Cat coughing up hairball might sound like an alarming occurrence, but it is actually completely natural to happen once in a while. The cough-gag-retch sound is a common furball symptom in healthy cat. That’s why it is quite tricky for most people to decide if the pet is coughing (pushing air out of its lungs to clear the airways), gagging (clearing stuck object by making throat movements), or retching (a sound that similar to vomiting and dry heaving). There is rarely anything to worry about hairballs in few far and between.
The problem arises if your cat is gagging for over 48 hours at once or every several weeks, because too many hairs might end up in their gut. Below are three possible reasons of cat constantly coughing up hairballs in unusual manner.
Occasionally, your cat may inhale strange items such as blade of grass or grass awn. It causes stubborn cough then because the eaten grass got stuck inside their throat. If you notice hacking cough or gagging, it may be necessary to get radiographs. This process helps to evaluate the persistent cough by examining airways directly using bronchoscope then allow the foreign objects to be removed from your pet’s body.
Chronic respiratory problem could be the next potential reasons why your cat coughing up hairball. Regular or continued coughing episode may stem from feline asthma, one of the respiratory conditions in cat. Try to listen closely to their breathing as your cat exhale to detect any wheezing sound. This health condition can be treated by using inhalant medication like human or using systemic corticosteroids.
Another lung disease that may cause hairball coughing is heartworm condition. The feline lung disease is originated from adult worm existence in the lungs’ blood vessels of infected cat. Furthermore, the immature worms can set critical inflammatory response in blood vessel of cat’s smaller lungs, which is quite severe to the lung tissue and its airways.
Seeing veterinarian is important if you observe that the cough in your cat does not produce any hairball. The vet is able to evaluate the cough, in order to specify the cause, then find out the possible way to control and cure the condition. It is important to pay regular visit to the vet, whether there’s a condition of cat coughing up hairball or not so you can detect and prevent any health issues earlier in the future.