Why is he coughing but nothing's coming up?

Sam is a 1 year old male cat. Lately, he's been coughing and it looks as tho he is going to cough up a hair ball, but he just swallows and nothing comes up. Occasionally he will vomit, but usually he coughs and hacks but then nothing. Is this normal? Should I be concerned?

Asked by Sam on Feb 20th 2009 Tagged coughing, hairballs in Other Health & Wellness
Report this question Get this question's RSS feed Send this question to a friend


  • Cast your vote for which answer you think is best!



You could give him some Laxatone or other hairball medication that will help break up the hair-if he does have a hairball. He could also be coming down with an upper respiratory infection (watch for any sneezing, nasal discharge, watery eyes). You may also want to look inside his mouth if he will let you and make sure their isn't any obviously wrong (like something stuck in his mouth or back of his throat). Most likely, it will go away once he coughs up what ever is bothering him. If you notice him not eating, becoming lethargic (wanting to sleep all the time), loosing weight, or if he starts to cough up blood- see your vet right away! Good Luck!

Charlie answered on 2/20/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 0 Report this answer


You need to go to the vet and have them take some xrays of his chest to rule out heart issues, pneumonia, asthma, etc. there is no way to know for sure what's going on without a full exam wand radiographs.

Hunter answered on 2/21/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 2 Report this answer

Izadore (Izzie)

Izzie and Delilah will occasionally hack without producing anything, too. However, if you notice that Sam is also lethargic, breathing heavily (except after playing), wheezing, seems to be losing weight and just doesn't seem interested or kitten-type energetic, then that's cause to be worried. I would not poke round in his mouth. At the least, he could bite you and at the worst, if there IS something there, you could push it farther back into his throat and block his airway. Call your vet and tell them what you've told us. They know what questions to ask and are the best ones to advise you.

Izadore (Izzie) answered on 2/21/09. Helpful? Yes/Helpful: No 1 Report this answer