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Christian K.
Christian K., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 10146
Experience:  12 year of veterinary experience in feline surgery, medicine and behavior
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My cats heart seems to be beating hard. He is just lying

Resolved Question:

My cat's heart seems to be beating hard. He is just lying where he usually does and I can see his chest/stomach area rise and fall rather fast. He is 13 and it has been hot the past 5 days in our area.
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Christian K. replied 6 years ago.
Chat Conversation Started
Christian K. :

Hello,


This is Dr. Christian. Welcome to JustAnswer. Is he panting or seem like he is straining to breathe? How long has he been this way? Is he an indoor or outdoor cat? Has he been eating and drinking? Does he have any other medical conditions? Has he had any vomiting, diarrhea or weight loss?

Customer:

He is a total indoor cat. I have been gone all day and I only noticed it since I got home this evening. I can just tell the his heart beat is noticable since I can see it rise and fall rapidly. He doesn't seem interested in anything but lying there

Christian K. :

Do you think you could count his heart rate for 10 seconds and multiply that by 6?

Customer:

it looks like around 84 beats.

Customer:

or around 96

Customer:

he is eating now, it's just I never noticed his chest rise and fall to where I notice it. When I place my hand on his chest, they just seem hard. I am not sure if it's his breathing or his heartrate

Christian K. :

Wow. That is high. There are many reasons this could be happening and some have nothing to do with the heart. For instance, anemia will cause a severe high heart rate and so will infections and lung problems as the heart tries to compensate. Of course there are some heart problems that will also cause this such as an overactive thyroid gland, or damage to the heart from blood clots or other heart problems. This sounds extremely serious. I don't think the heat is the problem since he is an indoor cat. There really isn't anything you can do at home, he should see a vet immediately since I'm unable to listen to his heart and lungs to determine where the problem is. I'm worried things could seriously worsen overnight if you try to wait until morning.

Customer:

it seems to be staying around 96 beats. What is normal for a cat?

Christian K. :

Is that 96 for a ten second period or for 60 seconds?

Customer:

96 for 1 min..16 beats in the 10 seconds

Christian K. :

Whew, I'm sorry. I was multiplying the 96 times 6 on my end and just realized that mistake. 96 is normal for a cat, which makes me think this is a lung or breathing problem. Of course that is just as serious, especially since he is just lying there and acting lethargic. Heart problems are also still possible but things like a fluid buildup in or around the lungs can be very common in older cats. I still recommend having him seen.

Customer:

he seems to be normal except the noticable rise and fall of his chest. do you think I can make an appt or should I take him to an emergency vet?

Christian K. :

I was worried since you mentioned that he was lying there and not active but if he acting normal then you can probably wait until morning, especially if he is eating and drinking.

Customer:

ok, thanks for you help. I will make him an appt tomorrow...

Christian K. :

You are welcome. Sorry about the confusion. I hope all goes well. Good luck.

Christian K. and 2 other Cat Specialists are ready to help you