Amitriptyline is a drug that was usually given to humans as an anti-depressant. This drug has been now modified to treat cats that suffer from behavior disorders. Although it is designed to let owners keep their cats that suffer from unacceptable behaviors by modifying them in most cases there is a price to be paid. For some cats amitriptyline can be literally a life saver there are some side effects of this drug that can take a toll on your cat. Here are some of the uses and side effects of amitriptyline in cats.
Uses of amitriptyline
Amitriptyline is used for several different behaviors in cats. It is a drug that works on the nervous system and can alter the brain by increasing the levels of serotonin and other neo-transmitters in the cats system.
~ This drug can modify behaviors in cats such as stress which may cause a cat to urinate in unacceptable places.
~ Stress is the factor here which can cause interstitial cystitis which can produce painful and frequent urination.
~ It may also be used for separation anxiety in cats or cats that have the habit of grooming themselves continually.
~ If your cat has allergies it is best not to administer this drug. Although this drug may help your cat there are a few side effects that may cause you some concern.
~ Your best defense is to acquire as much knowledge as possible from your veterinarian before starting your cat on amitriptyline.
Effects of amitriptyline
The effects of amitriptyline in your cat can range from mild discomfort to severe reactions depending on your cat.
~ Some of the first signs of the effect that this drug is producing in your cats system are excessive drooling and lethargy.
~ Urination may stop completely or at the least become less frequent. There is also a possibility of constipation in some cats while taking this drug.
~ A change in appetite is quite likely. Some cats tend to eat more when on this drug which may lead to the cat gaining weight or becoming obese. This could be due to the effects of amitriptyline slowing down your cat's metabolism.
~ Changes in your cat’s fur are quite possible. It can change from a coat of healthy fur to a coat that looks dull and unkempt.
~ Another common effect of amitriptyline is confusion and disorientation. This is from the effects this drug has on your cat's brain.
~ Perhaps the most dangerous side effects of this drug are on your cat's heart. It can cause abnormal heart rhythms which if left untreated may sometimes prove fatal.
~ In the most extreme conditions of the side effects of amitriptyline on cats are convulsions and coma and heart attack.
~ Other more common side effects include bruised skin, low blood pressure, allergic reactions, sudden diarrhea, discoloration of gums and cold paws.
~ Another concern is if your cat is on any other medication amitriptyline may not be compatible with it.
Make sure you have researched all areas before administering this drug to your cat starting with a complete checkup at your veterinarians and following his advice. Sometimes you may find that the cure for anxiety in cats is worse than the condition. Before starting your cat on amitriptyline make sure you understand the uses and side effects before you decide.