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Old November 13th, 2009, 09:47 AM
ayclee ayclee is offline
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Possible to overdose on Omega 3's?

Hi all, I was wondering if anybody has any experience with giving Omega 3's to their cats? I am just doing some research and was re-reading Dr. Lee's post on Essential Fatty Acids and more convinced that Felix needs more Omega 3's.

A brief history: Felix is about 12 years old and about 4 months ago tore his ACL in one of his hind legs. I decided not to go with surgery because his x-rays showed indications of tearing in his other leg and it would be too risky. We put him on a few drugs and Cosequin and within 3 months of rest and a great deal of patience he was pretty much brand new!! Unfortunately, about a month ago he tore his other ACL (was expected...) so we are back with some more tender loving care.

He is still on Cosequin and I feed him Orijen 6 fish dry and Wellness wet. I noticed on the guaranteed analysis for Orijen DHA is 0.7% and EPA is 0.5%. Is that enough? Or should I be added some more? If so, how much?

I am now concerned about arthritis in his legs and want to do whatever I can to help him out and perhaps "prevent" it for as long as I can.

Thanks for taking the time to read and any suggestions you may have.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 10:06 AM
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aylee, sorry I can't offer any suggestions, but I'm sure Sugarcatmom and Growler may be able to help. All the best for your boy Felix!
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Old November 13th, 2009, 02:33 PM
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The amount of glucosamine and chondroitin in the Orijen would not be enough to make much difference. I don't know about cats but with dogs if you give too much fish oil (omega 3's) then they will get diarrhea and you just cut back the amount. Also, if the brand you supplement does not have vitamin e added then you need to supplement with that 2-3 times a week as fish oil depletes the body of vitamin e over time.
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Old November 13th, 2009, 04:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rainbow View Post
The amount of glucosamine and chondroitin in the Orijen would not be enough to make much difference. I don't know about cats but with dogs if you give too much fish oil (omega 3's) then they will get diarrhea and you just cut back the amount. Also, if the brand you supplement does not have vitamin e added then you need to supplement with that 2-3 times a week as fish oil depletes the body of vitamin e over time.
That is what I heard too, rainbow, but when I asked at the vitamin shop the owner told me that vit e is a preservative . He had never heard that omega 3's inhibit vit e absorbtion. Is it only in cats and dogs?
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Old November 13th, 2009, 04:34 PM
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Aww, poor Felix! Sounds like he would benefit from some extra Omega3 for sure. Like rainbow said, the amount found in pet food is pretty negligible. You might want to pick up some capsules from a health food store (I like the ones that use sardines, anchovies or krill instead of salmon, for environmental reasons). You can use a pin to poke a hole in one end and squeeze a couple drops in Felix's wet food, gradually increasing the amount to half a capsule or so per day (there really are no set guidelines on how much to use so find out what Felix can tolerate and go from there).

Couple other things come to mind. How is Felix's weight? Any possibility that you can eliminate the dry food from his diet? The high amount of starch in kibble (and the potato starch in Orijen in particular) is thought to be pro-inflammatory and would undo the benefits of adding Omega3. If you could feed just the Wellness canned, that would be ideal.

Some other supplements worth considering are MSM and green lipped mussel extract. Is Felix on any pain meds right now?
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Old November 14th, 2009, 12:14 AM
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I agree that Felix would benefit from Omega 3's especially given his acl history. Keeping him at or just slightly under his optimal weight will also help reduce the load on his joints.

Do you have stairs or boxes placed where he likes to jump up onto the bed/couch/window sill to make it easier for him to get around?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rainbow View Post
if the brand you supplement does not have vitamin e added then you need to supplement with that 2-3 times a week as fish oil depletes the body of vitamin e over time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Love4himies View Post
That is what I heard too, rainbow, but when I asked at the vitamin shop the owner told me that vit e is a preservative . He had never heard that omega 3's inhibit vit e absorbtion. Is it only in cats and dogs?
Vitamin e and/or Rosemary are used as preservatives to extend the shelf life of omega 3's but with cats they are also essential in preventing steatitis, as it will occur when a cat is fed a fish rich diet without a vit e balancer. An exclusively or mostly fish based diet will deplete the body of vit e causing serious medical conditions.


Quote:
http://jn.nutrition.org/cgi/content/full/132/6/1613S
Over the last 50 years there have been numerous reports of vitamin E deficiency in cats with the main cause of these deficiencies being attributed to ingestion of diets high in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs). Steatitis ("yellow fat disease") is attributed to vitamin E deficiency and has been experimentally induced in kittens after feeding a commercial cat food with a high fish content and after feeding vitamin E–deficient purified diet containing tuna oil and stripped safflower seed oil.

Fish oil is a rich source of PUFAs, which are highly susceptible to oxidation, and an increased intake of fish oil has been associated with increased vitamin E requirements

In regards to L4H's question about humans this is what I found:

Quote:
http://www.mercola.com/article/omega3.htm
As you increase your intake of essential fatty acids like omega 3 you also need to increase your need for fat-soluble antioxidants, because fish oil is extremely perishable and the antioxidants will ensure the fish oil doesn't oxidize & become rancid in your body a term known as lipid peroxidation
BTW while on the topic of fish - Tuna lacks Taurine which as we all know is essential for cats and a deficiency can cause eye & heart problems.
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Old November 14th, 2009, 04:33 AM
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Thanks growler
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Old November 14th, 2009, 05:11 PM
ayclee ayclee is offline
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Thanks so much everybody for your input!

Felix’s weight is an issue for sure! I had him at a pretty good weight but since his injuries he has gained it all back :sad: but I’m working on lowering his weight. Giving him more wet food and cutting back on the dry. Sugarcatmom, you mentioned the potato starch in Orijen, is there a better dry food I should try out that doesn’t have the potato starch? I was looking at Wellness Core, but it’s so expensive so I chose Orijen instead.

He is not on any pain meds at the moment. He was on Medicam and Tramadol (sp?) for the first few weeks. I read up on the issues with Medicam and stopped that after 7 days. And we tried different doses of Tramadol but he was so stoned that I wasn’t very comfortable leaving him on it – so that lasted about 7 days. So instead I made a bed for him in the living room and brought his food to him like a King. He loved every moment of it!!

Growler, I did try the boxes route for him to jump on the bed and couch but he wanted nothing to do with them! He just ended up going around and finding another spot to jump from. It’s a scary thought, but I think his jumping up to the couch/bed had something to do with tearing his acl’s. I have hardwood floors and I think the slippery floors gave him very little traction to jump from. So I went out and bought those (ugly) runners and put them all around the condo so he has a bit of traction. He also has gotten VERY good at giving me those pathetic big eyes when he wants up on the bed or couch. So I am now his personal elevator!!

Also, Growler did mention “An exclusively or mostly fish based diet will deplete the body of vit e causing serious medical conditions.” So would you recommend switching their Orijen 6 Fish?

Thanks again for everybody’s advice. This board is amazing!
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Old November 14th, 2009, 06:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ayclee View Post
I’m working on lowering his weight. Giving him more wet food and cutting back on the dry. Sugarcatmom, you mentioned the potato starch in Orijen, is there a better dry food I should try out that doesn’t have the potato starch?
I would suggest eliminating the dry completely. That will help with both his weight and the inflammation issue. Cats really shouldn't be eating any dry food, it has no redeeming qualities and is the number one cause of numerous health issues, such as diabetes, kidney disease, allergies, IBD, bladder/urinary tract problems, and obesity. More on that here: www.catinfo.org

If pain is an ongoing issue for Felix, you could try Buprenex (very expensive though, and not all vets have it in stock, but it has a better safety margin than Metacam), or perhaps some homeopathic options like Traumeel or Zeel.
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