Vitamin B for Cats: dosage and benefits

Vitamin B for cats: dosage and benefits

The B complex vitamins are involved in numerous bodily functions, being essential micronutrients in the diet of any cat for the maintenance of its health and normal physiological state.

Generally, if the cat is fed a complete food for the feline species, either in solid or wet format or in combination, and gets the minimum amount necessary per day, that is, it is not sick or manifesting a loss of appetite or You do not have digestive problems associated with malabsorption of nutrients, you will obtain all the vitamins in this complex through your diet, without needing extra supplementation. However, at other times it is worth offering a nutritional supplement containing B vitamins to cats, as well as knowing which B vitamin foods are suitable for cats.

If you want to know the benefits of vitamin B for cats and when it should be given to these animals, continue reading this Best Pets Lover article.

You may be interested in taking a look at this post How to take care of your cat in winter: Tips to Protect, here.

What is vitamin B for cats?

Vitamin B does not exist, but there is the vitamin B complex, made up of a series of water-soluble vitamins that can dissolve in water, so they can be solubilized in urine and their excess excreted from the cat’s body.

If you wonder what vitamin B is for, in cats, you should know that eight vitamins make up the B vitamin complex and that they have the following functions:

  • Thiamin or vitamin B1: stimulates the appetite and is involved in nerve functions.
  • Riboflavin or vitamin B2: it is key in the correct function of vision and for the good appearance of the small cat’s hair.
  • Niacin or vitamin B3: it also promotes appetite and improves and helps proper digestion.
  • Pantothenic acid or vitamin B5: helps in the metabolism of fats.
  • Pyridoxine or vitamin B6: intervenes in protein metabolism.
  • Biotin or vitamin B8: plays a fundamental role in maintaining skin and hair under normal conditions while facilitating the metabolism of proteins, fats, and carbohydrates.
  • Folic acid or vitamin B9: reduces the risk of fetal malformations during pregnancy and favors the development of new cells.
  • Cobalamin or vitamin B12: plays a role in the creation of blood cells, among which erythrocytes and red blood cells stand out.

In other words, in general, B vitamins are involved in proper brain function, vision, hair appearance, nutrient metabolism, growth and development, stress relief, the proper development of the fetus in pregnancy, and the proper function of the immune system.

Do not hesitate to consult the following SoyUnGato article on How a cat grows.

What is vitamin B used for in cats?

The B complex vitamins, as we have just mentioned, are involved in numerous vital functions and maintenance of the body structures of our small cats. In addition, specifically the vitamins thiamine (B1), pyridoxine (B6), folic acid (B9), and cobalamin (B12) are essential for good cognitive function and neurological development in cats, since they are involved in the transformation of the amino acid homocysteine ​​into other usable substances by the feline organism. If by chance the cat is deficient in these vitamins, homocysteine ​​would accumulate in the blood, which could cause cardiovascular problems or cognitive impairment.

In addition, the B complex vitamins are important for the following:

  1. They are involved in cell differentiation.
  2. They stimulate the metabolism.
  3. They are crucial for healthy skin and hair.
  4. They stimulate the immune system.
  5. They are involved in the biochemistry of the nervous system.
  6. They help combat stress.

If you want to know more about The Secrets to Winter Cat Care, do not hesitate to consult its complete file here.

Benefits of vitamin B for cats

There are many benefits of the B complex vitamins, as we have just mentioned since they are vitamins that exert and intervene in various functions of the cat’s body and the maintenance of its organic and bodily structures.

For example, three of them are key to the neurological development of the cat and for its correct cognitive function because they play a role in the transformation of homocysteine ​​into substances that the feline organism uses:

  1. Vitamin B6 or pyridoxine.
  2. Vitamin B9 or folic acid.
  3. Vitamin B12 or cobalamin.

These vitamins also play a role in the processes of cell division, they act in the correct functioning of the immune system, metabolism, and biochemistry of the nervous system, they help to combat periods of stress and help to maintain the good luster of the skin and hair. hair of our little cats.

Vitamin B Dosage for Cats

The dosage of these vitamins will depend on the individual needs of the cat and the manufacturer and form of presentation in question since we can find them both in oral paste or tablet format and injectable form.

For example, it is possible that your cat only needs one or more of the vitamins in this complex, especially vitamin B12 in older cats or with digestive diseases that present with intestinal malabsorption and are deficient.

Of course, you should never offer a vitamin B complex for human consumption as they are designed for human needs, not cats, and you should always have the opinion of a veterinary professional before giving vitamins to your cat.

Don’t miss this Best Pets Lover article on How To Make Cat Ice Cream 2023.

Lack of vitamin B in cats

Beyond vitamin B12 deficiency in the cases discussed in the previous section, a vitamin B deficiency in cats is rare in a feline fed correctly with complete wet food or feed designed for the feline species.

A deficit can occur in cats with digestive malabsorption as it stops absorbing essential nutrients. Some of these diseases can be:

  1. Gastrointestinal infections.
  2. Inflammatory bowel disease.
  3. Pancreatitis
  4. Cholangitis.
  5. Intestinal lymphoma.

Vitamin B12 supplementation is recommended for all cats with a vitamin B12 level less than 300 ng/L or in cats with gastrointestinal disease until acceptable levels of this vitamin are verified by blood work.

How to give vitamin B to my cat

The best way for cats to obtain vitamin B is through their daily diet, but it can be helped by giving foods rich in vitamins from this complex as a supplement, such as:

  • Animal viscera: such as kidneys or liver.
  • Sardines.
  • La lubina.
  • The salmon.
  • The eggs.
  • Turkey, chicken, or pork meat.

If they require supplementation, the way to give it to them will depend on their format, they are given orally in tablets and pastes and injected into them, normally requiring a veterinarian to do so. Of course, you must give it every day because these vitamins dissolve in water, excreting their excess daily and not accumulating in the cat.

If your cat also presents alterations at the level of cognition, it may be a good idea to use a supplement that also includes substances that promote communication and metabolism of nerve and brain cells such as L-tryptophan and L-carnitine.

Foods with vitamin B for cats

In addition, we can offer our cats on certain occasions and always as a complement to their usual diet a series of natural foods that contain high levels of vitamin B. These foods are the following:

  1. Animal viscera such as liver and kidney
  2. Pork Meat
  3. Chicken or turkey meat
  4. Rabbit meat
  5. Sardines
  6. Lubin
  7. Salmon
  8. Tuna
  9. Eggs

If our cat follows a homemade diet, then there will be no problem in including these foods as part of it, since animal protein should occupy 80-90% of the daily diet, since the cat is a strict carnivorous animal. Of course, again, we recommend consulting with a veterinarian specializing in feline nutrition to avoid nutritional deficits. 

To find out about the types of Dyspnea In Cats – Treatment and Causes, don’t hesitate to read this Best Pets Lover post.

Side effects and contraindications of vitamin B for cats

As we have commented, poisoning by group B vitamins is very unlikely as they are water-soluble vitamins that do not allow their toxic accumulation in the body. However, excessive doses of vitamin B6 can lead to:

  1. Lack of coordination and muscle weakness in our small cats.
  2. Allergic reactions: after supplementation in certain cases such reactions may appear, although they are not frequent at all.
  3. Vomiting, Malaise, and Nausea: Injectable administration of these vitamins in rapid intravenous form can lead to nausea, vomiting, and general malaise in cats.

On the other hand, a lack of vitamin B1, B6, B9, or B12 can cause an accumulation of homocysteine ​​in the blood, causing cognitive or cardiovascular problems, since these vitamins are involved in the transformation of this amino acid into other substances that can be used by the cat’s body.

Finally, no contraindications of vitamin B for cats have been found to date.

If you want to read more articles similar to Vitamin B for cats: doses and benefits, we recommend that you enter our Cats section.