The next step would be to have a fine needle aspirate done on the popliteal lymph nodes to determine the types of cells present; lymph nodes can aggregate white blood cells in response to many conditions so an examination of the aspirate would be useful. With other parameters coming back normal, it is difficult to say what the specific cause is; but speak with your Veterinarian about performing a fine needle aspirate to help narrow in on a diagnosis. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM
A normal healthy cat will take 20-30 regular breaths per minute. The air travels into your cat’s lungs and is used to oxygenate the blood, which is then circulated throughout your cat’s vital organs. When a cat is suffering from rapid breathing, this breath rate increases and often becomes irregular, or shallow. This can often be an indication that your cat is not able to bring enough oxygen into the lungs to supply their body’s need. Rapid breathing is a symptom that can be caused by a number of illnesses or injuries. Since regular breathing is vital, if your cat is suffering from rapid breathing (also known as tachypnea) it is a serious and life threatening condition and you should seek immediate veterinary care.

Thank you for your email. Unfortunately, without examining Bella, I'm not sure if she is having a problem or not. If her behavior seems off, and her breathing is more rapid, it is worth paying attention to, and if you can get her in to see your veteirnarian before the storm hits tomorrow it would probably be a good idea, to make sure she is okay. I hope that all goes well for her!


For as long as I can remember my 5 year old cat has intermittent rapid breathing. She doesn't seem bothered by this and she doesn't have any other symptoms when she is breathing quickly. I always forget to ask about this when she is at the vet and her breathing is always normal there. When her breathing is fast it's around 70 75 breaths per minute and normal is around 32. The intermittent fast breathing last maybe a few minutes and then goes back to normal.
If your cat is having difficulty breathing, this can be a life threatening emergency. It is important to have your cat seen by a veterinarian as soon as possible. You will need to give a thorough history of your cat's health, onset of symptoms, and possible incidents that might have preceded this condition. During the examination, the veterinarian will carefully observe how your cat breathes, and will listen to its chest for evidence of a heart murmur or fluid in the lungs. Your cat's gum color will be carefully evaluated as well, since the color of the gums can indicate whether oxygen is being delivered to the organs (hypoxemia) effectively, or if it there is a low red blood cell count (anemia). Your veterinarian may try to get your cat to cough by pressing on its windpipe. If your cat is having extreme difficulty breathing, the veterinarian will give your cat oxygen to help it breathe before doing any more tests.
You shouldn’t notice breathing rates over 40 breaths per minute in a resting cat; an increase in respiration may be due to inadequate airflow, malpositioning of the throat, respiratory infection, heart issues among other causes. Without examining Roxanne I cannot say for sure what is happening, keep a close eye on her and if you decide to have her fixed speak with your Veterinarian then. Regards Dr Callum Turner DVM
Rapid breathing (tachypnea) is a respiratory disorder characterised by abnormal breathing that is rapid and shallow.  It is caused by a reduced level of oxygen, mechanical disorders (where the lungs aren’t able to expand as they should, usually due to a build-up of fluid in or around the lungs), and physiological disorders in which the cat’s respiratory centre in the brain is over stimulated.
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