It was a normal day for my cat Gremlin. She was lounging around the house, sleeping in the sun and chasing her tail. But then, something strange happened. She started to sneeze uncontrollably. She sneezed so much that she began to feel lightheaded and dizzy.
Despite feeling sick, Gremlin refused to stay inside. She continued to lounge in the sun and chase her tail, even though she was constantly sneezing. And sure enough, before long, her energy faded and she had to go back inside.
Here in this blog post, I’ll be exploring what could be causing my cat’s sneezing. Is it something serious, like a respiratory infection? Or is it just a harmless allergic reaction to something in the house? I’ll look at some common causes of sneezing and examine how to help Gremlin feel better.
Lets Find Out Why My Cats Sneeze
There are many reasons why cats sneeze, but the most common one is because they have a cold. When a cat has a cold, their nose gets congested and their eyes get watery. This makes it difficult for them to breathe, so they sneeze to try to clear out their nose and mouth.
Cats can also sneeze when they have allergies. If a cat is allergic to something, their immune system will react by releasing histamines into their blood stream.
These histamines will cause the tissues in the cat’s nose to swell up, which will make it difficult for them to breathe. This will cause the cat to sneeze as a way of trying to clear out their nose.
Some cats also sneeze when they are stressed or excited. This is known as a “stressed sneeze.” When a cat is stressed or excited, their body releases adrenaline into their blood stream.
This adrenaline will cause the tissues in the cat’s nose to swell up, which will make it difficult for them to breathe. This will cause the cat to sneeze as a way of trying to clear out their nose.
Why Does My Cat Keep Sneezing But Seems Fine?
As I said earlier, there are many different reasons why cats might sneeze. If your cat is sneezing but seems fine otherwise, it’s probably nothing to worry about.
Here I’ll list some of the most common causes of sneezing in cats, and explain how you can help your cat feel better.
1. They Have a Viral Infection
If your cat has been sneezing more than usual, there’s a good chance they have a viral infection. While uncomfortable, viral infections are generally not serious and most cats will recover without any treatment. In most cases, the best thing you can do is keep your cat comfortable and wait for the infection to run its course.
Viral infections are caused by viruses, which are tiny organisms that invade and attack cells in the body. There are many different types of viruses, and each can cause a different type of infection. Viral infections can affect any part of the body, including the respiratory system, digestive system, or urinary system.
Here I’ll try to introduce few common viral infections that can cause sneezing in cats:
a. Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV)
This is the most common viral infection that can cause sneezing in cats. RSV infects the respiratory system, causing inflammation and mucus build-up in a cat’s nose and throat.
Unfortunately, there is no specific treatment for RSV infection. Most cases will resolve on their own as the immune system fights off the virus.
However, if your cat’s symptoms are severe, you may want to visit your vet who can prescribe anti-inflammatory medications or antibiotics.
b. Feline Calicivirus
This is another type of viral infection that can cause sneezing in cats. This virus infects the respiratory system, causing inflammation and mucus build-up in a cat’s nose and throat.
Symptoms of calicivirus infection can include sneezing, runny nose, fever, and oral ulcers. If your cat is showing these symptoms, then you will want to visit your vet for treatment.
Most cases of calicivirus are treated with antibiotics and anti-inflammatory medications to help relieve symptoms and boost the immune system.
c. Feline Herpesvirus
Feline herpesvirus (FHV-1) is a highly contagious virus that can cause serious respiratory illness in cats. The virus is spread through contact with respiratory secretions, such as saliva, mucus, or blood, from an infected cat. FHV-1 can also be spread indirectly through contact with objects or surfaces that have been contaminated with the virus.
FHV-1 is the most common cause of upper respiratory infections in cats. Symptoms of a FHV-1 infection can include sneezing, coughing, discharge from the eyes and nose, and fever. In severe cases, the virus can cause pneumonia, which can be fatal.
There is no specific treatment for FHV-1 infections. Treatment focuses on relieving symptoms and supporting the cat’s immune system. Most cats will recover from a FHV-1 infection, but some may experience ongoing respiratory problems.
Prevention of FHV-1 infections is important and can be achieved through good hygiene practices and by vaccinating cats against the virus.
2. They Have Allergies
Like humans, cats can also have allergies that trigger sneezing. If your cat has seasonal or environmental allergies, they may start to sneeze more frequently during certain times of the year.
Allergies in cats can be caused by many different things, including pollen, mold spores, dust mites, and even certain foods. The best way to treat allergies in cats is by identifying the specific allergen and minimizing or eliminating exposure to it.
There are many different types of treatments for allergies in cats, including antihistamines, allergy shots, and other medications. Some people also find that using a HEPA air purifier or cleaning the house regularly can help reduce allergy symptoms in cats.
3. Fungal Infections
Fungal infections, such as ringworm or candidiasis, can also cause sneezing in cats. These types of infections are caused by fungal organisms that invade the tissue and cause irritation to the respiratory system.
Symptoms of a fungal infection in cats may include sneezing, runny nose, nasal discharge, and nasal congestion. If you suspect that your cat may have a fungal infection, it is important to visit your vet for testing and treatment.
Treatment for fungal infections in cats typically involves the use of antifungal medications as well as topical ointments or shampoos. Your vet will also likely recommend cleaning the environment in which your cat lives to help reduce the risk of reinfection.
Reducing your cat’s exposure to environmental allergens and fungal infections can also go a long way toward preventing these conditions from developing in the first place. Regular grooming is also key, as it helps to remove allergens that may have accumulated in the fur.
4. Foreign Bodies in the Nose or Throat
Another possible cause of sneezing in cats is a foreign body lodged in their nose or throat. This typically occurs when they try to eat objects that they find around the house, such as pieces of string or hair ties.
If you suspect that your cat may have a foreign body in their nose or throat, you should take them to the vet as soon as possible. The vet will likely use medical instruments to look inside your cat’s mouth and throat to try and locate the object.
If the foreign body is found, it may be removed with forceps or tweezers depending on its location. Your vet may also prescribe antibiotics or other medications to help clear up any infection caused by the object.
To prevent foreign bodies in cats, it is important to keep items like strings and hair ties out of their reach. You should also make sure that your cat gets regular veterinary checkups, as this will allow your vet to monitor your cat’s health and check for any signs of objects in their mouth or throat.
5. Respiratory Tract Infections
Respiratory tract infections, such as upper respiratory infections (URI) and pneumonia, are also a common cause of sneezing in cats. These types of infections can be caused by bacteria, viruses, or other pathogens.
Symptoms of respiratory tract infections in cats may include sneezing, nasal discharge, difficulty breathing, lethargy, and a fever. If you notice any of these symptoms in your cat, it is important to visit the vet as soon as possible for testing and treatment.
Treatment for respiratory tract infections in cats typically involves the use of medications such as antibiotics and antivirals. In some cases, your vet may also recommend supportive treatment such as oxygen therapy or fluid therapy to help manage symptoms and support your cat’s overall health.
To help prevent respiratory tract infections in cats, it is important to make sure that they are up-to-date on their vaccinations and to keep their environment clean. This includes regularly washing their food and water bowls, vacuuming the house, and keeping litter boxes sanitary. You should also make sure that your cat gets plenty of rest, as this will help them stay healthy and fight off infections more easily.
6. They Have Nasal Cavity Cancer
Cancer of the nasal cavity can also cause sneezing in cats. This type of cancer is caused by abnormal cell growth in the tissues and organs that make up the nose.
Symptoms of nasal cavity cancer in cats may include sneezing, a runny nose, nasal congestion, difficulty breathing, and an infection or abscess in the nose. If you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to take your cat to the vet as soon as possible for testing and treatment.
Treatment for nasal cavity cancer in cats depends on the specific type of cancer present, but may include surgery, radiation therapy, or chemotherapy. Your vet will likely also recommend supportive care measures, such as antibiotics or pain medications, to help manage any symptoms and promote your cat’s overall health.
To reduce the risk of nasal cavity cancer in cats, it is important to make sure that they are not exposed to known carcinogens, such as cigarette smoke. You should also pay attention to any changes in your cat’s behavior or physical appearance that could indicate the presence of a medical condition.
This includes sneezing, nasal discharge, and difficulty breathing, among other symptoms. If you notice any of these symptoms, it is important to visit your vet as soon as possible for testing and treatment.
7. They Have Feline Allergic Rhinitis
Feline allergic rhinitis is a condition that occurs when your cat’s immune system overreacts to an allergen. This can cause sneezing, nasal discharge, difficulty breathing, and other respiratory symptoms.
If your cat has feline allergic rhinitis, your vet may prescribe antihistamines or corticosteroids to help relieve their symptoms. They may also recommend supportive care, such as steam inhalation or saline nasal sprays, to help manage your cat’s condition.
To reduce the risk of feline allergic rhinitis in cats, it is important to keep them indoors and away from potential allergens. This includes things like dust mites, pet dander, cigarette smoke, mold, and pollen. You should also keep your cat’s environment clean by regularly dusting and vacuuming.
8. They Have An Infection In Their Sinuses
Another possible cause of sneezing in cats is an infection in their sinuses. This can occur when bacteria or other pathogens invade the tissue and mucus membranes that make up the sinuses, causing inflammation and irritation.
Symptoms of sinus infection in cats may include sneezing, nasal discharge or congestion, fever, difficulty breathing, and lethargy. If you notice any of these symptoms in your cat, it is important to visit the vet as soon as possible for testing and treatment.
Treatment for sinus infection in cats will depend on the specific type of infection present, as well as your cat’s medical history and overall health. This may include antibiotics or other medications to help clear up the infection, as well as supportive care measures like warm compresses or saline nasal sprays.
9. They Have An Undiagnosed Medical Condition
In some cases, sneezing in cats may be a sign of an underlying medical condition that has not yet been diagnosed. This could be due to a variety of factors, such as difficulty accessing care or financial barriers to treatment.
If you are concerned about your cat’s sneezing, it is important to visit your vet as soon as possible for testing and treatment. This may include blood tests, imaging studies, or other diagnostics to help identify the cause of their symptoms.
To reduce the risk of an undiagnosed medical condition in cats, it is important to stay up-to-date on veterinary care and schedule regular check-ups with your vet. You should also be aware of any changes in your cat’s physical appearance or behavior that could indicate the presence of a medical problem. This can include changes in appetite, urination patterns, sleep habits, or overall energy level.
10. They Have Feline Bronchitis
Feline bronchitis is a condition that occurs when your cat’s lungs become inflamed and irritated due to exposure to irritants, such as smoke or pollutants. This can cause symptoms like coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and sneezing.
If you suspect that your cat has feline bronchitis, your vet may recommend supportive care measures like warm compresses or steam inhalation to help reduce inflammation and irritation. They may also prescribe medications like bronchodilators or corticosteroids to help manage your cat’s condition.
To reduce the risk of feline bronchitis, it is important to minimize your cat’s exposure to irritants and toxins in their environment. This includes things like cigarette smoke, car exhaust, or cleaning products. You should also make sure that your cat’s environment is thoroughly cleaned and free from any potential allergens or irritants.
11. They Have Feline Asthma
Feline asthma is a respiratory condition that occurs when the passageways in your cat’s lungs become inflamed and irritated. This can cause symptoms like coughing, wheezing, difficulty breathing, and sneezing in cats.
If you suspect that your cat has feline asthma, your vet may recommend supportive care measures like warm compresses or steam inhalation to help thin mucus and reduce inflammation. They may also prescribe medications like bronchodilators or corticosteroids to help manage your cat’s condition.
To reduce the risk of feline asthma, it is important to minimize your cat’s exposure to allergens, irritants, and other environmental triggers that can cause inflammation in their lungs. This includes things like cigarette smoke, car exhaust, or cleaning products. You should also keep your cat indoors as much as possible, especially in high-smoke areas or during times of poor air quality.
When Should You Take Your Cat to The Vet?
As I mentioned before, there are many possible causes of sneezing in cats, so it is difficult to provide a one-size-fits-all answer. However, some general guidelines may help you determine when it is time to visit the vet.
If the sneezing is due to one of the medical conditions I have mentioned above, then other symptoms will become evident over time. Therefore, if the persistent sneezing lasts longer than five days or is extremely violent, it’s time to take a trip to the vet. If you notice your pet sneezing in combination with any of the following symptoms, this is also an indication that veterinarian assistance may be required:
Overall, if you notice that your cat is sneezing frequently and persistently, it is important to seek immediate veterinary attention. This will help ensure a proper diagnosis and allow your vet to offer appropriate treatment measures for any underlying medical conditions your pet may be experiencing. And with proper care and management, most cats can recover from sneezing and other associated symptoms without any long-term health issues.
How Can You Stop Your Cat’s Sneezing?
There is no one-size-fits-all solution for stopping your cat’s sneezing, as this will depend on the underlying cause. However, there are some general steps you can take to reduce or eliminate your cat’s sneezing altogether.
1. Purchase a Humidifier
When your cat starts sneezing, they could be trying to tell you something. In many cases, cats will start sneezing when the air around them is too dry. You can help alleviate this problem by purchasing a humidifier.
A humidifier will add moisture to the air, which will help keep your cat’s nasal passages healthy and free from irritation. In addition, a humidifier can also help to relieve other symptoms of dry air, such as chapped lips, dry skin, and even headaches.
If you’re not sure which humidifier is right for you and your cat, there are a few things to consider. The size of the room you want to humidify is important, as is the type of humidifier. There are both warm mist and cool mist humidifiers available on the market.
Warm mist humidifiers are best for small rooms, as they can quickly become hot. Cool mist humidifiers are better for larger rooms and work by releasing a fine mist into the air.
Whichever type of humidifier you choose, make sure to read the instructions carefully to ensure that it is safe for use around pets.
2. Remove Allergens and Irritants
In addition to using a humidifier, it is also important to try to reduce your cat’s exposure to allergens, irritants, and other environmental triggers. This may mean getting rid of chemicals and cleaning products in your home, or installing an air purifier for cigarette smoke.
You can also provide your cat with a comfortable and safe space to rest, such as an elevated bed or scratching post. Some cats will also benefit from the addition of omega-3 fatty acids to their diet.
3. Change Your Cat Litter
Cat litter can also be a source of irritation for your cat, especially if they are allergic or sensitive to the chemicals used in some types of litter.
To help reduce sneezing and other allergy symptoms, consider switching to an all-natural variety of cat litter.
This will eliminate many of the harsh chemicals and fragrances that could be triggering your cat’s sneezing, while still providing them with a comfortable environment to rest and play.
4. Purchase an Air Filter
Adding an air filter to your home can also help reduce the environmental triggers that cause your cat to sneeze. This will help prevent exposure to pollen, dust, and other airborne irritants, which may be contributing to their sneezing.
When choosing an air filter, look for one with a HEPA filter or activated carbon filter. Both of these types of filters are designed to remove particulate matter from the air and can help keep your cat’s nasal passages clear and healthy. And with regular use, an air filter can also prevent sneezing in cats over time.
As you work to address your cat’s sneezing, remember to be patient and persistent. With the right care and management, you can help your cat recover from their sneezing and other associated symptoms.
Closing My Thoughts
At the end of this article, I hope that you are equipped with some practical tips for stopping your cat’s sneezing. Whether you decide to purchase a humidifier, remove allergens and irritants from your home, or invest in an air filter, there are many things you can do to keep your cat comfortable and free from irritation.
Remember to be patient as you work towards managing your cat’s sneezing and other symptoms, as this can sometimes take time. By implementing these tips and working closely with your vet, you can help your cat feel better and recover from their sneezing in no time!