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Hyperthyroid Cat and her Litter Box Behavior

angelsmom1988

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My cat was recently diagnosed with hyperthyroidism.  Prior to the diagnosis, she was avoiding her box by peeing on bathmats and only using her box for pooping.  Currently, she has been on her meds for over 30 days and is showing overall improvement  (decreased hunger and thirst, decrease in shedding, weight gain, etc.)  However, I am not seeing improvement in going back to the litter box. 

One issue is that she did not want to take pills.  Rather than cause anxiousness, I crush her pills in food twice a day and she appears not to mind.  I do wonder that, if she doesn't eat every morsel on the bowl, is she getting a full dose. The vet can give me a prescription for a gel that goes in her ear, instead of pills, but I haven't yet made a decision to do this.

My theory is that when she was ailing, she didn't feel like going down the stairs to the litter box, so she used our bathrooms which were handier.  So I removed the bathroom rug and set a second litter box in the same spot.  However, she is not covering her business as is the feline instinct to do. 

Please let me know if I am missing something.  By the way, we return to the vet on Friday.
 
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Kieka

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It sounds like you are doing everything you can.

My cats are hit and miss on covering when they use the litter box so I wouldn't be too worried about that aspect. It sounds like she is using the new box which is a good thing. 

For the pills, have you tried pill pockets? They are like a soft treat you put the pill in and pinch shut. They don't work for every cat but they did work for one of mine years ago (it might have helped that he was missing half his teeth so he swallowed things and chewed less). When you crush up the pill as long as she is eating most of the food I think it is okay but full dosage is likely better, probably check with the vet. You could try maybe adding some homemade unsalted and no spice chicken broth to make it more watery and entice to eat it all or maybe mix in human meat baby food instead so she licks the bowl clean? 

Hoping all goes well with your vet visit and good vibes for her continued health. 
 
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angelsmom1988

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Kieka,

Thank you so much for your words of encouragement and great suggestions. 

Yes, I tried the pill pockets and she eats the pocket and avoids the pill.  How she gets the pocket away from the pill, I cannot guess.  I followed the directions and sealed the pocket tight and she still missed the pill.  I have some food that are meat chunks in broth, I'll try that.  I was concerned that she would see white powder in the broth and walk away.

Angel consistently covered her business in the past, but I will just ignore this new behavior.  It's better than stepping on pee soaked rugs or have Angel moving to the living area and soaking area rugs or hardwood floors

.Thank you again. 
 
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angelsmom1988

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We returned to the vet today. I will have the results of the hyperthyroidism retest tomorrow.  The major issue was that she did not want to take pills.  I crushed her pills in food twice a day and she appears not to mind.  I asked the vet if she doesn't eat all of the food on the bowl, is she getting a full dose? The vet replied that it is not a big issue unless it takes her hours to finish the food.  As it only takes an hour or two, the vet is not concerned.  The vet's assistant advised to only put out half of the food with the crushed pill and give Angel the other half when she eats the food with the pill.  I tried it for her evening dose today and this works very well.

Prior to the diagnosis, her litter habits changed.  I added the litter box on the main floor.  She started showing improvement yesterday and is now consistently covering when she is done.

Hopefully, the results of the retest with show that we are on the right track.  She regained almost a pound since beginning treatment, so I am very optimistic.
 
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