Consequences of Taurine Deficiency in Cats

Posted on by Ink Well Mag

Woman holding a cat for checkupAmong the essential amino acids needed by cats is taurine. It is responsible for fueling a variety of body functions in your cats. Cats are particularly prone to taurine deficiency because, unlike other species, their bodies cannot convert other types of amino acids into taurine.

It is therefore vital that when you shop for cat food online, ensure the brand you get contains taurine. To learn more about the subject, here are some consequences of taurine deficiency in your cat.

1. Blindness

Taurine is an essential mineral for proper development and functioning of a cat’s retinal cells. Cats with taurine deficiency suffer from feline central retinal degeneration. This is a consequence of when retinal cells do not function well. The cells eventually die, resulting in impaired vision and eventual blindness.

2. Heart Disease

The most common result of lack of taurine in your cat’s diet is dilated cardiomyopathy. This is a fatal heart condition that might eventually cause heart failure. Taurine deficiency leads to an electrolyte imbalance, which causes flabby cardiac muscles.

This lack of muscle tone makes the heat dilate and lose its elastic recoil. Common symptoms of dilated cardiomyopathy in cats include decreased appetite, fainting spells, a buildup of fluid in the heart and belly as well as lack of energy.

3. Decreased Growth and Reproductive Performance

Queens need to maintain an adequate level of taurine throughout pregnancy and lactation for the proper structural growth of kittens. Kittens need taurine in their feed for proper growth and development. The reproductive performance of queens with taurine deficiency is also significantly lowered.

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These results of taurine deficiency are typically apparent after a prolonged period and in severe cases. Treatment and recovery from taurine deficiency hence take considerable time in most cats. The only way to prevent this is to ensure the cat food you buy contains taurine.