Do Cats Get Headaches? Causes, Diagnose, And Treatment 2022

Do Cats Get Headaches? One of the most common pain complaints among people is headaches. We rely on our ability to communicate this pain to each other to diagnose it and relate it to other aspects of our health because there are no available methods to detect an ongoing headache. Unfortunately, our pets are unable to partake in this luxury. As a result, we frequently overlook that cats can also suffer from headaches!

Do Cats Ever Get Headaches?

One of the most common pain complaints among people is headaches. We rely on our ability to communicate this pain to each other to diagnose it and relate it to other aspects of our health because there are no available methods to detect an ongoing headache. Unfortunately, our pets are unable to partake in this luxury. As a result, we frequently overlook the fact that cats can also suffer from headaches!

Primary headaches

Cat Get Headaches

These are not symptoms of another health problem, even though they are painful.

Secondary headaches

According to The Journal of Headache and Pain, these are linked to and caused by a health issue or trauma. Secondary headaches can be either innocuous or deadly. The majority of headache research has been conducted on humans. However, we know that animals, including cats, suffer from headaches. The study is limited, but it is growing. Let’s look at the different types of headaches and their causes before we look at how they manifest in domesticated cats.

Do Cats Get Headaches? Symptoms

Even in humans, headaches are an abnormal condition, and it’s unknown if and to what degree cats suffer from them. Cats, unlike humans, cannot express their problems verbally, making headaches far more difficult to diagnose. However, when cats are in pain, they exhibit certain very uniform behaviors and symptoms, which might help you recognize when anything is wrong.


Many animals prefer to be alone when they’re in pain, and cats are no exception. When a cat is in agony or discomfort, it will hide from humans and other animals in the home, usually in a comfy area. Whether you find your cat acting this way, check to see if they’ve acquired a haunched posture, which suggests that they’re in discomfort.

Secluding Themselves

Cats enjoy their private moments, which may become even more common if they are in pain or discomfort. If your cat is secluding themselves more than usual, keep an eye on them.

Loss of Appetite

Many of us prefer to avoid meals when we have a nasty headache, and our cats are no different. If your cat’s appetite has changed, it might indicate that they’re in discomfort — potentially from a headache. If your cat hasn’t eaten in more than a day or two, you should seek veterinary help. When cats cease feeding, their bodies quickly deplete their protein stores, leaving just fat. When the liver processes this fat, it may lead to a catastrophic illness called hepatic lipidosis, leading to liver failure and even death.


If your cat is avoiding your touch more than normal, it could signify a nasty headache. Give them their space and monitor how they react over the next couple of days.

Sensitivity to Touch

Some veterinarians believe that when animals refuse to be handled, it might indicate a headache. If your cat is normally friendly but suddenly withdraws from your contact, it might be suffering from a severe headache.

Defensive Behavior

When animals are in pain, they instinctively become protective to prevent more torment. Cringing, flattened ears, a warning hiss, or backing away from you are all examples of defensive behavior in cats. If your cat is normally friendly, this is a clear indication that something is wrong.


While some dogs hide in pain, others may have the opposite reaction. Pacing and fidgeting are typical symptoms of pain, discomfort, or distress in animals. If not accompanied by any physical signs, this conduct might indicate a headache.


Overheating is a typical cause of headaches, and many veterinarians believe the same is true for cats and dogs. Panting is an indication that your cat is overheated, and it might also indicate a headache.

Red Gums

Cats in discomfort are unlikely to allow you to look into their mouth, yet it may be important. A headache may be caused by tooth discomfort, overheating, or carbon monoxide poisoning, among other reasons. Take them to the vet as soon as possible if their gums are red.

What Causes Headaches in Cats?

Do Cats Get Headaches

Headaches are a mysterious condition, and there could be various reasons why your cat is experiencing them. While most headaches aren’t life-threatening, you should pay attention to how they’re acting and take any behavioral changes seriously. Here are a few possibilities for why your feline pal is suffering from a headache:

Neck or Head Trauma

Cats are playful creatures who enjoy jumping from great heights and sprinting through the house. Your cat could have bumped their head or pulled a muscle in its neck, resulting in a headache if they weren’t careful. 


Collars are both a fashion statement and a way to display your contact information in case they get lost, but if they don’t fit properly, they can cause a headache. They may also become entangled in furniture or branches, resulting in head or neck trauma.

Exposure to Chemicals

Have you heard the expression “curiosity killed the cat?” While snooping around your house is unlikely to result in death, they may come across something that causes headaches. Carbon monoxide, fertilizers, pesticides, and other household chemicals are hazardous to your cat and should be stored in a secure location away from them.


As we mentioned before, headaches could signify that your cat has some underlying health issues. Most headaches are harmless, but a tumor could be a possible suspect. Tumors grow and put additional pressure and inflammation in the head region.


Clean, fresh water should be available to cats at all times. They may get urinary tract infections, bladder stones, renal problems, and migraines if they become dehydrated.


It’s unusual for people to have headaches if they go too long without eating, and cats may experience the same problem. If your cat isn’t eating, though, headaches should be a small worry, and you should see a veterinarian as soon as possible.


Chemical exposure may cause headaches in humans and, most likely, other animals. 

  • Carbon monoxide, which is produced during incomplete combustion, 
  • Pesticides
  • Fertilizers and monosodium glutamate are among these compounds.


Stress headaches are frequent among people, and our feline companions may also suffer from them. A major change in your cat’s life, such as the death of a family member or a move, may cause stress headaches.

Do Cats Get Headaches? Diagnosing

Human headaches are divided into two categories: primary headaches and secondary headaches.

Primary headaches are considered to be benign or innocuous. Cluster headaches, migraines, and tension headaches are the most common primary headaches.

Meanwhile, secondary headaches are dangerous because injuries and diseases cause them. There is no headache classification for cats because primary headaches are difficult to detect. However, cats with underlying health issues do experience headaches. Many of the signs that would indicate headaches in cats have other possible causes, so it is essential to discuss your observations with your veterinarian.

Let them know when you first noticed the signs and whether your pet was involved in an accident or altercation. The doctor will combine your report with their test results and observations to develop a conclusive diagnosis.

Do Cats Get Headaches? Treatment

Do Cats Get Headaches

Don’t be alarmed if you feel your cat suffers from a headache. You can do a lot to help them get back on their feet.

Provide a Quiet Spot

When we have a headache, a quiet place to recuperate can be what we need. You can use the same strategy with your pet by taking them to a soft, comfortable, and secluded location and periodically checking on them.

Help them Hydrate

Humans, as well as cats, may suffer from dehydration, which can result in headaches. Ensure your cat has access to freshwater wherever they go to avoid dehydration. Even if a headache isn’t the issue, sufficient hydration is critical for feline health in general.

Offer Light Food

If your cat seems to be in discomfort, giving them a treat or two may help them rest and recuperate. Encouraging children to eat may help them avoid problems like hepatic lipidosis. Finally, determining whether or not your cat is willing to eat might aid in the diagnosis.

Encourage gentle Exercise

A little mild stretching may sometimes help reduce some types of headaches, so it could be a good idea to get them moving if you believe your cat is up to it. With rewards of their favorite toy, you may contact them to take a leisurely walk about the home; be cautious not to promote overexertion, and stop if they seem disturbed by your efforts.

Avoid Human Treatment

Drugs containing Acetaminophen, such as Tylenol, should never be given to cats. Even in very tiny dosages, Acetaminophen may cause substantial injury to cats because their systems do not metabolize the chemical in the same manner that people do, and their red blood cells can be destroyed.

Tips to keep your cat healthy

There are many ways cat parents can keep their felines happy and healthy. Here are a few ways to ensure you’re doing your best to keep your cat in tip-top health:

Check that your cat is eating. 

Are they eating all their food and not skipping meals?

Playtime contributes to your cat’s happiness. 

Please play with your cat using their favorite toy, string, or catnip. Playing chase a line or rolling a kitty ball keeps them active, enriches their environment, and helps them bond with you.

Provide parasite prevention 

Parasite protection is easy to administer and effectively keeps your cat healthy and itch-free. It’s essential to protect your cat from ticks and parasites.

Keep their litter box spic and span.

Cats are naturally clean animals and prefer a regularly cleaned litter box. When you periodically maintain their litter box, you can keep tabs on digestion issues and urinary problems.

Don’t skip their annual exam. 

Like humans need medical tests and exams, your cat needs to see the vet annually. This is especially important as they age to receive needed screening tests and vaccinations.

Conclusion Do Cats Get Headaches? 

Headaches are a normal part of most life, and having the ability to identify the symptoms is the best way to get your cat back to feeling normal. Pain isn’t something that any person or animal enjoys. They will start feeling better before you know it with the right care.


Do cats get heartworms?
Although cats are not as prone to infection as dogs, they may catch heartworms after being bitten by an infected mosquito. Heartworms do not flourish as well within a cat’s body. Thus it is not a natural host for them. Heartworm illness may affect both indoor and outdoor cats.
Do animals get headaches?
Because animals are nonverbal, a diagnosis would be even more difficult; however, given the high prevalence of migraine in humans and some clinical signs suggestive of migraine have been replicated in experimental animals, animals may have the same propensity to suffer from migraine.
Can cats cause headaches?
Allergies in cats and dogs are quite frequent. Runny noses, nasal congestion, sneezing, itchy watery eyes, wheezing, chest tightness, coughing, itchy rashes, and headaches are some of the allergy symptoms induced by animals. If these symptoms worsen when you’re around dogs, you could have an animal allergy.
How to help a cat with a headache?
Before prescribing therapy for your cat, please seek a veterinary specialist, and NEVER treat your cat’s headache with human analgesics! If your cat seems to be in discomfort, visit a veterinarian as soon as possible.
What causes headaches?
What are the causes of headaches? Signals from the brain, blood vessels, and surrounding nerves combine to cause headache discomfort. An unknown process stimulates certain neurons that impact muscles and blood vessels during headaches. The brain receives pain signals from these nerves.

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