Appointments: (02) 6251 1444
16-18 Purdue St, Belconnen, ACT
(Parking via Gillott Street)
Mon - Fri: 8:30am - 5:30pm
Saturday: 8:30am - 1:00pm

Canberra Cat Vet Blog

Thiamine deficiency in cats

Monday, October 27, 2014

When we read about recent cases of thiamine deficiency in cats fed preserved pet meats in Sydney we also found this American report about thiamine deficiency in cats fed uncooked fish and some pate type can foods.

Thiamine is essential for carbohydrate metabolism, muscle contraction, and nerve conduction. Very little thiamine is stored in the body and cats depend on a steady dietary source of the vitamin. Thiamine is naturally found in many food sources such as whole grain cereals, nuts, legumes, brewer’s yeast, but cats derive thiamine mainly from meat products, in particular skeletal muscle, liver, heart, and kidneys.

Improper food storage and processing, consumption of uncooked fish that contain the enzyme thiaminase, and consumption of diets with sulfur dioxide or sulfite meat preservatives can lead to insufficient dietary thiamine.

After two to four weeks of a thiamine deficient diet, cats exhibit salivation, anorexia (loss of appetite), and sometimes vomiting. If the deficiency is not corrected, then dilated pupils, bradycardia (slow heart rate), aggression, and progressive neurological symptoms such as ataxia (loss of coordination), rigid head and neck ventroflexion, twitching, loss of righting reflexes, seizures, coma, and death will ensue. Rigid head and neck ventroflexion is the most common clinical sign in cats presented to veterinarians.


(Winn Feline Foundation)

Search Blog

Recent Posts


gifts poisonous plants sneeze stress discount allergy, pancreatitis abscess,cat fight obese blockage kitten deaths ulcers hunter visit diuretics RSPCA flea treatment birthday noisy breathing best clinic ACT meows a lot examination computer mass snot touch house call skinny hard faeces indoor cats chlamydia cat worms blood pressure hospital calicivirus pica enemies vet visit gasping decision to euthanase massage polish joints blood in urine fireworks spraying best vet bed cat history scale dry food snake cat behaviour microchip cryptococcosis old cat hyperactive home hypertension poisons snuffles lump stare into space adipokines arthritis fluid pills training introduction FIV blind lymphoma snakes body language renal disease sense of smell advantage feline AIDS outdoor cat cystitis whiskers worms cat friendly crytococcosus kitten checkup cta fight brown snake itchy appetite slow xylitol senior off food annual check wobbles behaviour change kidney dilated pupils kittens sun holidays paralysed socialisation moving award herpesvirus not eating petting cat sudden blindness euthanasia panleukopaenia pet panadol behaviour bump fight scratch fever sore eyes lick fits photo competition pheromone litter comfortis enclosure breeder eye infection virus toxins poisoning in season goodbye catoberfest runny nose senses cat enclosure rash echocardiography kitten play straining introducing high blood pressure cognitive dysfunction cage eye liver litter box introductions hungry snuffle mycoplasma bladder bad breath blue urinating on curtains or carpet constipation spray head bladder stones salivation new year unsociable hiding snake bite bite headache when to go to vet attack teeth intestine on heat dementia information night worming anaemia seizures drinking a lot carrier AIDS wool enteritis skin hyperthyroidism blood weight loss prednisolone best cat clinic fleas blood test African wild cat antibiotics stiff desex christmas best veterinarian diarrhoea diet grass check-up client night holiday hunting weight control flea prevention dental check pill physical activity pain relief home visit activity panadeine fat paralysis Canberra urinating outside litter hearing lilies foreign body rub tooth spey string sore pet insurance tapeworm open day obesity cortisone plaque runny eyes skin cancer poison abscess love IBD conflict cat containment kidneys cranky depomedrol paracetamol sucking wool fabric cat ulcerated nose sick heaing thirsty vocal train mouth breathing mental health of cats antiviral dental ribbon panleukopenia toxic blocked cat revolution old unwell health check permethrin introduce breathing difficult pred heart disease thyroid allergy signs of pain lilly aggression kibble lily learning nose scabs furball castration strange behaviour pain hairball urine spraying competition tartar corneal ulcer wet litter drinking more asthma scratching post tablet collapse change vomit vomiting aggressive tradesmen restless jumping prey aerokat feline enteritis tick return home flu cat fight cancer Canberra Cat Vet vaccine food puzzles vision feline herpesvirus insulin grooming sensitive hole exercise diabetes snakebite anxiety poisonous marking rolls dymadon mince face rub rigid head eye ulcer twitching changed eyes pain killer aspirin scratching tumour ulcer desexing thiamine deficiency FORLS sensitive stomach yowling feliway plants new kitten radioactive iodine holes furballs new cat opening hours weight open night blindness cough odour rough play sick cat overweight Hill's Metabolic lame panamax fear vaccination heavy breathing painful cat enclosures holes in teeth free hunters New Year's Eve hunched over cat flu inflammatory bowel disease cat vet kidney disease paralysis tick dental treatment urination roundworm appointment hypertrophic cardiomyopathy sore ears urine biopsy pet meat urinating groom nails


A calm, quiet haven for cats and their carers staffed by experienced, cat loving vets and nurses.

Canberra Cat Vet 16-18 Purdue St Belconnen ACT 2617 (parking off Gillott Street) Phone: (02) 6251-1444

Get Directions