Diet for a hyperthyroid cat

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Diet for a hyperthyroid cat
Siamese cats are especially prone to hyperthyroidism. (Siamese Cat image by Lauren O from Fotolia.com)

Hyperthyroidism is a condition in which a cat's thyroid gland produces too much thyroid hormone. The most common cause is a non-cancerous overgrowth of cells in the thyroid gland, according to petseducation.com. The exact reason this occurs is unknown. The condition is more often found in cats over the age of 12 and Siamese cats, according to The Cat Health Guide. Symptoms include losing weight while increasing food consumption and excessive thirst. While hyperthyroidism might require surgical or medical intervention, a change in diet can help alleviate symptoms or prevent the onset of the disease.

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Consequences of Hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism causes a variety of medical problems, such as fast heartbeat, high blood pressure and enlargement of the heart, according to The Cat Health Guide. It is important to get your cat's hyperthyroidism under control with diet and medication. High blood pressure can cause a variety of problems including organ damage and problems with the eyes.

Exclusion Foods

According to Vetinfo.com, there are several foods which must be avoided if your cat has been diagnosed with hyperthyroid disease. These foods include canned cat foods consisting of seafood, especially whitefish and salmon. Canned foods that include sweet potatoes, sorghum, turnips and millet should also be avoided.

Other Foods to Avoid

In general, feeding people food to your cat puts her at greater risk than using soy-free products meant for cats. The Cat Health Guide says that leafy greens such as cabbage, and legumes such as peas, might be linked to hyperthyroidism. If you eat soy products, be careful not to let your cat eat dropped food and do not feed him table scraps, as soy is linked to hyperthyroidism. You should also check cat food labels carefully, as some canned foods include soy.

What to Feed

Canned foods that contain beef or poultry is best. Aside from those foods, there are some herbs that Vetinfo.com recommends. These herbs include kelp, chamomile and astragalus

Other Treatments

Diet alone might not be enough to get hyperthyroidism under control. Common treatments include oral medications, radiation therapy or surgery. If your cat has an overactive thyroid, talk to your veterinarian about the most efficient treatment or combination of treatments. This is a serious condition.

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