HomeCat HealthparasitesMy cat is shaking her head. Why?

Comments

My cat is shaking her head. Why? — 11 Comments

  1. I just now found this article (Nov. 2016). I just had to euthanize another of my own and have been through that more than a dozen times. I’ve seen mine shake their heads and many times there’s apparently no observable reason. One thing I think head-shaking could also be is tinnitus (ringing in the ear), which unfortunately has it’s origins inside the brain. I especially think it’s possible when a cat puts their foot in their ear. As more of the cat’s brain is devoted to hearing, and age, noise they’re very sensitive to and head bumps add up on them, I think it may even be probable in leu of anything else. As any human will tell you, tinnitus is maddening and though I’ve had it most of my life and know it’s not originating at the ear, I still sometimes put my hand palm over it hoping to make it stop. The sound just seems like it’s coming from somewhere else. Knowing all this I keep noise, tv and music to very low levels around my house. I’m hyper-sensitive to it as well and am actually wanting to sell my home at a loss to move to where life is quieter.

  2. Unfortunately a cat with cancer hasn’t got months left and no matter how much care,the disease always wins in the end.The one thing we can do for our pets that we can’t do for humans is to spare them the wasting away and the last agonising pain.

    • I agree with Michael, Mark AND Ruth on this. It’s a tough call, but one thing I always consider is that a vet’s ultimate answer will be euthanasia, and they’re trained to advise it when appropriate, they’re prone to human ego too and when they run out of “fixes”, they problem-solve with this in mind. It is an answer, and no matter how convincing they are that your cat is suffering, they also remind us how well cats hide it. So, which is it? We have to be ultra observant and know the cat personally as well as all the signs, and be honest with ourselves. I have felt pangs of guilt both ways, that I waited too long or I took them too soon. It’s the toughest decisions I’ve ever made for sure, and I always question it. I think the best thing I can do is learn to communicate with the animals as best I can, and read them at least half as well as they read us. I’ve been working on it for twenty years and I still feel like I’ve only just begun.

  3. Michael, I agree with what everyone says, but considering the fact that you are even thinking about the possibility of fixing the tooth and considering how you seem to repeat the same simple fact that she seems to be quite ok all things considered – it sounds like right now is not the time to end things. And if the tooth is the only thing causing her bother then maybe she will be quite happy for another few peaceful months with you. You don’t bring accross the idea of a cat who is in any pain or major discomfort at all – just a bit now with the head shaking. On an intuitive level it would be hard to put her to sleep now because very little, outwardly, is telling you to, and she is not telling you to. It would be sad if she lost a few months to a tooth. She looks like a sweet little lady. Hard for you, much more so than it is for her for the moment. I’d find out what effect better eating would have on her. Was she ever outdoors? Wouldn’t it be nice if she got to sit on the grass on a warm spring day and smell the earth and grass. It won’t matter if she goes now or in a year in the end though, you have been so kind and probably she feels very secure having you around most of the time to look after her. I think you have given her a wonderful gift of peace and warm company at a time when anyone would most want it.

    I am hopeful, like you – I hope you are right and having her tooth pain dealth with will give her a new lease on life.

    • You are almost psychic, Marc. I can understand why you are such a good cat caretaker. You really are a smart person. Everything you have said is true. I am not convinced she is ready to go. And I am convinced she has a right to live a bit longer if possible. She might pick up after an operation on her teeth and eat better and live for 5 months or more (diagnosis on cancer is not very accurate as to life expectancy) but as Ruth sensibly says would a vet recommend this? The operation and the expense are factors.

      I am going to take her to the vet again to check out her ears and get further advice. I am currently being reimbursed my vet expenses by a person who I believe has power of attorney or who is the executor of the lady owner’s will. If she approves dental work up to £500 we’ll give it a try if the vet thinks it is worth it.

      I don’t want to put Cardi through the upset of vet work unless it is recommended by a good vet. I am struggling to do what is right for Cardi divorced from all other considerations.

  4. It’s worrying that Cardi is shaking her head, it could be a sign of an impending mini fit due to the cancer spreading in her body, it may be travelling to her brain.
    I don’t think a vet would anaesthetise a terminally ill cat to take a tooth out.
    Sadly it’s the cancer causing the weight loss, whatever Cardi eats can’t nourish her as it should.
    This is so very sad for you but the vet might recommend she is PTS soon.
    Ultimately though you will know if/when the time is right and do what is best for her.
    Thinking of you.

    • Thanks Ruth, I have been right on the cusp for about 2 weeks about whether to put her to sleep. It is a real balancing act. I agree that removing a tooth at this stage is probably overdoing it.

      There is just the slight possibility that if the tooth was removed and she did eat better she might live for several months if the vets have diagnosed slightly inaccurately. Perhaps I am being overoptimistic and hanging on too long. One has to be as objective as possible.

      • Living longer is good as long as she has quality of life and you who are caring for her will know if she has that better than any vet or anyone else.
        When Bryan had cancer the vet said she could give him steroids which would give him a few more days for our sake, but we saw he was weary of life and we had to let him go, it would have been selfish of us not to.
        You WILL know when the time is right for Cardi.

  5. I think a vet should be consulted. Could it be the cat is hearing ghost noises caused by a tumor? Only thing I can think of not on the list. As someone who has has trouble with my inner-ear all my life (I had six sets of tubes placed when I was ages 5-8) I know that having wax move in your inner ear can be very distressing. It gets hot and you feel it down the side of your neck. I remember shaking my head trying to clear it out. Didn’t work. 🙂 I was the subject of a Ear, Nose, Throat Medical Journal article. I was the 100th kid to get the surgery in the United States. We were very lucky to have great ENT just 60 miles away from my tiny home town. Anyway, best to get a vet check for something that you can’t figure out.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.