Cats is Breathing Heavy: Causes and Treatment

A conscientious owner of a mustachioed — striped pet should be well aware that a healthy animal can not smell unpleasant from the mouth. This is a clear indication of a problem with the cat’s body, so it needs to be taken to the vet as soon as possible.

It does not matter whether the animal is young or old — the smell can occur at any age, even in small kittens. Self-medication will not help in any way, but only aggravate the picture. The cat will be nervous, angry, scratch and bite the owner, and he will not be able to make a diagnosis — this is the job of a veterinarian.


There are many different reasons for the appearance of a smell from the mouth:

  1. Dental problems. Tartar deposits, caries, broken and rotten teeth, gingivitis, periodontitis, problems with the salivary glands, and many other dental problems often cause unpleasant odors.
  2. Bacterial infection of the oral cavity, for example, the rhinotracheitis or calicivirus. Rapid reproduction of microorganisms provokes the development of a strong smell.
  3. Violations of the change of milk teeth are permanent.
  4. Malocclusion. That is why in short-faced breeds of exotic cats, bad breath is much more common than in other cats.
  5. Injuries to the oral cavity, such as solid food particles, dry food.
  6. Diseases of the digestive and endocrine system: gastritis, duodenitis, ulcers, diabetes, kidney disorders also cause odors.
  7. During the formation of malignant neoplasms, the body suffers greatly from intoxication, which can also lead to the development of a strong smell.
  8. Sometimes the stench from the mouth indicates infection with helminths.

Since the change in breathing is an alarming symptom, but it does not give a clear indication of a specific disease or other cause. You must be examined by a veterinarian.

Accompanying symptoms

If there is a smell from the mouth, the owner should pay attention to the accompanying signs:

  • animal lethargy, apathy;
  • refusal of food and water;
  • fever, fever;
  • the cat wants to eat, but it clearly hurts when eating, it keeps its head sideways and tries to take food sideways, where it hurts less;
  • inflammation, redness and bleeding of the gums, ulcers on the tongue, mucous membranes;
  • nausea, vomiting;
  • diarrhea, constipation;
  • increased thirst;
  • the smell of acetone, urea, sweet Apple often accompanies serious diseases of internal organs — kidneys and liver.

Strange behavior of the animal, sudden weight gain or weight loss along with the smell should alarm the owner of the cat and make him immediately visit a veterinary clinic.

Diagnostics in a veterinary clinic

Diagnosis begins with a thorough examination of the cat’s mouth. If necessary, the veterinarian will give the animal a sedative injection, because the sick animal may react aggressively, especially if it has severe pain or such a nature.

Many cats scratch and bite in unfamiliar surroundings and at the sight of strangers. This is a kind of defensive reaction.

After the examination, the veterinarian can send the animal for an x-ray if it is suspected that there are various defects in the teeth and jaw tissue. If the cause of the smell is a violation of the internal organs, you may need to conduct an ultrasound, as well as pass the necessary blood and/or urine tests.

Treatment method and prognosis

Getting rid of bad breath is directly related to the treatment of the underlying disease that provoked it. When it can be cured, the smell will pass on its own.

But in the event that the cause of the unpleasant smell from the mouth is diseased teeth, treatment should consist in removing the hopelessly damaged teeth and treating the affected ones, but those that can be saved.

When the cause is a violation of the change of milk teeth permanent in kittens, you can wait for the loss of milk teeth and the smell will disappear on its own. But in the case when some of the teeth do not fall out in the allotted time and interfere with the proper eruption of permanent ones, they can be removed without harm to the animal in the clinic.

When the cause of halitosis (a sharp smell from the mouth) becomes periodontal disease, pulpitis, the formation of fluxes and other purulent processes, treatment will consist in a combination of conservative medication and surgical cleaning of purulent cavities.

In most cases, the prognosis is favorable if the disease is not in the extreme stages. In the latter situation, the outcome can be either positive or negative.

What to do at home

It is extremely difficult to treat a cat’s teeth at home, and you can only get rid of other diseases in a hospital. All that cat owners can do on their own is to provide their pet with ideal conditions for recovery.

To do this, the pet needs to allocate a clean, dry and warm place where the sick animal can safely recover. In some cases, the owners will have to make their own injections and give tablets prescribed by a veterinarian. It is forbidden to replace the prescribed medications yourself, so you can only harm the cat.

An important place is occupied by the cat’s nutrition during treatment and recovery. It is selected according to the state of health and type of disease. Basically, it should be a light high-calorie food, soft, not injuring the tissues of the mouth, easily digestible.

The animal must have unrestricted access to water.

Possible complications

If you start any disease, it can lead to serious consequences. This is especially true for such complex systemic diseases as endocrine and hormonal disorders (diabetes, thyrotoxicosis, and so on), diseases of the digestive system, liver, and kidneys. A number of diseases threaten the cat with a fatal outcome.

But even damage to the gums and teeth can cause irreversible consequences. The cat may lose its teeth, which will cause violations in its diet and lead to complications with the digestive system.

Prevention measures (diet)

Like any other disease, halitosis (bad breath) is much easier to prevent than then trying to cure the animal for a long time and painfully. To do this, take the following preventive measures:

  1. Cleaning the mouth and teeth with special pastes and brushes for animals. This procedure is mandatory for short-faced cats and exotics with malocclusion. It is desirable to do it daily and teach the kitten to it from childhood.
  2. Regular visits to the veterinarian to check the condition of the teeth and oral cavity.
  3. Professional cleaning of teeth from plaque and stone will help prevent the destruction of teeth and the development of inflammatory processes in the gums.
  4. When feeding wet food, it is necessary to give the animal solid products for mechanical cleaning of teeth from residues.
  5. Rapid response to the appearance of signs of the disease. Early diagnosis and proper treatment help to cure the problem at the earliest stages of the disease.

Careful attention to the health of your pet will make it possible to avoid the development of many unpleasant diseases, including preventing the appearance of an unpleasant smell.