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Forum > Miscellaneous > Old kitty cat with a thyroid problem ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Old kitty cat with a thyroid problem
She's hungry ALL the time
Vintage Joan
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Vintage Joan
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Date: 6/10/13 3:40 PM

My 14-year-old kitty seems to have a hyperthyroid issue. I'm taking her to the vet soon, but from what I understand from my (people) doctor, a hyperthyroid condition is much harder to treat than a hypothyroid condition. So I'm not totally sure how this will turn out. If it's going to cost a large amount of money to treat this, I won't be able to. (I so wish we had a kitty health care plan!)

Anyway, she seems a bit calmer now that I've switched her to all canned food -- she was hardly touching her dry food, and someone said it might be hurting her teeth, poor thing. But she's still pretty hungry much of the time. She's lost weight -- you can really see it around her neck. My poor little girl.

-- Edited on 6/10/13 3:40 PM --

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kkkkaty
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kkkkaty  Friend of PR
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In reply to Vintage Joan <<


Date: 6/10/13 3:52 PM

sorry to hear this! In humans, I think they would destroy the thyroid, and then put the person on a synthetic thyroid substitute. I hope you and your sweet kitty can be helped....

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Vintage Joan
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Vintage Joan
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In reply to kkkkaty <<


Date: 6/10/13 3:59 PM

Quote:
sorry to hear this! In humans, I think they would destroy the thyroid, and then put the person on a synthetic thyroid substitute. I hope you and your sweet kitty can be helped....

Thank you. Yes, that's what my GP told me -- treating an underproduction of the thyroid hormone is relatively easy, but treating an overproduction of the hormone involves serious intervention.

I'm starting to weigh all this out. If there isn't a workable solution, I'll have to just let it continue until she's suffering too much -- until the bad is outweighing the good. But I am starting to think the unthinkable. This is the cat I used to call a "kitty olympian," she's always been so agile and fit. Even now, she sometimes suddenly runs and leaps around for no reason, chasing invisible mice.


-- Edited on 6/10/13 4:00 PM --

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my shield and my very great reward ~ Gen. 15:1

poorpigling

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In reply to Vintage Joan <<
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Date: 6/10/13 4:04 PM

We had a thyroid thread here on PR a while back.. I do know with humans.. they do have a med that can take instead of a radiation treatment or surgery.. and some sort of beta blocker..which really helps with that appetite thing..
Take heart.. tell your vet what you can and can't afford.. it can be controlled with meds I hope.. HUGS

sleeping wolf
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sleeping wolf
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In reply to Vintage Joan <<
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Date: 6/10/13 4:49 PM

I own and run a boarding cattery and hyperthyroidism is the second most common chronic illness we see in our more elderly guests. Most of them are treated with one tablet a day (active ingredient is called Carbimazole usually in tablets with brand name Vidalta in the UK). It often takes two or three blood tests to get the dose right and then the cat usually takes medication for life. Recovery is usually pretty quick once the right dose is found and the lost weight goes back on in time. The only problem I find is with cats that are difficult to medicate because the tablets have to be given whole and can't be crushed in food ( slow release is important with these meds). There are some possible side effects including vomiting and anaemia but these are usually mild compared with the symptoms of hyperthyroidism.
If the condition is very severe or the cat is impossible to medicate ( some are!!!) one or both thyroid glands can be removed under general anaesthetic. In the UK vets tend to view this as a last resort because of the risks of anaesthetics in older cats.
It really is worth getting your cat checked out as the change in their health can seem truly miraculous once they're treated.
I wish you and your cat the best - I know how distressing it can be to have a dear friend who is unwell. Please let us know how you get on.

Edited to correct typos
-- Edited on 6/10/13 4:51 PM --

PattyE
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In reply to Vintage Joan <<


Date: 6/10/13 4:50 PM

My older cat had this issue. It scared the heck out of me. She was put on a medication and it got the situation totally under control. She put weight back on, her fur looked so much better, and her behavior went back to normal. I was able to get the meds online so it was very convenient. I have no doubt your cat will respond well. (((hugs)))

Nikki
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Date: 6/10/13 5:06 PM

My cat has this and easily takes the pills in Pill Pockets. My parents un-pillable cat has the same medication in a gel that is applied to the ears.

Another possibility is to have a one-time treatment with radioactive iodine, the cat has to be isolated at a special facility for a week, but the success rate is extremely high and then there are no pills to be taken. This is expensive but probably less so than having frequent blood tests and bottles of pills.

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AdaH
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AdaH  Friend of PR
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In reply to Vintage Joan <<


Date: 6/10/13 5:13 PM

Sorry to hear about your kitty. From the posts looks as if there is a treatment. So that some good news.

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Ada

Mandolin82
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Mandolin82  Friend of PR
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Date: 6/10/13 5:35 PM

Have you had all the blood work done to find out if it hyperthyroid, or some other issue? Weight loss can be attributed to lots of other diseases.

Our relatively young cat, 8 years old, was hyperthyroid. We are in a large metropolitan area and they have a specialty clinic here that treats cats with over-active thyroids. They ingest radioactive iodine to kill off the parts of the gland that are over-reactive. It is expensive, but with a younger cat we decided to pay the money. His blood work is all normal now, so I think it was worth it. At their website they have instructions for people who are flying their cats in for treatment, so I guess they come other areas to get it done here.

Hypo-thyroid is easier. The cat just needs to take regular thyroid medication, which is inexpensive.

There is a non-surgical alternative to treating an over-active thyroid, which involves also involves taking pills. Rather nasty tasting ones. In preparation for the final treatment our cat had to take them for about a month. He hated them.

Below is the website of the place we used. They have lots of good info.

Feline Hyperthyroid Treatment Center

Susan

shana707

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In reply to Nikki <<


Date: 6/10/13 5:41 PM

I don't know how the radioactive iodine treatment works with cats but have experience with it used on people (me). After the treatment the thyroid--or what's left of it--frequently becomes underactive and so medication is required. That being said, it really is possible to pill a cat. I had one who needed meds twice a day for almost 12 years. The trick was to not make too much of a fuss. If we didn't fuss, she didn't (much!). Good luck. Keep in mind that the treatments and the meds work very quickly. Once you get on to the right treatment, she should be her old self within a week.

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