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Dr Scott Nimmo
Dr Scott Nimmo, Small Animal Veterinarian.
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 19653
Experience:  BVMS, MRCVS. { Glasgow UK }
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my cat has been hitting/swatting at his mouth intermittantly

Resolved Question:

my cat has been hitting/swatting at his mouth intermittantly for a couple days. I open it and look inside and I can't see anything. I do have a rabbit and she eats hay and I thought maybe he had a piece of hay stuck in his throat, any ideas...or how long she I wait to see if it passes before bringing him in?
Submitted: 8 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr Scott Nimmo replied 8 years ago.
Thanks for the question.

While I cannot diagnose this over the internet I have seen just this type of thing in the past on a number of occasions at my clinic. The possibilities would be :

1. It could be some type of tooth problem.

2. It could be ulcers in your cat's mouth or tongue

3. It could be a foreign object like a needle or a spicule of bone lodged somewhere in your cat's mouth.

Very often it is difficult to find the above problems when you look in a cat's mouth and sometimes I have had to give the cat an anaesthetic and use a high intensity light source to see what is going on.

4. It could be some problem related to your cats jaw area or the articulation of the jaw, this would include trauma and infections following bites from other cats.

5. Finally I have seen cats with hay grass lodged at the back of the throat or in the nose, as you say you will not see this by looking in the mouth but the cardinal sign of this incident would be coughing or sneezing.

I am so sorry I cannot offer any home remedy here as I often like to do, I guess all you can do is wait a couple of days and if it does not resolve on its own have your vet take a look.

If I have not answered your question fully enough or if you would like to ask more I will be on line for the next hour or so and I will be pleased to discuss your question further.

Scott Nimmo BVMS
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