Cat Litter Causes Wheezing

Dr. Fiona is a veterinarian guest blogger for pet insurance provider, Pets Best.

Hi. I’m Dr. Fiona Caldwell; I’m a veterinarian at Idaho Veterinary Hospital. I’m answering questions from Pets Best Insurance Facebook page today. This question comes from Carrie who asks: Why do some cat litters cause wheezing? This is a great question. Cats can have different sensitivities to litter, some cats have no problems at all, and other cats can be more sensitive.

Litter can be really dusty, and just like with you and I, if we’re in dusty places, it can cause sneezing and wheezing. If you do have a cat that has wheezing with a certain brand of litter, you might try experimenting with unscented litters, clumping versus non-clumping, some can be a little bit dustier than others. There’s also litter that are crystals, that don’t even have any dust to them or compounded newspaper, like a Yesterday’s News-type litter can occasionally be better for your cat. It may take a little experimenting before you find which one works for you.

If you guys have questions for me, feel free to post them below or on the Pets Best Insurance Facebook page.

One comment

  • Gina

    One other bit of information I would like to share regarding litter: My cat Bubba is a Russian Blue. At the beginning of this past summer, I noticed a small spot on his belly, the size of a dime, where he was missing fur. A week later the patch grew to a quarter and it continued to grow and grow until his entire belly was bald and pink. I took him to the vet, he thought it ay be a food allergy, so we tried different food changes. That didn’t seem to help. Then he suggested blood test and then shots. But he really still didn’t know what they problem was and by this time Bubba’s undercarriage completely naked and he was starting to clear cut all the fur off his paws and legs. I did some research and someone suggested I change his litter. I was using Fresh Step, unscented. The dust from that and other clumping litter tends to be very fine. Two days after changing to The World Best Cat Litter, which is a corn based litter and has very little dust, Bubba stopped this constant grooming and within 4 months his fur was back. The super fine dust gets into the cat’s fur and ends up irritating the skin, thus the grooming. So if you cat has the same issues, change his litter before you go through the shots, test etc. Thats my tip when it comes to litter.


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