Clonazepam is a benzodiazepine medication commonly used to treat anxiety, seizures, and muscle relaxants in humans and animals. Cats can suffer from stress, anxiety, and fear. As a result, further issues may develop. Quality of life can suffer under persistent or severe stress. Even physical sickness in cats can occur from anxiety.

In specific cases, your vet may prescribe clonazepam for your cat, but cats have a faster metabolism than humans, so they may process the medication more quickly, leading to higher concentrations in their bloodstream. 

Common Signs of Stress or Anxiety in Cats

It may be difficult to understand or see the signs of anxiety or stress in your cat. Below is a list of common indications of stress or anxiety in cats:

  • Squeezing themselves into the small spaces
  • Standing hair
  • Growing pupils
  • Excessive meowing
  • Efforts to flee or conceal
  • Appetite loss
  • Aggressive behaviors such as hissing or attempts to scratch or bite
  • Grumpiness
  • Urinating places other than in the litter box

These signs can range from just one to many. Your cat’s environment is important to take into consideration. Contact your veterinarian or make an appointment before jumping to conclusions, because some of these signs can also be the cause of a serious medical issue. Your veterinarian will do a physical examination and diagnostic procedures like bloodwork before giving a sedative or anxiety-relieving drug. This helps rule out underlying medical issues as the origin of the cat’s problems.

Clinical Signs of Clonazepam Poisoning

Cats can experience poisoning if they ingest a toxic amount of clonazepam. The clinical signs of clonazepam toxicity in cats can include the following:

  • Severe sedation
  • Incoordination
  • Aggression 
  • Agitation 
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting 
  • Respiratory depression 
  • Cardiovascular depression

It is important to always follow your veterinarian’s directions when administering a medication. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your cat’s medication, call your veterinarian immediately.

Clonazepam Toxicity Treatment 

If you believe your cat is experiencing clonazepam poisoning, it is crucial you act quickly and seek veterinary care. Call Pet Poison Helpline® at (855) 764-7661 and go to a vet clinic for immediate medical help. The sooner treatment is initiated, the better the chances of recovery. Treatment for clonazepam toxicity in cats will depend on the severity of the symptoms and the amount of the medication ingested. In mild cases, your cat may be given supportive care, such as fluids and monitoring, until the effects of the drug wear off. However, in more severe cases, your cat may need to be hospitalized and given medications to reverse the effects of the clonazepam.