Cat’s Unusual Behavior Following Tapeworm Medication

by Susan
(Richmond, Virginia)

Why Did My Cat React Negatively To Ringworm Medication

One of my cats had worms. Vet suggested medication for both cats. Now, the cat that did not have worms will not eat. It started slowly over the past week until she will eat nothing - treats, chicken canned food, tuna, i.e., all the things she would go crazy for before (but I never fed her anything but dry food). Taken to vet and physically she is fine. Vet wanted to do blood test. I said okay, but he couldn't do it. He wanted to sedate her. I said no.

She has had adverse reactions before with shots, needing Benedryl now before any kind of shot, I am sure this was some side effect to the worm medicine, so sedation would be even worse. Vet says he doesn't think it is a side effect. Other than not eating she is fine - wants to play, although she constantly follows me everywhere (not normal). Any suggestions?



Vet’s Reasoning For Cat’s Unusual Behavior

Hello Susan,

I have to say that I agree with your veterinarian that a reaction to the dewormer is an unlikely cause of your cat’s symptoms. These medications are very safe.

Not eating for more than a few days can be very dangerous for cats, particularly if they are overweight. They can develop a disease called hepatic lipidosis, which is potentially fatal if left untreated so you don’t want to let this problem continue if your cat has not already started eating on her own.

If your cat needs to be sedated for a blood draw, your veterinarian could always pre-treat her with Benadryl to lessen the chances of her having an allergic reaction. If you decide to go this route (and I suspect it might be necessary to get to the bottom of things), I recommend that you let your veterinarian get samples to run as many tests as might prove necessary to avoid (as much as possible) the need to sedate again in the near future.

If your cat were my patient, I would take multiple blood samples, run a general chemistry and complete cell count and keep the “extra” blood in the refrigerator for additional testing if necessary, get a urine sample for a urinalysis, fecal sample for a fecal exam, and take abdominal x-rays.

Best of luck,

Jennifer Coates, DVM

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