Saturday 29 January 2011

Cat Losing Voice

The medical terms for a cat losing its voice is laryngitis, which is the inflammation of the mucous membrane of the voice box.

Healthy cat! I couldn't find a picture of a cat that had lost its voice. Photo by Mindaugas Lickus (Flickr).

The symptoms are loss of voice as mentioned and hoarseness. The common causes of a cat losing its voice are a chronic cough and excessive meowing. These strain the vocal cords.

Laryngitis can also be associated with:
  • tonsillitis
  • throat infections
  • tracheobronchitis
  • pneumonia
  • inhalant allergies
  • tumors in the throat although this is rare
  • See Feline URIs
If excessive meowing is the cause, the reason for this needs to be assessed and removed. It will usually be due to stress and anxiety or the cat may be distressed about something.

Clearly if the cat is coughing a lot the cause needs to be assessed and treated. The page on cat coughing deals with when we can and can't treat a cat cough ourselves. Most often we cannot if it is chronic. In which case a veterinarian is required.

Some cats are very quiet and have silent voices. This is simply a cat characteristic. British Shorthairs are like this.

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