Hyperthyroid cat

(35 Posts)
GrandmaW Fri 14-Dec-12 16:07:41

My lovely cat Thomas, age 14, has just been diagnosed with hyperthyroidism and has to start on medication - one tablet a day.
I'm dreading having to dose him. The vet has recommended just putting the tablet in his food ( whole, not crushed) and seeing if he will take it that way - because of his problem he has a good appetite so I'm hoping that will work.
Otherwise, its a case of holding him and trying to get it in his mouth and making him swallow.
Any one with experience of a hyperthyroid cat who can give me some tips please?

Bakingtins Thu 20-Dec-12 13:40:52

The tablets normally normalise the thyroid levels in 3-4 weeks and the levels should be retested then to make sure the dosage is correct.
The other options you should have been offered are 1) Hills Y/D which is a low iodine diet (iodine is needed to make thyroid hormone). If you feed Y/D and only Y/D then it will normalise thyroid levels and mean you don't need medication. 2) Surgical removal of the thyroid glands 3) Radioactive iodine injection (only available in certain specialist centres and cat needs to stay there for several weeks after treatment).
The feline advisory bureau fabcats website has good information on all feline diseases including hyperthyroidism.

GrandmaW Sat 15-Dec-12 16:05:15

Well I can report that the first tablet went down a treat.
I collected the tablets from the vet this morning - they are Vidalta which are one a day. While I was out I also bought some of the cat stick treats and a bag of prawns!
I tried the cat treats first (cut of about an inch, slit it and put the tablet inside). I was amazed - Thomas, bless him, wolfed it down and looked for more! No stress for me or Thomas.
I hope you get your cats medication sorted, nipersvest. It is worrying isn't it? the vet also said that Thomas' heart rate was really high, so I'm hoping these tablets will soon have some affect on him.

nipersvest Sat 15-Dec-12 10:18:56

thanks, will take him back. it was felimazole he was on.

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 15-Dec-12 09:25:56

Untreated he will lose weight rapidly, have a very high heart rate likely to develop blood clots and throw a pulmonary embolism so not great I am afraid.
There are two different treatments it sounds like you are on felimazole which can be a number of tablets a day, it maybe worth asking about vidalta which is a once daily slow release medication.
I do the thyroidectomy with three weeks worth of tablets on board as on balance the risk of the anaesthetic is less than the risk of not being medicated,

nipersvest Sat 15-Dec-12 09:25:13

also, for those dosing their cats, i was told not to crush the tablets and that they had to be given whole as they weren't good for humans to handle.

nipersvest Sat 15-Dec-12 09:19:56

grandmaw - he's ok so far, i am worried about him though and will most likely take him back to the vet and see if it's worth persevering with 1 tab a day, it's the 2 tabs a day which make his vomit. he's happy in himself, still runs around the garden like a kitten when it's windy!

his heart rate is up, that's down to the overactive thyroid, so untreated, it will put pressure on his other organs.

lonecatwithkittens - can i ask?, what is the prognosis if we leave it untreated? he's 14.

Lonecatwithkitten Sat 15-Dec-12 09:08:25

Cats don't need thyroid supplementation after a thyroidectomy as they are cleverer than humanssmile.

Mibby Sat 15-Dec-12 09:05:43

We used to coat the tablet in meat or fish paste and he would eat it that way. Tubs of sanwich spread type stuff worked best. Good luck smile

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 15-Dec-12 08:55:32

My cat also had a thyroidectomy, cats have two glands. She doesn't have medication for hyperthyroidism any longer.

marriedandwreathedinholly Sat 15-Dec-12 08:50:44

Then he'll go underactive and need tablets to correct that. I did smile but it's more stable to correct.

Please please do not crush or split thyroid meds

Hills do a food which negates the need for meds - I think it is called Y/D
You basically just feed the food and nothing else, worth looking into if no luck with meds

TheNebulousBoojum Sat 15-Dec-12 08:39:59

Have you considered him having an operation to remove the affected gland?

cozietoesie Sat 15-Dec-12 08:37:18

Best of luck, GrandmaW. I'm sure it will go well. (<crossing fingers behind back>)

GrandmaW Sat 15-Dec-12 08:22:29

Just checked in again this morning and found more suggestions - thank you..
Marmite - check
Cream cheese -check
Ham - buy
Prawns - buy
Stick cat treats =buy

Nipersvest - how is your cat managing without tablets?

As well as the obvious loss of weight from this problem, do cats get any other symptoms? I did mention to the vet that Thomas seems to be a bit nervy and 'on edge' and he did say there can be some changes in their behaviour.

Collecting tablets this morning so bracing myself for the first dosing!

cozietoesie Fri 14-Dec-12 21:31:05

Thank goodness seniorboy doesn't have to take tablets. He has no teeth apart from incisors so won't eat anything crunchy including treats, dislikes prawns........ I think I would be doomed.

pepperrabbitanddesultorytinsel Fri 14-Dec-12 20:21:33

My cat is on 2 a day now - the first tablets brought her out in a horrid skin disorder with bleeding sores shock, she has been soooo much better on the new ones.
To start with she took it in her wet food, then, as jux said she began sneaking them round the house - I'd find them in the oddest places!
Now I squish up a pouch of wet food, hide the tablet in it and sprinkle dried food on top. She doesn't seem to detect it in the mix of consistencies.
Twice a day, DH looks at me like this hmm

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 14-Dec-12 20:17:37

Tablets for hyperthyroidism should never be crushed as there is quite a significant risk if humans inhale or gets the active substance on their skin. The data sheets are very very clear about this.

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 14-Dec-12 20:10:59

Oh yes the moggy girl did really well on the meds obviously. It was renal failure that ended her life not the hypothyroidism or mediastinal tumour.

Jux Fri 14-Dec-12 20:09:13

We had to do this for one of our old cats (she died 5 years ago).

She would eat around her pill when we put it in her food.

We then tried to give her pills. She would appear to swallow it and we would find it later spat out somewhere else, so she was either pretending to swallow it, not swallowing it properly or regurgitating it. It took two of us to get it in her mouth every day.

So I am of no help whatsoever, I'm afraid.

Lonecatwithkitten Fri 14-Dec-12 20:08:59

I am a vet. I am not proud of what I am about to confess and I refuse to admit how desperate I was to tablet my own cat to resort to these methods.
Right at the top of the list is a smal chunk of really strong cheddar it takes the thyroid tablets really well. Then there is the teaspoon of Philly (supermarket own brand is too thin) put it on the teaspoon poke tablet in let cat lick of teaspoon.
Ah now for the cheesy wotsit (cats adore them) it is possible to pop the thyroid in the top without damaging the tablet or the wotsit.
Finally the fresh cold water prawn you pop the thyroid tablet into the head end of the prawn.
These tricks also work with prilactone and frusemide tablets too.
The beautiful moggy girl was conned into living another 18 months beyond what she would have done by using these methods.
Here ends my confession.

Yddraigoldragon Fri 14-Dec-12 20:08:46

The tablets can be ground up (between two spoons or buy a pill crusher) and added to the first spoonful of food. Once that is gone, feed the rest. It helps if the cat is hungry....
Wrapping up in a towel also works, but is stressful to do every day. A syringe of water is useful to make sure the pill goes down.

TheNebulousBoojum Fri 14-Dec-12 20:07:43

Yup, mine has high blood pressure tabs.
Towel wrapped tightly round cat as if he's in a barber's chair.
Put cat between your legs, use thighs to control the thrashing.
Tilt head of cat back until it is glaring at you with hate-filled eyes.
Stick finger in mouth, behind feline teeth.
Flip tablet to back of throat and continue holding on until it has swallowed the tablet.
Watch out for conniving little sod spitting out expensive medication when you let go.

GoingGoingGoth Fri 14-Dec-12 20:02:21

I had a hyperthyroid cat, he lasted 3 years on the tablets. He would not take them wholesome we had to grind them up in his food, I 'm never sure if he got a full dose, but it was less stressful for him, and I felt his quality of life was still good.
On the other hand my Mum's cat would eat tablets like treats, she would just hand feed the treats, and sneak a tablet in.

TheseGoToEleven Fri 14-Dec-12 19:39:11

I used to have a hyperthyroid cat, sadly passed on now, but she would not take the tablets, she became a frothing hissing mass of claws if I tried to hold her and she wouldn't take the treats. (I am in Canada so this next bit might not be an option btw) We were given a methimazole ointment to rub on her ear, so I would feed her, she would eat her food and as she was eating I rubbed the ointment on her ear. Much much better than getting scratched to heck every day!

ThePlatypusAlwaysTriumphs Fri 14-Dec-12 18:39:03

It's a really common problem in older cats, and most of the things I would recommend have been said!

nipersvest- I've had some hyperthyroid cats like this and I've put them onto really smal doses to begin with- sometimes it's better to start with a smaller, once a day, dose and work up if you need to- ask your vet

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