Sunday, April 29, 2012

My Cat had a Cold and I gave him Robitusin

This is Angry Cat before he became sick. Usually, he enjoys getting in the way!

My cat was sick as a dog. The whole weekend. On Friday, he threw up his food. Initially I thought he just overate. But then he threw up again. And again. I watched him and he seemed to be gagging with each swallow. He had a sore throat. I know enough about cats to know they have to be eating and drinking each day. (Liver failure can set in if a cat goes longer than 24 hours without food.) No danger there: my cat loves to eat. And he continued eating and drinking after he threw up.

By morning, I knew it was not going to go away on its own. Every few minutes he was gagging. So I bundled Angry Cat in the car and drove to the vet. I knew just how much he wasn't feeling well when he ignored all the dogs in the office. (Usually he would be alarmed by them).

The vet said it was viral and to give him Robitusin - plain. The dosage is .25 -1 ml /pound of weight.  And vitamin C tabs (actually a 1/4 tab twice a day). Ribitusin DM contains dextromethorphan and this is okay to use in cats. You can not get any type of Robitussin except DM because they all contain other ingredients that can be toxic to cats.

I think I got one millitre into him, when I calculated he should get about 10 ml. But he seemed calmer. I put him in the upstairs bathroom, it is the warmest room in the house. This has become his sick room. He has access to food and a litter box, and is resting comfortably. 

He began to gag again after about 4 hours (time for the next dose).

Then I boiled rice and used that water plus some tap water and crushed the 1/4 tablet of Vitamin C into it. (When I got him as a kitten and thought he wasn't eating enough, the vet told me to use the water from rice to feed him. So I went back to that.)

Again, Angry Cat fought me (I think the return of his bad temper is a good sign!) but he got some. Cats can have Vitamin C for up to four days after getting a cold. Don't give it as a precaution.  Here is a website with more information on treating cat colds and coughs.

He gagged about once every six hours on Saturday which was a huge improvement from the night before. On Sunday morning he was noticeably better. He drank some water and his eyes looked better. (They were large as saucers when he was ill. Now that he was recovering, they looked about normal.) I gave him a couple ml of Robitusin and also a millitre of rice water and vitamin C concoction I made Saturday night. He has some pink stain on him from the cough syrup and he hasn't groomed himself. So he isn't back to normal yet.

Colds in cats last up to 10 days. He seems a lot better already. 

Note: Do not give your cat any medicine with Acetaminophen in it. Acetaminophen is a substance that is toxic to cats.

Cold symptoms in my cat

running nose,
hurts swallowing,
wants to be left alone


  1. poor KItty, sounds like he was really suffering. Glad to hear he is feeling better. My son had sore throat like your cat but he was a lot easier to manage. I didn't know you could feed cats Robitusin. Your cat is so cute to still eat even though he was throwing up, that's a good thing.


  2. Poor little cat. I hope he gets better soon!

  3. Wow, I had no idea about those treatments! Thanks for the tips!

  4. Feel better little kitten!

  5. Thanks for the website link. My cat has off & on diarrhea and the site gave me a lot of helpful information.



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