How Can Supplements Maintain Health in Cats?

March 16, 2022

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By Dr. Elizabeth DeLomba, DVM MBA

As we much as we adore our feline patients and pets, there are several challenges that come with keeping cats healthy and happy. The first challenge is detecting if something is off with your patient. Cats are masters at hiding issues. Whether it’s discomfort, gastrointestinal upset or stress, cats conceal their problems so that their owner may not realize something is off. Kitty may have a reduced appetite or activity level without demonstrating significant signs of distress.

Veterinarians are the first line of defense in discovering the issues that may be affecting our feline patients. This is accomplished through the annual wellness exam where we can assess a patient’s health. Much of the information is gathered by querying the pet owner about their cat’s appetite, litter box habits, interactions with family and other housemates, unusual activity or hiding. These questions lead to clues that the cat may be experiencing health issues that haven’t been detected by the owner.

Address Mobility Issues

Joint problems occur in the majority of cats as they age. In fact, up to 90% of cats over the age of 12 years have radiographic signs of joint issues. [1] This prevents them from jumping on the furniture or leaping up to enjoy their favorite window. Providing them with a joint supplement that has synergistic ingredients early in the aging process may prolong functionality.  The same is true with cognitive health. Providing the brain with essential nutrients supports nerve health and helps maintain cognition.

Early intervention with supplements can help optimize a cat’s health. For example: utilization of a joint supplement helps keep cats active by supporting joint tissues and reducing distress. This allows the muscles to maintain their strength since their utilization is normal.  If there is discomfort, cats tend to hide and not move as much which can lead to weakness, which may lead to further loss of flexibility and dysfunction. VetriFlex® for cats contains a balanced combination of ingredients to support joint health, comfort and overall mobility.

Maintain Urinary Tract Function

It’s common for younger cats to have issues with missing the litterbox. If there’s an active UT issue, introducing a supplement can support UT function and bladder control.  Since their bladder is the target organ for stress in many cats, UT Strength Feline Pro not only support their urinary tract but promotes calm behavior and improved cognition to provide comprehensive support for bladder issues.

Provide Immune Support

Many younger cats also experience occasional upper respiratory issues. Latent viral presence can cause cats to have runny eyes, sneezing and obstructed airways. Providing them with immune support to combat the agent responsible may help to decrease signs and frequency of flare-ups. L-Lysine Pro combines immune-boosting l-lysine with DMG, a substance shown to increase the immune response by 400 times. [2]

Promote Behavioral Health

At any age, cats can suffer from stress due to changes in their environment or daily routine. Composure™ Pro for cats contains effective calming ingredients to help cats manage stress caused by thunderstorms, car rides or house guests and prevent behavior manifestations.

Compliance is critical as supplement must be administered routinely in order to achieve the desired result.  VetriScience formulated their cat supplements specifically to help improve compliance and achieve positive outcomes. They combine a feline-friendly chew size with added flavoring for fussy eaters. 

As veterinary professionals, we strive to see our clients succeed and our patients live long, happy lives. Supplements give us a way to support them both.

Dr. DeLomba, DVM MBA is a Senior Veterinary Services Consultant at VetriScience®. She combines extensive clinical experience with 13 years of management in veterinary pharmaceuticals. She has authored over 50 veterinary articles and continuing education courses. Dr. DeLomba earned a DVM in Veterinary Medicine from Michigan State University and MBA from Villanova University.

[1] Hardie, Elizabeth M et al. “Radiographic evidence of degenerative joint disease in geriatric cats: 100 cases (1994-1997).” Journal of the American Veterinary Medical Association vol. 220,5 (2002): 628-32. doi:10.2460/javma.2002.220.628

[2] Graber, C., Goust. J., Glassman, A., Kendall, R., and Loadholt, C. Immunomodulating Properties of Dimethylglycine in Humans. Journal of Infectious Disease. 143:101, 1981.18

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