In detail

Fish Oil for Cats: Healthy Supplements?


Fish oil can be a useful food supplement for cats, which helps our beloved house tigers to absorb important fats. The essential omega-3 fatty acids in particular support many processes in the body and cannot be produced by cats themselves. Oils and fats - and thus also fish oil - make an essential contribution to healthy cat nutrition - Shutterstock / irinaorel

Oils and fats are important in cat nutrition and can be added to the food in small quantities if necessary. You can buy fish oil in specialist shops and pharmacies and add it to cat food - the right dosage is important, because too much fish oil can have unsightly consequences. Generally speaking, if in doubt, consult the veterinarian about your cat's diet.

This is why fish oil is so healthy for cats

Fish oil contains long chain omega-3 fatty acids, DHA and EPA. These are found, for example, in salmon, herring, mackerel, trout and sardines. Since the cat organism cannot produce the fatty acids itself, they have to be supplied. They have important functions in the structure of the cell membrane, support diseases of many organs such as the liver, kidneys or skin and also have a positive effect on the brain, nerve cells, hormone balance and immune system.

The musculoskeletal system of cats can also benefit from fish oil and the essential fatty acids, since the oil is said to have anti-inflammatory effects, protect the tissue of the joints and can alleviate stiffness and pain, for example in arthritis. Since fish oil has a slightly blood-thinning effect, the risk of arterial blockage is reduced and the heart is relieved. A visible advantage of the adequate supply of fish oil is healthy skin and beautiful, shiny cat fur.

Is fish oil in cat food?

In the meantime, many finished feed manufacturers advertise fish oil in their products. Unfortunately, in most cases only a very small proportion is buried, which is not sufficient. In addition, there is the difficulty that it is not always clear what the quality of the fish oil added is, whether it is pure or mixed with other additives. Therefore, if you buy fish oil yourself, make sure that it is pure and of the highest quality.

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Feed fish oil for cats: the right dosage

The dosage of the fish oil is based on the manufacturer's recommendation. You can usually feed two milliliters per ten kilograms of body weight per day. Since cats rarely weigh ten kilograms, a quarter teaspoon of fish oil is usually sufficient, but less for small cats.

Too much oil can have negative consequences for the health of your fur nose. Possible symptoms of an overdose include diarrhea and other gastrointestinal problems. If your cat has gastrointestinal problems more often, add very little fish oil to the cat food first and increase the dose slowly - this way the organism can get used to the nutritional supplement.

Important: Since fish oil is thought to have a blood-thinning effect, you should mix a little less oil in the feed for free-runners, as they have an increased risk of injuring themselves outdoors and, for example, contracting wounds or bleeding from thorns. If the blood is thinned, wound healing becomes more difficult, so that a seemingly harmless scratch can lead to a serious infection. Also, you should not give your cat fish oil if she is taking blood thinning or anti-inflammatory medication, as fish oil increases these effects.