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Feline Hyperthyroidism | When to Euthanize a Cat With Hyperthyroidism?

You must have heard of a hyperactive thyroid gland in human, but did you know that hyperthyroidism can also be found in cats. This disorder is known as feline hyperthyroidism, which results from excessive thyroid hormone produced by the thyroid glands present in the cat. The hyperthyroidism in cats is very common in older felines and a few cases, middle aged cats that refrain from predilections towards sex or breeding. Thyroid carcinoma, which is cancer, is caused amongst 2% of cats, whereas 98% show minor to significant adenoma symptoms. 70% of cats may have both of their thyroid lobes affected by this disorder. The cat hyperthyroidism symptoms include weight loss, rapid heartbeat, hair loss, thirst, increased appetite, diarrhoea, vomiting, anxiety, vocalizing, and nervousness. Ever wondered when to put a cat to sleep with hyperthyroidism, here is the complete guide.

When To Put A Cat To Sleep With Hyperthyroidism?

Before you decide on putting your cat suffering from hyperthyroidism to sleep, you need to look into various things, such as the longevity of their life. The quality of a cat’s life in the short and long run is essential. If your cat is still young or middle-aged, we suggest refraining from putting it to sleep but going for treatments that might cure or reduce the disorder’s impact. But in case your pet is old and shows significant hyperthyroidism in cats symptoms like anxiety, hair loss, weight loss, and nervousness, you may wish to consider getting a consultation from a qualified vet.

In most cases, it is not recommended to put a cat to sleep if it suffers from hyperthyroidism. Hyperthyroidism leading to additional conditions is rare and can only be observed in senior cats. When this happens, and you find your cat in pain, you can consult a doctor and get more information. Otherwise, it’s best not to rush into a decision and get your proper cat treatment for hyperthyroidism.

Things To Consider Before Euthanize a Cat With Hyperthyroidism

On the off chance, your cat is aging, and it pains you to see it in bad condition, you always have the choice to put it to sleep. But when it comes to hyperthyroidism, you need to make sure that you have checked the various factors that you need to consider on making this big decision. Some of the factors have been jotted down below to give you a brief idea on hyperthyroidism cats.

#1 Major Organ Failure or Disease

You need to be accountable for your cat’s condition and why you have decided to put it to sleep. If your cat is only suffering from hyperthyroidism and has no other ailments, it is inadvisable to put it to sleep. Ensure that you are getting your proper cat treatment, as, like in humans, hyperthyroidism can be treated with medicines in the feline. But on the off chance your cat is suffering from a kidney disorder or any condition related to the proper functioning of the kidney, you may have to talk to a vet and get a consultation on whether it’s time to put your cat to sleep.

#2 Quality Of Life

Another factor to consider will be the quality of your cat’s life moving forward. Will your cat be able to do all the things it is supposed to do? Will your cat be able to eat normally, walk properly, sleep peacefully, and will also have no mobility issues? Such questions need to be asked to yourself before deciding on the next step for your feline. To be sure about the mobility issues, as a new pet parent, you may find it difficult to diagnose or pay close attention to. In such a case, consider taking your cat for a visit to the doctor, and he will provide you with a detailed report. If your cat shows signs of potential issues and degrading quality of life, you may go for Euthanization.

#3 Age Of The Cat

If your cat is young or is middle-aged, it will become easier for it to be able to fight the syndromes caused by hyperthyroidism. But in case your cat is senior, it will start developing more ailments because of the hyperactive thyroid gland. You may consider talking to your vet to put your cat to sleep in such cases.

#4 Kidney Disease In Cats

To give your cat a pain-free death, always talk to your vet if it is also undergoing kidney failure. Kidney failure can be very painful, and your cat may not be able to express how difficult it is for him to walk, urinate, or even fall asleep. When hyperthyroidism reaches its late stage and is combined with kidney failure, it might be time for you to consider putting your cat to sleep. Make sure to provide low phosphorus cat foods for kidney disease and maintain healthy deit.

Feline Hyperthyroidism Treatment

For feline hyperthyroidism, there are several treatments available. Some of them can be provided to your cat in the comfort of your home, and some may require your cat to be admitted to the vet or a nearby hospital.

#1 Medical Treatment

In the medical treatment of your cat’s hyperthyroidism, a specific anti-thyroid drug will have to be injected or ingested by your cat regularly. This drug needs to be provided daily for the entire lifetime of your cat to keep it practical. The drug has a few side effects: loss of appetite, bleeding, facial swelling, vomiting, etc. In some cases, this drug is provided even two times a day.

#2 Surgical Treatment

This can be an easy way out of the disorder if your cat is reluctant to take pills regularly. You can choose to go for the surgical removal of the thyroid gland. However, the loss of the thyroid gland can have some side effects on the body, such as problems related to calcium metabolism.

#3 Dietary Treatment

controlling hyperthyroidism in cats with diet is a best option, try to follow a strict iodine-restricted diet. When you provide less supply of iodine to your cat, the amount of thyroid hormone generated by the glands is also reduced. The reason behind that is thyroid gland needs iodine to produce thyroxine. This will subsequently reduce the impact of hyperthyroidism on your cat.

#4 Radioiodine Treatment

Some hospitals have access to radioiodine treatment for late stage hyperthyroidism in cat. Radioiodine is considered the best way to cure hyperthyroidism because it has a success rate of 95 to 98%.


Are cats in pain with hyperthyroidism?

The answer will be both yes and no, as in some cases, the cat may suffer from high blood pressure that may result in damage being caused to their eyes, kidneys, and other organs. It degrades the quality of life for a cat.

Do cats with hyperthyroidism suffer?

Cats with hyperthyroidism may suffer from dietary distress, nervousness, anxiety, hair loss, and increased appetite. Some may also face heart problems that may be fatal to them.

How long will a cat live with untreated hyperthyroidism?

The longevity of a cat’s life suffering from hyperthyroidism is 2 to 48 months if untreated.

When is it time to put an old cat to sleep?

If your cat is aging and suffering from multiple organ failures combined with hyperthyroidism, it may be time to consider putting it to sleep.


Hyperthyroidism is a common disorder in senior cats, but you can always go for treatment if a young cat or a middle-aged cat suffers from it. Some of the treatments provide a permanent solution to it, whereas some may be temporary and need to be supplied regularly like the medical treatment. Before putting your cat to sleep, always make sure that you consult a doctor and get proper information on its condition and advice.