Cat Choking: Identifying the Signs and How to Respond

Choking is a scary thing to watch in any pet, no matter how old they are. When we think of choking, we almost always picture an older dog or cat with something lodged in its throat. However, even younger pets can experience this problem. And while it's not common for cats to choke on foreign objects, it's still important that you know what to look out for if your kitty does happen to get something stuck in his or her mouth or throat—and what steps will keep him safe until he gets veterinary care!

A cat choking on a toy is nothing new.

A cat choking on a toy is nothing new. Cats love to play with toys, but sometimes they get too excited and swallow them. Choking is a common response to swallowing a foreign object, so if you see your cat choking or having difficulty breathing or swallowing, it's time to take action!

If you think your cat may be choking:

  • Call for help immediately--if possible, bring the pet to an emergency veterinary hospital (never attempt to drive yourself). Do not try any first aid measures until professional assistance arrives; even if you have done everything right up until now, there could still be serious internal damage happening inside of the animal's body that requires immediate attention by trained professionals in order not only save its life but also prevent long-term health issues later down the road due directly from improper treatment during these critical moments when every second counts most greatly towards making sure nothing goes wrong later down line due solely because something could've been done better sooner rather than later after things started going bad earlier rather than later before anything became worse before anything happened yet again afterward once again !"

The choking response for cats is similar to what it is for dogs.

The choking response for cats is similar to what it is for dogs. Cats will gag, cough, and retch. They may paw at their mouth or drool excessively, which can be a sign of an obstruction in the throat. Other signs of choking include difficulty breathing, passing out, and vomiting. If you see any of these symptoms in your cat, immediately remove whatever is stuck in its throat--even if it's not a toy or food! If you are unable to remove the object yourself (and don't feel comfortable doing so), take your pet to a vet immediately!

What can you do if your cat is choking?

If your cat is choking, there are several things you should not do:

  • Do not force anything down their throat. This can cause further damage to their airway and make it harder for them to breathe.
  • Do not give milk or water if they're having trouble swallowing. Choking often leads to vomiting, but giving fluids will only increase the chance of further complications when they vomit later on (and possibly aspirate on those liquids).
  • Do not try to make your cat vomit if they are coughing forcefully or drooling excessively because this can cause more damage than good! If you suspect that something might be stuck in its throat after attempting these steps above and it still won't pass out naturally after 15 minutes or so then call an emergency vet immediately before doing anything else!

How do you know if your cat has actually swallowed the foreign object when they gag?

If you see an object in your cat's mouth, it's likely that he has swallowed it. In this case, perform the Heimlich maneuver on him by gently squeezing his abdomen inwards with one hand while supporting his chest with the other hand. This should dislodge the foreign matter and allow him to breathe again.

If you cannot see what is causing your cat's choking symptoms but suspect there may be something stuck in their throat or esophagus (the tube connecting their mouth to their stomach), try reaching into their mouth with one finger and pressing down gently on either side of where his tongue meets his throat until you feel something move around inside his neck cavity and then pull out whatever it was--this might be food particles or even pieces of plastic toys! If this does not work for whatever reason (for example if there is no visible obstruction), then rush them straightaway over to see a veterinarian who can further assess whether surgery is needed immediately due to risk factors like infection developing inside those areas where air cannot reach due to being blocked off entirely by foreign objects being stuck inside there too long without being removed quickly enough before they become lodged permanently within those passageways leading away from where they belong instead: namely outside

Is it possible to dislodge an object from your cat's throat?

It's possible to dislodge an object from your cat's throat. However, if you are unable to do so and the object is lodged in the throat, take your cat immediately to a veterinarian. While it may be tempting to try out different methods at home before taking them in for professional help, this could be dangerous for both you and your pet.

If you can remove an object from your cat's mouth on your own:

  • Get it out of their mouth as soon as possible! If they swallow something--even if they don't seem like they're choking on it--they need medical attention right away because there could still be pieces of whatever was swallowed left behind that will cause problems for them later on down the road if not removed now (and possibly sooner).

If you see any of these signs, rush your kitty to the vet immediately.

If you see any of these signs, rush your kitty to the vet immediately.

  • If you see your cat gagging or coughing, take them to the vet immediately.
  • If you are not sure if it is a foreign object, take them to the vet anyway. In many cases, cats will cough up their own hairballs as well as foreign objects that may have been swallowed accidentally and lodged in their throats or stomachs. Coughing could also indicate pneumonia or other respiratory illness so it's important for both diagnosis and treatment purposes that all possible causes be ruled out before moving forward with treatment options like antibiotics or surgery.
  • If you see your cat vomiting (even if it looks like food), take them to the vet immediately. Even though vomiting usually isn't serious on its own (especially if no blood appears), it can mean something more serious like kidney failure which would require immediate attention from an expert veterinarian who specializes in treating feline patients!


Choking is a serious medical condition that can lead to death if not treated immediately. If your cat is choking, the first step is to determine what kind of obstruction or blockage there is in its airway. There are many types of obstructions that can cause this life-threatening condition in cats and it's important to know what they are so you can treat them appropriately.


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