Just like humans, your pet may sneeze on occasion for seemingly no reason at all. If this only happens to your cat every once in a while, and is otherwise normal and active, you probably have nothing to worry about. However, if your cat is sneezing a lot and it is accompanied by other symptoms, your cat’s sneeze may be a sign of a more significant problem. Keep reading to learn more about common causes for your cat sneezing and what you should do if this happens. 

Why is My Cat Sneezing?

If your cat is sneezing, this can be caused by several different things. Some of the most common causes of sneezing in cats are infections, inhaled irritants, and allergens. Viral infections that most commonly cause sneezing in cats are the feline herpes virus and feline calicivirus. 


Here are a few possible reasons why your cat might be sneezing: 


  1. A simple tickle: One of the most obvious reasons for a sneeze is a simple tickle. If your cat’s nose was tickled by a bit of dust or a mild irritant, it can cause a reflexive sneeze. 
  2. Upper respiratory infection: One of the most common causes of sneezing in cats is associated with respiratory infections. These infectious diseases include herpes virus, calicivirus, chlamydia infections, and bacterial infections, such as Mycoplasma. 
  3. Inhaled irritants: If your cat only sneezes once in a while, something may be irritating the nasal passages. Make sure to look for patterns in your cat’s sneezing. Potential irritants include cigarette smoke, perfume, pest sprays, cleaning agents, mold, pollen, candles, and cat litter. 
  4. Dental disease: Dental problems, especially those involving root infections, can allow bacteria to establish in your cat’s nasal sinus; this results in inflammation and sneezing. 
  5. Intranasal vaccines: If your cat receives a vaccine that fights against respiratory infections, it may cause sneezing for a few days following the vaccine. 

Sneezing and Other Symptoms

Sometimes, your cat’s sneezing may be accompanied with other symptoms that may be the result of a wide range of infections and other health-related issues. These symptoms may include: 

  • Fatigue or depression
  • Eye discharge, swelling, or ulcers
  • Fever
  • Excessive nasal discharge (typically yellow or green in color)
  • Drooling
  • Decreased appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Enlarged lymph nodes
  • Poor coat condition
  • Wheezing and/or coughing
  • Diarrhea
  • Trouble with breathing 

When to See a Veterinarian about Your Cat’s Sneezing

If your cat is only sneezing once in a while, you may want to simply monitor them for a few days. However, if your cat continuously sneezes, sneezes blood, or exhibits other symptoms that were listed above, call your vet immediately. 


When it comes to being sick, prevention is always better than treatment. One of the best ways to prevent certain viruses is by having your cat vaccinated according to the schedule recommended by your family veterinarian. If you have any concerns about your cat’s health, call or schedule an appointment with your veterinarian today! 


Our team of veterinary professionals at Bowman Road Animal Clinic is here to provide diagnosis and treatment if your cat is exhibiting any unusual behaviors. Contact our office today at 501-223-3737!