23 August 2016

HEALTH - An Alternative to Giving the Cat a Pill

It can be one of the most challenging tasks for a cat owner - giving their feline a pill.

The internet abounds with serious how-to videos and the not-so-serious cartoons and step-by-step instructions which inevitably result in hospitalization of the cat owner.

There is good news on the horizon for owners of fractious felines. A Colorado veterinarian is researching a different way to administer a popular medicine to cats with kidney disease, one of the most common medical conditions in older felines. 

Mirtazapine, a drug that boosts appetite and reduces nausea in cats, is applied as a cream to the cat’s ear.

Quimby’s latest clinical trial builds on five previous studies into whether a transdermal gel works and how the appetite stimulant can help improve nutrition for cats, who become picky eaters as their kidney disease progresses.

Dr. Jessica Quimby is still recruiting subjects for her study and is looking for owners who are willing to use the cream for six weeks and record the results.

Over the six weeks, half of the time the cream is Mirtazapine and the other three weeks it’s a placebo, with neither Quimby nor the participants knowing which cream is which.

The official results won’t be ready for at least a year.

In the meantime owners can wait and hope for an alternative to full-fledged feline battle when medicating their cats.

For information on participating in the study, contact jessica.quimby@colostate.edu.

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