Taurine Deficiency in Cats

Source: PetWave, Updated on August 12, 2016
Taurine Deficiency

What is Taurine

Taurine, also called 2-aminoethanesulfonic acid, is a sulfur-containing amino acid that is found in relatively high concentrations in a variety of animal tissues, including muscle, the retina and the central nervous system. It is an “essential” amino acids in cats. Most mammals, including dogs, are able to manufacture taurine from other amino acids, such as cystine and methionine. However, the cat's ability to synthesize taurine is extremely limited. Cats have to get taurine from their food. Moreover, because of a unique metabolic pathway in cats, most of their dietary intake of taurine is excreted by their liver in bile at unusually high levels. For both of these reasons, all cats must have a sufficient amount of taurine in their daily diets to remain healthy.