Hi stranger! Signing up for MypetMD is easy, free and puts the most relevant content at your fingertips.

Get Instant Access To

  • 24/7 alerts for pet-related recalls

  • Your own library of articles, blogs, and favorite pet names

  • Tools designed to keep your pets happy and healthy


or Connect with Facebook

By joining petMD, you agree to the Privacy Policy.

PetMD Seal

Hormone Replacement Poisoning in Cats

Toxicosis with Hormone Replacement Medidogions in Cats

 

Hormone replacement therapy (HRT) is used in various forms by many women, including creams, gels, sprays and patches. However, accidental exposure of cats to these hormone replacement products can cause serious illness. Cats are easily poisoned by these products.

 

Hormone replacement products can also be poisoning to dogs. If you would like to learn how they affect dogs, please visit this page in the petMD health library.

 

Symptoms and Types

 

Symptoms associated with hormone replacement poisoning will vary depending on the sex of the cat.

 

  • Female Cats – Signs similar to being in heat, including a swollen vulva and bloody discharge will be present in female cats experiencing HRT toxicity, even if spayed.
  • Male Cats – Extreme attraction to female dogs as well as the possibility of swollen mammary glands (breasts) and abnormally small penis. In unaltered cats, testicular atrophy (shrinking of the testicles) may also occur.
  • Hair loss may occur in both male and female cats.

 

There is also concern that prolonged exposure to HRT products could cause bone marrow suppression leading to aplastic anemia (a severe blood disease) and possibly mammary tumors (breast cancer.)

 

Causes

 

Hormone replacement therapies are used in women to replace estrogen and treat symptoms of menopause such as hot flashes, mood swings and bone loss. HRT medications are commonly supplied as creams, gels, sprays or patches. Women are often advised to apply the medication to the wrists, inner elbows, or legs.

 

Cats typically become exposed by licking the HRT medication from a woman’s skin. They may also be exposed by chewing on or licking discarded patches.

 

Diagnosis

 

Diagnosis relies on the appearance of expected clinical signs and known (or suspected) exposure to an HRT product. Estrogen levels can also be measured in the blood to confirm the diagnosis, if necessary.

 

 

Treatment

 

Symptoms are often reversible by eliminating further exposure to the medication. However, symptoms may take months to resolve completely in some cases.

 

Prevention

 

  • Women should apply hormone replacement therapy products to areas of the body that the cat is not likely to contact.
  • When applying HRT products, women should wear gloves. The gloves should be disposed of in a location inaccessible to the cat when finished.
  • Used patches and similar items should be discarded out of the cat’s reach.

 

 
  • Lifetime Credits:
  • Today's Credits:
Hurry Before All Seats are Taken!
Enroll
Be an A++ Pet Parent! Take fun & free courses to earn badges & certifications. Choose a course»
Search cat Articles

 

 

PETMD POLL

What do you use to prevent ticks from feeding on your pet?

Around the Web
MORE FROM PETMD.COM