Fluid in the Lungs Average Cost

From 355 quotes ranging from $500 - 4,000

Average Cost

$1,000

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What are Fluid in the Lungs?

Fluid in the lungs in cats is also referred to as pulmonary edema, which means there is an excess of fluid inside the lungs. If not treated promptly, this can lead to the damage of your cat’s healthy lung tissue.

Your cat’s health depends on his entire body functioning correctly. While most cats do not develop significant medical issues, some develop problems that affect their overall health and wellness. If your cat has developed a condition that has led to an accumulation of fluid in his lungs, it can cause a myriad of symptoms and potentially damage his lungs.

Symptoms of Fluid in the Lungs in Cats

There are certain symptoms you may notice if your cat experiences a buildup of fluid in his lungs. The following are some of the most common symptoms veterinarians see in cats with this condition:

  • Breathing with an open mouth
  • Dry cough
  • Lethargy
  • Intolerance to exercise
  • Increased breathing rate
  • Wheezing or crackling noises when breathing
  • Bluish tint to gums and mucous membranes
  • Chest pains

Causes of Fluid in the Lungs in Cats

A variety of disorders and diseases can cause your cat to develop fluid in his lungs. Here are some of the most common causes seen in domestic cats:

  • Pneumonia
  • Feline Infectious Peritonitis
  • Parasitic infections
  • Viral infections
  • Heart Conditions
  • Tumors
  • Mediastinal lymphoma
  • Feline Leukemia
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy
  • Obstruction of the upper airway
  • Heartworms (rare in cats)
  • Bronchitis
  • Feline Asthma

Diagnosis of Fluid in the Lungs in Cats

Your veterinarian will need some information from you before making a diagnosis. He will ask you questions regarding your cat’s overall health including any unusual occurrences during his birth and if he has been diagnosed with any other health conditions by another doctor. You will also need to let your doctor know when you first noticed symptoms in your cat. Your veterinarian will take vital signs including weight, temperature, heart rate, and respiration rate. In addition, he will draw blood for laboratory tests that may help him make a diagnosis. In veterinary medicine, a CBC or complete blood count and a chemical profile are routinely run. A urine sample will also be taken from your cat and examined. Diagnostic X-rays or an ultrasound may also be performed to help your doctor make a diagnosis. 

In addition to testing, your doctor will examine your cat thoroughly. He will listen to his heart and lungs and evaluate his neurological functions. Your doctor will also evaluate your cat’s overall behavior and mannerisms.

Treatment of Fluid in the Lungs in Cats

The treatment for fluid in the lungs in cats depends largely upon the cause of the condition. Here is an overview of treatments for some conditions that can cause fluid to accumulate in the lungs:

Asthma

If your cat is diagnosed with asthma, your veterinarian will most likely prescribe an inhaler and corticosteroids. Since asthma is worse if your cat is overweight, your doctor may place him on a diet or on prescription cat food. 

Heartworms

Unlike dogs, heartworm infections are rare in cats but they can happen. If your cat has heartworms that are causing a buildup of fluid, your doctor may treat his symptoms with medications. There are currently no safe heartworm treatments for cats.

Cardiomyopathy

There is no cure for feline cardiomyopathy, but your doctor can help manage your cat’s symptoms. He may prescribe diuretics to help your cat eliminate excess fluids and ACE inhibitors to keep his blood pressure in check. Anti-clotting medications may be administered to prevent blood clots from forming. 

Your doctor may also help stabilize your cat with IV fluids and place him in a chamber with oxygen to help him breathe. In most cases, veterinarians recommend restricting your cat’s activities so he can breathe better. If your cat is struggling to breathe or not stable, your doctor may admit him to the veterinary hospital for medications, treatment and supervision. 

Recovery of Fluid in the Lungs in Cats

Your doctor will give you detailed instructions on how to care for your cat during and after treatment. It is important to give your cat his medication exactly as prescribed and follow any instructions regarding diet and overall care. Your veterinarian may want to see your cat every few weeks until he is sure your cat is stable and recovering in the proper manner. Be sure to use these visits to keep your doctor informed about any changes in your cat’s behavior, diet and symptoms. If your cat appears to be recovering and suffers a relapse in symptoms, it is best to report that to your doctor at once so appropriate action can be taken.

If your cat has been diagnosed with cancer or is suffering, your doctor may recommend euthanasia as the best course of treatment. While this is never an easy decision, it may be the most humane thing to do. You may also opt to take your cat home and manage his symptoms with holistic or alternative treatments. Your cat will benefit if you work together with your doctor to discover the cause of fluid in his lungs and treat it accordingly. 

Fluid in the Lungs Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Shadow
g hair
6 Years
Mild condition
1 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

wheezing, sqeeky sound

My 6 y.o. male cat started to have a sqeeky sound sometimes ( not every day) but I got concerned and took him to be checked. He is eating, acting as always ( always been sleeping more than my other cats).
After Xray I was told that his left lung is collapsed, due to probably fluid build up, lung mass, heart disease. They also told me that they cannot do anything due to the fact that they cannot visual heart very good and they can cause damage. On the other hand on the vet report heart beat are regular and can he heard ok. We have been send home on enalapril every 8hrs and prednisolone every 12 hrs for a week.
Lungs Xray show white on left and on the right the lung can be seen clear.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
I'm sorry that that is happening to Shadow. Without more information on his condition, I can't add very much to what your veterinarian has already done, and the medications that he is on. One thing that might give more information is an ultrasound of his chest, as they may be able to more clearly visualize his heart, or any masses that may be there. I hope that he recovers well.

Thank you so much for your fast answer.
-Is that possible that he was living on one lung for long time, and just adapted to use only 1 lung?
-There is any way that I can send you the xrays to see ?

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Padme
dsh
2 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Fluid In Abdomen

My cat wentntonthe vet yesterday and they told me she most likely has FIP. I am wondering what other diseases are associated with fluid in lungs and small blood clots. Her level of is slower but she still plays, eats, and drinks.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Other diseases that can cause fluid in the lungs and blood clots might include heart disease, clotting disorders, warfarin ingestion, or cancer. WIthout seeing Padme, I'm sorry that i can't comment on what is going on with her, but your veterinarian may be able to advise you on some possible therapy to keep her comfortable.

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Cookie
Short hai
One Month
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

No eating , gasps for air

Very congested kitten. Very hard for her to breath. Vet said antibiotics I may help, maybe fluid in the lungs, in that case not much to do bc they r too little? Is that correct

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
It is hard to treat tiny kittens, that is true. Since pneumonia is somewhat common in kittens, the antibiotics may help, but she may also benefit from oxygen therapy until she is feeling better. You can ask your veterinarian if they offer that kind of service, or if you need to be referred to another clinic to have her treated. I hope that she is okay.

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Chacho
domestic short hair
10 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Fluid in lungs

Medication Used

Baytril

My cat chacho has had symptoms for about 6 months. About 4 months prior we took him to a vet. 3 x rays performed and explained he had fluid in the lungs. Sent home with antibiotic. Money has been tight not knowing what to do. But meds have finished and he is still the same. He is over weight. Breaths ver heavily. Any thing I can do.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
There isn't anything that you can do for fluid in Chacho's lungs at home, unfortunately. Since your veterinarian has seen him, it would be reasonable to call them, let them know that he is still the same after the medications, and they can sometimes use that response to therapy as a clue to try something else to help him. They should have an idea as to what is causing the fluid, and may be able to provide another therapy without costing a lot.

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zoe
Himalayan
6 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

hi, i really need your help today! on Friday my cat got her x ray done and the vet said, my cat have fluid on her lung not a lot, she also has heart murmur and she was born with it, her symptoms are coughing and when she breathing specially sleeping she makes funny sound, but not too too loud. the vet gave her amlodipine .0625 mg and it said for life! that really scares me, this amlodipine .0625 mg is mainly for hypertension and high blood pressure kitties, can you tell me why the vet gave her this med. thank you. connie

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2995 Recommendations
Amlodipine is a calcium channel blocker used to treat hypotension in cats, it is possible that your Veterinarian diagnosed Zoe with hypotension based on other symptoms found during the physical examination. Generally with fluid on the lungs, there are many different causes and treatment may involve diuretics or heart medications. If you have concerns, call your Veterinarian to discuss the rationale for this medication being prescribed and if you have further doubts visit another Veterinarian in your area to see if they come to the same diagnosis. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM https://wagwalking.com/cat/condition/hypertension

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Romeo
Sphynx
6 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Labored and Open-Mouthed Breathing
Fluid in lungs

Good afternoon,
My cat presented with so much fluid in her lungs that only 15% and 20% of the xray in each lung, respectively, was black. The heart could neither be seen nor heard. The vet has said that removing the fluid "blind" might puncture the lung or the heart. He said that he could not hear the heart. The cat is eating very well and has healthy stools.
Please give me your opinion about whether I should put the animal down or proceed to treatment. I don't want the animal to suffer. Thank you in advance for your prompt answer and your candor.
~Jeanine

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Whether Romeo would benefit from treatment depends on the cause of the fluid buildup, of which there are many. There are relatively safe and commonly used techniques to perform a thoracocentesis, or removing the fluid. At minimum, your veterinarian will be able to assess the type of fluid to determine what the cause of the buildup may be. At best, it may give him some relief, as not being able to breathe is a terrible way to live, or die, sadly. Please follow up with your veterinarian to discuss whether he is suffering, and what the best decision for him would be. I wish you both well.

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Zenis
Persian
9 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Severe breathing

I am wondering what happened as my cat died in one day . He started to breathe very fast - I took him to emergency and they said x ray showed fluid in the lungs . The fluid had blood as well. They took the fluid out and he died after that in few hours. What could be the cause?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2995 Recommendations
I understand that this is a distressing time for you, but without performing a necropsy on Zenis I cannot say what the specific cause of death is; it is also important to determine whether the fluid was in the lungs themselves or in the pleural cavity as the causes of vary. I would recommend asking your Veterinarian for a necropsy to get some specific answers. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Molly
Short hair tabby
14 Years
Moderate condition
0 found helpful
Moderate condition

Has Symptoms

Mass in chest and fluid biuld up

Hi after takeing my cat of 14 to see the vet i was told she as a mass in the chest cavety and fluid in the lung he drained a lot of fluid off. we have her home she is on medication and she is eating well drinking weeing pooing seems fine at the moment what do you think please. Anita..

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
Thank you for your email. Without knowing more about Molly's situation, the type of fluid, the size or location of the mass, I can't comment on what might be going on. Since your veterinarian saw her and knows her situation, it would be best to call them and ask what to expect, any possible treatments, and what they think the cause of the problem is. I hope that she does well, it is very positive that she is eating and drinking well.

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Isla
Medium haired tuxedo
7 Years
Critical condition
0 found helpful
Critical condition

Has Symptoms

Cat with fluid around lungs

My 7 year old cat had laboured breathing, was not eating or drinking, lost weight. The vet did an X-ray and pulled some fluid from her lungs. 2 months prior I had given her cat grass from a grocery store and she then had diarrhea, and she was put on antibiotics. There was no other tests done when I brought her in for the breathing. No blood work or anything. Is it possible that she just had a parasitic infection from the grass? The vet said her prognosis was fatal and didn’t offer any other treatment. It was devastating to have to put her down. Now I am worried that I should have asked for more tests??

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2995 Recommendations
I understand that this is a devastating time for you and you are second guessing your decisions. However, without examining Isla I couldn’t tell you what the underlying cause for the fluid was or if any treatment or management options would have helped. Sorry I cannot be more useful at this time. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Vanessa
American Shorthair
3 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Trouble breathing with no fluid
Pulmonary edema

Medication Used

Rutin
Furosemide

Hello, my cat has fluid buildup in her lungs. I took her to am emergency clinic where they tested for cancer and bacteria, and a cardiologist who ruled out heart failure. Currently she's on rutin and a diuretic. The rutin appears to decrease the fluid in her lungs, but it still sounds like she has trouble getting air into her lungs. Personally I think it may be heartworms or asthma, but the vets did not test for these and left it as she is one of those cats that just gets fluid in her lungs for no good reason. So I'm just wondering how I should proceed, seems like steroids would be a good thing to try to me.

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2995 Recommendations
Without examining Vanessa myself I cannot give any indication for a course of treatment apart from following what has already been prescribed; steroids may help in some cases but it depends on the underlying cause. If you’re not happy with the approach taken by your Veterinarian, I would recommend taking Vanessa for a second option with another Veterinarian in your area to see if they match the original approach to treatment or not. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Tom
Mongrel
13 Years
Serious condition
0 found helpful
Serious condition

Has Symptoms

Fluid buildup on lungs

Hello, my cat is currently in the vets suffering from fluid on the lungs which the vet suspects is from heart disease, but they cannot do a scan of his heart to confirm this until Monday which is a great worry. The only medication he is on is 'furosemide' and something for his thyroid. Should he not also be on medication to keep his blood pressure down (like benazepril), or digoxin, or anti-clotting medication, or even beta blockers? I have heard spironolactone or enalapril works well with the furosemide that he's on so why hasn't he been given that? He is eating and is fine in himself so I am really not comfortable with the prospect of putting him down. I've read that 'Corticosteroids' could really help him too. The vets he is with seem to be treating the fluid buildup but not the cause, and couldn't the cause be pneumonia/heartworm/bronchitis seeing as he doesn't have other symptoms of heart failure like blue/grey gums, extreme tiredness etc...it's purely just the fluid buildup. They don't seem willing to give him medication to help his heart pump until the fluid stops building up which I just cannot get my head around because surely trying that is better than not trying it. Thank you so much in advance.

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
Different conditions do require different medications, and heart failure is one cause of fluid in the lungs. Furosemide is an emergency medication to clear fluid from the lungs, and is typically quite effective. Since they don't know the cause of the buildup, they are probably hesitant to start treating Tom for all of the possible causes, and getting the fluid out of his lungs will allow him to breathe and survive. I can't comment on what other medications he may need without knowing more about his situation, but it seems that your veterinarian is providing care until they can get further diagnostics and narrow down the cause.

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Brian
British Shorthair
9 Months
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Rapid breathing

Medication Used

frusemide

Hi,
My Brian is 9 months old. He was rapidly breathing and usually will open his mouth. So I brought him to the vet and was told that he need to warded as there's fluid in his lung. And the doctor did ultrasound and found that his heart also abnormal, probably HCM. The doctor also advised to start him with drug - Vetmedin, however I'm not so sure whether it is a good idea since Vetmedin is usually prescribed to dog only. Any advice? TQ

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2995 Recommendations
Vetmedin (pimobendan) is used off label in cats by Veterinarians even though it is intended for use in dogs (occurs with many medicines not approved for certain species or even for any veterinary use); however Vetmedin should not be given in cases of hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (HCM). If you have concerns about treatment, you should discuss with your Veterinarian or ask for a referral to a Cardiologist. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM www.vetmedin.com

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Vivi
Domestic shorthair
4 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Breathing shallow
Open mouth breathing,
Acting normal
Rapid breathing

Medication Used

none

My cat, Vivi, is about to turn 4 next month. She is an outdoor/indoor cat, and has had all of her vaccines. I'm the past few weeks, I have noticed when she exerts herself she will start panting. When she is laying down, she breathes shallow and fast. She is acting completely normal, and seems to be in no pain. I've never paid attention to her breathing like this before, so I'm not sure if I'm just being paranoid, but I'm very worried about her. It has been hot out recently, so maybe it could be due to heat exhaustion or something related? I am planning to take her to the vet at the end of the week, but I'm not sure how serious this is since she seems fine in every other way, and has no preexisting conditions. Any ideas?

Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
Dr. Callum Turner, DVM
2995 Recommendations
There are many different causes for respiratory changes which may include heat exhaustion, without examining Vivi I cannot determine if the changes are something to be concerned about or not; there are many causes apart from heat exhaustion which may cause these symptoms including infections, cancer, lung tumours, liver disease among many other causes. Keep an eye on Vivi and visit your Veterinarian when you can for an examination to be on the safe side. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM

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Boo
Snowshoe
2 Years
Mild condition
0 found helpful
Mild condition

Has Symptoms

Rapid breathing

My cat has been acting very weird lately . I first began to notice when I realized she was breathing fast . However she has yet to breathe with her mouth open . Her gumbs also appear to look normal . This has been going on for about a week. Also she’s been way more friendlier lately and now loves to be around me on my bed and love to be petted before she was very independent and at times aggressive . At night time she won’t let me sleep , her constant meows keep me up and she doesn’t stop until I’m out of bed . But once I’m out she simply just stops I don’t know what she wants . I’ve done a lot of research and I simply don’t know what’s wrong with my cat .

Dr. Michele King, DVM
Dr. Michele King, DVM
1408 Recommendations
Boo may be going into heat if she isn't spayed, or there may be something that is making her nervous, or she may not be feeling well. If you are concerned, it might be a good idea to have her seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine her and see if there is anything that she needs to have treated.

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