Coughing frequently, say once or twice a week, it could be an indication of asthma! In addition, your cat may squat low to the ground with its neck looking upwards when coughing, attempting to fill in as much air as possible. It can be fatal for your cat if you ignore it.

2. Your Cat Coughing

Have you ever paid attention to how often your Cat Coughing? If your cat is coughing a lot and has been for several days, you should take her to the veterinarian. If the problem is getting worse by the day, you must take immediate action.

A small bit of carelessness on the part of the owner could end up costing a lot of money in the long run. Coughing on a regular basis could be a sign of asthma or a respiratory illness.

3. Your Cat Coughing Is Wet

If your cat coughs up phlegm or sputum, a mucousy substance, phlegm or sputum will come out with it. A moist sound can be used to detect such a cough, and it is capable of attracting prompt attention. To make matters worse, this could be a sign of a lower respiratory condition.

4. A Wheezing Noise Interrupts Coughs

Do you hear your cat gasping in between coughs? Alert! It’s possible that it’s due to feline asthma. A wheezing sound is actually caused by your cat’s inability to get adequate oxygen.

This could be related to airway constriction or edoema as a result of inflammation. In this situation, the wheezing arises from the lower airways.

5. Sneezing and Coughing in Your Cat

Coughing is sometimes followed by sneezing, which makes the condition even worse. This horrifying combo could indicate major ailments such as respiratory infections or viral infections.

6. Your Cat Starts to Shed Pounds

Is your cat suddenly losing weight? Is it possible that she has lost her appetite for no apparent reason?

Aside from coughing, if your cat’s appetite has diminished and she has lost a significant amount of weight in a short period of time, you should be concerned. These are signs of parasites or infection, and they should not be ignored.

7. Your Cat Is Suffering From Recurrent Cough

If your cat’s cough persists, you should seek medical help from a veterinarian. Only a veterinarian can determine what is causing the cough to come back again and again. Most of the time, it’s due to allergies or feline asthma, which might afflict your cat for the rest of his life if not treated appropriately.

Cat Coughing: What to Do

Cat coughing can be treated in a variety of ways depending on the situation. If your cat was coughing due to a hairball, it may have stopped as soon as she puked it out. In other cases, however, veterinary therapy is required.

Owners are sometimes responsible for determining the reason of their cat’s coughing. They end up administering their own remedies and, as a result, jeopardising her health. Always see a veterinarian before attempting to treat your cat yourself.

If you see any unusual behaviour changes in your cat, you should contact a veterinarian right once. Don’t try to start treating your cat before getting a diagnosis because treatment without a diagnosis could make your beloved feline’s health worse.

Asthma and Respiratory Infections in Cats

You must be asking why feline asthma and respiratory infections appear to be the most incurable of all ailments. Fortunately, both of these disorders can be treated.

There are two types of prescription drugs for Feline asthma: corticosteroids for inflammation and bronchodilators for widening airways. These treatments can also be breathed, administered orally, or even injected to help you relax more; nevertheless, inhaled medication is the most popular.

They must have a substantial risk of side effects, right? Not at all. Inhaled steroids, unlike systemic steroids, are not digested by the body and target the lungs directly, lowering the risk of side effects. Furthermore, for inhaled drugs, an inhaler with an aerosol chamber is the most effective option.

Is it possible to take antihistamines to treat asthma and bronchitis? There isn’t any proof of this.

Preparation for a Veterinarian Visit

Prepare to answer a barrage of questions! If your cat is sneezing and coughing, having trouble breathing, losing a lot of weight abruptly, or losing her appetite, tell your vet right away. Don’t make the mistake of assuming that any detail is irrelevant; leave it to the vet.

If you’re still not sure, make a video of your Cat Coughing at home and show it to the veterinarian. All of the information is required for the veterinarian to appropriately diagnose your cat.

You should have answers to inquiries such as “is the cough wet or dry?” “how frequently does coughing occur?” “does your cat go outside?” and so on. Finally, don’t keep quiet about what you’ve discovered, and don’t try to fix the symptoms on your own.


Cat Coughing isn’t a significant problem, and it’s really quite common. However, it can be really serious at times, and it has the potential to kill your cat!

Always seek the counsel of a veterinarian before attempting to treat your cat on your own. Your Kitty’s life could be jeopardised if you take one wrong step. As a result, even if your cat isn’t coughing frequently, you should visit the veterinarian.

Small behavioural changes, such as a decrease in your cat’s appetite, physical activity, etc., as well as an increase in dyspnea, coughing, and other symptoms, should not be overlooked.

Please make a list of them and provide them to the veterinarian. Last but not least, to have a healthy and happy kitty, be a vigilant and concerned owner!