To explain any number of the great mysteries of the universe, one has to conduct extensive research and amass endless observations. Scientists have uncovered possible truths about the Easter island statues, dark matter, the lost city of Atlantis, and other fabulous head-scratchers. Among the list of unsolved enigmas is a very important topic for us: cat drooling. From the serious to the silly, this feline behavior can be explained through a variety of factors, and we’re happy to share them with you!

The Good News

Looking at a behavior most often linked to dogs, cat drooling is not always cause for concern. Indeed, many felines will work up extra salivation when utterly content, such as when kneading a favorite pillow or snuggling with a special person. This is not necessarily a problem (besides the obvious drool puddle), but if cat drooling becomes excessive, something may be amiss.

Dental Issues

Because more than half of all pets older than three years of age have periodontal disease, we see many animals suffering from side effects. Beyond inflamed gums, gritty or discolored teeth, and bad breath, cat drooling can be related to oral cancers, lesions, or disease.

We believe in supporting our community’s pets through dental care. Not only great for your cat’s mouth, good dental health also reduces the chance for disease throughout the body.


Another reason to pay attention to cat drooling has to do with string or other foreign bodies that can become lodged in the mouth or around the tongue (e.g., bones, foxtails). Difficulty swallowing can cause cat drooling. Likewise, if your cat chews on an electric cord, he or she can experience burns or cuts in the mouth, causing salivation to pool up.

Cats can also become quite nauseous after eating something toxic, increasing the chances for drooling. Knowing the signs of an accidental pet poisoning can save an animal’s life!

So Hot, I’m Drooling!

Cats are not immune to suffering from heatstroke. When internal temperatures rise, cat drooling may occur along with panting, excessive fur licking, lethargy, a bright red tongue, and pale gums. Move your cat to a cool, dim place, and provide fresh water. Please call us immediately, as heatstroke is a medical emergency.

Observing Cat Drooling

Because cat drooling can also be caused by fear, stress, or anxiety, it’s not uncommon to see this routinely in a veterinary practice. Often, when a cat receives medication, their body reacts with an emetic response, leading to salivating and vomiting.

Helping Your Drooling Cat

If your cat dislikes traveling or visits to the vet, crate training can certainly calm him or her down, reducing cat drooling. Understanding your cat’s behavior and knowing the signs of danger will also help preserve his or her health.

If you’re unsure whether your cat is a happy drooler or if there could be something wrong, please let us know. We’re always happy to help!