Nyquil is a brand of medication that intends to relieve the tedious symptoms of the common cold.
The common cold is uncommonly frustrating, as sniffles and coughs interrupt our day and night. This over the counter medicine also functions as a sedative, making it ideal to use before going to sleep.
The sedation guarantees a good night’s rest on the road to recovery. No one can afford to lose a good night of sleep in these busy days where it is an increasing luxury. It works so well to help us overcome our cold we may be tempted to help our furry feline friends out by letting them have a good night’s rest and a relief from their cold.
Can I Give My Cat Nyquil? Answer: No.
Human medications should never be administered to cats without express indication by a veterinarian. Nyquil is a particularly dangerous drug to cats. The active ingredient in Nyquil, acetaminophen, can be lethal to cats. Just one regular strength tablet will result in fatal toxicity. When a cat consumes only 10 milligrams of acetaminophen per kilo of their weight they are already at risk of being poisoned. A single dose of Nyquil syrup contains 1000 milligrams of acetaminophen.
That is 100 times the dose that is toxic to cats! Even though an owner might have the best of intentions, the rest induced by Nyquil will be permanent. Never give your cat Nyquil or any other medication that contains acetaminophen.
Treating Cat Cold
It normally will take about a week before a cat recovers from a cold. Nyquil, or any other human medication is out of the question, but there are other methods to help your little lion overcome his cold. Use a cotton ball or clean towel to wipe your cat’s nose. If the mucous has crusted onto the nose, moistening the cotton or towel will make it easier to remove.
A tad of petroleum jelly on the nose may help prevent chaffing and irritation. Humidity can help alleviate some of the symptoms too. A good alternative to a humidifier is taking your cat into the bathroom while the hot shower is running. The steamy air will help relieve some symptoms, but your cat might not appreciate being so close to the water. A cold can always get complicated so make sure to contact your veterinarians at the first signs that your cat has a cold.
Do Not Use as a Sedative
Nyquil should never be used as a sedative for cats. Since the main ingredient is toxic to cats, it may result in a never-ending nap. Your veterinarian can recommend safer and more effective sedatives. Another alternative to reduce the stress and anxiety in cats is a pheromone spray. The spray contains synthetic pheromones that communicate a state of safety and security to the cat. This might be sufficient to calm your cat down. They are naturally nocturnal creatures though, so if they bother you at night it might be necessary to just kick them out of the room or to tire them out during the day.
Most aspirin-free painkillers and other cold medications contain acetaminophen, including brands like Tylenol, Panadol, Midol, Excedrin, among others. As a result acetaminophen is extremely common in the average household’s medicine cabinet. Cats are notoriously curious explorers and might eventually stumble upon these medications. Make sure you store them in a place where they cannot reach them.
Steps to Take if You Suspect Acetaminophen Toxicity
Accidents are always possible and if you suspect that your cat has consumed any medication containing acetaminophen, contact your veterinarian or emergency services immediately. Even the tiniest bit of the drug can be lethal to a cat so it is important that treatment is received as soon as possible. Even if you merely suspect your cat may have consumed acetaminophen it is best to seek immediate attention.
Cats that are suffering from acetaminophen toxicity will have brownish-gray gums, hypothermia, labored breathing and a swelling in the face, neck and limbs. They often lose coordination and may fall into a coma. A veterinarian will administer extra oxygen and fluids in addition to amino acids that will help the liver counteract the toxic effects of the drug.
No Nyquil for Your Feline Friend
Never give your cat Nyquil. It contains ingredients that are extremely toxic to cats. A dose of Nyquil will most likely be fatal. There are other ways to make your cat more comfortable during their illness, such as providing humidity to loosen up the mucous. It is completely inappropriate as a sedative since the active ingredients are lethal to cats. If your cat keeps you up at night, it is safer to take the Nyquil yourself.