Our pets aren't as different from us as we might think. We don't like to consider such things, but our pets can develop illnesses the same way we can as we age, or even when we're young. Cats can get illnesses such as lung cancer and heart disease too, and oftentimes we can take them to the vet and have them treated the same way we would be treated for the same diseases.
If your cat has been diagnosed with severe lung or heart problems, and its been found that they have a low blood oxygen level, your cat's veterinarian might prescribe the use of oxygen therapy. This type of medicines for animals are administered in the animal hospital, or at the veterinarian's office, but if your cat has been diagnosed with low blood oxygen, he or she might be sent home with oxygen tanks.
They often prefer an animal be sent home when prescribed oxygen therapy, because animals fair much better in a familiar environment. The cat would likely panic when handled by a stranger, especially when something new and different is going on, and oxygen therapy can be very scary at first for a cat. Vets understand this, and a respiratory patient who panics will only cause their symptoms and conditions to worsen. If an animal is to recuperate properly, it needs to be at home with its owners.
It should also be able to move around when receiving oxygen therapy. Movement and oxygen therapy are a good combination most of the time, just make sure its safe by talking to your cat's veterinarian. Being able to use its muscles can help disperse the oxygen throughout the body much better than if the cat was just lying around all the time. This will help the cat get better sooner, and hopeful improve its lung function or overall condition.
When administering portable oxygen therapy to a cat, it's usually best to use a collar cone, which is the same kind that would be worn if the cat had surgery, to keep her it from biting or licking at the stitches. The opening of the cone would then be covered a little over half way with cellophane, which can be taped around the edges or sides of the cones to hold it in place. About 80% of the opening of the cone should be covered with a sheet of plastic.
The plastic should not be touching the cat's face at all. The plastic is there to make sure the cat can breathe properly, and breathe in the oxygen that is being delivered into the small hole in the cone. The hole is sealed on the edges, against the sides of the tubing, with tape to make sure none is leaking out. The tube is attached to the small and light oxygen tank, which can be strapped to the cat's back.
Being able to use oxygen in its own home will give the cat a much better chance of getting better, as most pets fair much better in familiar environments, surrounded by their loving owners. Using portable oxygen will allow a cat to do just that.