Rhinitis (runny nose) in cats and cats

A runny nose in a cat (the scientific name is rhinitis) can be both a sign of mild ailment and a symptom of a serious illness. If you notice that your cat is sneezing, rubbing its eyes and nose with its paws, breathing difficulties are noticeable and it has discharge from the nose, then you should not think that this is a mild cold and just wait for it to pass. Nasal discharge can be both signs of mild rhinitis (runny nose) and symptoms of quite serious, and sometimes extremely dangerous diseases, such as calicivirus, panleukopenia, or rhinotracheitis. What causes rhinitis and how to cure a runny nose in a cat?

Causes of the common cold in cats and cats

For what reasons can a cat have a runny nose? Let's look at the most likely cases.


The simplest reason. The pet could slip through, or it would freeze. Well, how many opportunities to catch a cold? But usually rhinitis is accompanied by lacrimation, conjunctivitis, lethargy.


Yes, if the immune system is sensitive to any allergen, then when the cat “meets” it, the nose gets blocked, the mucous membrane swells, which can lead to rhinitis. Because of this, the lumen of the nasal passages narrows very much. Difficulty breathing. There may be discharge. But it is worth eliminating the cause, the condition improves almost immediately. Usually, an allergy is manifested not only by a runny nose, but also by lacrimation, itching, swelling and redness.

Weak immunity

Probably it the main cause of rhinitis in a cat. And already because of it, any other may appear (infections “cling”, the pet catches a cold quickly). Therefore, having noticed a runny nose in a cat, you should not drip baby drops from a runny nose, or try to warm your nose with something. You don’t know what caused the cat’s runny nose. Therefore, before starting the necessary treatment, we carry it to the veterinarian. And we carry it as soon as possible, because if it is not just a runny nose, then in a few days no veterinarian will help.

Foreign object hit my nose

Yes, a cat is not a child; nothing will be stuffed into its nose. However, cases are sometimes recorded when a foreign body is stuck in the nasal passage. From here, a cat runs a runny nose, because the body tries to "withdraw" a foreign object from the nose with the help of mucus.

In some cases, everything is solved safely, the problem resolves itself without the help of a specialist. But there are also such cases when you cannot do without the help of a veterinarian, because the subject is very large or the mucous membrane is too swollen, so the nasal passage has become too narrow.

Bacteria and fungi

In the world there are many types of fungi and bacteria, ready, on occasion, to infect the mucous membrane of the animal. This can be a pathogenic pest or a conditionally dangerous neighbor, which is activated in case of violation of the immune defense of a cat. Depending on the number of fungi, bacteria, the degree of sensitivity of the pet to them, and the general condition of the animal, the clinical manifestations of the common cold are expressed differently.

For example, a cat’s chronic runny nose with a mild fungal infection manifests itself in the form of rare transparent outbreaks that appear periodically. Acute bacterial infection provokes a thick exudate, forming crusts. The course can be continuous, clog the nose of a cat.

To combat fungi and bacteria, special directed drugs are used. Here, ordinary drops from a cold will not help, with them you can only achieve a temporary improvement, but then it will be even worse. Therefore, if there is a suspicion of a bacterial, fungal runny nose in a cat, you must go to the clinic and take tests to identify the culprit of the disease.


The difference between parasitic rhinitis in the bilateral nature of the lesion. It can last about a year. He is also characterized by abundant outflows of a different nature. A cat can often rub its nose, sneeze, rub its head against objects. Her airways clogged and her lymph nodes swell.

Other possible causes

In addition, there are many other possible causes of the common cold in cats:

NeoplasmsWhen tumors form in the nasal passages, it is very difficult for the pet to breathe. And it flows strongly from the nose, because the body "thinks" that there is a foreign body in the nose. You can’t delete anything yourself.
Infectious diseasesA huge number of infections that lead to a runny nose in a cat (infectious rhinotracheitis, calicivirus and others). The first difference is the discharge from the nose of the cat purulent (yellowish, greenish or very thick). Then you will notice that the pet has become very lethargic, body temperature has risen, there may be vomiting, diarrhea, or other specific symptoms of an infectious disease.
Chronic diseasesEven diabetes mellitus, urolithiasis, obesity, jade, heart and other ailments can cause a cat's runny nose.
Parasites and fungiThey also cannot be excluded.
Pungent odorsRemember yourself, if you inhale something sharply smelling (household chemicals, for example, paints and varnishes). Tears flow from my eyes. But it’s worth aerating the room, as the cat gets better.
Ear inflammationSometimes the inflammatory process from the ear goes into the nasopharynx and vice versa. In this case, without removing the inflammation of the auricle, the common cold cannot be eliminated.
Congenital pathology of the nasopharynxFor example, curvature of the nasal septum can lead to chronic runny nose, which, in turn, will provoke a secondary infection.


How to cure a runny nose in a cat? Having determined the cause of rhinitis, the veterinarian prescribes therapy. But remember that the recovery of a cat largely depends not only on what drugs you give her (or drip). Treating a runny nose in a cat at home should be comprehensive.

Runny nose from hypothermia

If the runny nose is caused by hypothermia of the animal, then during the illness it will be necessary to carefully monitor that your whisker is warm.

Try to choose the food as carefully as possible, as the pet does not smell at the time of a cold and may refuse to eat at all. You can help the baby by choosing a food with a pronounced smell. If there are no contraindications, add vitamins to the feed. If a cat’s runny nose is caused by an infection, it must be isolated from other animals. And be sure to consult a veterinarian! Without specific treatment (hyperimmune serums, antibiotics, antiviral and others), there will be no recovery.

Allergic rhinitis

In the case of an allergic rhinitis in a cat, before starting treatment, it will be necessary to abandon what causes the allergy in the cat. You may have to exclude some product from her diet, and it may be necessary to abandon her favorite detergent, or indoor plants. But the well-being of a pet is probably worth it.

If the doctor considers that the cat needs antibiotics, then you will need special attention to ensure that she regularly receives the prescribed medicine, as well as other injections, tablets, or nasal drops.

How to treat a runny nose in a cat at home

Unfortunately, not everyone can not always treat pets in a veterinary clinic, some owners have to do this at home. Therefore, experienced breeders recommend using proven in practice remedies for the treatment of the common cold:

  1. The method of heating with the application of a bag stuffed with warm sand or salt helps to get rid of secretions from the sinuses.
  2. As well as humans, cats, in order to eliminate the symptoms of rhinitis, a drop of beet or aloe juice is instilled into each nostril.
  3. Using boric acid and zinc sulfate, the animals are washed their nose.
  4. Against dryness, the nose is irrigated with a one percent solution of soda.
  5. A streptocide in the form of a powder, inflated by a cat in each nostril, relieves inflammation.
  6. You can remove a slight nasal congestion by the introduction of saline.

The cat’s chronic runny nose is treated according to a similar principle. The only thing worth considering is that constant abundant discharge leads to irritation of the skin of the nose. To prevent this, the skin is dried. Powder from streptocide is not bad for these purposes. Frequency of use - several times a day.

Cat runny nose drops

If a runny nose is associated with a cold and is not accompanied by other symptoms, indicating its allergic or infectious nature, then with home treatment, the following drugs can be administered to a cat:

  1. "Maksidin" - immunostimulating drops.
  2. "Anandin" - has antiviral and immunostimulating properties.
  3. "Naphthyzine", diluted in half with "Dioxidine" - is used to rinse the nose.
  4. "Galazolin" - children's drops that help with severe difficulty breathing.

The medicine, according to the instructions, is administered into each nostril by 1 (less often - 2) drop over a period of 5 (in advanced cases - 7 days).

How a cold can harm a cat

Rhinitis is preceded by a compensatory reaction. But the long exposure to cold increasingly violates the mechanisms of thermoregulation. As a result, the cat is supercooled, its body temperature decreases, which leads to malfunctions of the functions of various body systems.

At first glance, a cold is a slight malaise, but if the animal does not come to the rescue, rhinitis can provoke the development of much more serious diseases, such as:

  • inflammatory joint diseases;
  • inflammation of the lungs and bronchi;
  • kidney disease, etc.

Among other things, the common cold reduces the cat's immune defense, lowering the body's natural resistance to infections. And if a pet with a healthy immune system, coming into contact with a virus or microbe, avoids the disease, a weak animal can get serious health deviations.

Cold Prevention

Some recommendations for the prevention of rhinitis in cats.

  • The best prevention of a cold in a cat is timely vaccination. Although, unfortunately, even it does not give a 100% guarantee of health, it increases the chances.
  • Do not allow the animal to become cold. The house should not have drafts, and the pet bed should not be located in a cold place.
  • Watch out for cat immunity. Feed correctly (balanced), do not forget about fortification. However, remember that an excess of vitamins also adversely affects the condition of the animal.
  • Eliminate possible allergens (hypoallergenic food, a minimum of chemistry when caring for animals, remove indoor plants away).

Regular use of a special vaccine significantly reduces the risk of a runny nose in a cat. Do not think that if the animal is always at home - this is the key to safety. Bacteria and viruses are almost everywhere, and you can bring them even to the cleanest house on the sole of the shoe. Therefore, if you are concerned about the safety of the animal, do not forget about preventive measures. This primarily refers to the improvement of the living environment.

Treatment of rhinitis in cats does not always go smoothly, so if you have any questions about the topic, write them in the comments - we will answer you!

Watch the video: How to Clear Nasal Congestion in Kittens : Cat Health Care & Behavior (February 2020).