health problems. vet says it could be hypo thyroid

This forum is for cat lovers seeking everyday advice and suggestions on health-related issues. Remember, however, that advice on a public forum simply can't be a substitute for proper medical attention. Only your vet can say assuredly what is best for your cat.


Queen of the- castle
Purred: Thu Mar 12, '09 2:47pm PST 
My cat is 12 years old and was spayed long ago. She has been gaining weight rapidly for the past couple of years. She has been on medication after ingesting pigeon droppings but had been fine for 4 years afterward. Unfortunately though she has been obsessed with food for a number of years now...asking for food all day long, even if she just ate. About 6 months ago she started having diarrhea and for the past 3 months I have noticed that she has pain and discomfort when/ and after she goes to the washroom. She makes noises in her litter box which makes me think there is an intestinal issue with her. After she does go to do her business, she most often has problems sitting down because I think she feels uncomfortable; I think her stomach is irritated. I have to give her weekly baths because she is overweight (20 pounds) and is unable to groom herself. She does not usually drink a lot of water, but lately I've been noticing her drinking more water. I have a huge concern because today when I came home, I was scared by my cat's loud crying and wailing. Her cries sounded like she was in a lot of pain. She continued crying for about 5-10 minutes and switched positions abruptly, as if she could not get any relief from her stomach pain. I know it is stomach pain because when she was lying on her side, her stomach was pulsating and moving around, like something was jerking inside her stomach.
Please help. I went to the vet today, who assumed it was hypo thyroid or a liver disorder (but something that is definately internal). He said he could not do anything until he took a blood sample. But my cat was very hostile and was under a lot of stress so I have to go tomorrow morning and they have to sedate her to get the blood sample. If you have any information for me, that would be very helpful. My cat is so precious to me and if she is in any more pain, I couldn't bear it. frown

Edited by author Thu Mar 12, '09 2:47pm PST


Racer (In- Loving- Memory)

Racer the ace- cat
Purred: Thu Mar 12, '09 8:06pm PST 
Your vet is right....he could not prescribe any medication unless he gets a blood sample from your cat. Our cat Racer is 17 yrs old and is diagnosed with hyperthyroid & anemia. His health is not improving inspite of the medication and also because of his age. He doesn't want to eat, drink or play anymore; he just likes to lay down and couldn't stand up anymore. Racer has been in the vet a lot of times. Racer used to weigh 15 lbs and his weight dropped drastically.

Get a blood test for your cat just to be sure.

Jester- (1988-2007)

Purred: Thu Mar 12, '09 10:59pm PST 
Hypothyroid is uncommon in cats (they tend to get hyperthyroid instead) but the vet will be able to confirm that with the blood test. What you describe about her stomach sounds like IBD (irritable bowell disease). When Jester had it her stomach would go into a spasm like what you describe and she had chronic diarrhea for months. I found a holistic vet who treated her with acupuncture, herbs and diet modification and this cured her without having to use prednisone which is the normal treatment but has side effects.

One other thing. I'm guessing that your vet is a general practice and not a cat specialist vets since they weren't able to do the blood draw without sedating her. If you can find a vets that specialises in cats near you it may be worth checking them out. They'll be more familiar with cat illnesses and more used to handling scared/aggressive cats so the visits will go more smoothly.


Named for the- other famous- green tractor
Purred: Fri Mar 13, '09 7:46am PST 
As stated above, Hypothyroidism rarely is sympotmatic in cats and rarely causes any health issues. Increased apetitite coupled with weight loss and increased activity and thirst are typical of hyperthyroidism.

Increased food intake combined with increased water consumption and an increase in weight sounds very much like Diabetes.

Diabetes can be a side effect of pancreatitis. Cats do not typically exhibit pain like dogs do for Pancreatitis tho they can be sympptomatic for vomiting and loss of apetite. Blood tests for Pancreatitis are expensive and inconclusive and the treatment is often expensive and less than satisfactory.

If you have cut back on the food, or the cat has developed diarreha and has malabsorption of nutrients, the extra fat your cat is carrying would tend to mobilize and deposit on the liver, impairing liver function and causing pain. This is serious.

Full blood panel is necessary coupled with Xrays to look for masses or obstructions. The blood panel will indicate CBC, BUN, T3 and T4 levels, Glucose etc. for diabetes and liver function.

Please keep us posted as to the outcome so that others can learn (including me).


Queen of the- castle
Purred: Fri Mar 13, '09 8:18am PST 
Thank you for your help! Tashka's feeling better today smile but I'm still going to get to the bottom of what's going on with her.

I was supposed to take her to the vet this morning to get a blood sample. But I don't want my cat sedated unless I have to...and they were insisting on it. I didn't even mention to the vet that a few weeks back my cat was licking wall paint in various places around the house which got me thinking that may be she has a mineral deficiency. I did some research online, and some of my cat's symptoms (muscle tremors, seizures and diarrhea) sound like she may have a mineral deficiency. I just don't want to put my kitty in unnecessary discomfort by having her sedated and I don't want her taking medicine as it could affect her liver.

I'm taking her to another vet today, one that was recommended, and consult about getting her a mineral shot. Wish me luck!


Named for the- other famous- green tractor
Purred: Fri Mar 13, '09 11:33am PST 
In spite of all this, a cat this age showing illness should have a complete Senior Blood panel run. This is very important. It can tell you so very much, including organ function that MIGHT let you know what mineral is deficient, if that is the case.

Some organ malfunctions can interfere with nutrient absorption and some nutirents require certain minerals or vitamins to be absorbed. If there is a malfunction in the endocrine system preventing the use or absorption of a mineral you can give shots 'till the cows come home and not illicit a cure.

I repeat.. the blood panel is IMPORTANT. It can pinpoint illness so you can pinpoint management or cure.

There are ways to restrain a cat and get blood without sedating.. they aren't taking ALL the blood.. merely a vial... (tho try to explain this to kitty)...


Lazy, Lazy, Lazy
Purred: Sat Mar 14, '09 9:12am PST 
You should definitely get a full blood panel run along with a urinalysis. You should request xrays or an ultrasound to determine what may be going on with her abdominal cavity. the xrays are cheaper but an ultrasound may provide more information. Consultation with an internal medicine specialist may be useful as well.

Alaidh - my little- angel

The only real- cat is a grey- cat!
Purred: Mon Mar 16, '09 1:18am PST 
I can't add anything that hasn't already been said, but I can give a suggestion on how to get blood without having to sedate.

My cat Alaidh was very wriggly and not co-operative at all at the vet. My vet, who is a cat specialist, has little cat bags that she can put the cat in so they can't scratch or wriggle. She also has little cat muzzles that she will use in extreme cases...like Alaidh...lol...Alaidh was a tough little girl.

Anyway, I included some pictures of Alaidh in her little bag in one of ther blog entries from a couple of years ago. Just click here and you can see it: Alaidh's Diary

Am I correct in assuming you're in Canada? You haven't included on your page where you're living. If you're in the Vancouver area, though, I can recommend a great vet!