Jump to section

What is Hypersalivation?

Cats in general are not prone to drooling. Because it is uncommon, getting a veterinary assessment is the best course of action, to determine whether the hypersalivation is harmless or serious. The earlier that a health issue is detected, the more likely it can be successfully treated. Secondary bacterial infections can develop if mouth injuries are left too long. Saliva can also irritate the mouth and, in response, the immune system will cause the body to section the excess saliva off in a cavity. If the drool has a foamy appearance, the situation may prove to be fatal.

A cat may salivate or drool for many different reasons. While drooling is a normal body function, excessive drooling, or hypersalivation, can be cause for concern. Normal drooling is usually accompanied by excitement or pleasure in the cat. Abnormal drooling appears suddenly, and can last for hours. A cat who has overheated may begin to hypersalivate. Certain diseases, injuries, and viruses can also cause a cat to drool excessively.

Hypersalivation Average Cost

From 270 quotes ranging from $200 - $1,000

Average Cost

$350

Symptoms of Hypersalivation in Cats

While most signs of drooling are associated with the mouth, many underlying issues will create multiple symptoms throughout the body. All of these secondary symptoms should be noted, as they can make identifying the health problem easier. Symptoms are as follows:

  • Excessive drooling (sometimes lasting for hours)
  • Blood in the saliva
  • Bad breath
  • Inability to eat or drink
  • Swelling or masses in the mouth
  • Vomiting
  • Pawing at the mouth
  • Weakness
  • Lethargy
  • Swollen lymph nodes
  • Labored breathing
arrow-up-icon

Top

Causes of Hypersalivation in Cats

The cause of the excessive drooling may be local to the mouth, or may be a symptom of an internal problem. Sudden onset is often linked with more serious issues. While cats may drool for numerous reasons, the following are the most common.

  • Excitement
  • Nervousness
  • Being near appetizing food
  • Poisoning (from a variety of sources)
  • Medication side effects
  • Foreign body stuck in mouth tissue
  • Teething (in kittens)
  • Injury to the tongue or mouth
  • Insect stings
  • Gingivitis and other gum disease
  • Abscessed tooth
  • Stomatitis (inflammation of the mouth and lips)
  • Acid reflux
  • Rabies
  • Pseudorabies
  • Cancer of the mouth
  • Nausea
  • Upper respiratory infection
  • Liver shunt
  • Chronic kidney failure
  • Heat stroke
  • Viruses (such as feline immunodeficiency virus, feline leukemia virus or feline herpesvirus)
arrow-up-icon

Top

Diagnosis of Hypersalivation in Cats

When bringing your cat to a veterinarian, be sure to provide the cat’s full medical history to help sort out potential underlying causes of excessive drooling. The veterinarian will perform a complete physical and oral examination. The cat may need to be sedated for the oral examination to be successful. All symptoms will be noted to see how they match with possible health problems. The vet will look for obvious injuries, abscesses, foreign objects, or masses within the mouth.

Full blood work will be run, including a complete blood count to help detect anemia or the presence of cancer, and a biochemical profile to find signs of metabolic disease. Urinalysis can help to assess how well the kidneys are functioning. A bile acid blood test will indicate the function of the liver. Cultures of the urine may identify bacterial infections present in the body. X-rays or ultrasounds may be used to assess organ health or to locate tumors or lesions in the mouth or body. A biopsy may need to be collected from any masses found.

arrow-up-icon

Top

Treatment of Hypersalivation in Cats

The best course of treatment will be based on the underlying issue that has been identified. Treatment is only necessary if a health problem is present.

Poisoning 

If your cat has been poisoned, the stomach may need to be emptied either by a pump or by inducing vomiting. Certain medications may be administered to counteract the effects of the poison and activated charcoal may be given to stop toxin absorption in the body.

Dental Issues 

Dental surgery may be necessary if abscesses have been found. Singular or multiple tooth extraction may also be needed. Any wounds should be cleaned, and antibiotics may be prescribed to eliminate infection.

Cancer 

If malignant tumors have been found, surgical removal may be attempted. This is only possible in certain locations of tumor growth. Both radiation therapy and chemotherapy may be used to fight cancer on a microscopic level.

Upper Respiratory Infection 

Many URIs are the result of viral infections, which have no curative treatment. Supportive care can greatly assist in recovery. This includes intravenous fluid administration, humidifier use, appetite stimulants, and feeding tubes.

Kidney or Liver Issues 

These complications may require surgery and/or ongoing care and medication application for the remainder of the cat’s life. Special diets may need to be followed to help alleviate these organ problems.

Foreign Body Presence 

To remove a foreign body causing salivation, the cat may need to be sedated. Certain cases may require surgery.

arrow-up-icon

Top

Recovery of Hypersalivation in Cats

If surgery has been part of your cat’s treatment, you will need to follow all at-home care guidelines provided by the veterinarian. This will include monitoring your cat for signs of infection near the incision site. Painkillers, medication or antibiotics may need to be administered daily. Your veterinarian will have you return for follow-up appointments to see how the surgery site is healing and to assess the overall health of the cat. 

The prognosis greatly depends on the type of health issue that has been diagnosed. Dental issues generally resolve with surgical repair, cleaning, and a good oral health routine. Recovery from being poisoned greatly depends on how fast the the poisoning was identified and what substance has been consumed. Kidney and liver disease prognoses are guarded, and often require lifelong treatment. Usually, a cat will recover from an upper respiratory infection. If the underlying cause of the infection is a virus, it may stay in the cat’s system permanently. Cancer prognosis depends on how soon it is treated and how aggressive the cancer is. If your cat is diagnosed with rabies, it will have to be euthanized. Vaccines to prevent rabies should be a part of your annual vet visit. 

arrow-up-icon

Top

*Wag! may collect a share of sales or other compensation from the links on this page. Items are sold by the retailer, not Wag!.

Hypersalivation Average Cost

From 270 quotes ranging from $200 - $1,000

Average Cost

$350

arrow-up-icon

Top

Hypersalivation Questions and Advice from Veterinary Professionals

Need pet health advice? Ask a vet

question-icon-cta

Ask a Vet

dog-name-icon

dog-breed-icon

Tabby

dog-age-icon

Nine Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Drooling

My cat started drooling a couple of days ago. She won’t eat or drink much. Spends most of her time outside or hiding underneath the couch

Sept. 25, 2020

Owner

answer-icon

Dr. Michele K. DVM

recommendation-ribbon

0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I apologize for the delay, this venue is not set up for urgent emails. I hope that your pet is okay. If they are still having any problems, It would be best to have your pet seen by a veterinarian, as they can examine them, see what might be going on, and get any testing or treatment taken care of that might be needed.

Oct. 20, 2020

Was this experience helpful?

dog-name-icon

dog-breed-icon

Domestic short hair cat

dog-age-icon

Nine Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Drooling

My cat has started drooling. It mostly seems to be when she’s happy — coming to sit on me to get pets. But, she has never done this before. She has been on chlorambucil and prednisolone for almost a year, after being diagnosed with small cell lymphoma in her small intestine last August. Her cancer is well managed and at her last oncologist visit, her numbers were good (just 2 weeks ago). I’m tempted to write it off as officially now being a senior cat, or even as being on prednisolone for a year. Do you think that’s reasonable?

Aug. 10, 2020

Owner

answer-icon

Dr. Michele K. DVM

recommendation-ribbon

0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Cats will drool sometimes if they are nervous, nauseous, painful, or have dental disease. Sometimes, some cats will also drool if they are really content. If she recently got a checkup and seems to be doing well, and does not have any dental disease or infected teeth, and is not nauseous., this may be something she's doing because she's happy. If you notice any kind of odor from her mouth, or her appetite seems down or less than normal, or she is vomiting, then it would be best to have her seen by your veterinarian to make sure that things are okay. Otherwise, this may be something that she is doing because she is feeling good. I hope that all goes well for her.

Aug. 11, 2020

Was this experience helpful?

dog-name-icon

dog-breed-icon

Domestic Cat

dog-age-icon

Fifteen Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

thumbs-up-icon

1 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Vomiting And Drooling

My 15yr old cat has thrown up white foam 4 separate times today, he is only drinking, drooling, and has low energy. There was a little hair of his in the foam. He is a shorthair. Should I be concerned?

Aug. 3, 2020

Owner

answer-icon

Dr. Michele K. DVM

recommendation-ribbon

1 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. I think that I would be concerned, yes. That is definitely not normal, and your cat may be sick. It would be best to have him seen by a veterinarian, if they can examine him, see what might be going on, and get treatment for him. I would probably have him seen sooner rather than later. I hope that he is okay.

Aug. 3, 2020

Was this experience helpful?

dog-name-icon

dog-breed-icon

Norwegian Forest Cat

dog-age-icon

Seven Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Drooling, Weak, Breathing Hard

Our cat was treated for tapeworms a few months ago, since then he has moments where we find him sitting/laying in the same spot for a couple hours breathing hard and salivating excessively and has happened more frequently. Diagnosed with a heart murmur so we are not sure if that is related. We found out that we have been buying lilies which happen to be poisonous to cats. we removed them immediately, he immediately felt better but just had another episode. Two videos of him during an episode are shown in the link below https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1eWNx6fmnF96dmUmkzfectKWpf3AFwQDm

July 28, 2020

Owner

answer-icon

Dr. Michele K. DVM

recommendation-ribbon

0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. From your description, it seems that the signs you are noticing are probably related to his heart condition, and it would be best to have him seen by your veterinarian as this is a change from his previous behavior. They can assess him and see what might be going on and get treatment for him. If you are able to show your veterinarian the video, that will help them with what is going on. I hope that he is okay.

July 28, 2020

Was this experience helpful?

dog-name-icon

dog-breed-icon

Domestic Shorthair

dog-age-icon

8 weeks

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Unknown severity

Has Symptoms

Drooling, Weak, High Blood Pressure, Not Eating Or Drinking

My kitten woke up and seemed oddly tired and weak. He had to rest his head on my arm, that's when I noticed the drooling and he started crying. The night before I noticed he wasn't eating or drinking.

July 22, 2020

Owner

answer-icon

Dr. Michele K. DVM

recommendation-ribbon

0 Recommendations

Thank you for your question. Young kittens are prone to problems with parasites and infectious diseases. From your description, your kitten sounds like she needs medical attention, and the best thing to do would be to take her to a veterinarian to have an exam and see what treatment options are available for her so that she feels better. I hope that all goes well for her.

July 22, 2020

Was this experience helpful?

dog-name-icon

Mr Grey

dog-breed-icon

I don't know

dog-age-icon

3 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Critical severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Critical severity

Has Symptoms

Death
Hypersalivation
Scared Wild Behaivour
Mouth Paralysis
Seizure Like Behavior

A stray cat started living with us. He recited the rabies vaccine a month ago. He was diagnose with feline Hiv and leukemia. He was eating and drinking water fine until yesterday. This morning suddenly he started acting differently. He started running around in circles wildly and salivating excessively. It was as if he was choking. His mouth wasn't closing and he was staring around afraid. Before we could get him to the vet, he died. He was such a loving cat but in those last minutes he was afraid of us and sitting under the table and jumping about. Please tell me what could have happened to him

dog-name-icon

Pussnboots

dog-breed-icon

Orange domestic

dog-age-icon

1 Year

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Serious severity

Has Symptoms

Not Eating Lethargy Weak Drooling

My kitty boots was outside and didnt come when I called so I went to the shed where their beds are and he was just laying in one he always comes when I call him no matter what so I picked him up and brought him inside the house. I noticed his fur looked funny and examined him and noticed he had a fever and his breath smelled like dead animal or something along those lines and this was around 8pm after vet hours. I had him sleep with me all night and then took him to the vet at 11 am the next day. They ran the normal virus test came back negative.. it's been 12 hours since then and I have to give him an antibiotic once a day but he still has stinky breath he hasn't eaten or drank anything since a few hours or more be4 we went to the vet. He walks sometimes but it's slow he went to jump on the bed and made it but barely he had to climb rest of the way I didnt make it in time to help him up. I'm worried he might've been poisoned or something as I have another cat that recently dissapeared and another cat that started drooling about an hour and a half ago. I'm thinking about taking boots back tomorrow if he isnt better to get him on an iv and get some overnight care.

dog-name-icon

Fiona

dog-breed-icon

tabby

dog-age-icon

4 Years

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Off Balance
Anxiety
Hypersalvation

My 4 year old cat drools a LOT. Mostly when purring. But I've noticed when she poops she is literally gooping thick strings of saliva from her mouth .. also she rarely lands on her feet when she jumps off of anything and is pretty jumpy/anxious around anyone other than myself or my son.. Any ideas? I've never seen this kind of drooling before

dog-name-icon

Eevee

dog-breed-icon

Tuxedo

dog-age-icon

6 Months

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Fair severity

Has Symptoms

Lethargy

As of last night my kitten has been more tired than usual, wasn't playing through out the night. Then this morning waking up I saw that her tongue had been sticking out for hours. She is now drooling excessively and has been for hours. She hasnt wanted to get up, eat, or drink all day. I am concerned but don't have much money to take her to the vet unless I know it is serious. Any advice would help.

dog-name-icon

Bennie

dog-breed-icon

Tuxedo

dog-age-icon

5 Months

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

thumbs-up-icon

0 found helpful

pill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filledpill-rating-filled

Moderate severity

Has Symptoms

Hello, my 5 month old male kitten was spayed 3 days ago. Since then he has refused all food water, treats, and all kinds of enticing foods. I’ve used a syringe to get fluids in him and he swallows it with no trouble but he just sits near his food, takes tiny bites and spits them out. He will not drink at all. Also, he is drooling constantly. He’s sleeping much more than usual but appears alert at times. I checked for signs of dehydration but he’s ok since I have used the syringe feedings. He is urinating. He weighed 8lbs when he had the surgery and now weighs 7lbs. I called the Vet and was was told it takes 3 days for some cats to recover.

Hypersalivation Average Cost

From 270 quotes ranging from $200 - $1,000

Average Cost

$350

How can we help your pet?