My Baby coughs but doesn't produce a hairball...?

Mellanie ChafeMellanie Chafe Deerfield Beach, FLMember Posts: 10
Basil (2 years) has a cough that sounds like a hairball cough every so often. He never has produced a hairball and just swallows. I've brought him to the vet for a check up, and from listening his heart and lungs they said they sounded perfect. I just lost my job so I kind of don't have the $200 dollars they want to charge me for a CAT scan (hurhur) and a blood test. He's maintained a healthy weight, no labored breathing, etc. I guess I need SOME kind of help while I try to get the money to bring him back to the vet. I'm always keeping watch every time I see him cough and try to pay great attention to his breathing. I bought some hairball remedy today just to see if THAT will help... Thoughts?

Best Answers

  • Leanne FroebelLeanne Froebel Member Posts: 1,730
    Accepted Answer
    I'm no vet, but what you are describing sounds like feline asthma. Mickey had asthma for years. Rider also had an episode of bronchitis and probable early asthma. Asthma attacks can resemble "hairball hacking" episodes. Has your vet taken an x-ray? Asthma does NOT always show up on an x-ray. Usually the cat has to be having an active asthma flair up for it to show on an x-ray, so a negative x-ray does NOT rule out asthma. Basil should also be tested for heartworm. Yes, cats can get heartworm and it is serious. My vet tested Mickey and Rider for heartworm while she was treating them. Heartworm can also cause the symptoms you are describing. I do see that you live in FL and heartworm is pretty common in the south. Has your vet ruled out respiratory infections like bronchitis and pneumonia? I knows times are tough. Have you heard of Care Credit? It works like a credit card, but is really an interest-fee extended payment plan as long as you make your payments on time.
  • Sarah ClarkSarah Clark Ruston, AustinMember Posts: 689
    Accepted Answer
    In addition to what the others have said: Some respiratory issues can be resolved with a round of predinisone (spelling? Theres a couple that are similar)- maybe you can ask your vet about it on the phone and they can give you a script for it, for us it cost less than $10 for 20 pills. 2x day for 3 days, then every other day for 2 weeks. Cleared my cough/hack right up. My vet said it did not seem like it was asthma, and I havent had another episode since my round of pills. in my case it appears to be an allergic reaction to mold (our tub leaked, the floor boards under it molded). So check your house for mold, or other allergens as well.
  • Sandy NenningerSandy Nenninger PlainvilleMember Posts: 1,975
    Accepted Answer
    In case it is a hairball issue, I have found that a higher fiber food helps a lot with Allie. (I use Natural Balance Indoor Ultra which is 8% fiber)She went from yacking up one a day to doing it rarely now. Also, try brushing him daily. This will cut down on the amount of hair he eats when he grooms himself. Mine all hate hairball remedy. You would think I was trying to poison her when I have tried it with Allie and I have tried several brands and flavors. But if it is a hairball, they will usually at least produce some phlegmy spit even if the hairball doesn't come up. It's more of a gagging "I need to puke" sound than a cough. Good luck! I hope that's all it is. Poor guy!!!
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