Over-the-counter iron supplements that are made for humans should not be given to your cat. They can make the condition worse and cause toxic overdose. Most pet supplements are only designed to meet a small portion of an animal’s daily requirements. Human supplements, however, often provide the entire daily requirement.
What to do if your pet accidentally consumes a Human Iron Supplement
Many pets are not likely to steal your vitamins and consume them. You should still be concerned, Dr. Lisa Murphy, an associate professor of toxicology and director of Pennsylvania Animal Diagnostic Laboratory System, advises.
Although cats react to iron toxicity differently depending on their age, health, and other factors, it is worth calling your vet immediately to discuss the possibility of a good outcome for your cat.
Iron poisoning in cats occurs when cats consume too much soluble iron. This is usually caused by iron supplements, multivitamins or gardening products that have iron. This is more common in homes with nursing mothers or pregnant women.
A cat can have mild to moderate iron poisoning if it consumes between 20-60 mg/kg and 60-60 mg/kg. However, severe iron poisoning can occur if a cat consumes more than 60 mg/kg. Cats can become fatal if they ingest more than 100 mg/kg of elemental iron.
What is Anemia?
Anemia is when hemoglobin (or healthy red blood cells) is insufficient. Hemoglobin is responsible for carrying oxygen throughout the body. Your cat’s cells won’t be able to get enough oxygen if they don’t have enough. Anemia can often be a sign of a more serious medical condition.
Cats can be affected by either regenerative or nonregenerative anemia. Regenerative anemia means that their bodies are making more red blood cell. Nonregenerative anemia is when the body doesn’t make more red blood cells. The vet will take a sample of your cat’s blood to diagnose the condition. This will allow them to determine the type of anemia in your cat. The vet will then recommend additional tests to determine the exact cause.
Anemia symptoms include anemia-like symptoms such as pale gums, weakness and fatigue. How quickly your cat’s red blood cells have dropped will determine the severity of his symptoms. Ask your vet for an evaluation if your cat experiences any of these symptoms.
What can cause iron loss?
Scientists have found that half of all kittens aged between five and ten weeks old are anemic. It is temporary and will resolve itself once the kitten starts to eat a high-protein solid diet. This usually happens around four to five week-old.
Anemia and low iron can occur in adult cats. These conditions include:
* Kidney Disease: Chronic kidney disease can cause a decrease in the production of the hormone Erythropoietin. This hormone stimulates bone marrow to produce more red blood cells.
* FeLV-infected cats : Viral cat illness.
* Heinz Body Anemia is a condition where the oxidation process of red blood cells is disrupted, resulting in a low number of blood cells.
* Blood parasites: A blood infection in a blood cell.
* Trauma: Hit by car, etc.
* Inherited anemia Deficiency: A condition passed on from one parent or both.
* Blood-sucking parasites: Infestation with hookworm, ticks, or fleas. This is especially true for kittens.
What can Iron Deficiency lead to?
Anemia in cats is the main cause of iron deficiency. This is a blood disorder that causes an abnormally low red blood cell mass.
The red blood cell mass is the sum of all red blood cells. These are red blood cells that contain hemoglobin and are responsible for transporting oxygen throughout the bloodstream and delivering it into the body.
Iron deficiency anemia is most commonly seen in cats due to chronic blood loss or poor diets. This disorder is rare in cats that eat a commercial diet.
Symptoms Of Anemia Due To Iron Deficiency In Cats
The severity of anemia can affect the symptoms. Anemia due to iron deficiency may not be apparent in all cats. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it is important to seek immediate medical attention.
- You can eat soil or rocks
- Eating litter
- Other food cravings
- Rapid heart rate
- Reluctance or inability to move or exercise
- Pale mucous membranes
Diagnosis Of Anemia Due To Iron Deficiency In Cats
A thorough examination and presentation will allow your vet to determine if you have a diagnosis. Your vet will need to know the severity and duration of your cat’s symptoms. Also, any blood disorders you may have had in the past. You should also be prepared to give your vet all of your cat’s medical information.
Blood tests will be performed by your vet to confirm the diagnosis. These tests may include complete blood cell counts, blood chemical profiles, and blood smear. If chronic blood loss is suspected, additional diagnostic testing may also be performed.
How is Iron Supplemented?
After your vet has performed some tests to confirm that your cat is lacking iron, the veterinarian will recommend a treatment plan based on your cat’s severity.
You can inject iron through a needle or a bag. Your vet will administer injectable iron on a monthly basis to resolve the problem.
Liquid Iron can be taken as an oral supplement. Some of these liquids also contain vitamins like B-complex or amino acids.
Although a high-calorie dietary supplement isn’t a direct iron supplement, it can increase the cat and kitten’s appetites. This may be enough to raise iron levels by providing high-quality nutrition.
Blood transfusions are for severely anemic cats who need an immediate boost in red blood cells. Death is imminent.
Treatment Of Anemia Due To Iron Deficiency In Cats
The cause of anemia can vary and treatment options may be different. Your veterinarian will advise you on the best treatment plan for your cat based on his specific needs.
Iron deficiency anemia can be treated in cats fed an unhealthy diet. Iron dextran injections may be an option for some cats. These injections can be painful so animal owners should consider oral supplementation. Blood transfusion may be necessary in severe cases of anemia. In order to prevent adverse reactions, your cat may need to be admitted for a brief time.
Treatment of animals suffering from chronic blood loss in order to prevent future blood loss is the primary goal. Oral iron supplements may be prescribed for milder cases. Iron sulfate is the most common form, but ferrous fumarate and ferrous gluconate are also frequently prescribed. Side effects may occur as these increase iron absorption in red blood cells. You can reduce side effects by dividing the dose into smaller doses.
If not taken care of, iron deficiency in cats can cause serious health problems. Don’t allow your feline companion to take in iron supplements from humans. This could lead to iron poisoning.