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Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 16511
Experience:  Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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Our cat, Max, will be 15 years old next month. For

Customer Question

Hello. Our cat, Max, will be 15 years old next month. For the last five months or so, she has been having an issue with her mouth and tongue. She started by "clacking" her mouth, like she had dry mouth. I took her to the vet - all of her blood work was normal. Since then, it's gotten more pronounced, and she drools a little bit when she sleeps. It seems that it's harder for her to drink when the water level starts to get low. She has also stopped grooming, with the exception of her paws and her face. Other than that, she seems fine. She still eats, drinks, poops, pees, plays, purrs, and is very loving. Her tongue just sticks out most of the time. Do you have any idea about what may be going on?
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Hello, my name is***** and I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian. I am very sorry to hear that your girl Max is clacking her mouth like she has dry mouth, drooling excessively when she sleeps, has some trouble drinking, stopped grooming herself, and has her tongue sticking out.
Drooling can be a sign of nausea but it can also be a sign of oral pain due to an infected or broken tooth or a foreign body caught between her teeth, on the roof of her mouth or in the back of her throat. Sometimes it is a sign of an oral tumor.
Since she is an older girl nausea due to organ failure is possible, so I am really glad that you had her bloodwork checked.
It can also be due to a nerve problem that is making it difficult for her to control her tongue or close her mouth properly. If she is eating and drinking without any trouble I believe that is less likely.
I know that you and your veterinarian may have looked in her mouth but sometimes it takes a very close look under sedation to find the problem. If she will let you examine the inside her mouth look closely for swelling, reddened areas or any sign or trauma or a foreign body. Make sure to look under her tongue as well for a mass.
You can try to give her an acid reducer to try and settle her stomach in case this is related to nausea. Either:
1) Pepcid-ac (famotidine) at a dose of one quarter of a 10mg tablet per 5 to 10 pounds of body weight every 12 hours.
OR
2) Prilosec (omeprazole) at a dose of one quarter of a 10mg tablet per 5 to 10 pounds of body weight every 24 hours.
These will reduce stomach acid and should help settle her stomach. These are quite safe and can be used for several days if necessary.
A couple hours after one of the acid reducers is given you can offer small amounts of water or clear broth to lick.
If her symptoms continue ideally she would see her veterinarian for an examination, and possibly sedation to look closely in her mouth and take dental radiographs.
Please let me know if you have any further questions.
Expert:  Dr. Kara replied 2 years ago.
Hi,

I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?

Dr. Kara