Vitamins & Supplements
Filed in Cats, Nutrition
If your cat is in general good health and eating a balanced diet of premium cat food, vitamins and supplements should not be necessary. You may, however, choose to give supplements as insurance that your cat's nutritional needs are being met. Although there are several excellent over-the-counter vitamins and supplements, they're no substitute these for proper diet and veterinary care.
A general vitamin supplement is helpful in making sure your cat gets all its daily requirements of vitamins and minerals. General vitamins are formulated to help remove the hazard of overdosing on the fat-soluble vitamins, which, in large quantities, can prove toxic.
If your cat is suffering from dry skin or dull coat its diet might be deficient in fatty acids. Fatty-acids (Omega 3, 6, and 9) are found in fish and certain plants, including flax seed and grape seed. Most commercially available premium cat foods (Professional, Premium Edge, Royal Canin) already contain well-balanced fatty acids. If you are feeding a "supermarket" food or if your cat is on a low calorie or limited fat diet, you may want to consider adding a fatty-acid supplement to its food.
Throughout your cat's life there may be times when nutritional supplements are necessary. These will most often occur when your cat is very young, pregnant, nursing, or sick. There are a number of quality, over-the-counter, nutritional supplements available. If your cat is under veterinary care for an illness check with your veterinarian before administering any over-the-counter supplements.
Pregnant and nursing queens require additional nutrition for fetal development and milk production after birth. You might want to switch them to kitten food during this period. If milk production is not adequate very young kittens might need to be hand fed with a milk substitute. Older and sick cats may need supplements to increase protein or fat levels.