Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

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gillybean129
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Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by gillybean129 » Wed Jan 08, 2020 5:31 pm

I love my cat dearly but he's driving us all crazy.
He's 10 years old and has started to miow like a low caterwaul from sometimes as early as 4am
I get up and feed him then he settles, I have tried feeding an additional pouch before I go to bed but he still wakes us up.
It could be my partner feeds him at 530 ish but now he's waking earlier and earlier sitting outside the bathroom whilst he showers waking everyone else up.
I have no idea why he's behaving this way it's very unusual, everything else is as normal...give him the run of the house but it's getting so I feel like confining him downstairs!

Ideas please??

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lilynmitz
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Re: Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by lilynmitz » Wed Jan 08, 2020 11:22 pm

My best guess is that given his age it’s possible he is hyperthyroid, which can result in the cat calling more than usual. Blood tests at the vet will confirm whether or not this is the case, and it can be treated either with surgery and/or drugs. My old girl Lily had it for years, and we managed it reasonably well this way.

It would be worth getting your vet to give him a thorough check up, including a full range of ”geriatric cat” blood tests, as this is the time age related conditions start, and the soonest caught, the soonest mended.

Another issue might be if you have new visiting cats on his territory. That can also set them off, but given that this seems to be food driven, again, I think hyperthyroidism may be likely, as it greatly increases their hunger, but because their system is so speeded up by this condition, they can also lose weight despite eating more.

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fjm
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Re: Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by fjm » Thu Jan 09, 2020 8:33 am

It does sound as if it might be hyperthyroidism. Have you noticed any weight loss, or increased activity, playfulness, or reactivity? All possible signs, although not in all cats. Pippin got very hungry in the night when he was hyperthyroid, so much so that he got hunger pukes in the early morning - an excellent way of persuading your human to feed an extra late night meal! I would certainly ask your vet to investigate - if left hyperthyroidism can have very serious consequences but it is very treatable. I opted for radio-iodine treatment for Pippin, very expensive, but non-invasive and with a very high success rate.

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Re: Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by gillybean129 » Thu Jan 09, 2020 5:08 pm

He's not particularly lost any weight, his routine has changed in the last 6 months with my partner doing the early feed before he goes to work at about 5.30 and I just put it down to the routine change of needing his food now!!
No other signs mentioned like the hyperactivity etc
He is insured (with a mega excess of course) but I do hate putting him through the trauma of the vets as he's a very stressy cat anyway.
Do they sedate for bloods and there's no way he'd take tablets, can you talk me through the treatment options if that's possible (understand you are not vets but you have experience of this!)
Thanks in advance

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fjm
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Re: Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by fjm » Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:00 pm

Mine have never needed sedating to take blood - they just sit there. Tilly does best with very little restraint, as she likes to be in control, Pip freezes when worried - with both blood is taken in just a few minutes. Blood tests seem to worry them less than inoculations.

There are four treatment options that I know of. There are a number of things to consider when making a decision, including any other health issues that may be identified, especially kidney disease.

1 - Special diet. There is a special prescription diet with no iodine that will reduce the output of the thyroid gland. It has to be the only food the cat eats - no hunting, no treats, no nibbles from your plate. I don't know how effective it is very long term, and it could prove expensive over the 8+ years your cat may live.
2 - Drugs. These are very effective in the short term, but as the thyroid tissue continues to grow may become less effective over time. Low cost each month, but requires regular blood tests, so the cost over the year can get quite high. If he won't take tablets that is another thing to consider.
3 - Surgery to remove the affected thyroid gland. High success rate, but some cats need a second operation to remove the other gland as well, and some cats have thyroid tissue growing elsewhere in the chest cavity which may continue to grow, and cause a recurrence. And, of course, carries the risk of anaesthesia, etc.
4 - Radio-iodine treatment. Cures completely in 99% of cases. It is expensive, although if your cat is insured it may compare favourably with other options. Requires a full blood work up to test for kidney and any other health issues, and a stay at a special centre - there are several around the UK. The length of stay varies, and it seems to be reducing all the time, but even when home the cat needs to be isolated and urine and faeces managed until the (already low) levels of radio activity drop to a very safe level.

I would book your cat in for a full health check, and then, if he proves to be hyperthyroid, discuss the options with your vet. A baseline health check at 10 years old is a good idea even if he turns out to be completely healthy - it gives something to compare results to in the years ahead.

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Re: Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by lilynmitz » Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:04 pm

Lily wasn’t really showing much symptoms, I can’t honestly remember why I took her in, it was a while ago now. No cats like going to the vet, but sometimes you really do need to just tough it out, reminding yourself that you’re doing this because you love them, and they will ultimately benefit from it by getting the treatment they need to improve and extend their quality of life. They usually get over it pretty quickly. Sometimes I think it’s worse for us than them!

They don’t usually sedate cats for taking bloods, they're very good at restraining them (firmly but gently). It doesn’t take long. Lily had both surgery and pills. But she never knew she was on pills, I just used to hide them in Webbox sticks, so all she knew was she was getting treats every day. I was pulling her for years this way. I had to give her companion, Mitz treats too (without pills) so he didn’t miss out :lol:

I really would encourage you to bite the bullet and get him thoroughly health checked.

Ps - have just read fjm’s post, agree with all of it. I couldn’t face putting Lily through the full iodine treatment, she wouldn’t have coped with that. We removed the thyroid glands, even though the vet couldn’t feel them when he examined her pre-op, they turned out to be 4 times normal size. But about 18 months later she had developed new thyroid glands in her chest cavity, so she was on pills thereafter and did well on these till eventually we lost her to heart failure, possibly partly caused by the long term effects of the hyperT, as it puts all the body organs under some strain. But she had good quality of life, and was a happy little puss to the end.

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Re: Catawalling being noisy at silly o'clock

Post by Mollycat » Thu Jan 16, 2020 6:48 am

Hyperthyroid would be high on the list to check for. Like Pippin we went for radioiodine because there's no way Molly could be pilled but while we were waiting hers was well controlled with the diet. The extensive tests and two weeks stay in hospital were extremely stressful for all of us and we are still recovering financially, she isn't insured and with all the pre and post tests the total bill ended up around £4,000 even though the treatment was £2,500.

They don't all lose weight. In fact Molly was a constant battle against the bulge for 5 years but since treatment her weight has stabilised a little over ideal but certainly not a worry any more. She presented so atypical that the hospital asked for retests before they would even book her in for her full assessment, but her T4 was around 70 uncontrolled, 30 controlled and is now 15 at the bottom of normal range. The caterwauling has not stopped though. Like Lily the symptoms didn't suggest HT, she had a crash of yellow D&V and I was worried about her liver and hepatic lipidosis. Because she is so hard to catch I asked for a full blood screen "while we've got her here" and HT showed up.

Another consideration is senility, even though he is a bit young for that. Or as you suggest the change of habit, though if you don't give in to the earlier calls he should figure out that it doesn't work and stop eventually. I was going to say if he doesn't there is probably something wrong but there is one problem with that. In his head he might be thinking it works because he keeps going and eventually it's time and he gets fed, but he may believe it's because he is keeping on and not realise it's just coincidence.

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