Dog ate chocolate?

ask a vet

Meowing and growling cat.

Species: Cat
Breed: Mix
Age: 11-15 years
I am having problems with my 15 year old neutered cat.
She has always been extremely alert and a bit stressed and nothing has ever really helped calm her down.
She likes to be cuddled, but when I do cuddle her she keeps on meowing so loud it sounds like screaming, while she is purring. She finds it hard to lie down and relax, but keeps on walking around on my lap, while purring and meowing and looking really stressed and confused.
It is clear that the noises she makes are not coming from pleasure, it sound like she is stressed and scared, but I have no idea why.
She is not deaf, she always reacts when I call her name.
I spend a lot of time at home with her and feel like I give her a lot of attention. I play with her, cuddle her etc.
I live in a second floor apartment and every now and then she likes to go to the back-yard, but she will most often return to the apartment after a few minutes, only to keep on growling and making screamy noises.
When she has been to the toilet she starts running around, while making growling noises.
She has now started making these noises at night and I feel so sorry for her and also worry about my neighbours waking up as it is so loud that I can hear her, when I am at my front door in the street.
Sometimes when I try to calm her she is very agressive and starts biting and clawing me severely, to the point where I can't even remove my hand.
She has been to the vet about a year ago and was physically healthy.
I hope you can help me.
Thanks.

From Maja in Denmark


Online vet, Dr. Marie

Dr. Marie replied:

I'm sorry to hear that Baby is having these problems. Vocalization issues in older cats can sometimes be difficult to figure out. I'll give you a few possible reasons for her symptoms.

Some cats will vocalize like this when they have issues with high blood pressure. I have had several older kitty patients that came in for excessive meowing and we have determined that they had high blood pressure. They usually do really well on a medication (often amlodipine). Some cats with hypertension (high blood pressure) have underlying health problems such as kidney disease or hyperthyroidism that need to be dealt with in order for the blood pressure to come down.

Another possibility is something called cognitive dysfunction. This is a form of senility in cats. While there is no cure for this, some cats do well on medication. Some that I have used include amitriptyline, clomicalm, reconcile and alprazolam. Cognitive dysfunction could account for the aggressive behavior as well.

A pain issue is possible as well. While cats with pain don't usually vocalize a lot, what you are describing with the growling and aggressive behavior makes pain a possibility. Pain could be arthritis pain, dental pain and many other things.

One final possibility is fleas. I have seen a number of cats get really weird behavior issues (especially if you are trying to pet them) in connection to fleas. Fleas can be difficult to find on some animals. If she has any hair loss or lesions over the base of her tail (on her back) then treating her with a prescription flea product is a good idea.

You mentioned that Baby had normal blood tests a year ago. It really would be a good idea to have things checked again as a lot can change in a year. If this were my case I would likely be recommending a physical exam, blood tests, possibly urine tests and a blood pressure check. If we can find a medical reason for her issues then this would be great.

If nothing was obvious on the tests then I would likely try a trial of pain medication such as Metacam for a while and see if her symptoms get any better. And if that didn't work we could try an anti-anxiety medication like one of the ones I mentioned above for cognitive dysfunction.

With all of that being said, I have had some cats with behavior like this where I couldn't find a reason and I couldn't make the problems go away. If you feel that she is uncomfortable (and it does sound to me like she is) then it may be time to be considering euthanasia.

Hopefully the doctor can find something that can be treated!

Dr. Marie.


Do you have a pet website? Interested in learning more about SEO for Wix?


Check out our dog age calculator and cat age calculator.

Want to receive pet coupons, vet advice and info on new pet products in your inbox?

* indicates required

We'll only send you great stuff, never spam. Unsubscribe any time.

Disclaimer: Although Dr. Marie is a qualified veterinarian, the information found on this site is not meant to replace the advice of your own veterinarian. AskAVetQuestion.com and Dr. Marie do not accept any responsibility for any loss, damage, injury, death, or disease which may arise from reliance on information contained on this site. Do not use information found on this site for diagnosing or treating your pet. Anything you read here is for information only.

Search for similar questions:

ask a vet

Popular questions...

Vomiting lethargic puppy. my dog is not wanting to eat at all and is just laying around she has vomited a few... (43506 views)

Is this mammary tumor cancerous? We have an 8 yr old shih Tzu, female spayed before first heat and we noticed a lump... (4611 views)

Cat's heart rate question. Does the heart-rate depend on the age of the... (7359 views)

Vomiting yorkie. Abby is 15 months old. She weighs 2.5-3.0 lbs. She is spayed. My question is that... (21854 views)

Bald spot on hamster. My dwarf hamster has a rather large bald spot above her left front leg. I noticed... (25907 views)

Guinea pig losing teeth. its mouth is sore and can only chew mashed up food its loosing his teeth to its not... (8695 views)

Sensitive at tail base. My cat is 7 years old. She is the only suvivor of her litteer. All of the kittens... (116621 views)

Dog is paralyzed. How are you? I have been reading lots of articles at your site and they help me... (5299 views)

Does my dog have mange? Hello Dr. Marie, I have a little 8 month old chihuahua. His name is chico and he has... (8286 views)

FIV positive and diarrhea. Hi Dr. Marie - I took in a semi feral cat about six weeks ago. He is FIV+. He has... (16329 views)

See all questions...

Dr. MarieDr. Marie is a veterinarian who practices in a busy animal hospital in Ottawa, Ontario. She created Ask A Vet Question as a resource for good, accurate veterinary advice online. Dr. Marie treats dogs, cats, hamsters, guinea pigs, and rats. She has been a vet since 1999.

Is an online vet visit just as good as a trip to your veterinarian? No! But, many times, asking an online veterinarian a question can help save you money. While Dr. Marie can't officially diagnose your pet or prescribe medications, she can often advise you on whether a vet visit is necessary. You can also ask Dr. Marie for a second opinion on your pet's condition.