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Dr. Drew
Dr. Drew, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16846
Experience:  Small Animal Medicine and Surgery
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My cat is breathing very hard. Had Friskees treats. Worried

Customer Question

My cat is breathing very hard. Had Friskees treats. Worried about the treats, or is he just getting old?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
Hi, thanks for your question. I'm a licensed veterinarian and I'll be happy to help.
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
Hard breathing, in an elderly cat, would make me concerned about problems with the heart or lungs. I would not expect that "old age" would be a cause of hard breathing, nor would I expect that treats would be the cause of this.I would strongly suggest a veterinary examination and chest x-rays, to determine if there's fluid buildup in the chest, or other issues that might cause hard breathing.
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
If veterinary care is not available, it would be wise to minimize Rudy's stress level whenever possible, to prevent an increase in heart rate or breathing rate any further than it already may be increased.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Thanks--so there is no probability that the "treats" had toxic stuff in them. And, he is extremely agitated when trying to move him in a car, or put him in a carrier. What about that?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
I meant, is there no possibility that the treats had toxins causing the problem?
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
It would be very unlikely that contaminated treats would cause this issue. I'd expect vomiting or diarrhea, rather than hard breathing.
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
Agitation when moving, could be because he's focused on getting enough air, and movement is reducing his ability to do so.
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
It could also mean that he's in pain, as sometimes rapid breathing is a sign of pain in cats, and moving him might be making him more painful.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
So, how do I get him to the vet? Seems like that would be the most traumatic of all!
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
I believe that it is worth the risk, since if there's breathing troubles, he may die without veterinary intervention.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Okay--just that he has freaked out going in cars, hyperventilated over just a car ride. Worrisome. His nose and ears were hot, now they're back to normal. Is there infections or "colds" or anything that make cats sick?
Expert:  Dr. Drew replied 2 years ago.
Sure, there are viral, bacterial, and other types of infections that cats can get... but in an elderly cat I worry about the more serious possibilities.

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