Feline asthma diagnosis

Discussion in 'Feline Health - (The Main Forum)' started by Jbiz, Jan 11, 2019.

  1. Jbiz

    Jbiz New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2018
    Hello, I know many here have experience with feline asthma so I was hoping there would be some insight on this situation:

    JD, a kitten of mine, is just over 6 months old now and had what I considered to be an asthma attack two times a few weeks apart, the last episode being three weeks ago. He appeared mostly fine after the attack was over.

    The vet recommended I investigate what the "trigger" of his attacks is, as if a single exposure to an allergen caused his attacks... That's all well and good but his asthma isn't being treated in the meantime. Also, the vet accepted my claim he had asthma just by listening to his breathing, no x-rays or further investigation. Anyway, I can hear him breathing heavily compared to my other kitten, so assuming asthma, his lungs are inflamed. Are his lungs not at risk of permanent damage while I'm trying to figure out what allergen is triggering his attacks? From my understanding the asthma left untreated won't just go away because he hasn't had major exposure to an allergen. He will permanently require treatment to keep the inflammation down.

    I do want to avoid the oral steroid because I know it can cause diabetes, but the Flovent inhaler sounds better, so that's what I'd like to get for him.

    It's also troubling that he has asthma at such a young age. Since asthma is a progressive condition I fear his condition will become severe later in life, especially if I allow for permanent damage to occur by leaving his condition untreated.

    Any thoughts are appreciated.
     
  2. Veronica & Babu-chiri

    Veronica & Babu-chiri Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2016
    Hi sorry to hear about your kittie having these troubles.

    I do think you do need some extra testing at least Xrays to make sure is asthma so that you can treat it properly usually at the beginning you do not need oral steroids to control asthma and is less aggressive for his body if you can give him an inhaled treatment, asthma does need to be treated because if left on it's own it will get worse, actually if is asthma you want to prevent a new atack as much as possible because a severe asthma attack could cause some degree of damage to his lungs and an asthma attack can be triggered by some allergen but also by an stressful situation or as a result of some other illness

    Does the heavy breathing occurs when he inhales or when he exhales? How did they determined that his lungs are inflamed?
     
  3. Jbiz

    Jbiz New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2018
    Yes for sure I'll get the x-ray done. I've heard stress could be a factor but I don't think JD has ever been stressed a day in his life. Parasites were another possibility but incident rate is very low where I am though I wouldn't rule it out.

    It's hard to determine his breathing because he's always purring, I seem to hear what I think is heavy exhales at times though. They didn't determine his lungs were inflamed, just that his breathing was heavy. It's my assumption that his breathing is heavy due to restricted pathways in his lungs as a result of an inflammation.

    Thanks for responding. I'll definitely get JD looked at again soon.
     
  4. Tracey&Jones (GA)

    Tracey&Jones (GA) Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Dec 12, 2016
    X-rays are needed as they will confirm pretty quickly if it asthma and how much scarring is in the lungs. and what is happening in there for inflammation.

    My civvie was given the oral steroids until the flovent administration actually taken hold - 7 days worth. She had a pretty severe attack where she was coughing lots with nothing being produced. She originally was on two puffs every day, then two puffs every other day and so on. She is now on a maintenance dose of a puff twice a week.

    I can usually tell if she needs more as she will have this dry hacky cough that is very different from a furball hacking sound. Her purr also sounds different when she is under more stress.
    We have both type of inhalers - the emergency one in blue and the Flovent in orange for everyday use.
     
  5. Jbiz

    Jbiz New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2018
    Thank you. I'll expect this as the path forward for JD.
     
  6. Veronica & Babu-chiri

    Veronica & Babu-chiri Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 5, 2016
    It will help if you can determine if the heavy breathing is when he inhales or when he exhales, if it is when he inhales then is a sign of upper respiratory issues since asthma would cause the heavy breathing when he exhales, still it could be allergies but treatment is different, hopefully you can have those X-rays done soon
     
  7. Jbiz

    Jbiz New Member

    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2018
    I had JD at the vets this morning and had an X-ray done. Looks like there's some minor asthma scarring, the vet described this as "donuts". There were also visible bronchial pathways, the vet mentioned in healthy lungs they should just see black, and seeing the pathways seems to imply infection, so I have 6 weeks of antibiotics to administer, then I'll take JD back in to have him looked at again. The vet expects to have him on an inhaler once the infection passes.

    I unfortunately didn't mention this before in my post but JD also has intermittent diarrhea. The vet said to keep him on one food and try to pick up on how often the diarrhea is happening. It's expected to be unrelated to his lung issues. I'm doubting allergies but will keep observing and pass along the info. He also has eye discharge, likely related to the lung infection.
     
    Tracey&Jones (GA) likes this.
  8. Adrienne & Molly

    Adrienne & Molly Member

    Joined:
    Jan 18, 2019
    Hello,
    Our cat Molly was diagnosed with asthma last December of 2017. She would cough and it sounded terrible. Took her to the vet and she had some x-rays done. Came back that she had asthma. The vet had suggested flovent for treatment twice a day. Myself I am asthmatic and use flovent so we shared lol. But the vet had suggested if I had any candles to get rid of them. So that's what we tried and she doesn't cough as much. If I hear her cough I give her the flovent. Maybe once a month if that.
     

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