Cats are prone to upper respiratory infections, and many of these diseases are highly contagious. If you’ve got more than one kitty that’s sick, it’s likely your pets have caught one of these bugs. Get your little ones to the vet right away to keep them from developing pneumonia.
When multiple kitties start to sneeze, the likely culprit is one of four main kitty bugs that cause upper respiratory infections in cats. Chlamydia and bordatella are the result of bacteria, while the feline herpesvirus and calicivirus are both viral infections. While symptoms can vary among these diseases, if your cats are sneezing and have goopy eyes or a runny nose, take your gang to their doctor and let the vet sort out exactly what’s causing it. Your main job is to make sure that they don’t get any worse.
Sneezing kitties are a lot like humans with a cold. They’ll share their germs with one another and they’ll look and feel miserable for a while, but they can get over it without any special treatment. Since your fuzzy pals can’t tell you if they’re feeling better or worse, though, it’s best to take them to the vet and let him check each one of them. Upper respiratory infections can turn into pneumonia with little or no warning, and your kitty could end up sick or even dying. The vet can offer supportive treatment to prevent such complications.
Whether your pet’s sneezing is caused by a bacteria or a virus, his vet will probably prescribe antibiotics. While these won’t help to get rid of a virus, they can help to keep your pet from succumbing to a secondary infection and becoming seriously ill. Depending on how sick your kitties get, they may require hospitalization for intensive treatment. Often you can bring them home and give them the medicine the vet prescribed. You may also need to put drops in their eyes and noses and keep their faces clean so that they can breathe easily.
Making sure your cats have all their shots can help prevent disease or minimize how sick they get if they’re exposed to an upper respiratory infection. Your vet will most likely recommend a combination shot like the FVRCP, which protects against feline viral rhinotracheitis (caused by the feline herpesvirus), calicivirus and panleukopenia (feline distemper). Keeping your kitties indoors will help to minimize the risk of exposure. Try not to board your pets, since kennels and catteries can stress your kitties and add to the likelihood that they’ll pick up germs from an infected cat.
Always check with your veterinarian before changing your pet’s diet, medication, or physical activity routines. This information is not a substitute for a vet’s opinion.