Respiratory Distress

Respiratory distress occurs when foreign objects in the mouth, throat, nose, or bronchi obstruct the cats breathing. A collapsed lung, wounds to the chest or diaphragm may also be the cause.

Signs that your cat may be in respiratory distress are as follows: gasping; pale or blue mucous membranes (check your cats gums); shallow breathing; open-mouthed breathing; short and rapid breaths; labored breathing; unconsciousness.

If your cats respiratory distress is caused by her choking on a foreign object and you can see it, try to remove it with your fingers or use a pair of blunt-nosed tweezers. If the object is further down her throat, you’ll want to place her down on her side and place the heel of your hand right behind her last rib. You will then need to firmly push at a slightly upward angle three to four times to dislodge the object. It is very important to keep in mind not to be too forceful or you’ll risk breaking her ribs. Immediately take your cat to the vet if you cannot get the obstruction free.

If not caused by choking, the respiratory distress may be caused by an illness or injury which also calls for an emergency trip to the vet.

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  1. A lot of respiratory problems can be caused by poor quality food. The website has lots of information on the quality of cat food.

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