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Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Taurine and cat health.

Felines have a greater need for taurine in the diet than other animals and deficiencies take a long time to be obvious and thus cause significant damage to a cat’s health. Cats fed a nutritionally balanced, fresh meat-based diet won’t need supplemental taurine,hence make sure balanced diets are presented. Home made cat diets should be supplemented with taurine, and all commercial cat foods should be checked and ensure it contains supplemental taurine. carnivores (cats) aren't able to synthesize all the taurine their bodies need from the dietary amino acids methionine and cysteine,unlike herbivores and omnivores that can synthesize all they need. Kitties can only conjugate bile acids with taurine thus they need taurine supplement with every meal. A low rate of taurine synthesis plus a loss of taurine in bile means kitties have an increased dietary requirement for taurine. Deficiencies will cause central retinal degeneration, disturbed reproduction and fetal development and heart cardiomyopathy. Taurine is an amino acid found primarily in muscle meat, especially dark meat, and organs like the heart, kidneys and liver, as well as seafood, including shellfish. It's also found in small amounts in dairy products, including eggs. Plants contain little to no detectable amounts of taurine. The way the meal is presented affects concentration of taurine available for the cats in the finished product. The highest concentrations are found in raw meat, then frying with juices retained, frying without retaining the juices, baking and finally, boiling. Home cooking for cats should consider this, cook the meat lightly, and retain all the liquids from the meat. The higher the temperature, the more taurine lost, so make sure to keep cooking temperatures low.