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Medicating cat with hyperthyroidism

linke79
August 9th, 2009, 09:43 AM
My 8/9 year old female cat was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism about 3 weeks ago. She started Methimazole (5mg 2x/d) treatments that I fed to her in Greenie's Pill Pockets, which she absolutely loved and begged for when it was time for medication. Two days ago, she stopped eating her pill treats and seemed to be very reluctant to eat her dry food and any dry treats. It seemed as if her mouth was hurt and she was having a hard time biting, but I checked her mouth and didn't see any sores or foreign objects. Her gums/mouth did seem darker (brown/black) than I remembered, but I'm really not sure if her mouth already had brown/black coloring, or if that is new.

I read about the side effects of the medication and one is possible loss of appetite. I put down wet food hoping that it would help her appetite. She eats a little, but she vomits right after eating (yet another side effect of the medication and of hyperthyroidism...she's been vomiting for years).

I'm scheduled to bring her to the vet tomorrow, but I'm so anxious that I posted on this forum. I'm wondering why her eating habits have changed over night (no treats, no dry food, very little wet food) and I'm worried how I will be able to give her her meds since she is refusing the pill pockets, which worked so well in the beginning. I'm covered in scratches from holding her down and prying open her jaw! If anyone has suggestions or a related story about treating hyperthyroidism, I'ld love to hear about it!

Love4himies
August 9th, 2009, 09:48 AM
Awww, your poor kitty :grouphug:

I know chico has a kitty who is being treated for hyperthyrodism so she will be able to help you.

Also, Sugarcatmom and Growler are absolute kitty experts and I am sure they will have some great advice for you.

Dr Lee
August 9th, 2009, 10:46 AM
With the treatment of hyperthyroidism, the methimazole (tapazole) can lead to a loss of some appetite. With that said, one of the biggest concerns is that when hyperthyroidism is initially diagnosed the kidney enzymes may be artificially suppressed on the blood test. This means that the enhanced fluid through the kidneys secondary to the hyperthyroid, reduced the kidney blood levels to be lower than what they realy are. For this reason, in some patients, when the hyperthyroidism is address (without any over suppression nor any adverse reaction to the medication itself) we will then see clinical signs of kidney disease such as loss of appetite. In order to know where the kidney values really are, we need the thyroid levels to be back to normal again.

Because both kidney disease and hyperthyroidism can lead to hypertension and hypertension can not only lead to further kidney disease but also to further clinical signs of not eating etc... routine blood pressure is always a good idea.

With some level of kidney disease being common with hyperthyroidism (due to age and hypertensive issues, etc...) starting a kidney diet (whether it be home made, commercial or prescription) and/or utilizing supplements like Fish oils (Omega 3 fatty acids - DHA) can be helpful.

As far as medication options. There are two great alternatives to pilling with methimazole. Methimazole can be compounded into a tuna or other flavored liquid to be placed either in the mouth or on the food. Also it can be compounded into a topical cream that you would rub a small amount (usually 0.05 - 0.1cc) onto the inner side of an ear twice a day. Regardless of how you have the formula prepared, remember that methimazole will behave within a human just as it will in a cat.

I hope this helps. :cat:

growler~GateKeeper
August 11th, 2009, 03:03 AM
Hi linke79 how did the vet visit go? :goodvibes:

Did you have the vet check her teeth to make sure she doesn't have a cavity or otherwise damaged tooth as those can make cats reluctant to eat.

Did you have full blood & urine panels done to rule out kidney failure?

Some info on HyperT meds here: http://www.veterinarypartner.com/Content.plx?P=A&S=0&C=0&A=510

And a thread with more information here: http://www.pets.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=60971

As for actually giving the meds, I have the easiest cat in the world to pill :D, you can try rolling the pill in a teensy amount of butter, wrapping it in cheese or meat, dabbing a tiny amount on her mouth so she realizes what you've got is tasty then try pilling her or offering it as a treat.

Another option is to crush the pill & mix it into a teaspoon of food or 1/4 teaspoon yoghurt, get her to eat that first then feed her the rest of her meal.