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Dr. Gary
Dr. Gary, Cat Veterinarian
Category: Cat Veterinary
Satisfied Customers: 19752
Experience:  DVM, Emergency Veterinarian, BS (Physiology)
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My 16 year old cat is having difficulty walking. He seems

Customer Question

My 16 year old cat is having difficulty walking. He seems drunk and cannot keep his back legs up. They slide out from under this. He won't eat and this came on in the last 12 hours. He is hyperthyroid. His hind legs are the same temperature as the rest of his body.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Cat Veterinary
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.

Hello. I'm sorry to hear about your cat.

It sounds like he may have Vestibular Disease. This is a condition where the balance is off. It's similar to vertigo in people. It typically comes on suddenly, then goes away slowly over 7-10 days.

I'm glad you checked the temperature of the rear legs. A saddle thrombus or clot to the back legs is also possible. Those cats are usually paralyzed in the rear legs, very painful and the feet/ paw pads are cold and a blue-purple color.

Either way, I would get him to a vet. You could either go to an ER vet tonight or your regular vet in the morning. Getting this diagnosed and treated is important. If Vestibular, we typically use anti-motion sickness meds (Meclizine) +/- antibiotics if we think it's an inner ear infection as the cause.

I hope this helps, let me know if you have any other questions.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thank you. He is also twitching periodically. Do you think he is in pain? What do you recommend? Taking him to dr now or in morning?
Expert:  Dr. Gary replied 1 year ago.

If it's Vestibular, we usually see rapid back and forth movement of the eyes that look like twitching. If it's the whole body, it could be a discomfort things.

I would go now if you can, just to error on the side of caution.