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Kitten sneezing/snotty/

Posted: Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:59 pm
by BillytheKit
Hello all,

We found a little male black kitten in our back garden, no mum in sight, took him to the vet who guessed he was about 5 weeks old. We decided to name him Billy. After a check over the vet thought he might have cat flu as he was breathing noisily, sneezing and bringing up phlegm, and therefore prescribed anti-biotics and a powder to mix in with Billy’s food to help with the secretions.

Course finished, Billy has since continued to be sneezing/wheezy and has had another vet visit (last week), had the first of his vaccines and the vet has put his condition down to allergies.

The bottom line is I don’t know whether I should be concerned or not? He’s a very loving and hyperactive little boy but the wheezing and sneezing is still going on (3 weeks later) and I just don’t want to think of him as suffering! Has anybody been through a similar situation and can provide some advice?

Thank you :-)

Re: Kitten sneezing/snotty/

Posted: Mon Aug 05, 2019 8:10 am
by Ruth B
If he is loving and active I don't think you need worry too much about him suffering.

My cat is at the other end of the age spectrum and is in her late teens, a year ago we noticed she was very snuffly and seemed to be labouring to breath. After several trips to the vets, nasal swabs to identify the infection, a couple of antibiotic injections, and a month long course of antibiotic tablets, and Bisolven powder to help break down the mucas, she still has the problem on and off for anything from a couple of days to a couple of weeks at at time. When she is bad she does a good Darth Vader impression with her breathing and we end up with kitty snot over the bed where she likes to sleep. I think it bothers me far more than her. Keeping a couple of old bedspreads to cover the bed and are easily washed is a small price to pay. She is now just on the Bisolven powder when I can get her to take it in food, as the antibiotics never seemed to clear it up for long we have given up with them, the tablet course particularly was just too stressful.

There are two main problems that you might also find you have to deal with, when she is bad her nose and face become encrusted and i have to try and wipe it clean with damp cottonwool, not the most pleasant of jobs for either of us, but it does seem to help her afterwards. The second issue is more concerning in the long run, when she is all bunged up she can't smell the food, if she can't smell it she won't eat it. I do monitor her weight and if she is eating and then pestering for food she does get extra, when she isn't eating we cut down (we have two other cats as well) the amount offered to avoid wastage.

Tiggy's age is against a recovery and we have accepted we are just treating the symptoms with her as long as her weight doesn't drop and she is still active we are happy to keep her going as long as we can, your lad's age is in his favour, if he is active and growing then there is a good chance that he will grow out of the wheezing and sneezing in time. It could also be that there is some damage to the respiratory tract caused by the illness that will take a few months to clear. As long as he seems happy, active and is eating well I don't think i would worry too much just yet, if it continues as he gets older or seems to give him problems doing what he wants to do then discuss it with the vets, there might be other options that would be worth trying..

Re: Kitten sneezing/snotty/

Posted: Mon Aug 05, 2019 1:16 pm
by BillytheKit
Thank you very much, your reply has been exceptionally helpful! Billy sounds a lot like Tiggy, I will continue to monitor and if any more concerns arise, will take him to see the vet again. It doesn’t seem to bother him, so perhaps I’m just being overly cautious.

Thanks again!

Re: Kitten sneezing/snotty/

Posted: Mon Aug 05, 2019 3:37 pm
by Mollycat
I didn't reply earlier because mine is also an elderly puss, but maybe this might be helpful too. I adopted Boo at the age of 8, a retired stud who had lived as far as I'm aare in an outdoor pen all his life. So when he started sneezing, snuffling, snoring and having runny eyes as soon as he came home, I took him to the vet who said his upper and lower respiratory tract was all clear, short of taking x-rays we had no way of knowing more, and that she was happy for me to monitor. A second vet after his first dental when it temporarily cleared up with antibiotics said it was probably a chronic viral infection that flared occasionally with a bacterial infection on top.

It wasn't until last year when he turned 14 that a new vet explained that he almost certainly had a latent herpes virus that flared up any time there was a bacterial threat and that it was nothing to worry about if it didn't really bother him. She said they are notoriously difficult to get rid of with really powerful multiple courses of antibiotics, and as he was starting to get gut problems antibiotics would be best avoided.

Since then he has been put on lifelong steroids for the gut problems and had an injection of two-week antibiotic to avoid messing with his gut, and guess what ... it's all cleared up and stayed cleared up so far for 8 weeks. Not suggesting it's the same thing yours has and definitely not recommending steroids (nasty things) but in support of Ruth's comments.

Re: Kitten sneezing/snotty/

Posted: Mon Aug 05, 2019 5:20 pm
by Ruth B
Tiggy's was identified as Mycoplasma, which is a blood parasite bacteria and notoriously hard to get rid off. The vet did suggest another month long course of antibiotics might work, however after the amount of antibiotics she has already had and the fact that each time they seemed to last for a shorter period, as well as the struggle to get the tablets into her, we decided that in view of her age we would treat the symptoms only, which does seem to be working to an extent.

Cat Flu, Herpes, Mycoplasma, three different things all giving long term respiratory problems, yours lad could have any of them, or something else entirely, even hayfever, mine and Mollycat's are older cats, so if Billy does keep having the problems it might be worth trying to find out what the cause is, but look at it as a long term diagnosis than something to worry about.