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Ask Dr. Michael Salkin Your Own Question
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 23811
Experience:  University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 44 years of experience.
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Cat loosing weight, seems to have respiratory problems,

Customer Question

Cat loosing weight , seems to have respiratory problems, cough, discharges thru nose
Submitted: 3 months ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Michael Salkin replied 3 months ago.

Fran, there are quite a few infectious respiratory agents in cats but the most common of them that causes a cough is the feline herpesvirus (FHV-1) and, less commonly, the bacterium Bordetella bronchiseptica. FHV-1 is more likely to cause chronic symptoms. Bordetella usually is self-limiting within 1-3 weeks. Unfortunately, a virus such as FHV-1 doesn't respond to antibiotics; it does respond to an antiviral drug such as famciclovir.

I'm concerned that George is losing weight which isn't consistent with most respiratory infections unless they're quite severe. I would encourage your having George attended to by his vet who should consider X-raying George's chest to see if infection is also involving George's lungfields. A broad spectrum antibiotic such as doxycycline should be considered because it's the antibiotic of choice for many of the bacterial respiratory infections in cats - those caused by Bordetella, Chlamydophila, and Mycoplasma, e.g.

Please respond with further questions or concerns if you wish.