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post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Shadow doesn't like having to take his pills. I keep telling him it's for his own good. Poor kitty.

I had to start giving him two 5mg tablets of Tapazol (methimazole) every day to get his hyperthyroidism under control. He's only been taking them a couple of weeks and in all seriousness he is pretty good about it. I may go to a liquid form since it might be easier to dose.
post #2 of 15
Have you tried Pill Pockets? They have them at Petsmart, Petco, etc. They are great! My cats fight over them...I've actually had the wrong cat eat a pill before! Luckily nothing harmful...but there's nothing better than standing back and watching them willingly EAT the pills...hidden in the pill pockets
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 
I've never heard of Pill Pockets. I just did a google to see what they looked like. Are they a soft "treat" that can be closed around the pill? I do believe that I'm going to give them a try. Thank you!
post #4 of 15
Yes, they're squishy...sort of like play-doh. If the pill is really tiny, I pinch a tiny bit off, to make the treat ball a little smaller, because some cats will do too much chewing if the ball is too big. Whatever it takes. If the pill is big, then I break it up and make multiple treats.

The directions say to just pinch the end shut, but I go ahead and work it into a ball, making it all tight and try to keep the pill as close to the center as possible. Those things are definitely worth a try.

They're a little spendy. At my Petsmart they're $9 for 45 treats, but when it saves pilling it's priceless.
post #5 of 15
Check your local feed store( ie one that has horse feed)... mine has it for 2.99
post #6 of 15
Has your cat been on methimazole and recently increased to 5 mg twice per day? Or is this a new medication altogether? If this is new for Shadow, please talk to your vet about lowering the starting dose to 2.5 mg twcie per day. While 5 mg x2 was the old standard, both research and the experiences of many pet owners has shown that starting at a lower does (2.5 mg x2) results in fewer side effects. The dose can then be increased slowly if necessary.
post #7 of 15
Thread Starter 
I left a message for the vet, she'll call me back tomorrow.

Shadow hasn't been showing any side effects from the med so far. No vomiting or diahrea. He's eating and drinking normally and using the box. I do wonder if he might not be suffering from a bit of lethargy, though. He's been on the pills since April 11 and is due to see the vet for another bloodtest next week. He has been spending a lot of time the last two days under the bed sleeping. I don't know if he just found a comfie hidey hole or is feeling a bit sick, hence the call to the vet. He does come out to be pet but didn't purr the last time he came up to me for petting and scratches which is unusual for him. Needless to say I'm a bit concerned.

The weather has been a bit warmer lately than it has been, is it possible that the warmer weather has him laying about more? The kittens have been taking it easy a little more, too.

What other side effects should I be looking out for other than lethargy, diahrea and vomiting?

post #8 of 15
Another vote for pill pockets. They are wonderful for hard to pill cats. The cats love them and anxiously wait for their treat each day. Here they are $6.79 for 45 pockets at Pets Discount.
post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the rec, Jean.

Figures, ever since I posted tonight the big bugger has been out and about keeping the kittens in line and being affectionate. Still want to talk to the vet tomorrow.
post #10 of 15
Sometimes they get itchy, especially on their ears and faces. The lethargy can be a sign that her thyroid is too low (hypothyroidism), so I would expect that after the blood test, you will likely be reducing the dosage.
post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by cloud_shade View Post
Sometimes they get itchy, especially on their ears and faces. The lethargy can be a sign that her thyroid is too low (hypothyroidism), so I would expect that after the blood test, you will likely be reducing the dosage.
Thanks! I was thinking that earlier. I take it that it's pretty common for the dosages to be adjusted according to the test results shortly after a cat begins taking the med?
post #12 of 15
Yep. It often takes a few weeks to figure out what dose is right for the individual cat. Halves and quarters of pills are pretty common. Have you looked into I-131/radioiodine therapy yet?
post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 
I haven't looked into the radioiodine therapy yet. He hasn't been on the pills but a couple of weeks, I wanted to go that route for a bit and see how that goes.
post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
Are there any risks to the I-131 treatment? Side effects? I have read that it usually only take one treatment, is that true?
post #15 of 15
It does usually only take one treatment (at least 90%, some facilities say 95% or more) of the time, with about 5% of cats requiring a second dose. It seems to be more effective when done early in the disease. The longer the cat is on methimazole, the more likely he/she will need a second or a higher dose. Occasionally cats will have a sore throat that resolves within a few days. Some cats will stop eating. This is not common, but it does happen occasionally, so it's good to be prepared to assist feed just in case. Thyroid storm is becoming more well known (http://www.avmi.net/NewFiles/Hyperth...inks/074.html). It happens when all the dying thyroid cells release T4 into the blood stream, ramping up the heart and breathing rates. Some vets will have the cat on heart medications before, during, and after treatment to help protect their hearts in case of thyroid storm. Cats with extensive kidney failure aren't candidates for the procedure, but cats with mild kidney disease may still be able to have it done. There are a lot of old rumors and information floating around about keeping a CRF cat slightly hyperthyroid to protect his/her kidneys. In the long run, however, this causes permanent damage to the heart and is not usually considered to be a good idea.

None of these things are very common. Methimazole has side effects as well, including itchiness, vomitting, etc. in the short term, and liver problems and/or anemia in the long term. Also, I-131 typically cures the disease whereas methimazole treats the symptoms. As a result, organ damage, particularly to the heart and kidneys, may continue to occur when the cats are kept on medication for long periods of time. Cats treated with I-131 have approximately twice the survival rate over cats treated with just medication (http://www.avmi.net/NewFiles/Hyperth...inks/071.html).

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