Do Cats Need Supplements?

BY | September 09 | COMMENTS PUBLISHED BY
Do Cats Need Supplements?

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You must have heard of various cat supplements and all the claims they make. Regardless of whether those claims can actually be fulfilled or not, supplements can be quite helpful to cats. Moreover, both wet cat food and dry cat food fail to fulfill the needs of your kitty, forcing you to include some extra supplements in their diet. 

Experts are divided on the subject, and to help you make the decision, you have to understand the types of supplements and what they can do to your cat.

Types of Supplements

There are generally 3 different types of supplements offered to cats:

  1. Fatty acids – These supplements are known for their ability to keep a cat’s coat shiny, prevent shedding and improve the cat’s immune system. Omega-3 fatty acids and omega-6 fatty acids are the most common. Omega-3 helps maintain good heart health and prevent high cholesterol.
  2. Probiotics – These supplements contain bacteria that are touted to be good for your kitty. Probiotics are good for your cat as they prevent the growth of harmful bacteria within their body.
  3. Vitamins and Minerals – These are individual supplements containing either one or a mixture of healthy vitamins and minerals. Depending on the supplement, they have various benefits. Sheba cat food contains vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients that are essential for your pet's health. 

Does Your Cat Need Supplements?

This is where the experts are divided. Many believe that if your cat is generally healthy, then simple cat food should be good enough. On the other hand, other experts claim that supplements are necessary for cats to live a long and healthy life. While the benefits of some supplements are evident, there are some that you need to avoid.

Supplements that contain garlic, onion, and an overload of calcium or vitamins can end up harming your kitty. In some cases, cats need extra supplements to stay healthy and fight against the disease. This is especially true in the case of pregnant cats. There might also be medical conditions where your kitty is unable to absorb nutrients; in such cases, nutrition supplements will fulfill the insufficiency of essential nutrients in your cat’s body. Whatever you decide to do, it is important to consult a professional vet before administering supplements.  

Moreover, if you are looking for food products that are tailored for your cat’s age, needs, activity, and dietary requirements, then considering IAMS cat food would be your best bet. It has been proven to contain all the essential components and nutrients as other brands of cat food. This helps reduce the amount of waste produced by your feline friend, allowing you to spend more quality time with him or her. 

Benefits of Science-based Diet for Cats

There are many types of cat food on the market, but not all of them are equal. If you want to keep your cat happy and healthy, then you should consider Hill’s Science Diet cat food. This type of food is specifically designed for cats with all kinds of health problems and conditions like diabetes, kidney disease, or obesity. 

You can choose science food products from various brands available in the market. Products like Wellness cat food contain a high proportion of fiber and protein and are low in fat and carbohydrates, which makes it easy for cats to lose weight without feeling hungry. 

Purine ONE is such a brand that constantly strives to create better products for your pet. Purina One cat food contains balanced ingredient ratios, which assist with maintaining healthy weight loss and also prevent overfeeding by limiting calorie intake. It’s important that you continue this diet alongside regular exercise so that your cat maintains a healthy weight over the years. 

Precautions to Take

Before anything else, if you observe any strange signs in your cat’s body and behavior, consider taking her immediately to a professional vet.

If you decide to give your cat supplements, there are various precautions that you need to take. Always ask your vet for recommendations because they are well-versed with different kinds of supplements available in the market. If you choose to buy on your own, then make sure you buy from trusted brands and websites. 

Remember that it is easy for anyone to put up a website and sell things. Always do thorough research on the companies before buying from them. Like most other things, giving more than the required amount of food can seriously harm your cat. Hence, it is recommended to ask your vet about both quality and quantity. Every cat requires different supplements and amounts depending on their age and breed.

Lastly, if you remain cognizant about your cat’s health from the beginning, then only raw cat food can keep them healthy and happy for years. With the right diet, your pet will be able to enjoy their years with you and still be healthy. 

Extra supplementation can lead to various issues like behavior problems, allergies, and other health issues in your cat. Being a cat owner, if you witness such a situation, then using melatonin for cats would be your best bet. This medicine improves health and behavior issues in cats. 

Make sure you purchase cat supplies from a renowned brand so that your cat lives a longer and healthier life. This is important because many suppliers store unlicensed products with a cheap price tag. The price tag on these products can be attractive but cause serious side effects in the long run. 

Does Your Cat Need Cobalamin Supplements?

If you have noticed that your cat has digestion problems or is not interested in eating – it could be because of a cobalamin deficiency. Cobalamin or Vitamin B12 is necessary for the body to process food and is ideally secreted by the pancreas. In most cats, B12 is a water-soluble that is excreted in the urine, but some cats tend to store it in their bodies under healthy circumstances. 

Animals that suffer from Exocrine pancreatic insufficiency (EPI), and other gastrointestinal diseases, often have this deficiency as the condition prevents them from retaining nutrients from food.

Causes of Vitamin B12 (Cobalamin) Deficiency

The most common cause of a Cobalamin deficiency is EPI. The condition is common in both cats and dogs, and a majority of the animals with this condition have a cobalamin deficiency. Additionally, EPI also hinders the production of intrinsic factor (IF) by the pancreas. This substance is the one that allows for the absorption of nutrients from food.

Deficiency may also be symbolic of the fact that your cat could be suffering from other major pancreatic problems. B12 deficiency could also be the result of diabetes, hyperthyroidism, and inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). In cats, B12 deficiencies are also caused by kidney diseases, liver diseases, and some forms of cancer treatments.

Symptoms

One of the most common symptoms of the deficiency is weight loss and diarrhea. Pets that are diagnosed with EPI have a hard time gaining weight even after treatment. Cats suffering from this condition are lethargic and confused as their body becomes weak.  

B12 also plays an important part in brain function, and its deficiency may seriously hamper the cat’s functionality. Cats that are not responding to typical EPI treatments are likely to have a B12 deficiency.

Diagnosis and Treatment

B12 deficiencies are confirmed through blood tests. The vet carefully examines the count of red and white blood cells before diagnosis. If B12 deficiencies are not treated immediately, cats would have a poor prognosis.

Moreover, cats suffering from EPI cannot be cured through oral supplements only as they cannot absorb the nutrients. In these cases, injections are the most preferred way to move forward. Fresh meats and livers contain high amounts of B12, and being a cat parent, consider a diet that consists of both of them.

As far as injections are concerned, your cat will need weekly injections for some time before getting properly cured. Moreover, the injections are administered long enough, so that B12 levels become adequate. During long-term injections, your vet will teach you to administer them yourself. Signs of improvement like weight gain and routine eating will become prevalent once the treatment starts working. Moreover, Lysine for cats can be used to get rid of respiratory infections.

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