Why is my FEMALE cat breathing like this?


Question by Rebecca S: Why is my FEMALE cat breathing like this?
Okay. Last night we fed our female cat this food … “Purina Cat Chow – Indoor Formula”. About 24 hours later, she is breathing in out & out pretty hard & deep but pretty repaidly. She thrw up the food a few hours after she ate it. It IS/WAS “hairball control” but she hasn’t had a single one yet. She came from a house that she lived at for about 1-2 years that used a coal/wood-burning stove real hard (almost every day). She has been out of that house for over 2 years & just started breathing like this yesterday. She HAS been breathing a bit odd for the past month but just a DRAMATIC change since last night. WE CANNOT afford a vet in the vicinity (York, PA). We are trying to get help ANYWHERE & NOBODY seems to want to take a “payment plan”. As well, we are VERY limited income. ANY HELP PLEASE !!! We have had this pet longer than all our others & if she dies, my wife will be obliterated !!! And we LOVE our pets!

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Best answer:

Answer by TKS
It may be heartworms, pneumonia, congestive heart failure, asthma, allergic rxn, the options are endless. I would try to borrow from a friend or family member and take her to the vet. Hawk something at a pawnshop, whatever it takes. Just because you go to the vet doesn’t mean you have to follow all their suggestions. Just get an idea of what she may have and what the options are, at least.

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3 comments on “Why is my FEMALE cat breathing like this?

  1. If your cat has been showing some respiratory signs for the past month, then the food probably is not the cause of her signs.

    How old is she? Older cats can have problems with heart disease that can create pulmonary edema = breathing problems. Another cause of breathing problems in cats is pleural effusion (fluid that accumulates around the lungs = can’t inflate adequately). Any cat that is having breathing problems needs to be in an oxygen chamber (provides greater oxygen so her lungs don’t have to work as hard).

    If it’s a heart problem causing pulmonary edema, then she needs diuretics and other meds (lasix, topical nitropaste, etc) to help remove the fluid from her lungs; after that she’ll need evaluation and heart medication to help her heart adequately do it’s job.

    If it’s pleural effusion, then she’ll need thoracocentesis (chest tap) to remove the fluid… since this has been occurring for at least a month (probably brewing for longer than that but was not noticeable to you), there will be some chronic lung changes; there are a few things that cause pleural effusion… the fluid would have to be analyzed to figure out the underlying cause and treat it.

    As for payment plans, call a few emergency clinics (open 24 hours)…. most emergency clinics are aware of the financial hardship of veterinary emergencies and so they offer a payment plan called “Care Credit” for which you can qualify for a type of credit card that will not accrue interest over a certain time period (up to a year)…. you may have to drive a bit of a distance for the clinic that can provide you with the financial help that you need.

  2. If she didn’t have the symptoms prior to eating the food it might be an allergic reaction. If you have a steam vaporizer take her in the bathroom after it gets steamy and keep her there for about 30 minutes. Stay in there with her to avoid stressing the cat and pet her and keep her company. Don’t add Vicks it’s toxic to cats. If you don’t have a vaporizer run the shower instead. See if her breathing becomes more relaxed after the steam treatment. You can keep repeating this every one to two hours. I have attached an article about what to do when you are having trouble affording vet care. Pay special attention to the second link it lists all the vets in a York Pa zip code that you can apply for Care Credit commonly used by many Vets so you can get a payment plan. You can enter you own zip on the website or you may have to drive a little further.

  3. What?

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