Abstract In unanesthetized cats, defecation produced by thyrotropin-releasing hormone (TRH) was investigated after its injection into the cerebral ventricle (ICV) through chronically implanted cannulae. TRH injected in doses from 0.1 to 1.0 mg into the cerebral ventricle evoked defecation which was not dose-dependent. The antimuscarinic drug, atropine, the ganglionic blocker, mecamylamine, the alpha and beta adrenergic blocking agents, yohimbine and propranolol, the dopamine antagonist, chlorpromazine, the 5-hydroxytryptamine antagonist, methysergide, and the antihistamine, antazoline, all injected into the cerebral ventricle had virtually no effect on the defecation evoked by TRH injected similarly. In cats pretreated with ICV reserpine, 5,6-dihydroxytryptamine and hemicholinium-3, the defecation induced by ICV TRH was not significantly changed. On the other hand, in cats pretreated with ICV 6-hydroxydopamine, the defecation caused by ICV TRH was potentiated. Therefore, it is concluded that TRH-induced defecation could not be related to central catecholaminergic, 5-hydroxytryptaminergic and cholinergic receptors, but rather to central TRH sites in the cat.