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Dr. B.
Dr. B., Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 22434
Experience:  I am a small animal veterinarian with a special interest in cats and am happy to discuss any questions you have.
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My cat is sneezing but has no symptoms associated with cat

Customer Question

my cat is sneezing but has no symptoms associated with cat flu
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 years ago.
Hello & welcome, I am Dr. B, a licensed veterinarian and I would like to help you with your wee one today.
How long has he been sneezing?
Does he have any discharge from his nose? If so, what color? From both signs or just one nostril?
Any facial swelling or asymmetry?
How is in himself? Lethargic or normal? Eating? Drinking?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
at least 1 year. no discharge from nose .no swelling. normal behaviour
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
very loud sneezing and very wet outcome. he sneezes in his food too
Customer: replied 2 years ago.
Expert:  Dr. B. replied 2 years ago.
Thank you for your patience (your replies were blocking me posting),
Now if Spike has had chronic sneezing for this length of time, we need to tread with care (especially if you think it is getting any worse). This is because while cat flu is a common cause of sneezing, it doesn't usually cause active continuous signs for such a long period of time (unless a cat is very immunosuppressed for some reason -- ie has FIV or FeLV).
Therefore, we'd be more concerned about something else lurking in one or both nostril or in the upper airway. Issues we'd have to consider here for Spike would include a chronic rhinitis (though I'd expect nasal discharge with that), allergies (though again usually some discharge and seasonality), fungal infections of the nasal passage, polyps in the back of the nasopharynx (where the back of the nose and throat meet), or a possible growth/tumor. As well, if this happens when he eats, a fistula (hole) from dental disease would be another concern.
In this case, it would be ideal to consider having Spike examined by your local vet. They can xray or scope his upper airway and nose to determine if any of these are lurking. They can also test for feline herpes virus (a lifelong cat flu agent) if that is suspect after the examine him. Depending on their findings, they can advise you of which is present and treatment options. And that would be ideal if this has been going on for a year.
Otherwise, I would just note that if you wanted to rule out the less likely allergy differential, you could consider trying Spike on a short course of an OTC antihistamine. In the UK, we often use Piriton (Chlorphenamine) and this can be given at a 2-4mg dose every 12 hours. You can start with the low dose, as it can cause drowsiness in kitties. Of course, check with his vet first if he has any known health issues or is on any other medication.
Overall, we have some serious concerns when an elderly cat has chronic sneezing. Therefore, we need to tread with care. And while we can try ruling out allergies, we need to be wary of those other issues and determine which is here as quickly as possible to help keep Spike comfortable.
I hope this information is helpful.
If you need any additional information, do not hesitate to ask!
All the best,
Dr. B.
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