What is taurine?
Most cat owners today have heard the word taurine and know to a general extent that it is required to keep their cat healthy. Beyond that, most are unaware of what exactly taurine is and why it is a vital part of the feline nutritional needs. This is exactly what you will be educated on in today’s article!
Taurine is a type of amino acid, and amino acids form the main constituents of all proteins. Taurine is exclusively found in animal-based proteins. It is critical for normal vision, normal digestion, normal heart muscle function, to maintain normal pregnancy and fetal development, and to maintain a healthy immune system.
LiLNudists HCM/Taurine Study:
LiLNudists Cattery conducted a small study to see what the average levels of taurine received in the cat’s diets of 25 cats of the Hairless sphinx and bambino cat breeds who were currently living with, or who had succumb to the heart condition HCM which is prevalent in the breed. We collected the data and then emailed the companies of each of the foods on the list to discover the taurine levels. It turns out that most of the foods on the list which were fed to HCM positive hairless sphinx or bambino cats were only meeting the minimum requirements of taurine or slightly over.
Minimum Levels of Taurine Required in Cat Food as determined by the AAFCO (The Association of American Feed Control Officials):
Taurine Levels contained in Cat Foods fed to 25 HCM Study Participants:
Recommended Amount of Taurine in Cat Food:
Through our research and comparing current commercial prepared cat foods with that of a wild cats natural species appropriate diet we have determined the appropriate levels of taurine concentration in the diet to be about 3X that of the minimum requirements set by the AAFCO. The recommended amount of Taurine in your cats diet should range between .50 – .65%. These levels are found in currently balanced home prepared raw food diets which best mimic a cats natural diet, and can also be found in several high quality commercial prepared cat food diets currently available on the market.
High Quality, High Taurine Recommended Cat Foods:
For your cats BEST health:
As you can clearly see form the chart above, a raw food diet is the highest level of taurine you can give to your cat and along with many other nutrients in its highest form the is the best diet you can feed. Secondly is a god quality canned food diet consisting of an animal meat based protein, be careful about feeding canned foods with only fish as the primary source of the diet as taurine levels are often low, and there is high risk of mercury toxification. The lowest taurine levels even in foods from the best companies are the dry food diets. This is because dry foods only have at most a 50% protein content and taurine is contained in protein not in carbohydrates like the fruit, vegetables, and starch fillers which dry foods are made up of.
It is clear to see from the data that a low taurine diet clearly can contribute to heart disease in sphynx and bambino cat breeds. The best over-al diet for any cat is a natural species appropriate diet which is very high in protein and low in carbohydrates. A strictly raw or quality canned food only diet is best. If you want your cat to live the longest healthiest life possible give them exactly what their heart and bodies need MEAT!!!
Please note: This article has been provided for informational purposes only. If your pet is showing any signs of illness, please consult a veterinarian as quickly as possible. A raw food diet may not be appropriate for all cats in all stages of health and we always recommend having your cat examined and discussing diet changes with your veterinarian.
Keep those Hairless Kitties Healthy and Happy Everyone!!!
Text: Copyright © April Arguin RDH, Founder of LiLNudists Sphynx, Bambino, SphynxieBob & BamBob Cattery. All rights reserved.