Licorice is a 9 ½ year old Domestic short hair who was first presented to our clinic for coughing in 2008. Licorice's coughing did not respond to antibiotics and became worse to the point she was having trouble breathing. She was admitted to hospital and our veterinarian decided to perform chest radiographs and a Bronchoalveolar Lavage (BAL) which is when they take a fluid sample from her lungs.
Feline asthma is very similar to human asthma. The muscles around the airways tighten, the walls of the airways swell and become narrower, and block airflow. The airways produce extra mucus causing more narrowing. In humans, it is managed with steroid anti-inflammatories which are ideally administered with an inhaler as this reduces the risk of side effects. Licorice is very well managed now and is a happy cat who is very good at taking her medication in her inhaler.