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Mariah's avatar

Does this sound like an emergency? Should I try and get my cat to a vet tonight?

Asked by Mariah (25863points) June 19th, 2012

My beloved cat seems unwell. Her purr sounds strange and raspy and she’s been coughing like she’s trying to get a hairball up (nothing has come up). We’ve also noticed her appetite has been a bit down lately, but she has eaten tonight. We can’t decide if it’s okay to wait till morning or if we should try and take her to a vet tonight. Any ideas?

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13 Answers

yankeetooter's avatar

I would not be the one to make a decision for you on whether to take your pet to the vet, but…you may want to try this. If you have any Vaseline, put a little bit on the tip of her nose. She will instinctively lick it off, and if it is just a bad hairball, the Vaseline will help to condense it and bring it up.

Best wishes…I hope your cat is okay.

Nullo's avatar

If it’s not interfering with her breathing, I would wait until morning. But then, I haven’t ever been responsible for the health of a cat.

Trillian's avatar

Mayonnaise will work as well as vaseline and it contains no petroleum.

tinyfaery's avatar

Try some Petromalt or a bit of olive oil. Your cat might have a hair ball. If she does, you can probably wait until morning. If it seems more like something is stuck in her throat you might want to consider taking her in. She could get a perforation and that’s dangerous.

I’ve never had a cat that was harmed by a hairball. It takes them a few days, sometimes, to expel the hairball. Try the Petromalt when she has an empty stomach.

Mariah's avatar

Thanks so far, all. I have no idea if this is actually a hairball or something else, I just know she’s coughing like she does when she has a hairball.

ZEPHYRA's avatar

Let us know how she’s doing! A speedy recovery to kitty!

wildpotato's avatar

If she’s still coughing after the Petromalt/Vaseline thing, I’ll echo tiny and worry that she might have gotten something caught. My fiance’s dad once had to remove a sewing needle from their cat’s throat, and that horror story would probably have me knocking down the vet’s door in the middle of the night if I were in your situation. I hope it’s just a hairball and that your kitty is ok!

Mariah's avatar

Thanks all. We let her stay upstairs for the night (usually we put them in the basement) and she hopped into bed with me around 2 in the morning, but she was purring and fine. Mom has taken her to the vet, wish I could have gone with, but we’re expecting a roofing guy today so someone has to be home. Her brother is mewing mournfully because he can’t figure out why she’s gone. We usually take them to the vet together, so they’re NEVER apart. It’s a little heartbreaking.

Hopefully Mom will be home soon with a good verdict.

Mariah's avatar

Just got home, nothing definitive. Vet did an examination and things mostly seemed fine outwardly, she has lost a pound since February though. No signs of hairballs. Unfortunately the vet didn’t get to hear her weird purr because of course she wasn’t purring at the vet’s. She got some IV fluids and a shot of an antibiotic just in case, and got some bloodwork done that we’ll hear about tomorrow. She’s 13 years old, so the vet is a bit concerned it could be cancer or something age related. I so hope my dear cat is alright.

Mariah's avatar

Kitty’s bloodwork was fine. Vet thinks she might have a little bug and asked us to bring her back in for a shot of steroids, so hopefully we’ll see some improvement over the next couple of days.

SuzM122's avatar

Maybe it’s allergies? Some cats develop them later in life. Make sure you are feeding her something holistic like natural balance. They have some amazing wet and dry cat foods with superfoods and ingredients that really boost the immune system.

Mariah's avatar

Think we’ve solved this one, actually. Kitty is doing much better, though still a little wheezy.

Mom bought some odor removing powder by Arm and Hammer to sprinkle on the carpet since our house is on the market. It was soon after that kitty started coughing. We didn’t connect the dots until the other day. Mom was vacuuming, and there must have been some of that powder in the sweeper bag because the whole house started smelling like it again. It has a very perfumey smell. Kitty started coughing again after having been quite well recently. So we think probably there’s an allergy or just a sensitivity there, and needless to say we’ve gotten rid of that sweeper bag and won’t be using that powder anymore.

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