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6 Reasons Behind a Cat Foaming at the Mouth

Cat Foaming at Mouth

Vet Approved

Dr. Hassan, DVM, RVMP
Dr. Hassan, DVM, RVMP

REVIEWED & FACT-CHECKED

The information contained in this article is for educational purpose and should not be taken as a substitute for your vet’s opinion, as much depends on circumstances and history peculiar to each pet.

The information contained in this article is for educational purpose and should not be taken as a substitute for your vet’s opinion, as much depends on circumstances and history peculiar to each pet.

To witness your cat foaming at the mouth can be a horrifying experience—to say the least. The first thing that may come to your mind is rabies, which can make you panic even more. Chances are high that this may be caused by something less serious.

But you still need to keep a check on your feline. While you need to consult a vet in such situations, there can be some harmless reasons behind your cat foaming at the mouth. Let’s take a closer look into the possible reasons behind cat foaming and what you should do when faced with such a frightening scenario.

6 Possible Reasons Behind Your Cat Foaming at the Mouth

cat foaming at mouth
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1. Nausea

Just like us humans, cats tend to feel nauseated. This can cause cat foaming at the mouth. Cats can feel nauseous when they are pregnant, diabetic, suffering from gastritis, or experiencing motion sickness. Apart from foaming at the mouth, symptoms of nausea may include fatigue, loss of appetite, and lethargy.

2. Anxiety

Another possible reason behind a cat foaming at the mouth can be anxiety. Cats can be affected by emotional distress. They may show their anxiety by roaming around the house restlessly, fidgeting with things, overly grooming their furs, and foaming.

They may feel anxious for a couple of reasons, some of which can be a new pet in the house with whom they cannot socialize, going through a fearful experience, separation anxiety, or moving to a new place. Medications are available in the market to reduce your cat’s anxieties.

3. Poisoning

A cat can start foaming at the mouth if she has poison in her system. This may happen if she consumes something poisonous or when some medications are administered incorrectly. For instance, if a flea medication is applied directly to a cat’s skin, she may ingest it by licking herself. It can also be caused if a cat accidentally ingests poisonous household substances like soap or bleach.

This can cause a cat to foam at the mouth. It is important to take your cat to a vet and get her examined for possible health risks in such cases.

4. Dental Problems

Many a time, dealing with a dental problem may cause foaming at the mouth in cats. A tooth abscess, a gum disease such as gingivitis, or a broken tooth may infect your cat’s mouth. This infection can make your cat experience pain, loss of appetite, and foul-smelling breath. Additionally, she may also start foaming at the mouth.

To minimize the chances of your furry fellow going through dental problems, your vet may suggest you keep her oral hygiene in check. Some vets recommend brushing your cat’s teeth to keep them safe from oral infections. If you are not comfortable with the idea, it is better to book a visit to your vet’s clinic.  

5. Seizures

Seizures—a neurological disorder—are very common in cats. Seizures in a cat are pretty much the same as they are in humans. The cat may collapse on a floor, be unconscious, shake and tremble violently, and can be foaming at the mouth.

If you witness your cat displaying the symptoms of a seizure or any mental disorder, you should immediately seek medical help.

6. Rabies

Suspecting a pet to be rabid can be a scary experience for any pet owner. Your cat may be foaming at the mouth if she has contracted rabies, a viral disease that affects the brain and nervous system. Some of the other symptoms include agitation or aggression, drooling, and loss of muscle control.

Foaming at the mouth is usually the last symptom of rabies, and if your cat is showing this sign, it means she cannot be treated. She may need to be euthanized to save her from a painful death. There is hope, however, if your cat has been vaccinated.   

First Aid at Home—All You Need to Know

As mentioned above, witnessing your beloved feline fellow foaming at the mouth can be petrifying. But if you can rule out any harm and know for sure that your cat isn’t exposed to something harmful, then relax. Your cat might be foaming as a result of being nauseous or may just be feeling anxious.

It is also highly likely her body is reacting to some new medication you have given her. It is common for cats to foam at the mouth if they are given bitter-tasting medicine. In such cases, wait for it. She will start feeling better once her body absorbs the medicine. Your cat can also foam at the mouth if eye drops are administered into their eyes. From eyes, they make their way to the cat throat, producing a bitter taste, which may prompt foaming in cats.

If the reason is bitter medicine, keep two things in mind. One, is the medication prescribed by a veterinarian? If so, there is no reason to worry, as your cat will do fine in a while, though we do recommend consulting the vet.

Two, if it is over-the-counter medicine and there occurs foaming, consult your veterinarian at the earliest. While it may not be a bigger issue, you still need to take your vet’s opinion on the matter.

When to See a Vet?

There are some cases where you need to immediately seek veterinary help if you see your cat foaming at the mouth. These include:

  • Your cat is being bitten or scratched by a stray dog or street cat.
  • If she has consumed something which is outright poisonous for her, such as laundry detergents, drain opening liquids, human antidepressants, onions, garlic, or some poisonous house plants.
  • She is exhibiting signs of some brain disorder, where she may have collapsed, lost consciousness, or is trembling violently.

If you see any of the above signs, contact your vet immediately. He or she will run the necessary tests and start medications to treat her symptoms.

If you know your cat foaming at the mouth is not because of something serious, then keeping an eye over her would suffice. She will start feeling better once her body gets rid of the poisonous substances. Additionally, if you feel your cat is in emotional distress because of some inevitable circumstances, show her more affection and give her your undivided attention. This will help to make her feel comfortable.

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