Today food supplements for humans are in fashion. They are sold in pharmacies, in herbalists and even in supermarkets. But in addition, it is becoming easier to find vitamins for cats , being sold as if they were necessary for them when the reality can be very different. In fact, if they are not used well they can cause serious health problems in our friends.
For all these reasons, it is important that you know the different types of vitamins and nutritional supplements that are available for cats, and in which cases they can be given without their health being compromised.
When are vitamins for cats YES necessary?
Vitamins and food supplements for cats are highly recommended if the animal is very sick and / or malnourished. There are several types:
Essential fatty acids
Essential fatty acids are prescribed to treat skin and hair problems , once underlying diseases have been ruled out. For example, salmon oil is highly recommended in cases of allergic dermatitis, dull hair or dry skin.
Omega-3 fatty acid is also very beneficial, since it improves the health of those who have kidney disease, arthritis, food allergies, kidney disease or autoimmune disorders.
Digestive enzyme supplements
They are highly recommended to treat different digestive problems , such as intestinal diseases or chronic diarrhea, as they guarantee complete digestion.
Probiotics are microorganisms that improve the intestinal microbial balance , so they can be used to stop diarrhea in cats.
If your cat suffers from osteoarthritis , your veterinarian may recommend a treatment with Glucosamine and Chondroitin, since it relieves the symptoms by increasing the quality of life of the patient.
When are vitamins NOT necessary for cats?
Vitamins for cats are not necessary if they are given a quality feed , that is, without cereals or animal by-products. It is true that they are much more expensive than those that do carry, but the quality of the latter is very low. Additionally, cereals can cause food allergies, and even kidney problems. Therefore, it is very important to always read the label of the ingredients, which are ordered from highest to lowest quantity.
So that you can see the difference between a high quality feed and a low quality one, here are the ingredients of one and the other:
Composition of a high quality feed
Dehydrated chicken meat (48%), dehydrated lamb meat (20%), dehydrated potatoes, minced chicken without bones (12%), beet pulp, roast chicken broth, salmon oil, vitamins and minerals, egg dehydrated, vegetable fiber cellulose (0.03%), sodium chloride, calcium carbonate, seaweed, lingonberries, DL-methionine, potassium chloride, Yucca Schidigera extract, citrus extract, rosemary extract.
Low-quality feed composition
Dehydrated poultry proteins, animal fats, rice, corn, vegetable protein isolate, corn gluten, animal protein hydrolyzate, wheat, minerals, dried beet pulp, yeast, fish oil, vegetable fibers, soybean oil, fructo- oligosaccharides.
As you can see, in the first case, meat is the first and second ingredient, and there is no type of cereal , while in the second there are three types of cereals: rice, corn and wheat. If you give him a high quality feed, you will make sure to give him all the nutrients and vitamins he needs.
In addition, it will not be necessary to give him vitamins if he is given complete natural food , such as the Yum Diet for cats, Naku, or Barf -this is always followed by a nutritionist, since if he does not give him enough nutrients he would end up needing veterinary help-.
The danger of vitamins
When you decide to give a cat vitamins without consulting a professional, we risk putting its health at risk. The pet supplement industry is not strictly regulated. An FDA study on food supplements for dogs, cats and horses emphasized that establishing clear and precise regulation is necessary , since currently regulations addressing these supplements are in disarray.
Therefore, they only have to be given in the real case that there is a deficiency , otherwise, you could have problems, such as osteoporosis (due to abuse of vitamin A), risk of bleeding, heart attack or stroke (due to excess vitamin E), or heart disorders (from high doses of vitamin C).
Therefore, before buying vitamins for cats, it is essential to consult with a veterinarian and do a blood test to the animal to see how it is and if they are really necessary. It is important for you to know that sometimes simply giving him a high quality diet does not mind spending the money on supplements or vitamins. Once you start this new diet you will gradually see its benefits, such as shiny and healthy hair, strong teeth, and most importantly: a better mood.
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