How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Dr. Barbara Your Own Question
Dr. Barbara
Dr. Barbara, Board Certified Veterinarian
Category: Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 1614
Experience:  Thirty years experience in small animal medicine and surgery.
Type Your Veterinary Question Here...
Dr. Barbara is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

why would my usually loving cat start hissing and growling

Customer Question

why would my usually loving cat start hissing and growling at me? today, he has gone from purring and laying on my chest to hissing and growling, to letting me pet him, back to hissing... what the heck is wrong with him? this is the second day of this behavior
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.
Hi, Hopefully I can help but first I have some questions. Is your cat neutered? Has he been eating, urinating and defecating normally? Does he walk and jump normally? Is he an indoor/outdoor cat? Please let me know ASAP. Dr. Barbara
Dr. Barbara and other Veterinary Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.

obviously u didn't read that i said he's eating fine! he is neutered, he is walking and jumping normally. inside only.

i don't want to pay for this since u've not read my first statement..............

Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.
Hi, You certainly aren't required to pay, but in my defense I did read all that was available to me at the time. . .either I was too quick, or the site delays in getting me all that you have written. I think the second scenario is what I have experienced a couple of times in the past. I am sorry for this. Anyway, I'm glad he seems normal in other ways and since he is indoors this is unlikely secondary to an abscess. Let's look at other behavioral causes. Have you introduced new people or animals into your household? Are there any new animals hanging around your home outside? Does he hiss when you touch a certain area?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
nothing new. no animals, laundry detergent, nothing. i did just notice that his right eye seems to squint every now and then
Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.

Is this behavioral change then very recent? So sorry that I am so full of questions. Any swelling around his eye? Any sneezing or coughing going on? From this new development we do seem to be dealing with some sort of a medical problem, not just a behavioral issue.

Customer: replied 6 years ago.
sneezing...he lets me hold him even tho he is hissing sometimes.. i'm afraid something is wrong medically. he's always been super sweet to me.. this aggression is not him at all..........
Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.
OK. . .it seems he has an upper respiratory infection which is almost always viral in origin and therefore like a cold and just needs time. However, if his eye grows worse or the sneezing produces a cloudy or green discharge or if he feels worse, then he should be placed on an antibiotic. As long as he is eating and drinking OK then you can wait a couple days and see what happens. In the meantime, just be careful, perhaps just leaving him alone for awhile so he can quietly heal. He will feel better and then be his affectionate self.
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
ok thanx. didn't mean to be an ass earlier. just worried and upset. he's the first cat i've ever had because of allergies but i've grown way totally attached to him and he acts the opposite of almost everything people say about cats. he comes to you when you say his name, he likes water, he always sleeps on my chest, etc....i'm sure you've heard all of this before. hope like crap ur right and he is ok within the next few days.....
Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.
Hi, I understand your attachment and therefore your being upset. No problem. He sounds like a wonderful cat. What type is he. . .what color and how long is his hair? Just curious. Watch him closely and if anything else develops write back or seek veterinary care there. Good luck. Oh, what is his name?
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
he is a stray that my sister saved as a kitten. he is charcoal gray, short hair. his name is XXXXX XXXXX my niece named the three strays alvin,simon, and theodore. i grew up w/dogs because of my allergins to cats....he has become my best bud. hate to see him hurt or angry....  can't u answer w/o charging me more money?  this is  b/s!!!!
Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.
Hi, I hope Simon is feeling better by now. I apologize for my delayed response. I live in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada and have been snowed in for 2 days with no power, internet, or phone service. Just got out and I'm sitting in Togo's. I will also write to JustAnswer and ask about your payment situation. Dr. Barbara
Expert:  Dr. Barbara replied 6 years ago.
Hi, Got an answer for us. Because I clicked the "Answer" choice, you got the "Accept" choice. From now on I will click the "Need Info" choice and should not have to be charged again. So how is Simon?