Cat Sleeping With Mouth Open – Causes Explained

cat sleeping with mouth open – causes

Cats have unique personalities. There are many viral photos and videos which capture their different behaviors.

Although,  some of the habits cats have can be attributed to their personality.

There are also times when they may be a cause for concern or a sign of another problem.

One such habit is when your cat sleeps with its mouth open.

Should You Be Worried If Your Cat Is Sleeping With Their Mouth Open?

It’s essential to determine whether your cat’s sleeping habits are a personality trait or a medical condition.

If a cat that sleeps with its mouth open does not show any other symptoms, such as those mentioned below, its habit may be expected.

Some cats who like to sleep with their mouth open also exhibit that behavior when being petted.

Look for signs that your cat shows, such as pawing at its mouth, not eating, drooling, sticking out its tongue, and panting.

If a cat exhibits such symptoms several times during the day, it may have a health issue that is causing them to sleep with its mouth open.

Additionally, a cat sleeping with its mouth open may be a sign that it is distressed or that it is trying to breathe through its mouth due to difficulty breathing.

There are a few reasons why your cat may be sleeping with its mouth open; let’s look at the causes and ways to prevent the issue.

Causes Of Cats Sleeping With Their Mouth Open

1. Overexertion

Cats that are active, such as those who live with other cats or go outside to hunt for prey, are prone to overexertion.

Keep note of your cats’ habits before they fall asleep.

Does their mouth open only after they have recently been active? Or is it something that happens throughout the day?

2. Rem Sleep

Some cats may slightly open their mouth when they reach the REM cycle of their sleep.

The reasons for this are similar to how humans also open their mouths during deep sleep.

Such behavior is typical and should not be a cause for concern.

3. Teeth Problem

One of the most common reasons for a cat sleeping with its’ mouth open is that it may have a dental problem.

This can result from various factors, including periodontal disease, gingivitis, stomatitis, and loss of teeth attachment structures that cause the luxation of teeth from their sockets.

Teeth problems in cats are common since it is challenging to clean their teeth.

This means that cats on wet food diets are more likely to develop issues as time passes.

Fortunately, tooth problems can be solved quickly by a vet who would likely do a scaling procedure on the cat to remove the plaque and bacteria.

4. A Health Issue

Cats may be sleeping with their mouth open if they have serious issues such as dyspnea, infection, trauma, bleeding, having a foreign object stuck in their body, heart failure (pulmonary or cardiac disease), asthma, and anemia.

They may also have congenital nasal/sinus obstruction, an allergy to something in the environment such as pollen or something in their diet, or they may simply have a cold.

5. Jaw/Joint Problem

Cats are said to have nine lives, and they are often seen taking high jumps or bold actions.

Their active lifestyle may sometimes lead to injuries.

For example, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) injuries result in luxation, which can cause the cat to sleep with its’ mouth open.

Cats can also develop issues such as a dislocated jaw, a loose tooth, or pain in their joints after hitting or bumping into something while playing.

These may all cause a cat to sleep with its mouth open.

Such injuries will often be accompanied by other symptoms that show the cat is in discomfort, including losing appetite, lethargy, a change or decrease in litter use, and meowing distinctly.

6. Behavioral Habit

While the reasons mentioned above may cause you to worry, your cat may also have a behavioral habit that causes them to sleep with its mouth open.

Like how some cats snore or stick their tongue out during their sleep, some cats keep their mouth open.

cat sleeping with mouth open

If your cat has a behavioral habit, it will be evident in its routine.

You will notice that it relaxed during the day and especially during its sleep.

It may also have had the habit for years even after it has been checked up on by a vet.

How To Prevent Cats From Sleeping With Their Mouth Open

1. Get Their Teeth Checked

Your cat also needs dental checkups and professional teeth cleaning.

If you notice that your cat is having problems with its teeth, you will have to get its teeth checked.

That way, any dental problems can be fixed; doing this will prevent the cat from sleeping with its mouth open.

 Cats must do a dental checkup at least once a year as recommended.

2. Change The Environment

The room your cat sleeps in may be too hot for them, causing them to open their mouth while sleeping.

It may also pant during the day in the room if it feels hot.

In such circumstances, try to adjust the room’s temperature or shift the cat to a colder room when it is time to sleep.

Additionally, if the cat opens their mouth while feeling hot, you can trim or shave its hair to help them adjust to the environment.

3. Change Their Diet And Brushing Habits

If your cat is sleeping with its mouth open due to dental problems, it will have to stick to a diet to prevent such issues from reoccurring.

This means that you should only give them wet food occasionally.

They should stick to a diet that mainly consists of dry food, dental treats, and water.

You can treat cats that are prone to dental problems by changing their brushing habits.

This means that you can start brushing their teeth with a cat toothbrush or cat toothpaste.

You could train your cat into the habit of cleaning its teeth in many ways.

While some will not allow it, others may put up a fuss initially but they get used to it as time passes.

4. Visit A Vet

If you have tried the treatments mentioned above and your cat is still sleeping with its mouth open, visit a vet who can examine the cat and recommend the best process for prevention.

As mentioned above, a standard procedure to eliminate dental problems is scaling.

The process can help your kitty feel better while sleeping.

5. Medication

If the resulting diagnosis concerns health issues like asthma, the vet will prescribe medication to help them.

The majority of cats with asthma will exhibit symptoms of respiratory distress such as coughing, difficulty breathing, open-mouth panting, and others.

Your vet may give your cat an inhaler known as a puffer that can be used when asthma attacks.

Ensure that your cat receives medication at the proper time to ensure the treatment is effective.

6. Surgery

If the cat’s diagnosis involves a serious health issue like a heart problem, your vet may perform surgery.

Detecting your cat’s heart condition can be very challenging because cats can hide their heart disease well.

Cats rarely exhibit visible signs of heart disease until the disease has progressed.

Take care of your cat during the healing period to ensure a quick recovery.

Cat Sleeping With Mouth Open – Conclusion

The causes mentioned above will help identify whether your cat’s sleeping habits are just a quirk or an issue that requires medical attention.

If you have any serious doubts about your furry friends’ behaviors, consult a vet for the best advice for the best action to take.