Do Cats and Dogs Weep?


I am curious, do cats “Cry” tears? My Patches, who went to the Rainbow Bridge, this past Sunday, had gotten extremely thin, and her eyes were somewhat “sunken”-in, and she would constantly be having tears in her eyes.

I don’t know if this is because she was feeling pain, and “crying” or it was a result fo the tear ducts overloading, because her eyes had gotten so small, as a result of the weight she had lost. Just curious.

Morongo Valley, CA

I am very sorry for your loss.

There is no doubt that cats and dogs experience a wide range of emotions. They can suffer from fear, anxiety, and pain. Many situations that would make a human cry undoubtedly stir similar emotions in pets.

However, I have yet to see a pet respond to these sorts of situations by producing excessive tears. Pets may act agitated, vocalize, pant, or hide when they are distressed or in pain. But they do not appear to weep.

I therefore doubt that Patches’ excessive tear production towards the end of her life was caused by pain.

I have noticed during my career that elderly, ill animals (especially cats) are prone to excessive eye discharge. I don’t know what causes it, but I suspect it may be due to decreased grooming activity combined with chronic dehydration (which causes the tears to thicken and not drain normally).

I suspect that Patches’ medical problems, rather than pain, caused the irregularities you describe.

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