Plenty of special diets exist for cats. These diets may be recommended by veterinarians or pet store staff based upon life stage, lifestyle, breed, or known medical problems. How useful are they? How strict must one be when feeding the diets to cats?
This article will focus mainly on the diets designed to treat medical problems. These diets are referred to as prescription diets because they frequently are applied to the recommendation of a veterinarian. Previously these diets were only available through veterinarians; in the web age, it really is now possible to buy the majority of them online and frequently from pet stores.
However before we explore the prescription diets, I wish to touch briefly upon the life span stage, lifestyle, and breed-based diets mentioned previously. Special diets exist for kittens, elderly cats, indoor cats, outdoor cats, Persians, Siameses, and several other cats who could be shoehorned into some category or other. However, i believe that the majority of them, and the breed-based types especially, are more marketing ploys than good-faith efforts to raised serve cats and their owners.
How about prescription diets? These diets are produced by a few different companies. Hills, Purina, and Royal Canin will be the market leaders. These diets are produced to handle issues such as for example obesity, pregnancy, diabetes, urinary problems, skin problems, kidney disease, thyroid disease, intestinal problems, and pregnancy. A few of them appear to are better than others. A discussion of most of these is beyond the scope of the article, therefore i will concentrate on four of the very most commonly used classes of prescription diets: those used to take care of kidney disease, diabetes, intestinal problems, and urinary problems.
The ordering of the four classes that I simply listed isn’t a coincidence. I’ve listed the diets to be able of, for me, increasing efficacy and importance. Prescription diets for kidney disease It could surprise many visitors to learn that I am not terribly impressed with prescription diets made to treat kidney disease. The logic behind their use goes such as this: It’s the job of the kidneys to eliminate waste material from the bloodstream.
The primary waste material they remove will be the consequence of protein metabolism. Protein contains significant levels of nitrogen and phosphorus, and the waste material that build up in your body with kidney disease are saturated in nitrogen and phosphorus.
These waste material cause cats to feel sick. That sounds good theoretically, but it appears there might be a flaw in the logic. This implies that their bodies could be prone to metabolizing an identical amount of protein regardless of just how much of it they eat.
Some professionals therefore think that kidney formula diets do not reduce the workload of the kidneys significantly, nor do they delay the progression of kidney disease. To create matters worse, cats find protein palatable. Cats with kidney disease have poor appetites, and they could be picky about foods that are low in protein. Also, increased consumption of protein is associated with a higher lean muscle, which is associated with greater longevity. Many professionals think that older cats – the kind of cats that always have kidney disease – generally need more protein than their younger counterparts.
That protein shall result from their muscles, reducing their lean muscle. And, since protein is palatable, cats might eat much less of the reduced protein diets, resulting in even great reductions in lean muscle and shorter life span therefore. However, owners should understand that kidney diets do have a tendency to affect blood phosphorus levels in a great way, and phosphorus is apparently associated with clinical symptoms.
Listed below are my recommendation for cats with kidney disease. The most crucial thing is to keep lean muscle. Therefore, the most crucial thing is that your cat eat the meals on offer actually, and that his weight be maintained at a wholesome level to the geatest extent possible.
If your cat is thinking about a kidney diet, then so be it – the decreased phosphorus might make him feel better. The most crucial thing is to keep him eating, also to monitor his kidney and weight values; if these parameters are unsatisfactory an adjustment could be necessary then. A treat of some Thanksgiving turkey will not affect the outcome in a cat with kidney disease significantly. Prescription diets for diabetes Diabetes is among the more common health issues in cats and humans.
The kind of diabetes that’s most common in cats is physiologically similar to the most typical type adult onset, or type 2 of diabetes in people. Dietary modification is a mainstay of type 2 human diabetes treatment in people. And no Yes. Diabetes is an illness seen as a high blood sugar. For me the logic behind these diets is sound. But there exists a rub.
Dietary modification probably can help cats with diabetes. Nonetheless it rarely is enough alone. The overwhelming most cats with diabetes additionally require insulin. I therefore advise that diabetic cats be switched to a diet made for diabetes, but I warn clients never to expect a miracle.
It is advisable to try to adhere to diabetic diets exclusively, although an intermittent deviance is not apt to be catastrophic. Fortunately, most diabetic cats aren’t picky eaters, so these diets are accepted by the majority of them. The standard way to take care of these problems has been dietary modification. Some cats might react to over-the-counter sensitive stomach diets.
It often is essential to test out a few diets and discover one which works for cats with IBD or food intolerance. But if you will discover one which works, I would recommend that you stay with it and steer clear of treats or other dalliances. These syndromes are treated with medications such as for example prednisone often; if possible it is best in my opinion to attempt to manage the nagging issues with diet alone.
Although the sources of the problem are controversial, most professionals think that diet plays a job. I am no expert I do not need advanced qualification in veterinary internal medicinebut as a crisis vet I’ve seen a lot more than my share of urinary obstruction, and I think that diet plays a role firmly. I would recommend their exclusive use for cats with the problem. What about raw? Prepared raw diets are nightmares filled with Salmonella Improperly, E. Those first three items on the list are bacteria that may spread to people in the homely house.
Bad, bad, bad! However, at the chance to be labeled a veterinary apostate, I am obliged to notice that properly prepared raw diets could possibly have some potential to take care of each one of the four syndromes addressed in this post. Having said that, I have yet to see enough evidence to allow me to recommend them. As a side note, I am aware that many people think that the major pet food companies are big and evil. I should explain that I’ve not seen any evidence to date that convinces me that commercial raw manufacturers are any less greedy although they undoubtedly are smaller.
If said companies desire to provide me with evidence, I recommend that they fund however, not hinder some well-run studies on the consequences of feeding raw diets to cats experiencing the above conditions. Other stories by Dr. Eric Barchas:.