Why Is My Cat Drooling?

I always thought cat drooling was a way a cat showed love and affection.  When our cat Cat Drooling Can Cause Health Problemsdrooled, I believed that sloppy saliva drooling out of her mouth was just her way of showing contentment. After all, she was in a home where she received lots of love and attention.  So it just made sense that she would show her feelings in such a “lovey dovey” way.  I was a bit surprised when finding out her drooling might be a sign of some serious problem.

Cats do drool when they feel happy or content, when they knead, and when they’re enjoying their favorite plant, catnip. But technically speaking, drooling is a result of excessive salivation.  And there can be health issues that cause this excess. So, if your kitty is a “drooler”,  you may want to consider some of these possible causes of drooling.

1. Poisoning Causing Cat Drooling

Drooling can occur when a cat is exposed to almost any type of poison or toxin.  These are some toxins that can poison your cat:

  • Household Cleaners: Toxic ingredients in cleaners can lead to liver and kidney damage, cancer, anemia, etc. These toxins include: bleach, ammonia, chlorine, glycol ethers, and formaldehyde.To protect your kitty (and all the other family members), use a non-toxic cleaner such as Jeani’s GreenMax Pro.  After Jeani was chemically poisoned,  she couldn’t stand to be near any chemicals.  She tried various natural cleaners, but always reacted to product ingredients.  Plus, she wasn’t satisfied with the way they cleaned.  So she created her own cleaner that disinfects and not only cleans great, but also gets rid of mold, mildew, bacteria and fungus.
  • Lawn pesticides and fertilizers
  • Human prescriptions and topical medications
  • Antifreeze
  • Nicotine products
  • Human drugs, especially topical medications
  • Certain plants containing calcium oxalate crystals which are insoluble (unable to be dissolved): Dieffenbachia, Calla lily, Arrowhead, Dumbcane, Peace Lily, Philodendron, Pothos, Umbrella Plant, Elephant’s Ear, Chinese Evergreen, and Schefflera.
  • Liquid potpourri
  • Laundry detergent pods
  • Chemical flea control products:

Laboratory tests have found that toxic chemicals in commercial flea prevention products contain harmful ingredients that can lead to serious health issues, such as seizures, cancer, and even death. These chemicals include permethrin, imidacloprid, pyriproxyfen, fipronil, and methoprene.

For flea prevention, try a safe chemical free option. Our favorite is the Flea Free Food Supplement, a non-toxic health enhancing liquid that you add to your pet’s food or drinking water.

Please call your veterinarian or a poison control hotline immediately if you believe your kitty has ingested a poisonous item. You can reach the ASPCA’s Poison Control Center 24 hours a day by calling 1-888-426-4435.

2. Dental Disease Leading to Cat Drooling

Dental issues and problems within the mouth are probably the most common cause of cat drooling.  These issues include:

  • Tartar and plaque buildup
  • Gingivitis (inflamed or infected gums)
  • Tooth resorption which occurs when a cat’s own cells eat away and dissolve tooth structure
  • Advanced dental disease that causes bone loss
  • Oral tumors
  • Stomatitis (inflamed or infected bone in the mouth)

Since dental problems can lead to a variety of kitty health problems, it’s important to be proactive when it  comes to your cat’s dental hygiene. Professional teeth cleaning can help greatly, and there are home oral hygiene products that help to reduce or eliminate tartar and plaque, thereby reducing the need for expensive professional dental cleaning.

3. Nausea or Motion Sickness Resulting in Drooling

Most cats do not enjoy (what an understatement for some cats!) riding in a car or other moving vehicles. They can suffer from motion sickness or nausea which then leads to drooling.  This drooling can also be caused by the severe stress that cats experience when riding in a vehicle.  Cats tend to be “home bodies” who like to stay home.  They feel threatened when being in new places.  And this stress can cause nausea and drooling.

If your cat hates traveling in a car, there are various calming products.  These will help calm your kitty and prevent or lessen the degree of nausea and motion sickness.

4. Kitty Drooling Caused by Trauma or Foreign Objects

If foreign objects become stuck in the back of the throat, the tongue, or the soft or hard palate, cat drooling may occur.  Head traumas can cause drooling, especially injuries to the jaw or the temporomandibular joint that result in cats being unable to close their mouths.

To prevent this from happening, keep your cat on a leash and harness when outside, and keep possible choking hazards far away from your kitty.

5. Kidney Disease Leading to Drooling

Cats can become dehydrated when suffering from kidney disease. They can also have painful sores on the gums and tongue. These symptoms can result in drooling due to excessive salivation.

Other signs of kidney disease include: leaking urine and increased urine, weight loss, body weakness, increased thirst, depression, loss of appetite and weight loss, itchy skin, anemia, and skin bruising.

If you suspect that drooling may be due to kidney disease, please take your cat to the veterinarian as soon as possible.

6. Rabies Causes Excessive Salivation

7. Upper Respiratory Infection Can Cause Drooling

8. Heat Stroke May Lead to Cat Drooling

9. Reflux

10. Teething in Kittens May Involve Kitty Drooling

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