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My cat is breathing heavy and won’t eat or drink or walk. We…

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My cat is breathing heavy...
My cat is breathing heavy and won’t eat or drink or walk. We have her wrapped in blankets inside after sleeping in our playhouse last night.
Submitted: 4 months ago.Category: Cat Veterinary
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Answered in 1 minute by:
1/1/2018
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Dr. Kara
Dr. Kara, Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 18,406
Experience: Over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian.
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Hello, I'm Dr. Kara. I have over 20 years of experience as a veterinarian and I'd like to help. Please give me a moment to review your concerns.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
We are giving water with a syringe. She laps it a little then, but doesn’t respond much.
Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 4 months ago

I am sorry to hear that your kitty is breathing heavily, and refusing to eat, drink or walk today.

Sick cats often hide to try to conserve energy, so her sleeping outdoors may have mean she already wasn't feeling well.

A normal cat has a resting respiratory rate of about 10 to 15 breaths per minute, and one breath is considered the in and out motion of her chest. If she has a rate faster then 30 to 40 breaths per minute then she is in trouble.

If you can notice that she is breathing abnormally then I am concerned for her, because cats are masters at hiding an illness until they are too sick to do so.

If she doesn't have a nasal discharge and isn't sneezing then her difficulty breathing is likely related to a problem in her chest or secondary to anemia (decreased numbers of red blood cells).

Problems in her chest leading to an increased respiratory include primary heart disease (including cardiomyopathy and heartworm), lung disease including asthma, bacterial, viral, parasitic (lungworm) or fungal infections, a mass(es) in the chest including lymphoma, heart based tumors or carcinomas, or fluid around the lungs (pleural effusion) due to a mass, bleeding, chylothorax or an infection.

Anemia can be secondary to poor red blood cell production, either due to kidney disease as the kidneys make a hormone to stimulate production or primary bone marrow disease, or anemia can be due to bleeding or destruction of red cells due to a tumor, blood parasite or autoimmune disease (body attacks its own red blood cells and destroys them).

If your girl's tongue and gum color are a nice bubblegum pink them she is in better shape then if her gum and tongue color is blue or gray, these would signify she is real trouble and this is a true emergency.

The conditions I listed above are serious and I would highly recommend that your girl see a veterinarian promptly to have an examination and further testing done based upon her examination. She likely needs radiographs of her chest to evaluate her heart and lungs to start and then further diagnostics based upon those findings. That may include testing for heartworm and lungworms, aspirating fluid for examination if there is fluid present around her lungs, or blood titers for fungal infections.

In the meantime keep her quiet so she can breathe as easily as possible.

Offer her soft, warmed, strong smelling foods she can easily lap up. Cats are stimulated to eat by strong odors and warming foods increases their smell.

Please let me know if you have any further questions.

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Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 4 months ago
Hi,
I'm just following up on our conversation about your pet. How is everything going?
Dr. Kara
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Cat Veterinarian: Dr. Kara, Veterinarian replied 4 months ago

Hello, I wanted to make sure that you didn't have any further questions for me, and I'd like to know how things turned out for your kitty. If you could give me an update that would be great, thank you, ***** *****

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