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Rebecca, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 14933
Experience:  More than 30 years of companion animal practice.
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My 16-year-old cat's head shakes every once in a while.

Customer Question

My 16-year-old cat's head shakes every once in a while. What's wrong with her? - lost communication after charging my account $5.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.


I am sorry to hear you are worried about Vivianna. I am a veterinarian and will do my best to help.

How long has she been shaking her head? Is she healthy in other ways: eating and drinking; normally active?

Shaking the head can be caused by ear problems, like infections, mites, or something like plant material or a tick in the ear. It can also be a form of a mini or partial seizure. I have seen a bad or infected tooth cause a cat to shake her head.

Let me know what other questions you have.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
She started doing this a few days ago. She has been eating and drinking as usual. I noticed this summer that once in a while she would shake her right rear leg. It's always a quick, jerking shake. It reminds me of how my leg feels when the nerve in my back is pinched. If she is having seizures, what can I do for her and is she in pain?
Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

Is it her leg, or her head she shakes, or both? If it is her leg, it could be a nerve twitch or muscle pain.

It can be hard to determine if these are seizures or not. I usually start by having the owner try to get a video of the head shaking for me to watch. Seizures can be caused by many things: low blood sugar, liver disease, or a brain disorder. Seizures are not painful; people who have seizures say they just black out. If she is shaking her head, I would have her ears examined to see if there is anything in there, and if the ear drum is intact. You cannot see the ear drum without an otoscope, so this needs to be done at a vet office.

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.

How is your cat doing?

Expert:  Rebecca replied 1 year ago.
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?