I'm puzzled. Thoughts?

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PLAY!!! Play- play play play- pl...zzzzzzz
Purred: Mon Jan 7, '13 5:01pm PST 
My grandmother's cat is acting like a classic hyperthyroid case. She is 16-17 years old. She eats ravenously but is losing weight. She is much more active and demanding than she used to be, crawling all over my grandmother and getting into her space at all times. She's always been an affectionate cat, but this is an entire other level of demanding attention.

She's also developed a very loud, demanding MEOW which she uses often.

Her drinking is normal, her peeing and pooping are normal. She vomits once a week or so, but she's done that her entire life, and we've never found out why.

WHen my grandmother described her behavior, combined with the weight loss, I immediately thought hyperthyroidism. I was very hopeful for a straightforward diagnosis, and even though it's likely to be masking renal failure at ehr age, I thought maybe we could get her some help since her behavior is driving my grandparents crazy.

Today I took her to the vet, and I'm less confident now about what's wrong. She had an exam and a senior panel run in August, and everything (including her thyroid) was normal. Just to be cautious, we ran another senior panel along with an additional thyroid test....I can't recall the name, but the vet said that a small number of cats have normal results on the T4 and abnormal results on the other.

The good news is that she looks really good for a cat her age. Her kidneys are a good size, her coat is soft and glossy, lymph nodes feel normal, no palpable masses, etc. The only abnmormal finding is that she has lost half a pound since August. The bad news is that if we get another normal panel we're back at square one.

At her age, we're not going to go nuts on diagnostics, but my grandmother is being driven crazy and I'd like to help her enjoy Posey's golden years with her.

Does anyone have any ideas as to what might be going on or how I can help Posey mellow out??


I may meow to- you if you're- worthy
Purred: Tue Jan 8, '13 7:55pm PST 
You might try Pet Naturals calm treats. I use them and it helps Felix to relax. Maybe she has a bit of cognitive issues that would be normal in an aging cat. What does the vet say about your concerns? COuld she be borderline? Maybe try & play with her a bit more to help tire her out some. My Maizy especially can holler like she is being poked with a sharp stick, so I get "loud meow" for sure!


PLAY!!! Play- play play play- pl...zzzzzzz
Purred: Wed Jan 9, '13 11:14pm PST 
We sell the calming treats where I work, I'll pick some up for her. Feliway hasn't helped, maybe something ingested will be better. smile

Her bloodwork came back today. Her thyroid is *borderline*, but still within normal limits. Everything else looks fantastic, especially for such an old lady!! We're still waiting on the secondary thyroid test, results should be in Friday.

We did make a discovery today which may explain some of her behavior, though not the weight loss. She is deaf as a post! This is new, we tested her hearing around a year ago, and she could still hear then. I'm betting that her hearing loss has something to do with her yowling and demanding more petting.

Alex (sweet angel girl)

Angel on a- mission!
Purred: Thu Jan 10, '13 9:43am PST 
She could have inflammatory bowel disease. If it's not her thyroid it may be IBD: http://www.ibdkitties.net/. Vomiting once a week is never normal, NEVER. That's a lot to vomit and it can scar the GI tract after awhile and give them intestinal problems.

Natalie the- Natcat,- Forever

Show some- respect,- youngster!
Purred: Thu Jan 10, '13 10:13am PST 
Natalie is deaf. She screams sometimes. She can't hear herself. We've also come to realize that because she's deaf, and her vision may not be as good as when she was young, she feels more vulnurable when it gets dark.

Wondering, too, if she has any FHS symptoms. Natalie was diagnosed with probably FHS-she attacks her tail when she's overstimulated, and she can be very very needy.

Natalie is 16/17 and does have CKD now, but the FHS started last year, and we've realized with her being deaf that she appears to feel 'cut off' if she doesn't get enough attention or if we aren't in the room but are home-she'll sit on the bed and 'yell' at us in the other room.


PLAY!!! Play- play play play- pl...zzzzzzz
Purred: Fri Jan 11, '13 6:31pm PST 
Well, Posey's bloodwork is officially all within normal limits, though her thyroid is *right* on the high edge of normal.

Since she's approaching 18 years old, our short-term plan is going to be to let her free-feed and see if she puts on any weight in the next six weeks. We're not going to go crazy with diagnostics since it's unlikely at this point we'll find anything we're going to treat.

I'm a little disappointed because thyroid problems would hvae been pretty simple to treat. But...I'm thankful that Posey has made it to such a fine age in such good health. smile


Sing a new- song...
Purred: Sat Jan 12, '13 1:10am PST 
My Chiquitita is also losing her hearing and she also cries a bit more loudly and more at night, and she also has a tendency to "lose" me which will cause the crying also. We found that the calming treats help on days where she seems more affected by her age. I hope that your solution helps and that she puts on some weight and that the vomiting is not symptomatic of bigger issues.

Purrs, head bonks, and sandpaper kisses! hug

Member Since
Purred: Fri Jan 25, '13 1:54pm PST 
You described my oldest cat to a t, except my cat is also deaf and unfortunately will pee outside the box sometimes. I will bet my bottom dollar that just like my cat, she is senile. Yes, cats do get senile. She meows really loud like she's lost, constantly wants to eat yet is skinny and is very pushy and demanding. My cat was tested and does not have a thyroid problem so I'm betting she is senile from old age frown it's sad

Gumpy Sweet- Boy

Love wrapped in- fur
Purred: Thu Jan 31, '13 2:15pm PST 
For an older cat, 'normal' values for T4 aren't always considered normal.

"T4 values in an older cat (over age ten) should not *just* be in the reference range, but in the lower half to third of the reference range and decreasing over time. Other ailments, such as CRF (kidney disease), IBD (inflammatory bowel disease), etc. deflate T4 values as well as age...."
From this article on feline hyperthyroidism.

There are more definitive tests, I believe the free T-4 is one of them.

The kitty could still be hyper-t even with values in the normal range. This happened to my parent's cat. Their vet said his T4 was still in the normal range (at the high end), but he had may symptoms including having a seizure. And sadly he died unexpectedly (likely related to this).

Edited by author Thu Jan 31, '13 2:27pm PST