PetMeds® Giving Aspirin to Cats

 
Filed under Dr. Dym's Vet Blog
Cats do not handle human medications the same way dogs do With the strains of an economic slow down in our country, as well as the increasing cost of veterinary exams, many animal guardians are often looking to their own medicine cabinets in easing discomfort in their dogs and cats. And while it is always important for an animal guardian to check with their local veterinarian before administering any over the counter medication at home, this is extremely critical for cat owners who often don’t realize that cats have very unique manners of handling medications. This means that some medications, while normally well tolerated by humans or dogs, can cause health and life threatening consequences in our feline friends.

This is especially true when it comes to the pain relievers aspirin and Tylenol. Because of unique liver metabolism, cats do not handle aspirin very well if given at high doses, and even one adult Tylenol tablet (325 to 500 mg) could be lethal and deadly to cats.  Even minimal levels of exposure to Tylenol can quickly cause depression, vomiting, difficulty breathing, brown discoloration of the gums, respiratory distress, and swelling of the paws and face.

Fulminant liver failure can occur with even minimal dosages. If you’ve made the mistake of giving your cat ANY Tylenol and/or your cat has been given aspirin that causes some of these symptoms, immediate and emergency medical attention is needed. In fact, to demonstrate how sensitive cats are to these nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents, when cardiologists prescribe aspirin to cats with certain types of heart disease, it’s at the reduced dose of one half baby aspirin every second to third day.

The take home point of this blog post is to never self medicate your cat at home, unless you FIRST check with your local veterinarian or emergency veterinary facility.   Interestingly, one of my favorite all time antioxidant supplements Proanthozone, has actually been shown to reduce Tylenol damage to cats who have been exposed.  Proanthozone has a wide variety of usages in dogs and cats including as anti-inflammatory, as well as pain reducer. Many of our feline friends can be given dramatic pain relief with safe nutritional supplements such as Yucca Intensive and Cosequin for Cats,. However, as in the case with any supplements, I always recommend feline guardians consult with their veterinarians before administering any over the counter supplements or medications.

Read Related Posts on PetMeds Blog:

  1. PetMeds® Herbal Arthritis Treatment
  2. Can I Give Aspirin to My Dog or Cat?
  3. PetMeds®: Pain Relief for Cats
  4. Top 10 dangerous medications found around the house
  5. PetMeds® Is Asprin Safe for Dogs?

6 Comments

  1. Posted July 13, 2011 at 1:17 pm | Permalink

    Any drug given to an animal can both be helpful or harmful depending on the measures taken by the owner. If not able to consult a vet, it is always good to get enough info online to know proper precautionary measures to avoid exposing the pet to danger.

    [Reply]

    Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarian Reply:

    Good advice for animal guardians.

    [Reply]

  2. Posted July 31, 2012 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    I really have to say I really adore your blog, the way you write is wonderful!

    [Reply]

  3. Dawn
    Posted September 22, 2012 at 7:34 am | Permalink

    My cat got in a fight and has some bites on his ear. I can’t afford vet but have doxycycline at the house (from past experience, I am certain they will get infected). What is a safe dose for him? He is about 9 lbs. Thank you

    [Reply]

    Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarian Reply:

    You can try doxycycline 50 mg once daily.

    [Reply]

  4. HEATHER
    Posted September 23, 2012 at 1:40 pm | Permalink

    MY CAT DISAPPEARED FOR 4DAYS..HE CAME BACK THIS MORNING THANK GOD BUT HIS BACK FOOT IS SWOLLEN AND HAS A CUT ON IT..I CLEANED IT WITH PEROXIDE THE BEST I COULD..HE SEEMS TO BE ALRIGHT BUT EVERY ONCE IN AWHILEHIS FOOT SHAKES..I THINK HE MIGHT BE HURTING..WHAT CAN I GIVE HIM FOR THE PAIN?AND TO HELP WITH THE SWELLING?I DON’T HAVE ANY MONEY TO TAKE HIM TO VET..

    [Reply]

    Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarian Reply:

    You could try a natural remedy called traumeel which you can get at health food store 1 tab three times daily for 5 to 7 days.

    [Reply]

    HEATHER Reply:

    I HAVE NO MONEY TILL WEDNESDAY.. CAN I GIVE HIM ASPIRIN TILL THEN?

    [Reply]

  5. Laura
    Posted January 17, 2013 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

    My 4 yrs old black pug has had some back problems for sometimes now. He hurt his back by playing with his new toy ball for his birthday yesterday and he played pretty much and wild with that ball then this morning his back is hurting so I put heating pad on his back which helps and gave him low dose of aspirin(81 mg) but can’t remember how many pills a day for a couple days before he should be feeling better again like we did the last time and it was successful than taking him back to vet like we did the first time it we know what to do from now on with him. How many pills a day?

    [Reply]

    Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarian Reply:

    You could try one half to one baby aspirin once to twice daily with food for a few days at most. If no help see vet. Also consider yucca intensive by azmira from 1800petmeds, as well as putting him on supplements like super joint enhancer.

    [Reply]

  6. Lizette Santana
    Posted April 30, 2013 at 12:44 pm | Permalink

    Hi, I have a stray cat I’ve been feeding for the past 6 years but he disappeared for a week and came back with a scratch on the top of his hesd between the left eye and ear. I was able to catch him two days after I noticed it and have him in doors. But now I also noticed he has a lump on the right side of his cheek and it looks like he can’t hardly open his eye. . I can’t afford to take him to the vet… would there be anything I could treat him with or something I can give him… please I really need help for him. Thank you.

    [Reply]

    Dr. Michael Dym, VMD veterinarian Reply:

    Most likely is infection or abcess that needs antibiotics from your vet. Not much you can do at home for this. You could try a dose of homeopathic remedy called silica at dose of 30c potency one pellot twice daily for 3 to 4 days to see if it helps likely abcess drain.

    [Reply]

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