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Sr. Kitty makes Old man mouth smacking noises

Trinity
March 17th, 2011, 09:58 AM
Hi, I was hoping someone might be able to help me with this question or at least has had a similar situation.

We have an old warrior kitty that is going on 15 this month. He is an active, healthy, lovable old boy that is mainly an outdoor guy but loves to cuddle.

This winter we've noticed that he seems to have started making a new noise & we can find no obvious reason for it. He has started making this noise that I can only describe as an old man who has taken his teeth out and makes a juicy smacking kind of noise.

His health appears to be excellent. He eats like a lumberjack, drinks a bowl of water twice a day, poops/pees properly, has not lost weight, his spirit is almost kittenish most days and he has not retreated into his own world and started to ignore us.

He has SEVERE & EXTREME panic attacks if he is put in a cage or taken in the car to the vet so I loathe to put the old boy through that if it's nothing serious like old age or cabin fever (long winter) or something like that.

Thank you in advance to anyone who has any information or advice to offer.

:offtopic:Please don't judge harshly - We absolutely ADORE this cat & if he needs medical attention he will get it regardless of the stress it puts him under.

Thanks again,
Trinity

Love4himies
March 17th, 2011, 12:05 PM
Smacking of the lips or licking can mean nauseous or a tooth issue. Cats are notorious for hiding any illness or pain.

I am concerned about the amount of water he is drinking. When was the last time you had blood work done to check his kidneys/thyroid/liver?

Also, if he is that stressed about travelling, ask your vet for some calming meds that you can give him before you go, or leave out the carrier and put his favourite treats in it and let him come and go in it over a few days..

14+kitties
March 17th, 2011, 12:06 PM
Couple of things I would be concerned with and both will result in a trip to the vets.
The smacking noise - could be because he has a bad tooth or even more than one. Could also be anything else.
The other thing that is of concern is the amount of water he drinks. It sounds to me like your kitty is dehydrated to an alarming degree. Cats need to get their liquids/fluids with their food, not beside it. By the time you see a cat drinking it is already dehydrated. That is why it is important that cats, especially males, are fed a diet of canned or raw foods. Assuming your kitty does live outside most of the time he is probably mousing but still...... maybe not catching enough mice to keep him hydrated. Dry foods just make for many health problems.
Both of the above issues can be indications of serious health issues. At 15 kitty will be in all probability in need of a good health check up. Cats are notorious for not showing they are sick until it reaches a point they can't hide it any more.
There is a pheromone spray you can buy called Feliway that, sprayed under the cats chin but not right on the cat may help to calm him down enough to endure a trip to the vets. There are also drops that can be added to his water for the same purpose. Conversely you can contact your vet and ask if they have a pill you can give the kitty to calm him down before the appt and confinement in a carrier.
My feeling is it's important to get the kitty in for a check up. Any time there is a change in behaviour it should raise a red flag that there is difficulty somewhere.

A good site to read when you have time is www.catinfo.org . It is a bit of an eye opener re cat food and health.

14+kitties
March 17th, 2011, 12:07 PM
Oh, that's funny L4! We posted about the same time!!

Love4himies
March 17th, 2011, 12:23 PM
Oh, that's funny L4! We posted about the same time!!

Great minds think alike, but yours was a much better explanation :thumbs up

Jim Hall
March 17th, 2011, 05:42 PM
Hi I have a 8 yr kit that drinks like a horse too I wouldnt be too concerned about the smacking my old girl Du does that too

That being said , a 15 yr old cat does need a check up and I can sympathise MS DU hates the carrier but it has to be done sometimes

Best of luck

Trinity
March 17th, 2011, 05:47 PM
Thank you both so much for your replies.

I may have inadvertently misled you about the amount of water. :sorry:

It is just a little ceramic kitty bowl, nothing large or anything. We just like to make sure that it doesn't sit around a long time and that he gets fresh water on a regular basis as opposed to water that has been there for a full day hanging around... He does drink it though...

He had blood work done and a complete "physical" done two years ago when his Mommy passed on at 18 & he sunk into a bit of a funk depression. He was given a clean bill of health and he does get his mandatory biannual check up each fall to renew his de-worming treatments as he is an avid "little game hunter" :angel:

I like the idea of the tooth issue as it isn't an ongoing all the time noise he is making.

I notice it mostly in the mornings while "we" get ready for the day at work...haha, he's an active participant in day to day life despite basically being housebound for most of the winter, that's why I was so concerned that maybe he was hiding something serious despite being in such good spirits etc.

Big boy will be taken regardless and I am glad that I don't have to freak out anymore about it being something more drastic and life threatening to him.

Thank you so much for the suggestions about how to calm him down before getting him into his carrier - you have no idea how stressful a situation it is! I feel like such a BAD pet parent when I take him into the vets covered in pee & rolling his eyes & yowling like I poked him with a sharp stick - for real!

Thanks again!

Trinity
March 17th, 2011, 06:08 PM
Thanks Jim - glad to know I'm not the only one with the issue!

14+ - thanks for the site referral - I am reading the website now and wow! what a great reference spot. The section about the litter is soooo true! The Warrior HATED corn litter! hahaha...

Keep well & thank you so much for all your help. I feel so much better about this. Appointment being made tomorrow am.

14+kitties
March 17th, 2011, 08:29 PM
Great minds think alike, but yours was a much better explanation :thumbs up

Nah, yours was great! I just yap more. ;) :p

Thank you both so much for your replies.

I may have inadvertently misled you about the amount of water. :sorry:

It is just a little ceramic kitty bowl, nothing large or anything. We just like to make sure that it doesn't sit around a long time and that he gets fresh water on a regular basis as opposed to water that has been there for a full day hanging around... He does drink it though...

He had blood work done and a complete "physical" done two years ago when his Mommy passed on at 18 & he sunk into a bit of a funk depression. He was given a clean bill of health and he does get his mandatory biannual check up each fall to renew his de-worming treatments as he is an avid "little game hunter" :angel:

I like the idea of the tooth issue as it isn't an ongoing all the time noise he is making.

I notice it mostly in the mornings while "we" get ready for the day at work...haha, he's an active participant in day to day life despite basically being housebound for most of the winter, that's why I was so concerned that maybe he was hiding something serious despite being in such good spirits etc.

Big boy will be taken regardless and I am glad that I don't have to freak out anymore about it being something more drastic and life threatening to him.

Thank you so much for the suggestions about how to calm him down before getting him into his carrier - you have no idea how stressful a situation it is! I feel like such a BAD pet parent when I take him into the vets covered in pee & rolling his eyes & yowling like I poked him with a sharp stick - for real!

Thanks again!

Thanks for setting us straight re water intake.


14+ - thanks for the site referral - I am reading the website now and wow! what a great reference spot. The section about the litter is soooo true! The Warrior HATED corn litter! hahaha...

Keep well & thank you so much for all your help. I feel so much better about this. Appointment being made tomorrow am.

It's a great site. Sugarcatmom is actually the member you should thank. She is the one who has turned so many people onto that site. Amazing information and it is continually updated too. :thumbs up

Thanks for being so proactive and setting up an appt quickly. :thumbs up A lot can change in two years.

One more thing that may help to calm kitty down while in the carrier on the way to the vets - if you can cover the carrier with a blanket or towel it sometimes is enough to help keep the cat calmer. I do that with feral cats I take to be s/n. It seems to help.

Please let us know how the appt goes. Good luck. :fingerscr

Trinity
May 12th, 2011, 10:32 AM
Sorry for the delay in posting a reply, but bad computer crashes etc. put a damper on all activities relating to it!

Sr. Kitty had his check up & all is well for a kitty his age. The vet said all test results are normal & that considering his age, he is fit and healthy.

Like you advised, it was likely nausea that caused the mouth smacking as believe it or not, has pretty much not happened since. (except when he ate grass one day...)

Thanks again for the help!

marko
May 12th, 2011, 11:11 AM
That's good news Trinity:thumbs up
I just wanted to add that I watched my friend's cat for 1 month this year.
That cat is 18 years old and makes the exact same 'old man' sound you describe.

My first instinct was that the cat was dehydrated, but like you, the cat has been to the vet several times this year...and is doing quite well for her age and is/was not dehydrated.
(Though as far as i know those noises CAN be due to a cat being thirsty)

It usually happened for a while after the cat ate - ya know kind of like a person with false teeth or no teeth trying to get all the food out of their mouth. The cat has been doing this for many years now and in her case it seems to be a habit rather than an issue or problem.

H.P.
May 13th, 2011, 09:35 AM
My Jo Cat makes this noise, she is almost 17, I think it is where she has worn her front teeth down to the gum and she is trying not to drool. Glad you baby got a clean bill of health.

mikischo
May 14th, 2011, 09:15 AM
Thanks for the update. Glad to hear the test results were normal.:thumbs up