Have you heard your cat sneezing of late and it stopped you dead in your tracks as you tried to confirm if what you heard was true? Cats also catch colds, but it is not the same as the common human cold. Whereas a human cold is caused by a virus known as the rhinovirus the cats’ cold is less complicated as they catch respiratory infections. Colds in cats are caused by viruses and bacteria which are:-
- Chlamydophilla felis (C. Felis)
- Feline Calicivirus
- Feline herpesvirus type-1 (FHV-1)
Like all viral infections cats carry around these viruses and they can get sick again from stress, babies and new housemates. Another way cats can catch a cold is through contact with other sickly cats.
The common cat cold symptoms include sniffling, sneezing, coughing, pus like discharge from the nose or the eyes. Sometimes a poor appetite or/and a slight fever may also come along with the other common symptoms.
The treatment of cat colds will basically depend on how mild the cold is. Senior cats and kittens will tend to get more affected by colds and bouncing back to normal health might take longer. Here are a few home remedies that will help to treat a cat cold:
- Humidity – Increasing the humidity in the house will help the cat to breathe, this can be done by placing the cat in the bathroom and letting the hot water shower run or by strategically placing humidifiers in the house.
- Nasal/Eye Discharge – Use a damp warm cloth to wipe out the nasal and eye discharge on the cat at least twice a day. A saline nasal spray may also be used on the cat to relieve the congestion; this can also be used twice a day.
- Diet – At this time your cat’s diet is very important, the food will provide extra energy and nutrients for your cat to help with the recovery process. Offering tasty meals like chicken or tuna will stimulate the cat’s appetite.
- Dehydration – Water will also help in the cat’s quick recovery. Ensuring regular consumption of water at this time is advisable. In some cases, your cat may be reluctant to take water because he/she is feeling unwell. Giving your cat wet food at this time should help to ensure that dehydration does not occur.
If your cat does not respond well to any of these treatment measures it is important to see a veterinarian. As with any other issue, including fleas in cats, it is important to diagnose the issue early on, so that treatment can be provided in time. This will reduce the symptoms and allow your cat to recover as fast as possible.