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Readers Respond: Living with a hyperthyroid cat

Responses: 33


From the article: Hyperthyroidism in Cats

Hyperthyroidism is a common disease of middle-aged and senior cats. The most striking sign is weight loss despite increased (sometimes ravenous) appetite.

Once a cat is diagnosed with hyperthyroidism, there are three treatment options. What option did you choose for your cat, and why?

Please share your cat's story of hyperthyroidism - how you first noticed the problem, how it was diagnosed, and what treatment option was selected for your cat.

Tell us your story

I asked a vet..

I put my 17 yr old cat on meds and she acted like she was dead. No cuddling or moving. I had a long talk with the vet. I asked what would happen if I didn't give her meds. He said she'd last a year or year and a half. She would not suffer but would keep losing weight. She wouldn't suffer. It would be me watching her waste away that would be painful. She's so thin but still purrs, cuddles, and even chases bugs and mice. If I even think she is suffering, I'll make the decision then. Till then I'm enjoying every moment I have left. She's sitting on me as I type. I'll miss her so.
—Guest Kittymom

Hyperthyroid 17 year old cat

My 17 year old cat was just recently diagnosed with hyperthyroidism. I am trying the medication my vet suggested and feeding her Hill's Y/D...which she does not like. Her sister, same age, is still healthy at this time but has always eaten with her sister and they spend every day, every night, every minute with each other. The problem with that....the dominant cat is the sick cat. If the sick cat doesn't eat...the other cat will not eat. It looks like...if this keeps up...one is going because I cannot allow the healthy cat to starve because she will not eat if the sick cat doesn't eat.
—Guest Abby

14 year old cat

We rescued my father in laws cat as he was too old to take care of her. She was vomiting all the time so I took her to my vet and she was diagnosed with hyperthroydism. She has bee on the transdermal gel in her ears twice a day for two years now and is doing very well. She went from 3 lbs to 7 lbs and NEVER vomits anymore.
—Guest Linda


My 15 yr old cat was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism in nov 2011. He was 12. He had weighed 22 lbs. & lost 10 lbs over months. Thank god hills science diet had just come out with prescription YD cat food. He has been maintaining. His weight of 12.9. Lbs. He enjoys the YD dry and wet food. This is working well. I would never want to have to give him medication. My sister s cat came down with hyperthyroidism & had to have medication which was do stressful cuz the cat hated it. It was very sad. Her cat lost so much weight & had to be put to sleep. So heartbreaking. Maybe if the hills YD cat food had been out at that time. Things would have been different.
—Guest Dongina


my cat Shonnie was diagnosed last year and was informed by vets about pills,cream and radiation.I know from past events about pills and my fingers and she spits them out anyway.The rest were too expensive.In light of her being 19yrs old this year I told the vet I did not want to start treatment & he understood & respected that.She also has some feline dementia which goes hand in hand so I will keep her as long as she is not in pain.I will also check her tin food for iodine .
—Guest dianne


My baby Goober has been my kid since the day that he was rushed to me at what we figure was about 3 days of age. After a long lengthy rearing he was my beautiful healthy boy till the age of about 8 years old when he started to drastically drop weight and become ill. He was diagnosed with hyperthyroidism and I was told that medication was my best route. Thankfully due to being bottle fed and a huge suck he took to pills easily and without trouble. Originally when he was first diagnosed it took the vet multiple testing to get the levels right but then he stayed within a extra half a pill either way a day. Now he is turning 16 and this last fall started with dropping weight again, my vet says that his levels are normal on his 2 pills a day. Although I have now increased his food by adding wet to his diet after 16 years without and I'm still seeing him waste away. I'm heartbroken and I don't see him make it to the fall. My heart goes out to everyone who is in these shoes. Be strong..
—Guest Tanya

Cookie is not only a cat, he is family

My 10 year old cat Cookie has been diagnosed with hyperthyroidism. We noticed a few weeks ago that he was losing weight and we noticed near his back and back legs. Cookie was also drinking water whenever he could. Besides these two noticeable changes Cookie was a normal lovable cat. We decided to bring him to the vet and they took blood from him. His results came back that he had hyperthyriodism. In any situation this is the best news because it could have been much worse. We were also unable to get a urine sample from Cookie so if anyone has done this with their cat, please give any suggestions. We give Cookie a pill (methimazole) twice daily and we notice he is looking much better. We love Cookie he is the best cat. He watches tv with us, he loves people and will go up to you no matter who you are. He has always been so lovable so I would never give up on him. I want him to live a longer life with us. We love you Cookie.
—Guest Lauren


I adopted a cat who I knew nothing about. After a vet visit I found she is about 8 1/2 years old & has severe hyperthyroidism… Level 20. I took the easiest way out that I could handle...hills y/d. Her poor coat has turned shiny again, and she has gained 2 pounds loving the food. only thing is that she wants to eat about 4 times a day. She eats almost 2 cans every day. It is a real pain what with the microwaving cold food & lastly feeding at 11:00 p.m ! I don't want to take her back to the vet, but I can have a vet nurse come to my home to do the blood test. She does not travel well, and I hate to put her through that again. If she is doing well on the food, why do I need to get her tested again? She is very vocal when she wants to eat but otherwise seems to be in good health. Can't I just keep her on this diet for the rest of her life without those terrible vet visits! Plus, she came home from the vet with fleas!! Thanks!!
—Guest Joan lind

hyperthyroid diagnosis

Our cat Baby was recently diagnosed with hyperthyroid. weight lose, crying, hungry but not wanting to eat. Decided the liquid medicine was the best option, but after 3 weeks I think the medicine is making her condition worse. Vet suggested cutting back to 5mg once a day instead of twice but that doesn't seem to help. She's still very weak and fraile.
—Guest baby

I dont know what to do

My wonderful Zimmy was diagnosed in Feb with hyperthyroidism. We noticed weight loss, excessive eating/drinking months before but just simply could not afford to take him in. We had him on the pills for about 3 months and he was so much better! However, I have 2 kids and we only have my husbands income right now so we are struggling pretty badly. Zimmy is nearly 15 and I had to make a choice between the $70/month it costs for bloodwork & medicine or food for my kids. Zimmy was my first "kid" and I have already cried at the thought at putting him down. I just dont know what to do!!! I want him to stay with us for as long as possible but I cant let him suffer because I cant afford his care. What would you do?
—Guest ZimmyCat


My vet insists of a blood test and examination every 3 months. Which is ok but do the vets need to do an examination with every blood test? Both the blood test and examination are charged separately. I think this is scandalous. The examination consists of checking her mouth weighing and feeling her glands around her neck at the cost of £25. Then the blood test on top. Vets need to run a business not sure they are animal lovers.
—Guest sally


Kelp is loaded with Iodine, which contributes to hyperthyroidism. Do not give it to a hyperthyroid cat. Canned cat foods such as fish/seafood/tuna, are also loaded with Iodine. See your Vet and try to get your cat to eat more 'meat' protein.... Read labels on cat foods as some contain soy, kelp, and are higher in iodine.....Avoid those!
—Guest T.L.DeVita

5 year old cat losing sight

a couple years back my cat started bumping into everything. Took her to regular vet and blood test came bck normal. Vet sent me to eye specialist and blood pressure was 260. Put my cat on blood pressure medication and brought it down to 160 and then 135. Still eye sight was not good. He gets around inside and outside and I think he can see images but not sure. Took him bck for blood pressure ck and it was back up to 210. Dr took blood test and thyroid test and both normal. Would like to have info about this.
—Guest jan sullivan

Cato and his thyroid issues

Please try a dose of methimazole that is lower than originally recommended if your cat gets very lethargic and starts hiding. Cato started on a dose that was way too high and I just adjusted it myself until he leveled out. The pills are bitter, which is why your cat hates them. You should not crush them. Roll them into a tiny ball of soft cheese. It becomes a treat. I squirt a little water into his mouth after putting the cheeseball down near the back of his tongue, to make sure it goes down. Cato actually purrs when he gets his pill. Put your cat on renal whole food supplements and cardiac supplements as a backup. Ask the vet. I use standard process products. This problem is very manageable with holistic health methods. 2013
—Guest Lee B.

My 14 year old cat

In May of this year I had to put my 16 year old cat Babie to sleep. She had hyperthyroid. The medicine was pretty harsh on her body. After a month I decided to have her daughter checked. And sure enough she has hyperthroid. We decided to try Science Diet Y/D food. She is doing great. She is always eating. I am hoping it works. I have to take her in for a T-4 re check. I hope I will get good news. The pills are not an option.
—Guest Sandra

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Living with a hyperthyroid cat

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