Potassium supplements are used to increase the amount of potassium in your pet's blood. Potassium helps to regulate several body functions, including muscle contractions, nerve impulses and heart function. Without it, the heart, skeleton, blood pressure and muscles are unable to function properly. If you have ever heard your veterinarian use the term Hypokalemia it refers to a low blood concentration of potassium in your cat. The most common cause of hypokalemia is chronic kidney failure, a condition common in older cats.
Cats can recover with potassium supplements which contain amino acids, iron and B-vitamins to help manage their symptoms and improve their quality of life.
Potassium is vital for the normal functioning of muscles and has a huge impact on heart health and circulation. Using a supplement with the essential amino acids helps with protein production and maintenance of muscle mass. Amino acids also support many aspects of health, including function of the kidneys and immune system. Vitamin B and iron helps to boost energy, appetite, and vitality. In pets with reduced kidney function B-vitamins are lost via urine and cause a host of problems. Iron deficiency in pets with chronic kidney disease is most often caused by reduced appetite. Low iron levels result in pets feeling lethargic and weak, and further reduces their appetite as they feel increasingly unwell but luckily this vicious cycle can be improved with a dietary supplement.
Do not supplement potassium without your veterinarian's knowledge and approval, because not all chronic kidney disease in cats have low potassium levels and giving potassium to a cat who does not need it can be very dangerous. Cats diagnosed early have an average survival time of 3 years. Those with moderate disease live an average 2 years. Those with advanced disease generally succumb to chronic kidney disease within months.
A cat suffering from chronic kidney disease is likely to be experiencing both physical and emotional pain due to the number of side effects associated with the disease i.e. vomiting, dehydration and anorexia for example. Unfortunately, once the kidneys are damaged, they have very limited ability to recover. However, with proper management and treatment, your cat may have several years of a good quality active life ahead.
If your cat has been diagnosed with kidney problems, you will almost certainly be advised to pay close attention to her diet, and potentially amend it so that it contains a more suitable blend of nutrients. Your veterinarian may provide you with a prescription for controlled meals. These tend to be based around highly digestible proteins which reduce the amount of waste your kitty’s kidneys have to deal with. Your cat may not be impressed with the taste, however, you must persevere. Your local veterinarian will be able to accurately assess the potassium levels in your cat’s body and make a recommendation as to whether a suitable diet and potassium supplements will be required. If you are concerned that your cat may have kidney problems, you should seek veterinary advice as soon as possible.
We don’t currently stock any Potassium Supplement for Cats but if it is something that you would like us to stock in the future, please leave a comment below.