Why Does My Cat Drooling All of A Sudden?

Cats are very mysterious creatures. As humans, it is almost impossible for us to pinpoint exactly what may be going through their mischievous little minds. 

But of all the weird things that they tend to do, drooling is not really up there on the list. Naturally, you might get a little worried if you notice your cat drooling

However, there can be a few different reasons for a cat to drool. It is not necessarily a sign of a medical condition, especially if the drooling is occasional and your cat is behaving normally otherwise. 

In this article, I will be talking about the different reasons your cat might be drooling. I will talk about the medical conditions that may cause drooling to occur and the symptoms that accompany them. I will also mention cases where drooling is just one of the many weird behaviors that cats have.

So, without further delay, let’s get into it. 

Cat drooling, when is it abnormal?

We can divide cat drooling into two categories, medical or non-medical. Non-medical reasons for drooling are just a part of normal cat behavior, whereas medical reasons can indicate some underlying disease or condition. 

Let’s take a look at both cases.

Non-medical reasons for cat drooling

This can include something cute like your cat enjoying being petted or your cat trying to cool down. Non-medical reasons are typically short-lived and will resolve after some time.

If the drooling is consistent, then it would make sense to visit a vet just to be on the safe side.

Cat drooling while petting

Sometimes, a really good petting session can get your cat to drool a little. This is, of course, the least concerning the reason for cat drooling. Typically, scratching cats on their cheeks or around their ears can get them to drool.

It is important to note that cats will only drool sometimes during petting. If you notice that your cat always drools when you pet it, then it may be a good idea to visit the vet. 

Cat drooling to cool down

Unlike humans, cats and dogs do not sweat. So the only way for them to regulate body temperature is by panting. Sometimes, cats might start drooling while they are panting, and that is not really a cause for concern. 

You should keep an eye on your cat if you notice them drooling while panting. If the drooling does not stop even when your cat has cooled down, then there might be other reasons at play. 

Kittens getting their adult teeth

Just like humans, cats also experience teething. Kittens first get their baby teeth, which last for a few months before they are pushed out by their adult teeth. 

While the teeth are coming out, the gums of the kitten become quite sensitive. You will notice that your cat is avoiding hard foods or just not eating as much. In this case, drooling is a natural reaction to oral pain. 

Kittens start getting their baby teeth at the age of 2–4 weeks. These baby teeth stay with them for the next few months. The adult teeth start emerging around the age of 3–4 months, this starting the teething process again. 


Reacting to food can also cause cats to produce more saliva in their mouths which results in drooling. This can happen if your cat is just really hungry or likes that particular food a lot. 

Of course, the drooling caused by food will stop immediately after your cat has eaten and is away from the food. 


Stress can also cause cats to drool. If your cat is stressed out a lot, then it will start acting abnormally. Being enclosed in small spaces for long periods, like when traveling, can really stress out your cat. 

Your cat may drool as a natural response to stress as it starts panting. Travelling can also induce motion sickness, which makes the drooling worse. 

And those were all the non-medical reasons for drooling in cats. Drooling caused by non-medical reasons is almost always caused by the environment that the cat is in. Once you remove the cat from that particular environment, the drooling should stop as well. 

Read also : Reasons why cats refuse to eat or drink

Medical Reasons for Cat Drooling

Unlike non-medical reasons for drooling, if your cat is drooling because of some medical condition, you will be able to tell fairly easily. In such cases, the drooling is persistent and does not go away after some time. Medical-induced drooling can be caused by things like oral diseases, digestive problems, infections, etc. 

Let’s take a look at the different diseases that may cause a cat to drool. I will also mention the symptoms related to each case so that it is easier for you to identify if your cat is really suffering from an illness. 

Getting Sick

Cats can get really nauseous when they get sick. Cats will salivate when they are feeling nauseous. This is what causes them to drool excessively. Usually, this drooling is followed by vomiting, as that was the main reason why they were feeling nauseous in the first place. 

Cats can get sick due to many reasons. Eating the wrong thing or eating too much can cause sickness. Cats can recover from sickness easily as long as you ensure that you are giving them the food and water that they need. 

Sick cats stop eating food or grooming themselves. This can further cause issues as it will cause weakness or dehydration to occur. It is your responsibility to monitor your cat’s intake to ensure that they recover.

Sickness can also be a symptom of another underlying disease in your cat. Things like gastrointestinal conditions, diabetes, or infections can also cause sickness in cats. So, it is always a good idea to visit the vet if your cat gets sick suddenly. 

Injuries in the mouth

Cats just love to chew on random things. Cats often end up injuring themselves by chewing on the wrong things and getting cuts in their mouths. It is not very easy for you to identify if your cat has injured itself in this manner. Usually, a major sign of this is drooling. 

If your cat is drooling a lot and does not eat hard foods or any food at all, then there is a chance that it has sustained an injury in its mouth. In this case, you should visit a vet to properly identify the cause and ease the pain for your kitty. 

Dental Issues

Dental diseases are a common occurrence in pets, and this is also true for cats. Older cats especially are prone to dental diseases. Dental diseases are usually caused by a build-up of plaque. 

This can cause gum diseases to take hold. It usually starts with gingivitis, a disease that causes the gums to become inflamed and swollen. Gingivitis eventually progresses into periodontitis.

Periodontitis weakens the tissues around the teeth. This weakening of the gums causes oral pain, which leads to drooling. 

Like with all oral issues with cats, this is also accompanied by not eating as much. You may also notice your cat acting abnormally wherever they open their mouth. Identifying the exact dental disease is critical for getting proper treatment, so it is very important to visit the vet immediately before the condition gets worse. 

Respiratory infections

Respiratory infections are commonly caused by bacteria and viruses. These infections can make it harder for your cat to breathe as these infections affect the sinuses, throat, and nasal cavities.

You can think of them as a cold for cats. 

These respiratory infections will also cause your cat to drool as it ends up opening its mouth more often to breathe. Drooling, accompanied by breathlessness, is a common sign of respiratory illness in cats. 

A vet can tell which virus or bacteria is causing the infection in your cat and recommend the proper treatment for removing the infection. So, you must take your cat to the vet immediately if you suspect that it is suffering from a respiratory infection.

Is your cat sneezing frequently?

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Final thought

In this article, I went through all the common reasons that cause a cat to drool. 

Non-medical reasons for drooling are always temporary and will not occur frequently. 

Non-medical reasons include things like a really good petting session, good food, teething, or just your cat regulating its body temperature. Of course, none of these reasons are a cause of concern. One of them is quite cute, actually. But if the drooling persists or is excessive, then you may want to visit a vet just to be safe. 

Medical reasons include various illnesses and infections. Things like injuries, dental disease, or respiratory infection are the most common causes. These illnesses are mostly concerned with the mouth of the cat. 

You should immediately visit the vet if you suspect that your cat is suffering from any of these, as it is always better to get treatment early to ensure a quick recovery. 

References and Further Reading

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