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Why Does My Cat Get Black Boogers? (Is It Suffering?)

If your cat has black boogers you may be feeling disgusted and wondering what you can do to stop it and if you should clean it off…

Why does my cat get black boogers?

Cats get black boogers because of mucous build-up that becomes dried. This is usually from discharge around the nasal area, dust in the air, scabs. Or a combination of all of these. It looks unattractive but is easily cleaned off.

So, now you know. But, what can you do to prevent this? What is the best way to clean it off? Can it get these boogers in its eye as well? Keep reading for these answers, and much more…

What are black boogers?

Black booger is a term used for mess or dried mucous around the facial area. This can often be seen on cats around their nose or even in their eyes. This is similar to humans that have dried mucous around their nose, maybe from a cold, or crusty matter around their eyes when they wake.

The term “booger” is also known as “bogey” in parts of Europe, such as the UK. Essentially they are one of the same things. For cats, they can be black, but they can also be green if the booger is fresh.

Have you ever seen a baby with a crusty mess around its nose? Well, the chances are it is very similar to these boogers that I am talking about.

How can you prevent your cat from getting black boogers?

Preventing your cat from getting black boogers can be as simple as treating their temporary cold, or taking them to the vets and discovering they need treatment for laryngeal paralysis. If it’s the former it should hopefully be easily treated and you will just need to clean it in the short-term.

However, other more serious issues will need assistance from your vet. The reality is if there is any doubt it’s worth checking for your vet. They may also have some more effective methods of cleaning these boogers.

Sometimes it’s hard to control these boogers because they can be from allergies. For example, caused by seasonal changes (more on this later).

Why does my cat get black eye boogers?

Black eye boogers are formed from the black pigment in their tiers. When it becomes dried it forms a hard black-colored form, known to us as a booger. These boogers are often wiped off to get rid of them. But, the reality is they are likely to form again.

These black eye boogers are not just seen in cats they are often seen in other animals and similar behavior in human eyes. Some babies have conjunctivitis. This condition causes a build-up of eye mucous which is similar. However, this matter is not black in color.

How to clean cat boogers:

Why does my cat get black boogers?

A kitten getting its face cleaned.

If you have discovered these black boogers on your cat you may be wondering what you can do to clean it off. Therefore, in this section I will explain the simple procedure:

  1. Hold your cat gently: The reality is your cat will not like its nose or eye boogers cleaned. So you need to hold it gently, but firm enough to hold it.
  2. Grab a wipe or cloth: You need to wet a wipe or soft cloth. Ideally, the water should be warm, not hot.
  3. Gently wipe: You then need to wipe off the boogers gently.
  4. Repeat: The reality is you may need to repeat this a few times or more. So be prepared to do it again.

Just to re-emphasize it’s important to be gentle when you wipe your cat. especially if these boogers are located anywhere near its eye for obvious reasons.

Why is my cat sneezing big boogers?

Your cat could be sneezing big boogers because it has a cold or the flu. There are other potential infections so it’s worth checking it out with your vet if in doubt. These boogers can get messy because they are fresh. Unlike black boogers, they will be runny and not pleasant to maintain.

So, now you have an idea of why your cat may be sneezing like this. But, it can be difficult to work out the true reason for these behaviors. So, always seek advice if you are unsure.

What could happen if it’s green or snotty boogers?

Green or snotty boogers can indicate your cat has the flu. However, cat flu is not directly related to influenza, according to Wikipedia. So, in this context, it is not the same as the flu we refer to for us humans.

Either way, it can still produce this mucous build-up and boogers may form. Which will result in you having to clean it up in the same manner.

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Could laryngeal paralysis cause black boogers?

Laryngeal paralysis can cause black boogers. This is when the cartilage around the larynx does not function normally. Meaning it does not open and close as expected. You could see your cat having a cough, changes in their voice, etc.

There has been a report of an owner, whose cat has  Laryngeal paralysis. He reported issues with his cat’s breathing and having black boogers for its entire life. Therefore, he has had to wipe down the cat’s boogers for a long time.

Is black crust around the cat’s nose the same as boogers?

Black crust around a cat’s nose is similar to boogers but could be from some nasal discharge. If you have a light-colored cat this can be more noticeable. This can be more alarming if this is the case because it is more noticeable.

Either way, you will still need to clean up the mess in a similar manner, by wiping it off as described above. But, if you are unsure what caused it, it’s worth checking with your vet to make sure.

One of the reasons it’s worth checking with your vet is the chance of it being something else that you may have not guessed, for example, some weird disease that your vet could deal with if it was discovered earlier.

Could cat acne look like black boogers?

Small acne around the nose can sometimes be mistaken for black boogers. These acne breakouts look similar and may wipe away days after discovery. They are noticeable because they are not easily removed like the boogers are, well initially.

These acne outbreaks can sometimes be caused by plastic feeding bowls. It could be bacteria held in the micro scratches in the plastic. Other owners have simply replaced these plastic bowls with a ceramic feeding bowl (Click here to see the reviews, on Amazon #Ad) to get around this.

Not only are these bowls more hygienic they often look pleasing to the eye. However, the downfall is they are breakable, so you may have to replace them in time from accidental damage or chipping.

Can seasonal allergies cause these black boogers?

Seasonal allergies can sometimes cause these black boogers. For example, the pollen in the air in the summertime can cause some cats to have runny noses resulting in black boogers.

If this is the case it is not usually a big issue. You can consult your vet for specific allergic remedies but once the season passes it shouldn’t be too much of an issue. This is not much different to us humans who have hayfever in the spring or summertime.

Lindsey Browlingdon