Anyone who has ever dealt with an aggressive cat knows the animal can pose a serious threat. With its razor-sharp claws and teeth, it can do a great deal of damage. At one time, having an aggressive cat usually led to the animal being put in a shelter or turned into an outdoor cat. Luckily, advances in medicine have enabled cat owners to provide medication for their feline companions that will help to treat their aggressive tendencies.
It’s difficult to know what causes aggression in some cats. Some are born with a chemical imbalance in their brains, while there is a theory that over-vaccination of cats can lead to some aggressive tendencies. While it isn’t important to understand the cause of the aggression in a cat, it’s important to understand that not all forms of aggression will have results from anti-aggression medication.
Feline Hyperesthesia Syndrome
One form of aggression in cats that will respond to anti-aggression medication is known as feline hyperesthesia syndrome (FHS). Although there are many symptoms to FHS, one of the more common ones is for a normally calm and loving cat to suddenly become fearful and aggressive. If a cat suddenly shows aggression where there previously haven’t been episodes of aggression, FHS may be the culprit.
Clomipramine is a medication that enhances serotonin in the brain. Serotonin is known to be a mood stabilizer and has distinctive anti-aggressive effects.
Fluoxetine is more popularly known by its trade name of Prozac. It works in much the same way as clomipramine, although it sometimes takes a little longer to reach full effectiveness.
Treatment with anti-aggression medication usually takes time to achieve maximum benefits. During the first few weeks, you may notice only limited effects. Meanwhile, the drug is building up within the cat’s body, helping to create a stabilized neural environment. For the most part, you'll notice little benefit for the first three weeks. By the end of the fourth week, however, the aggression should be reduced by 50 percent, and by the end of the fourth month, there should be very few incidents of aggression.
While giving the cat anti-aggression medications, it is important to also make sure he is eating a nutritionally beneficial diet. Low-quality foods can sometimes cause aggressive tendencies, as the cat might not be getting the proper nutrition. A veterinarian will usually be able to assist in providing a proper and healthy diet for use with the anti-aggression medication.