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How to Make a Cat Sneeze to Clear its Nose – 4 Tips & Tricks

Vet approved

	Dr. Paola Cuevas Photo

Reviewed & Fact-Checked By

Dr. Paola Cuevas

MVZ (Veterinarian)

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

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If you’ve ever had a sneezing fit, you know exactly how uncomfortable it can be. Your cat can suffer from a stuffy nose and need to sneeze just like we can. So, how do we help them? Your cat’s congested nose can cause discomfort, and identifying the source can be the first step in providing them with the help they need.

Sneezing can help your cat and clearing its nose can help rid them of nasal congestion and irritated mood. However, at the end of the day, if your cat is acting unusual, it is best to always consult your veterinarian before taking any action at home. Getting your cat to sneeze to clear their sinuses is possible, but check out some tips and tricks below to help them out!

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Important Considerations

Your vet should always be your first stop for your cat’s health questions. Your vet can assess your cat’s health and give you the best course of action. Some of these symptoms may be a clue that your cat needs a vet visit:

  • Your cat has noisy or raspy breathing
  • You can see nasal discharge
  • Your cat has teary eyes
  • Your cat does not show their usual interest in food
  • Your cat is showing signs of a lower energy pattern
Cat sneezes
Image Credit: ZlataMarka, Shutterstock

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Step-by-step Instructions to Help Your Cat Sneeze

The following methods can help your cat sneeze if they are having sinus trouble. We recommend discussing with your vet if you intend to clear your cat’s nose or checking with your vet to see if it needs to be done in the first place.

The first step in getting your cat to sneeze is always making sure they are comfortable with being handled and held. Most methods will only work if your cat is used to being held or confined in some way. If your furry friend is a bit wiggly, it can be difficult to follow some of the steps below.

1. Consult Your Vet

When intentionally trying to make your cat sneeze, you must always follow any safety precautions that your vet recommends. Please consult your vet first in any attempt to make your cat sneeze, as they are the best source of information on how to help your furry friend. Taking your cat in for regular checkups and ensuring all vaccinations are up to date is essential to ensuring their overall health and well-being. If you need to induce sneezing for your cat, your vet will be the one to tell you.

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2. The Steam Method

As with humans, steam can help clear your cat’s sinuses. The goal is for your cat to inhale the steam. The easiest way to accomplish this is to bring your cat inside the bathroom with a closed door while you enjoy a long, steamy shower. Steam will help clear out any mucus stuck in your cat’s nose, as it loosens anything trapped in the sinuses.

a ginger cat sneezes
Image Credit: Ihtar, Pixabay
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3. Non-Medicated Nasal Spray

If your cat is used to allergies or you have used medication before, you can opt for a nasal spray to clear out the sinuses. If your cat is okay with nasal sprays, using it can help trigger a sneeze to clear out bacteria and mucus trapped in their sinuses. This should only be used on an as-needed basis after veterinarian approval. For cats that don’t have a prescription nasal spray, a non-medicated saline solution over-the-counter spray will work for this method too. As with anything concerning your cat’s health, your vet has the final say.

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4. Tickle Its Nose

If none of the above methods worked, you can try using a cat toy with feathers to gently tickle your cat’s nose. This method is almost guaranteed to trigger your cat to sneeze, helping it clear its nose. If you use this method after placing your cat inside a steamy bathroom or using saline solution spray, the chances of clearing its nose are even higher since both of those methods help to loosen the mucus.

cat and feather toy_Pixabay
Image Credit: Pixabay

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Causing your cat to sneeze should only be done with approval from your veterinarian. If you need to induce sneezing, you can try steam, use a nasal spray, or even get them excited with their favorite toy. However, you must avoid exposing your cat to toxic chemicals or treatments designed for humans.

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Featured Image Credit: Jupiter_79, Pixabay