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cat is hacking when she sleeps

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
My cat Misty has been acting kind of weird lately. It sounds like she has been trying to hack up a hairball for the last couple days. It mostly happens when she is resting or sleeping at night. She will constantly wake up and dry heave but nothing ever comes up. During the day she is fine and plays and eats like normal. Right now she is just chilling on my bed grooming herself and watching me. I bought some hairball gel recently and have been giving her that, but it doesn't seem to be helping. I'm going to make her an appointment for the vet first thing Monday morning to see what the problem is. She hasn't really been pooping so I'm worried she is clogged up. Is there any home hairball remedy that I could try that might be better than this one I bought?
post #2 of 8
hi
sorry to hear your cat is having a difficult time!
has Misty had hairballs before? how old is she?

the reason i ask is that sometimes a cat who seems to be trying to hack up a hairball, but never does, could have asthma.

i have two cats with asthma, and i thought that they were trying to cough up hairballs, except they never did, and they never had a hairball, ever.


turns out they both have asthma, one has it pretty bad and needs medication every day, the other one her asthma is milder and she is only treated as needed.

check out this link and see if what they describe sounds anything like what Misty is doing.
i hope it is only a hairball.... and for those, my vet recommends some butter or margerine (if she wont eat it, you can put it on her paw and she will lick it off)
what makes me think that she might have asthma is that you say she wakes up coughing, and this is a very common time for a cat to be having an asthma attack

see this site:
http://www.felineasthma.org/symptoms/index.htm

for more information
and then, if you want to see what a cat looks like during an asthma attack, check out this one:
http://www.fritzthebrave.com/gallery/inhaled.php#Videos


click on the video of Fritz coughing.

when i saw that video, i finally knew what was wrong with my cat!!! that is what he was doing.

i hope for your sake and for Misty's sake that she does not have asthma, but if she does, its best to treat it as soon as you can. untreated asthma can cause respiratory collapse and even sudden death.


not meaning to scare you!! just thought i'd pass this along just in case. i hope she poops soon
and that the coughing stops!!!
post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
Shes only a year and a half old. I have never seen her cough up a hairball before, but she has vomited a little bit of food before. She hasn't vomited anything up lately though even though she keeps having these episodes. I'm concerned now because the symptoms described does sound a lot like whats going on with her. Is asthma in cats hard to treat? She hasn't been foaming at the mouth or anything but does seem to swallow whatever she brings up. I'm just worried because I'm a college student and I don't have a lot of income to have huge vet bills, but I will do what I can for her.
post #4 of 8
geez, i dont know, i've read that asthma is usually diagnosed in cats from age 2 to 8
but that is when they are diagnosed
it doesnt say if they had symptoms before this.

i know what you mean with the vet bills, i am disabled on a very low fixed income and scraping together the money for my guy's asthma stuff is not easy

asthma can be treated with pills, or with inhaled meds. inhaled meds are safer but more expensive
the pills, prednisone, are cheap but can have long term side effects
still most ppl opt for the pills.

you do what you can, you know?

i hope she doesnt have asthma, but maybe a call to the vet just to see if this is something that she needs to be seen right away for....? some vets are good and will tell you things over the phone
others, not so good, when it comes to trying to save some dough.

if she starts to pant or breathe with her mouth open, that IS an emergency, ok?
i know many ppl who never bother to take their cats to the vet even though they have many asthma attacks, they dont seem to realize, or care, how serious it can be.
and others who care very much but didn't know that the cat's cough could be anything other than hairballs.


did she poop yet?
post #5 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by Misty21 View Post
My cat Misty has been acting kind of weird lately. It sounds like she has been trying to hack up a hairball for the last couple days. It mostly happens when she is resting or sleeping at night. She will constantly wake up and dry heave but nothing ever comes up. During the day she is fine and plays and eats like normal. Right now she is just chilling on my bed grooming herself and watching me. I bought some hairball gel recently and have been giving her that, but it doesn't seem to be helping. I'm going to make her an appointment for the vet first thing Monday morning to see what the problem is. She hasn't really been pooping so I'm worried she is clogged up. Is there any home hairball remedy that I could try that might be better than this one I bought?
If she hasn't been wormed lately, you might want to have the vet do that when you take her back. Roundworms will cause coughing like that...especially when they are resting or asleep, when they migrate from the bloodstream into the lungs, where they are then coughed up and swallowed. Just a thought...
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
Yes she did poop. So now I'm kinda really pointing to the possibility of something else like asthma. A lot of my family has asthma so now that I listen to her it does sound a lot like a person would trying to cough up phlem. I was just curious.. do cats use the same medication for asthma as humans? Its midnight now and she keeps coughing so I'm trying to look into some possible emergency vets in the area, but I'm terrified because I know thats going to cost a lot more. I wish there was something I could give her to make her comfortable through the night and wake up and take her somewhere first thing in the morning.
post #7 of 8
Thread Starter 
Well, I took her to the vet, and to my surprise the vet said she was healthy except she was a bit overweight. Does this seem right? I don't see how a cat a bit overweight would be coughing so much like she is. She told me to keep giving her hairball treatment as well as a diet food to help her lose weight.

I'm just not so sure this is the problem, shes constantly coughing and it seems to be getting worse. shes actually been vomiting up her food shortly after she eats because the coughing can get so bad and I guess it irritates her stomach. To me, it doesn't sound like a hairball but rather the asthma like what was suggested.

Is there anything I can give her that can help her with the coughing? I feel so bad and the vet just keeps saying to watch her and wait to see if she gets better, but she looks so miserable when she haves the coughing attack. I don't know what to do!
post #8 of 8
I would take her to a different vet and get another opinion. Reoccurring & consistant coughing in cats isn't normal. I have 2 cats that had reoccurring coughing/gagging spells, and it turns out they both have the dry form of FIP. I think that your furbaby probably has asthma from what you describe, but I'm certainly no expert. I would definitely get another opinion..

I hope it isn't anything serious, and that your baby will be okay!

~KK~
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