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Dr. Deb
Dr. Deb, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 10921
Experience:  I have been a practicing veterinarian for over 30 years.
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My cat has lost his meow. Apart from a bit of snoring when

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My cat has lost his meow. Apart from a bit of snoring when he sleeps he is fine. He is eating, washing and going out. He does not appear ill - no lethargy or any other symptoms. He has regular booster vaccinations each year.
Could you tell me what the cause might be and if I should take him to the vet.

Hello Sarah, I'm Dr. Deb and will do my best to help you today.

I'm sorry about Baloo but glad to hear that he's otherwise acting fine.

It sounds like he may be suffering from laryngitis which is either going to be a primary condition or secondary to something else (the more common of the two).
Any irritation to the throat which might cause inflammation and/or swelling of the structures in the back of the throat could be responsible. Infections such as Upper Respiratory Infections (aka Feline Flu), ingestion of irritating substances (such as grass or catnip), inhalation of irritating vapors are possible causes.

Since he's not showing other symptoms such as lethargy or disinterest in food or difficulty breathing, then a vet visit at this time is not necessary. I would just monitor for now; his voice should return in about a week or so, or it does in most cases.

I might feed hem very soft food so that the throat doesn't become more irritated, though, if he enjoys this sort of food.

I hope this helps and eases your mind about this. Deb

Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Many thanks for your reply - I do tend to worry about my cats.

If it is laryngitis and the voice doesn't come back in a week - is there a treatment the vet can give me?


As he has been vaccinated is it likely to be Feline Flu?



You're more than welcome. I'd much rather an owner worry too much than too little:)

Since laryngitis is almost always secondary to something else going on, it will be important to try and determine what that "something" else might be if there's absolutely no improvement after about a week or so. Usually, this is going to require sedation so that the pharyngeal/laryngeal area can be thoroughly examined.

If a few cases, I've suggested antihistamines just on the off chance that post-nasal drip might be responsible.
Acceptable ones to use would include:

Benadryl at a dose of 1/2 of a 25 mg tablet given twice daily or

Chlorpheniramine at a dose of 2-4 mgtwice a day or

Claritin at a dose of 2.5-5 mg twice or

Zyrtec 5 mg once or twice a day

It is important to ensure that the formulations used contain ONLY the antihistamine and are not combination products (e.g. Claritin-D contains pseudoephedrine, which could cause very significant adverse effects in a cats.

Sedation is a common side effect with these kinds of drugs

The vaccinations can help reduce the severity of disease but they don't usually prevent development of it after exposure. Vaccinated cats develop Feline Flu all the time; they just aren't as ill, in most cases.
But, he's not showing any signs..not yet anyway. If he starts to sneeze or develop a nasal/ocular discharge, then we can reliably assume his voice issues are related to an upper respiratory infection.

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