What Inhalers Are Safe For Cats?

As a cat owner, you know that your feline friend’s health is paramount. When it comes to respiratory issues, inhalers have become a go-to treatment for cats suffering from asthma. But with so many types of inhalers available on the market, it can be challenging to know which one to choose.

Using the wrong type of inhaler or administering the wrong dosage could have serious consequences for your cat’s health. That’s why in this blog post, we’ll explore what inhalers are safe for cats and the different types of inhalers that veterinarians prescribe.

We’ll also dive into how these inhalers work and how they help cats with respiratory problems breathe easier. But that’s not all – we’ll also identify some warning signs to look out for if you’re using the wrong inhaler and provide tips on how to mitigate any risks.

By the end of this post, you’ll have all the information you need to make an informed decision about which inhaler is best for your furry friend. So sit back, relax, and read on to learn more about keeping your cat healthy and happy.

Metered Dose Inhalers (MDIs): Advantages and Disadvantages

As a pet parent, there’s nothing more heartbreaking than seeing your feline friend struggling to breathe. Respiratory issues such as asthma can be challenging to manage, but one effective treatment option for cats is the use of metered dose inhalers (MDIs). In this article, we’ll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of MDIs for cats with respiratory issues.

Advantages of MDIs for Cats

  • Easy Peasy: MDIs are compact and convenient, making them easy to use at home with minimal training. Simply press the canister to release a set dose of medication directly into your cat’s airways.
  • Efficient: MDIs deliver medication directly to the lungs, offering rapid relief of symptoms. The medication goes straight to where it’s needed most, providing faster results than other types of inhalers.
  • Safe and Sound: Unlike other types of inhalers, MDIs typically have fewer side effects, making them a safer option for cats. This means fewer worries and more peace of mind for pet parents.

Disadvantages of MDIs for Cats

  • Pricey: There’s no denying that MDIs can be expensive, especially if your cat requires long-term treatment. However, the cost is often worth it considering the positive impact on your cat’s health and quality of life.
  • Resistance is Futile: Some cats may resist using an inhaler or find the experience stressful or uncomfortable. However, with patience and training, many cats can learn to tolerate and even enjoy using an inhaler.

What Inhalers Are Safe For Cats-2

Overall, when used correctly and under the guidance of a veterinarian, MDIs can be a safe and effective treatment option for respiratory issues in cats. To ensure the best possible outcomes, it’s important to choose an inhaler that is specifically designed for feline use and follow the instructions carefully.

It’s also essential to note that not all medications can be safely administered via inhaler. Your veterinarian will be able to determine if an inhaler is the right treatment option for your cat’s specific condition. In some cases, oral medications or injections may be necessary instead.

Dry Powder Inhalers (DPIs): Advantages and Disadvantages

There are various inhalers available in the market, and Dry Powder Inhalers (DPIs) have gained popularity due to their ease of use and effectiveness. But what are the advantages and disadvantages of using DPIs?

Let’s start with the good news. One of the most significant benefits of DPIs is their simplicity. Unlike other inhalers, they don’t require any special coordination or technique. You load the medication into the inhaler, place it in front of your cat’s nose, and let them inhale the dry powder. This makes DPIs a great choice for cats who may be resistant to other types of inhalers.

Moreover, DPIs are relatively inexpensive compared to other types of inhalers, which is a considerable advantage for pet owners who want to provide their feline friends with the treatment they need while sticking to a budget.

Perhaps most importantly, DPIs deliver medication directly to the lungs, making it more effective in treating respiratory conditions than other types of inhalers that may not reach the right spot.

However, there are also some disadvantages to using DPIs that cat owners should consider. For instance, some cats may not like the taste or texture of the dry powder, which can make it challenging to administer medication. Additionally, DPIs require a certain level of force to activate the inhaler, which may not be suitable for cats with weaker lungs or respiratory conditions.

Lastly, it’s worth noting that DPIs are less portable than other inhalers as they require protection from moisture and humidity. This may make them less convenient for on-the-go use.

Other Types of Inhalers to Consider

Cats can suffer from various respiratory issues, including asthma and COPD. Inhalers can be an effective treatment solution for cats, but not all inhalers are appropriate for them. Apart from the commonly used MDIs and DPIs, there are other inhalers that cat owners can consider to treat their furry companions’ respiratory problems.

One such alternative is the Aerokat Feline Aerosol Chamber. The Aerokat acts as a spacer and can be attached to an MDI to ensure that the medication is delivered directly into the cat’s lungs. This type of inhaler reduces the likelihood of your cat losing any medication in their mouth or throat.

Another option available is the Respimat Soft Mist Inhaler. The Respimat uses a gentle mist instead of a spray to deliver medication, making it an excellent choice for cats who are sensitive to strong sprays. Additionally, it has a longer duration of action, allowing for less frequent administration compared to other types of inhalers.

Nebulizers are another alternative that can be used for cats with severe asthma or COPD. This type of inhaler converts medication into a fine mist that the cat can easily inhale. Nebulizers ensure that the medication reaches deep into the lungs, making them an ideal choice for cats who have difficulty using other types of inhalers.

It is essential to remember that not all inhalers are safe for cats, and some medications can be toxic to them. Therefore, it is crucial to consult with your veterinarian before administering any medication or using any type of inhaler on your cat. Your vet can recommend the best course of treatment based on your cat’s individual needs and medical history.

Important Things to Note Before Using an Inhaler on a Cat

When your beloved feline friend is struggling with a respiratory condition like asthma or COPD, it’s natural to want to do everything you can to alleviate their symptoms. Inhalers can be a game-changer for cats with these conditions, but before administering one, it’s essential to consider some crucial factors.

First and foremost, never use an inhaler that hasn’t been prescribed by your veterinarian specifically for your cat’s respiratory condition. Human inhalers or those intended for other animal species can be incredibly harmful and even fatal for your furry companion.

Proper technique is also essential when administering medication through an inhaler. Your veterinarian can show you how to use a spacer device, which ensures that the medication is delivered directly to your cat’s lungs and not just in their mouth or throat. Don’t hesitate to ask for guidance or clarification because the right technique can make all the difference in managing your cat’s respiratory condition.

It is worth noting that some cats may be resistant to using an inhaler and require training to become comfortable with the process. Your veterinarian can offer tips for training your cat to accept the inhaler, making the process less stressful for both of you.

Monitoring your cat’s response to the medication is critical. Keep an eye out for any adverse reactions or changes in behavior such as increased lethargy, decreased appetite, or difficulty breathing. If these signs occur, report them immediately to your veterinarian. They may need to adjust the dosage or switch to a different medication.

How to Properly Administer an Inhaler to a Cat

Inhalers are a safe and effective treatment option for cats, but administering them can be tricky. To help your cat breathe easy, we’ve compiled a guide on how to properly administer inhalers.

Sub-Ensure Safety by Choosing the Right Inhaler

Not all inhalers are safe for cats, so it’s crucial to consult with your veterinarian before administering any medication. Human inhalers may contain ingredients that are harmful to felines, so only use inhalers designed specifically for cats. Common safe options include Albuterol, Flovent, and Atrovent inhalers.

Prepare the Medication Correctly

Reading the instructions on the inhaler carefully is essential for proper medication preparation. Administering the correct dosage is crucial, as too little medication can be ineffective while an overdose can cause adverse reactions. Always follow your veterinarian’s instructions and never modify the dose without consulting them first.

Position Your Cat Comfortably

Administering medication can be stressful for cats, so create a calm environment in a quiet room where your cat feels safe and comfortable. Covering their head with a towel or blanket can help keep them still and prevent them from seeing what’s happening.

Use a Spacer Device

A spacer device is typically used when administering inhalers to cats. This device attaches to the inhaler and helps ensure that the medication is delivered directly to your cat’s lungs. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully when using a spacer device.

Administer the Medication Properly

Hold the spacer device up to your cat’s nose and mouth, ensuring a tight seal around their face. Depress the inhaler once or twice to release the medication into the spacer device. Allow your cat to inhale the medication for several seconds. Be patient and offer treats or use calming pheromone spray to help relax your cat before administering the medication.

Monitor Your Cat for Adverse Reactions

After administering the medication, monitor your cat for any adverse reactions or side effects. Some cats may experience mild side effects such as vomiting or diarrhea, while others may develop more severe symptoms such as difficulty breathing or seizures. If you notice any unusual behavior or symptoms in your cat after administering an inhaler, contact your veterinarian immediately.

Potential Side Effects of Using an Inhaler on a Cat

If your furry feline friend is struggling with respiratory issues, inhalers can be a lifesaver. However, pet owners must be aware of the potential side effects that come along with this treatment.

One of the most common side effects of using an inhaler on a cat is an increased heart rate. This can be alarming for pet owners to witness, but it usually subsides within a few minutes after administration. Nonetheless, it’s important to keep a close eye on your cat and contact a veterinarian immediately if the increased heart rate persists or if they seem to be in distress.

Tremors or shaking is another potential side effect of using an inhaler on a cat. If your cat receives too much medication or if they’re sensitive to the medication being used, they may experience tremors or shaking. This is usually not serious and will go away on its own. However, if your cat seems to be having severe tremors or shaking for an extended period of time, it’s always best to double-check with your vet.

In rare cases, inhalers can cause more serious side effects like vomiting, diarrhea, or even seizures. To avoid such situations and ensure the safety of your pet, follow the dosage instructions given by your veterinarian and monitor your cat closely after administering the medication.

It’s also important to note that some cats may be allergic to certain medications used in inhalers. If you notice any signs of an allergic reaction such as facial swelling, difficulty breathing, and hives after using an inhaler on your cat, stop use immediately and seek veterinary care.

When Should You Not Use an Inhaler on a Cat?

Inhalers can be a valuable tool in managing respiratory issues in cats, but there are situations when using one might not be safe or appropriate. To determine whether an inhaler is the right choice for your cat, it’s essential to consult with your veterinarian first.

One situation where using an inhaler on a cat is not recommended is during a severe asthma attack. In such instances, immediate emergency medical attention may be necessary, and using an inhaler could worsen their condition. Instead, oxygen therapy or other medications may be prescribed by your vet to help manage the symptoms.

It’s also crucial to use only inhalers that have been prescribed specifically for feline use. Some cats have adverse reactions to certain types of inhalers, which could cause serious harm or even death. Follow your vet’s instructions carefully and only use the medication that has been prescribed for your cat.

Moreover, it’s vital to assess your cat’s overall health before using an inhaler. Cats with heart disease or high blood pressure may not be suitable candidates for certain types of medication. Using an inhaler may exacerbate their condition, so it’s essential to consult with your veterinarian before administering any medication.

Alternatives to Inhaled Medications for Cats

Watching your beloved cat struggle with respiratory issues can be heartbreaking. While inhaled medications are often the first line of defense, they may not always be the best option for every feline. Luckily, there are alternative treatments available that can offer relief and improve their quality of life.

One alternative to inhaled medications is oral medications. These come in various forms such as tablets, capsules, or liquid and can be prescribed by a veterinarian. Although they may take longer to take effect than inhaled medications, they can still provide effective relief for respiratory issues and are often easier to administer.

Another option is nebulization therapy, which involves using a nebulizer machine to convert liquid medication into a fine mist that can be inhaled by your cat. This method may require some additional training and equipment, but it can be less stressful for your cat than inhaled medications and has proven to be an effective way to manage respiratory issues.

In addition to medication, environmental changes can also make a significant difference in managing respiratory issues in cats. Keeping the air clean and free of irritants such as smoke or dust can help reduce symptoms. Installing air filters or humidifiers can also help improve air quality and make it easier for your feline friend to breathe comfortably.

It’s important to remember that before administering any medication or treatment to your cat, consulting with a veterinarian is crucial. They will be able to recommend the best course of action for your cat’s specific needs and ensure their safety and well-being.


When it comes to treating respiratory issues in cats, inhalers have become a popular option. But with so many different types available, choosing the right one can be overwhelming. Using the wrong inhaler or dosage could have serious consequences for your cat’s health. That’s why it’s crucial to consult with your veterinarian before administering any medication or inhaler.

Two common types of inhalers for cats are Metered Dose Inhalers (MDIs) and Dry Powder Inhalers (DPIs). MDIs provide rapid relief by delivering medication directly to the lungs and are easy to use at home with minimal training. DPIs are relatively inexpensive and don’t require any special coordination or technique.

In addition to MDIs and DPIs, there are other options such as the Aerokat Feline Aerosol Chamber and Respimat Soft Mist Inhaler. Nebulizers can also be used for severe asthma or COPD cases.

It’s important to note that not all inhalers are safe for cats, and some medications can even be toxic. Therefore, consulting with your veterinarian is essential before administering any treatment.

In conclusion, if you notice respiratory issues in your cat, seeking veterinary care should be a top priority.