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S. August Abbott, CAS
S. August Abbott, CAS, Own Animal Care/Rescue Org.
Category: Cat
Satisfied Customers: 7607
Experience:  Up to 300 cats saved each year; Animal Care author; Behavior & Nutrition Consults
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Will it hurt my cat if I give him human aspirin How much

Resolved Question:

My cat must have been in a fight. His hind quarters are sore and he limps. He is still eating and drinking plenty of water. We would like to give him some aspirin (it's late and can't get anything now) to give him some relief. Will it hurt my cat if I give him human aspirin? How much should I give him? He weighs around 12 pounds?
Submitted: 9 years ago.
Category: Cat
Expert:  S. August Abbott, CAS replied 9 years ago.

Cats do not tolerate any human medication very well. There is far too great a chance for toxicity, allergic reaction and organ damage to take any risks.

How long has this been going on with your cat? Is he neutered? How are his litter habits? Have you seen him make urine and stool normally?


Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Just happened today. Yes he is neutered. He is an in and out cat. Litter habits are fine. When he came in today he had poop hanging from him and poop on the underside of his tail and on his side. We have horses, so I wasn't sure if it was horse or his, but took him in the bathroom and cleaned him up. He was so sore! Someone dropped him off several months ago and we took him in because he had no claws front or back and had no way to eat or protect himself. We are not sure how old he his. I have cat antibiotic, but nothing for pain. What can I do?
Expert:  S. August Abbott, CAS replied 9 years ago.

What a good heart you have! So many of these abandoned cats end up suffering a terrible life and death if not for people like you Innocent

I'm wondering if he might have an infection that's causing these symptoms. It is not at all unusual for people to think it's a limb injury when in fact it's an intestinal parasite or even FLUTD (feline lower urinary tract disease).

Check his gums and let me know if they're a normal color.

And if you can get a better look at his back end, let me know if you notice redness or swelling, anything unusual in those areas.


Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Gums are normal color. There is no swelling or redness on his bottom, but when I move him he lets me know it hurts. Does not seem to show anything unusual in that area other than the poop under his tail when he came home this evening. (we live on 20 acres in SW Missouri) He has occasionally backed up to the door or the wall in the house and sprayed. I know some cats do this, but I wondered if that might be a sign of a urinary problem. I thought when they were neutered they didn't spray anymore.
Expert:  S. August Abbott, CAS replied 9 years ago.

Neutered males may still spray, especially if they were neutered after reaching sexual maturity and having picked up the behavior already. This poor guy is probably determined to keep his hearth and home no matter what - and is spraying to be sure no other fellows vie for your attention.

Urinary problems usually present with squatting to urinate and straining instead; or signs of red/pink in the urine; or no urine coming out at all. There would be symptoms of pain upon touch in many cases, sometimes bloating, even problems with feces, which you're describing.

All that said, the other concern I have is that kitty has been injured, maybe kicked by the horse. If there's internal injury, you could very well see the soiling you saw and the pain display.

How is he doing right now? Still alert, bright eyed, eating/drinking?


Customer: replied 9 years ago.
He has been sleeping all evening. He got up once and ate cat food and drank water, then jumped back up on his chair and went back to sleep. The anibiotic I have in Clindamycin hydrochloride Oral Liquid Antibiotic. He is not dragging his hindquarters but it's obvious he walks in pain. He did hoist himself "carefully" onto the chair he calls "His" and seems alert when you pet him.
Expert:  S. August Abbott, CAS replied 9 years ago.

The problem with antibiotics is that they don't just destroy the bad bacteria, they take out a good number of the good stuff too. When this happens you may find new problems rather than resolution of the original problem.

Also, once a course of antibiotic is begun, it has to be continued for (usually) 10-14 days, even after the initial problem seems to have resolved. Otherwise those 'bad bacteria' just come back, with some immunity to the antibiotic, making it harder to get rid of them the next time around.

All in all, doctors are trying to avoid prescribing antibiotics not only for our animals, but for humans too. They should be saved for "absolutely necessary" situations only.

In this case it would probably be a better idea to just address the pain until you can have him seen. I'd be more comfortable if he had at least an Xray to determine whether or not there's an injury to his spine or legs.

Keep checking his gums for normal color too, and if you see them become pale or any other symptoms you just know are not right - don't waste any time - find an emergency care center. These are usually regular vet offices that keep after hour hours.

Keep him calm, comfortable and warm. Move his litter box closer to him along with his food/water and again - trust your instincts. They've served you well so far.

If you can get him seen by someone tomorrow/Sunday it would be very worth it.

Let me know how he does ok? And how you're doing too.


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Customer: replied 9 years ago.
Thank you. We have 8 cats in the house, and 6 of them are rescued, and of course I worry about all of my babies. I still have the question of addressing his pain. Is there anything I can give him? Should I do something externally, like ice or heat on him?
Expert:  S. August Abbott, CAS replied 9 years ago.

If you feel 'heat' from the area, you might want to try applying ice or cold packs. If you feel it's muscular (although I understand how difficult it is to know for sure), heat may help relax it.

I don't care for electric sources around animals, but this is up to you too. I use 'rice socks' on our animals (I own an animal rescue org) when they need it.

Use any thick sock, cotton preferred, fill 3/4 with raw white rice and knot the end. Microwave it for 1 to 1 1/2 minutes and then shake it out to distribute the heat and be sure it's not too hot.

This can last for a couple of hours or more if you tuck it under a blanket. You can use two socks just for comfort - cats love the heat.

If you really want to try an aspirin, 1/4 of a "low dose" aspirin may be acceptable; or up to 1/2 of a baby aspirin, but no more than once every 24 hours and never more than two days in a row without veterinary monitoring.

Remember, aspirin is a blood thinner and if there's injury internally, it could make things much worse.

Watch for drooling, vomiting, lethargy, staggering, rapid heart rate, hyperactivity or anything else you know isn't 'right' for the first few hours.

This is a very lucky cat.