Taurine in cats is absolutely critical, and if you feed your cat a homemade diet, it must be supplemented by one of the various forms available.
For cats that are feed commercial foods, it is also something that every owner should consider supplementing simply because the cooking process can destroy over half all of its value.
This nutrient is so critical, that a deficiency of it can cause circulation problems as well as cell death in your cats system, as well as low fertility rates and fetal re-absorptions.
It can also lead to growth diseases in kittens that do survive the birth process.
Taurine is a beta-amino acid that is synthesized in the liver from dietary sulfur containing amino acids, and then absorbed into your cats small intestines.
Most all animals can manufacture taurine from other amino acids in their body if they suffer a deficiency.
However this is where your cat becomes separated form most every other animal; they cannot manufacture it.
It is critical for your cat as contrary to classical amino acids that are included in the very complex proteins, it stays in a free form.
Your cat has several tissues that are very rich in taurine and they including the muscles of their heart.
The central nervous system,as well
as the retina of their eye are also rich with taurine.
However, perhaps its most important function in your cat is with their biliary salts.
Taurine in cats is also critical in the formation of biliary salts that are essential for the proper digestion of fats in their small intestine.
Other animals simply utilize other acids in this critical process if taurine levels become deficient, but for some reason your cats system cannot perform this function.
Because of this, your cat relies on a dietary intake of taurine and is believed to be one of the major reasons,
if not the major reason, that cats must have animal products to survive, as it is not found at all in vegetables.
Your Cats Eyes
Taurine in cats also plays several other very important roles in your pet starting with their vision.
The retina of your cat’s eye, which is the membrane that covers the eye and forms pictures, has about 300 times the amount of taurine as compared to what is found in the blood.
Simply put, if your cat does not receive enough taurine in their diet, it kills their eyes.
It will gradually begin a process that will induce progressive degeneration of the retina, and within two years, your cat becomes totally blind.
By correcting the taurine deficiency it does stop this progression, but the lesions that it causes are not reversible and can still result in damage to your cat’s vision.
Taurine in cats accounts for about fifty percent of the free amino acids that are found in cats cardiac muscles, and if it deficient, it will quickly lead to what is called cardiomyopathy.
This can cause dilation on the left side of your cat’s heart, which plays a major role in the hearts over function.
Dilation can lead to several heart problems and there have been several recent studies that have demonstrated that once the levels are returned back to normal, the dilation stops.
If your cats heart continues to be weak on the left side, it cannot aerate the blood flow properly and will quickly lead to both circulation problems as well cell death in their heart.
Taurine in cats also plays a very important role in your cat’s reproductive processes.
Taurine deficiency can inflict several huge impacts on this process as it can cause a lack of fertility, abortions, as well as what is referred to as fetal re-absorption.
However, it can also cause several different abnormalities in the litter as well as stunting the growth of kittens that do survive this process.
Taurine is also critical for your cats overall nervous system as it is needed to maintain both the development as well of the integrity of this system.
If it is not found in the diet or supplemented, it affects blood coagulation, immune reactions, as well as damaging your cat’s respiratory tissues.
Taurine in cats can be supplied by the diet supplements. If you feed your cat dry food diets, they will require at least 1000 to 1200 mg/kg in their food.
The term mg/kg simply implies milligrams per kilogram of food. If your cat has a canned diet, they will require a lot more taurine as they will need at least 2200 to 2500 mg/kg.
Both types of commercial foods are cooked and processed, but dry forms hold taurine levels better than do moist or canned foods.
If you choose raw diets or homemade diets, you must supplement these diets with taurnine.
Pills and tablets come in 50, 125, 500, 850, as well as 100 mg. levels, but there are also several other very good options.
Supplements are also available in chew-able tablets and treats, and well as powder and liquid forms.
The actual mg that you give your cat will depend on their body weight as well as their current taurine levels and should be left entirely to your veterinarian.
Taurine in cats is very often overlooked in homemade diets which can have catastrophic effects on your cat.
It is very easy and quite inexpensive to properly supplement this critical amino acid.
If you choose a raw or homemade diet, have the taurine levels tested before, after a few weeks, and then at least a couple of times a year.
If you use conventional diets, you should still have the taurine levels tested as most processed foods cannot meet your cat’s requirements and they cannot produce it on their own.