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Amitriptyline - Anti-anxiety.

post #1 of 22
Thread Starter 
As I've posted before, Gremlin finally was diagnosed with FLUTD. I was also given Amitriptyline for the anxiety that might be causing the episode.

I've given him his first pill tonight, and he's become very growly. I've just brought a new kitten into the house (2 weeks ago) and he's just been starting to accept her and he hasn't growled or hissed at her in about 1.5 weeks.. until tonight.

I'm wondering if the new med is making him feel a bit under the weather? I'm on SSRI's myself, but I don't know if they work the same way in cats.
post #2 of 22
It made Tazzy girl lethargic and she started to drool- but never got growly-
post #3 of 22
Thread Starter 
I remembered when I started them, I felt a little sick for the first while, and I'm just hoping it is just that - he is moody from all the pills (and my re-arrangement of the apartment this evening).

I feel so badly for him, but I'm trying to live my life at the same time (moving, new kitten, etc....) It's hard sometimes, but he is my big (moody) guy.

I'm just confused by the sudden startup of growling again.
post #4 of 22
My dog was on it at one time it made her groggy... but I do know some humans react with anger to ssris
post #5 of 22
Thread Starter 
I personally find the humour that I myself have an anxiety disorder AND recent bladder surgery, and now my furry fuzzball is having the same issues.

Anyway, I've put it in this forum because I'm not sure if it's behavioural or health.
post #6 of 22
It could be he is growly because you are pilling him- not a cat's favorite pastime, or he just could flat be in pain. If he keeps growling, I would call the vet in the morning.
post #7 of 22
Thread Starter 
The growling happened a few hours later after a few seconds of petting. He normally loves petting and has never growled at me for that.
post #8 of 22
Candace, i would give your vet a ring, even if it's to put your mind at rest.
post #9 of 22
Thread Starter 
I feel like I've been calling the vats everyday
post #10 of 22
The med may be making him disoriented. Since it takes a while for him to growl after taking the pill it sounds like the pill needs some time to mess with his head. I've dealt with numerous cats with flutd, and i take issue with medicating their minds with mood altering drugs. Yes anxiety can make flutd worse, but the first cause of the problem is crystal or stone formation in the urine, bad PH values, and so diet change is strongly indicated. Some cats react to mood altering drugs in unpredictable ways. Remember, we can't tell the cat what this pill is for and what to expect. If someone popped a valium in your morning coffee without telling you, you'd think you were going insane.

FLUTD cannot be fixed by a little white pill. It takes a serious diet change. And if you're concerned about anxiety, then I'd take steps to reduce the environmental causes of anxiety in your cat. One of the largest, if not *the* largest stressors on cats are new cats in the home. Consider the effect of the new kitten on your cat's stress levels and see what you can do to reduce that.

If you're not already, begin a diet designed to correct the cat's ph, you may need a prescription food. Use lots of wet food. Avoid dry as a rule. Consider raw food if he would eat it.
post #11 of 22
Thread Starter 
I just made a move which is when he started with the symptoms. Otherwise I would have been much more skeptical at medicating him with the anti-depressants. I also began a diet change as soon as I found out he was having urinary problems. I've almost switched his food over to a new low ph / low ash brand (wysong). He has also been put back on an anti-biotic for ten days. All I was told is that it would make him lethargic, which this morning I found him being a sapce cadet in front of his food dish.
post #12 of 22
It sounds like this cat has been diagnosed with interstitial cystitis which falls under the very general term of feline lower urinary tract disease.

In some cats crystals form because of high pH, resulting in painful urination, blood in the urine, and possible blockage. Diet change alone usually corrects the problem in these cats.

Some cats start off with an infection in the bladder resulting in painful urination and blood in the urine. This occurs more often in female cats and blockage is less of an issue. The bacterial growth sometimes alters pH and crystals may or may not be present. Antibiotics usually resolve the problem and a change to a high quality urinary tract diet is usually recommended to help prevent future infections. (acidic urine is less likely to grow bacteria)

Some cats present with blood in their urine and the diagnosis is less obvious. Upon urinalysis there may be signs of inflammation (like red and white blood cells ) but no obvious signs of infection or crystal formation. The veterinarian will usually rule out infection by culturing the urine and rule out diet as an issue by reccomending a urinary tract diet. Sometimes these cats will resolve. Some cats though (much to the frustration of the owner) do not get better. Once bladder tumors and stones have been ruled out with xrays and ultrasound a diagnosis of idiopathic cystitis or interstitial cystitis is made.

This condition is not well understood but new research is showing that is may be an anxiety related condition. Many vets are perscribing anti-anxiety drugs like amitryptiline with a lot of success. Glucosamine is also quite helpful in reducing inflammation and is now commonly perscribed.

I use amitryptiline on one of my dogs and I have taken it myself. It is very commonly perscribed by human doctors as a sleeping aid. It produces a very restfull sleep with no hangover drowsyness and is non-addictive. In my own dog I noticed a little sedation at first (for maybe a week or so) but before I knew it he was in full sail again! He is one of the most active dogs I know and has boundless amounts of energy. This drug has given him (and I ) a much better quality of life by greatly reducing his anxiety and aggression.
post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by home.slice
All I was told is that it would make him lethargic, which this morning I found him being a sapce cadet in front of his food dish.
one of my cats was diagnosed with the cat version of interstitial cystitis last year (1 yr ago june) and put on amitriptylene. he had been having on again off again UTIs for about 3 months or so. he was a space cadet and slept ALL the time while taking the ami. VERY unusual for raven, he's the kind of cat who plays with his puffballs regularly, is vocal, runs around. my vet also just said he was going to be groggy. well, i called after he was on it for a while and expressed my concern that he hadn't "adjusted" to the meds, they said "don't worry, he's fine." we moved out of state 1-yr ago august and got a new vet. our new vet is a cat specialist (cat-only clinic) and she is awesome! first thing she took raven off the meds. it was causing other side-effects...his eyes were always dilated and he was having constipation problems. (he was also on c/d dry & getting a glucosamine supplement that he started not eating) since weaning him off, he has been great. he's on over-the-counter food, mostly canned. no meds, no supplements, and he's been stable for over a year (knock-on-wood).

i much prefer this vet's approach to the problem. i really think the major trigger for his cystitis (he hasn't had crystals since 2000, and there were no bacteria present) was at our last apartment we were on the first floor and there was a TON of stray cats around. roaming cats really stress raven out alot. now we live on a 3rd floor apt, and there are very few strays around. his stress level went WAY down. i also recognize that raven is more of a high-stress cat than most.

i also wanted to add, that several years ago raven had an 8 month bout with pretty much constant UTIs. after being on hill's c/d and repeated steroid & antibiotics weren't working we took him off the c/d and used nutro max dry (with a little canned--they didn't get as much canned then as they do now). i currently use Sensible Choice dry as their kibble, and actually am probably switching them back to nutro at the end of this bag (sensible choice has gotten a little too expensive because of circumstances). we're going to try the natural choice line though. i don't feed alot of dry kibble, i have 2 dry food addicts, so i have reached a compromise point with them.

editted to add:
have you tried a Feliway diffuser? when we were in that awful apartment i had a diffuser going and that really seemed to help the cats. i wouldn't say it was super noticeable, but it seemed to take the "edge" off so they weren't really snippy with each other.
post #14 of 22
Littleraven has made some good points. The new environment he is in could be the source of the stress, not just the move itself. Is there anything different about your new place that may be stressful? Also the feliway diffusers have been used with some success. It seems to work really well in some cats and not at all in others, but it is certainly worth a try.
post #15 of 22
Thread Starter 
My new apartment is about 1/3 the size of my old apartment. There is also just me now, and not my two other roommates. I know the kitten has caused stress, but his UTI symptoms began before I brought the kitten home. There was a lot of blood in his urine today, so I've tried to give him some wet food. At least he is able to urinate AND he is using his pan. I feel lucky that he hasn't gone outside the box yet.

I've just given him the second night of pills. I'm going to be away for the night, so hopefully he will be like last night and just relax. I can tell he is really stressed out from his behaviour, but I can't move to a new apartment and I can't get my old roommates back to make him more comfortable! I've also bought all new furniture, so perhaps he isn't used to the scent of it. Poor guy probably misses the old. holey couch he used to live on lol. I'm just hoping that with time (a few weeks/months) he'll calm down and be more comfortable with the new environment (and kitten).

I'm trying to to the best I can with him.
post #16 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by home.slice
My new apartment is about 1/3 the size of my old apartment. There is also just me now, and not my two other roommates. I know the kitten has caused stress, but his UTI symptoms began before I brought the kitten home. There was a lot of blood in his urine today, so I've tried to give him some wet food. At least he is able to urinate AND he is using his pan. I feel lucky that he hasn't gone outside the box yet.
i would really suggest the feliway diffuser. all of those changes in his life may be a bit overwhelming. another thing i wondered, does he have a place to get away from the kitten (where he has some peace & quiet)? and does the kitten harass him when he tries to use the box?

Quote:
Originally Posted by home.slice
I've also bought all new furniture, so perhaps he isn't used to the scent of it. Poor guy probably misses the old. holey couch he used to live on lol. I'm just hoping that with time (a few weeks/months) he'll calm down and be more comfortable with the new environment (and kitten).
you could also try taking a towel and rubbing it on him and then rubbing it on the new furniture so that his scent is on the new furniture. that might help.
post #17 of 22
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by littleraven7726
i would really suggest the feliway diffuser. all of those changes in his life may be a bit overwhelming. another thing i wondered, does he have a place to get away from the kitten (where he has some peace & quiet)? and does the kitten harass him when he tries to use the box?
He does and the kitten doesn't bug him when he leaves the room or when he uses the litter box.



i don't know what this diffuser is :/
post #18 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by home.slice
He does and the kitten doesn't bug him when he leaves the room or when he uses the litter box.



i don't know what this diffuser is :/
Feliway diffuser is a behavior modification diffuser of perphomones. They are sold in pet stores and they are supposed to calm cats down, reduce urine markings, etc.
They are not cheap, though.
post #19 of 22
Thread Starter 
I went to a pet store on my way home this morning and they told me that Im best asking my vet about getting one. It was one of those independant stores.

I'm sure it's expensive, but I'm doing almost everything I can!
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by home.slice
I went to a pet store on my way home this morning and they told me that Im best asking my vet about getting one. It was one of those independant stores.

I'm sure it's expensive, but I'm doing almost everything I can!
Pet stores do sell it. I am pretty sure Petsmart, Petland and Pet Value stores do sell it. My vet also has it as well.
post #21 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by home.slice
I went to a pet store on my way home this morning and they told me that Im best asking my vet about getting one. It was one of those independant stores.

I'm sure it's expensive, but I'm doing almost everything I can!
also, if you have a Farm & Fleet near you, they carry it for a good price (and the refills).
post #22 of 22
Thread Starter 
I don't think I've seen that place in Toronto :/
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