Cats, they say have nine lives, but if even one of those lives is to be lived in the full and your cat is to remain healthy, satisfied and look on you with respect and love, you need to reciprocate – with proper attention and medical care, when your cat needs it.

Hyperthyroidism in cats and Methimazole

One peculiar problem that pet cats may face is Hyperthyroidism. This abnormal condition occurs when the thyroid gland produces excessive amounts of thyroid hormones. Although this condition is thankfully somewhat rare, as of now, the only possible prescribed medication is Methimazole. 

In some countries, like Australia and the United Kingdom, sometimes Carbimazole is used. Both drugs block the production of thyroid hormones T3 and T4. Since Carbimazole is not so commonly used, let us examine why veterinary doctors prefer the use of Methimazole. Firstly, it is an alternative to surgery or radiotherapy, both treatments fraught with the danger of many possible side effects, and also being long-drawn. With Methimazole, side effects are not so common and furthermore, the effects of treatment by Methimazole are reversible.

 Apart from the drug form, Methimazole is also available in gel or cream form known as Methimazole transdermal gel. The advantage of this is that as the actual drug is not at all palatable, and in fact quite bitter, many cats will of course not take it as it is. Even if mixed with food, after the first one or two instances, it may even give up eating altogether. This gel containing Methimazole is a viscous liquid applied to the skin of your pet either by hand, wearing gloves or finger cots for your protection. It is also packaged and sold in syringes, which is often more easy to administer. This gel is a compound that needs to fit the prescription and is available in a variety of strength doses.

Most common side effects

When Methimazole is fed to cats internally, in rare cases it produces side effects and can disrupt the normal functioning of the digestive tract of cats. The poor pet could experience nausea, vomiting and general loss of appetite. Reassuringly these effects are not permanent, and usually cease after a couple of times the drug has been fed to your pet, but of course, it is very disconcerting to the owner to see their precious pet go through this kind of discomfort and suffering.

Another problem could be irritation of the face and neck with this irritation becoming so unbearable that the cat scratches itself badly, leading to scratches and cuts. In such a case, immediately stop the treatment before the animal mutilates itself further. If in fact, considerable damage has been done, then pellitol ointment should be smeared on the injured areas. This forms a thick protective coating inside the ear, which prevents the cat from further harming itself.


Even though Methimazole can have some side effects, but at this point in time, there is no drug that acts faster or produces more effective results than it. But if only recommended doses are administered, and the patient (your cat) is monitored carefully for any side effects or any kind of abnormal swelling, then your pet can indeed be healed and protected from any recurrences of thyroid-related problems in the future.

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