Appointments: (02) 6251 1444
16-18 Purdue St, Belconnen, ACT
(Parking via Gillott Street)
Mon - Fri: 8:30am - 5:30pm
Saturday: 8:30am - 1:00pm

Canberra Cat Vet Blog

Snotty nose cats

Saturday, May 31, 2014

                                                                                                                                                                  Snotty-nosed and snuffly cats are difficult to live with.Their owners put up with sneezes and snot all over the house, as well as snuffles and grumbles all day and half the night.

The causes of sinusitis and rhinosinusitis are also difficult for vets to diagnose accurately and even more difficult to treat effectively.

Inflammation and infection spread rapidly from cats’ throats to adjacent structures, such as the middle ear, frontal sinuses, nose and tympanic bullae. These cavities are difficult to reach with medical or surgical treatments.

Feline mucus is also thicker than human mucus and medication has a hard time penetrating the mucus to get to the offending microbes.

Feline Herpesvirus is the most common initiating cause of chronic rhinitis and rhinosinusitis. It causes chronic airway inflammation and swelling, destroys the normal lining of the nasal cavity and upsets the normal mucus layers. The nasal cavity cannot remove foreign particles or the abnormal mucus and the sinuses become blocked. Bacteria leap in and set up infections making the situation even worse.

Drugs to reduce the mucus and the swelling in the sinuses help a bit. We treat the bacterial infection with antibiotics but are still left with Herpesvirus and all the damage it does. Herpesvirus sinusitis soon flares up into full blown bacterial sinusitis again. Some cats respond well to antiviral drugs but others keep getting intermittent sinusitis.

Nastier causes of similar signs are Cryptococcosis, a fungal disease, and cancer, commonly lymphoma, adenocarcinoma and squamous cell carcinoma. These are difficult to distinguish on X-ray but CT or MRI are very helpful, if they are available. A biopsy clears up any doubts. A blood test is available for Cryptococcosis.

Bad teeth and infected tooth roots sometimes make cats snuffly. A dental inspection and X-ray under general anaesthetic allow targeted and successful treatment.

Occasionally a cat breathes in a grass seed or other foreign body. Usually nasal discharge is from one side only and there is some bleeding.


Search Blog

Recent Posts


aerokat panadeine skin cancer photo competition lilly kidney disease inflammatory bowel disease furball holiday fleas salivation IBD changed blockage nose scabs poisoning bed chlamydia radioactive iodine train hypertension carrier return home renal disease enemies introducing blood pancreatitis cognitive dysfunction lily fight diet pain vomit hyperthyroidism runny eyes urinating outside litter abscess,cat fight off food blocked cat pica wobbles spray tooth in season hospital fat grass hearing sick best veterinarian eye intestine comfortis arthritis cat enclosures snake mental health of cats eye infection cat friendly on heat groom snakes head constipation cryptococcosis new year vaccination stiff activity unwell pred hungry allergy, flea prevention behaviour change blindness competition sucking wool fabric bad breath sensitive stomach mince hyperactive cat vet hard faeces dental check hypertrophic cardiomyopathy urinating pet dilated pupils kitten play rolls breathing difficult tick aggression nails sneeze hole ulcers anaemia cat flu thirsty urine spraying appointment fever senses asthma introductions kitten eyes snake bite snuffles gasping gifts cta fight free furballs xylitol cortisone heaing desexing tapeworm feliway dental poisonous plants meows a lot hiding training whiskers home Canberra introduction mouth breathing decision to euthanase blood test cough seizures pain killer not eating holidays poisonous aggressive rough play depomedrol adipokines health check weight loss sense of smell dymadon blood pressure yowling cystitis behaviour drinking more bump eye ulcer body language sudden blindness award food puzzles twitching socialisation microchip castration biopsy slow lymphoma ulcerated nose calicivirus kidneys tumour feline enteritis foreign body ribbon prey birthday catoberfest African wild cat herpesvirus grooming flea treatment roundworm panleukopaenia hunters dementia thiamine deficiency desex worms itchy abscess bite advantage old cat flu appetite senior panadol best cat clinic lump echocardiography marking antiviral bladder stones moving love ACT snuffle massage feline herpesvirus antibiotics best vet blind painful toxic toxins bladder kidney Hill's Metabolic brown snake aspirin skin heart disease enteritis paralysis weight control tablet poisons noisy breathing snakebite fireworks lilies wet litter fear panleukopenia overweight obese indoor cats urination holes rub check-up open night hairball scratching vaccine kittens anxiety blood in urine urine rigid head checkup spraying annual check diabetes kitten deaths sensitive kibble face rub jumping AIDS conflict vomiting vet visit insulin introduce signs of pain mass breeder euthanasia drinking a lot strange behaviour permethrin mycoplasma allergy paralysed dry food straining worming obesity string skinny information night cancer exercise christmas blue plants pain relief visit new cat cat history FORLS cat behaviour crytococcosus scale New Year's Eve headache cat fight client night high blood pressure pet insurance sore ears paracetamol tradesmen touch fluid pills dental treatment wool lame prednisolone collapse poison cage sick cat fits urinating on curtains or carpet stare into space old virus best clinic pet meat hunched over litter tartar hunting snot odour vision litter box runny nose FIV cat enclosure learning open day sore revolution Canberra Cat Vet heavy breathing petting cat goodbye cranky hunter when to go to vet polish diarrhoea diuretics corneal ulcer spey cat cat worms pill sun stress ulcer vocal paralysis tick panamax teeth opening hours plaque sore eyes new kitten change rash scratch computer liver unsociable thyroid cat containment lick weight restless holes in teeth scratching post attack physical activity pheromone


A calm, quiet haven for cats and their carers staffed by experienced, cat loving vets and nurses.

Canberra Cat Vet 16-18 Purdue St Belconnen ACT 2617 (parking off Gillott Street) Phone: (02) 6251-1444

Get Directions