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I have a large part Maine Coon cat who is 12 years old.

Customer Question
I have a large...

I have a large part Maine Coon cat who is 12 years old. We've noticed heavy breathing for months now if not longer but it doesn't seem to last long. I noticed yesterday the heavy breathing was more than usual and doesn't seem to be stopping. He acts normal otherwise, still eats. Today I can't tell if he's purring while breathing or if his breathing is making a noise. I've been reading so many things it's scaring me how it could be bad.

Veterinarian's Assistant: I'll do all I can to help. What is the matter with the Maine?

I entered all of his symptoms above

Veterinarian's Assistant: Where does the Maine seem to hurt?

He's not hurt, he's breathing heavy.

Veterinarian's Assistant: OK. No obvious pain. What is the Maine's name?

My R Mr. Kitty

Veterinarian's Assistant: Is there anything else the Veterinarian should be aware of about Mr.?

He's overweight

Submitted: 1 year ago.Category: Cat
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Answered in 4 minutes by:
1/10/2017
Cat Vet: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 1 year ago
Dr. Michael Salkin
Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 34,303
Experience: University of California at Davis graduate veterinarian with 45 years of experience
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You're speaking to Dr. Michael Salkin. Welcome to JustAnswer. I'm currently typing up my reply. Please be patient. This may take a few minutes.

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Cat Vet: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 1 year ago

I'm sorry to hear of this with your cat. Can clarify "heavy breathing" for me, please? Are you seeing his abdomen contract when he breaths (an "abdominal push")? Is his respiratory rate elevated over 30 breaths/minute while asleep or at rest?

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Customer reply replied 1 year ago
I can see his sides and chest move. He was only purring earlier, no noise now.
Customer reply replied 1 year ago
I'm counting his breathing now.
Cat Vet: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 1 year ago

Thank you. I'll wait to hear what it is.

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Customer reply replied 1 year ago
Counted 38 breaths in a minute
Cat Vet: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 1 year ago

His respiratory rate is elevated and compounded with seeing his abdominal musculature move while breathing, suggests respiratory compromise. I would be more comfortable knowing that his vet carefully auscultates (listens to) and X-rays your cat's thorax (chest). Please continue our conversation if you wish.

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Customer reply replied 1 year ago
Would you recommend an emergency vet visit? I planned on taking him to our regular vet anyway. I know you can't tell for sure, just concerned if I should take him immediately. He's acting normal otherwise.
Cat Vet: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 1 year ago

He doesn't sound like an ER patient but I'd like him attended to by his regular vet at your earliest convenience. Watch his respiratory rate. It's a good indicator of how stressed his breathing can become. Check his gum and tongue color. They should remain nicely pink - not whitish (anemia) or bluish/greyish (cyanosis/lack of oxygen to his tissues).

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Customer reply replied 1 year ago
OK thank you.
Cat Vet: Dr. Michael Salkin, Veterinarian replied 1 year ago

You're welcome. I can't set a follow-up in this venue so please return to our conversation - even after rating - with an update at your convenience. You can bookmark this page for ease of return.

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