Melatonin is generally described as medicine in tablet form used to treat insomnia and other sleep disorders in adults and children. However, can you give cats melatonin for the treatment of the same condition?
We tend to be meticulous when it comes to our pet’s health. Felines, in particular, are more sensitive than any other household pets.
Our feline friends may be agile and flexible, but they are delicate in the inside which makes them more prone to illnesses.
No matter how scrupulous we are, it’s still difficult to detect some of the illnesses that they’re putting up with. This is because our furry companions are independent by nature.
They tend to hide their pain and distress from their humans because they think they can handle it all on their own.
Therefore, cat owners need to be more vigilant to spot complicate issues that their pets may be suffering.
Keeping an eye on their eating habits, litter behavior, and any signs of ailments is crucial to ensure that nothing is wrong with them.
A sudden change or deviations from their habits and behaviors could be an indication of a potential health issue.
For example, if your usually friendly kitty suddenly isolates itself from other animals, you need to find the reason why.
If your usually jolly kitty suddenly becomes overly anxious or depressed, you need to find the cause of it all.
Behavioral changes in felines are easily recognizable as long as you monitor your pet’s routine on a regular basis.
One of the most probable reasons why our feline companions start showing signs of stress and lethargy is due to issues with their sleep patterns.
Just like us, animals also need sleep for overall well being. Hence, rest is essential to felines in the same sense like us.
Lack of sleep can have adverse impacts in both humans and animals. Moreover, this condition can be caused by insomnia, rapid eye movement (REM) sleep behavior disorder and dementia.
The level of the sleeping disorder can vary widely. Acute partial sleep restriction can lead to fatigue, irritability, depression, and weight issues.
Sleep deprivation increases the risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes. Long-term chronic sleep deprivation has adverse effects on cognitive performance as it decreases brain activity and function.
In rare circumstances, a total lack of sleep may lead to coma and death.
Thanks to medical science, melatonin supplements have emerged to alleviate and treat sleep disorders.
Over-the-counter melatonin supplement is the most convenient and effective way to achieve a good quality of sleep.
However, can you give cats melatonin too?
You’re probably asking this question if your kitty is showing signs of restlessness associated with sleep disorders.
Can you give cats melatonin to help them ease the symptoms of sleep disorders and to help them sleep well?
Before we give you the answer to this question, let us first learn more about melatonin and how can it affect our feline buddies.
What is Melatonin?
Melatonin is a naturally-occurring hormone in mammals. This chemical is produced by the pineal gland that is situated near the base of the brain.
The primary function of melatonin is to regulate sleep and wakefulness. Furthermore, this hormone plays a vital role in the synchronization of the circadian rhythms.
In animals, melatonin helps regulate sleep-wake cycles that serve as the body's natural clock. It is also involved in the regulation of blood pressure and seasonal reproduction.
Aside from its role in maintaining a regular sleep pattern, it also has a sedative effect that effectively calms down hyperactive processes of the body.
In plants, this hormone acts as a powerful antioxidant by fighting off oxygen radicals and reactive nitrogen species.
People can also benefit from the antioxidant properties of melatonin, as it has been proven to be twice as active as vitamin E.
Additionally, it is also known to interact with the immune system by enhancing the production of cytokine that helps fight immuno-deficiencies.
Positive immunological effects of melatonin can boost the immune system to fight infectious diseases such as HIV, cancer and other viral infections.
Melatonin supplements in tablet or capsule form can be taken to give an additional boost of its health benefits.
Nevertheless, questions remain.
Can you give cats melatonin for the same purposes?
Do felines suffer from sleep disorders too? Can we use melatonin supplements to ease our feline friends from distress?
Is melatonin safe for cats? Can they also benefit from its antioxidant property?
You've probably heard or witnessed other pet owners administering melatonin to their kitties. Also, you're probably wondering if it's okay to follow suit.
If your feline pet is showing signs of restlessness and agitation, it’s only reasonable to consider giving melatonin to your beloved pet.
Can you give cats melatonin?
Yes, you can give it to your furry friend. However, there are precautions and conditions that you need to remember if you ever decide to give these supplements to your pet.
Is Melatonin Safe for Cats?
Since melatonin is a naturally-occurring hormone in mammals, giving supplements should be safe for cats.
Melatonin supplements are primarily used as a sleep aid in household pets such as dogs and cats. However, aside from this function, it can also be used to treat hair loss, anxiety and senility in animals.
If your pet has difficulty falling asleep, which is usually associated with persistent meowing and yowling at night, melatonin certainly comes to mind.
However, don’t be too hasty and give your pet melatonin out on a whim.
A veterinarian should prescribe the use of this hormone supplements for cats. Take your pet to the vet for a thorough medical assessment.
It is possible that your kitty has trouble sleeping due to lack of exercise, cognitive dysfunction, pain, or underlying medical conditions.
Taking your pet to the vet will help you pinpoint the cause of your pet's suffering. Don't write off the possibility that the condition may be something more than just insomnia.
Keep in mind that melatonin has a sedative effect and it could harm patients with liver dysfunction, kidney failure or diabetes.
Your vet is likely to prohibit you from giving melatonin if your pet has any of the conditions mentioned above.
However, as long as your furball doesn't have these conditions, your vet should prescribe the use of melatonin supplements for cats.
However, take note of the recommended dosage. Too much of anything is always wrong.
Can you give cats melatonin?
Yes, as long as the veterinarian prescribes it and you religiously follow the appropriate dosage.
Remember, melatonin provides certain benefits to felines, but it's not a miraculous cure that can immediately treat health issues.
Moreover, giving your pet more than it could do more harm than good.
Benefits of Melatonin to Cats
Cats can take melatonin the same way as we do, by administering it orally, preferably in tablet form.
However, how does this hormone affect felines?
Just like us, animals are also exposed to stressful events that can bring them sleepless nights.
Separation anxiety, the introduction of a new pet into the household, being moved to a new place, these things can surely stress them.
These traumatic experiences can lead to stress which is later associated with sleep disturbances and restlessness.
Stress in felines is also associated with hair loss because stressed cats tend to groom themselves excessively.
Both sleep patterns and hair loss can be addressed with melatonin. Due to its calming effect, it helps ease away mental and emotional burdens to give you a worry-free feeling.
If the mind is calm, the quality of sleep improves, and the body tends to relax even better.
This pineal hormone can also help calm down hyperactive pets that are demonstrating unreasonable aggression.
Here are some of how melatonin can benefit your feline pet:
Can you give cats melatonin as a sleep aid?
Sleep disturbances are most common in aging cats as melatonin production decreases as they age. Well, much like us too.
However, if it gets to the point that their loud meowing at night is disturbing your sleep, maybe it's time to consider giving them melatonin.
This would allow them to get their sleep cycle back on track by regulating their sleep cycle.
Do cats suffer from anxiety?
Contrary to what you think, human beings are not the only ones susceptible to emotional disorders.
Even animals have their fair share of anxiety too.
The most obvious sign of feline anxiety is frequent, loud vocalizations. If your cat continually meows and howls for no reason, then take that as a sign of feline
Several factors can cause anxiety. Since felines are capricious to be the default, it makes it more difficult for us to find out the real cause of their concern.
Supplementing with melatonin for anxiety can ease negative feelings associated with anxiousness.
If you suspect that your pet has anxiety disorders, discuss the details with your veterinarian and ask for advice regarding the use of hormone supplement.
Melatonin regulates several physiological functions that extend beyond its role in the regulation of the circadian rhythm.
Furthermore, it is also secreted in the extra-pineal organs such as the reproductive organs. This means that this hormone also plays a vital role in regulating reproductive physiology in both humans and animals.
While this hormone is helpful for inducing sleep by relaxing both body and mind, it can also inhibit one’s sex drive.
Consider that as an effect of its sedation power.
However, this side effect may not be a bad thing. It may be an excellent method to pacify intact kitties that frequently go into heat.
Unless you get your feline pets spayed or neutered, it could be a bit troublesome to deal with a kitty in heat.
The constant howling and occurrences of spraying, those are few of the ugly things about intact felines.
Giving them supplements of this hormone produces side effects that affect hormone levels in both male and female. The alterations in hormone levels can suppress one’s libido.
This can come in handy during a queen's estrus cycle. While melatonin supplement can suppress a feline's sex drive, spaying or neutering is still the most advisable method to control reproduction.
How to Administer Melatonin for Cats?
Over-the-counter melatonin supplements can be purchased in most drugstores without the need for a prescription.
However, it is essential to seek the advice of a veterinarian if you're thinking about giving melatonin supplements for your kitty.
The veterinarian knows the right dosage of this supplement for cats, as well as the frequency and the method of administration.
Remember, the feline body is different from us. This also means that feline dietary and medical requirements are entirely different from us.
It would help if you never gave them the same doses of supplements or medicines as you're taking.
Here are some important reminders to keep in mind if you decide to administer this supplement to your feline pets.
Side Effects and Contraindications of Melatonin for Cats
Let us remind you that melatonin is a hormone and it has direct interaction with several processes in the body.
Lack of melatonin can adversely influence sleep patterns which can eventually lead to stress and other serious health problems.
On the other hand, too much of this hormone in the body can also cause detrimental health issues.
Melatonin works by regulating other hormones. Over-dosage and extended use of it may interfere with the proper functioning of other hormones in the body.
Look out for the following side effects and contraindications of this supplement in cats:
Can you give cats melatonin supplements?
Yes, you can.
Do cats need it?
Only if you're sure that sleep deprivation is the primary cause of its anxiety disorders and other behavioral issues.
The case would be utterly different if other factors cause these symptoms. That is why it is highly advisable to consult a veterinarian before giving this supplement to your furry friend.
Melatonin for cats can help them calm during a particularly stressful time. It could be during an estrus cycle or when they’re trying to recover from a traumatic experience.
No pet owners can endure the sight of their beloved pets in distress. Is melatonin safe for cats?
If given in appropriate doses, your kitty can benefit from its calming and antioxidant effects. However, you also need to keep an eye on potential side effects.
Adverse reactions to this hormone are still possible, and you need to stop administering it if you see some side effects emerging.
Our furry companions deserve a stress-free life with enough sleep and relaxation. Melatonin is indeed one of the best natural relaxants available.
However, don't make a breakneck assumption that what's useful and safe for us is also helpful and reliable for felines.
You may also to check out can you give cats melatonin for more options.