Cat’s Immune Systems

By | November 19, 2017

Cat’s immune systems are both the surveillance and the defense systems that protect your pet from any type of foreign invasion including fungi, viral, and bacterial infections. It also helps to protect against pollens, toxins, and microbes.

If this immune system becomes weakened, every body system and function of your cat is placed at risk. There are several natural treatments for the immune system that can fight off most any type of outside invasion and they will include vitamins as well as several herbs and herb supplements.

There are two parts of your cat’s immune systems; the innate portion and the adaptive portion. They work separately of each other but they also work very closely together when it is necessary. The can be considered the outside and the inside defense systems, but the real battle that your cat fights starts with the outside, or their skin and hair coats.

Any type of living organism has an innate immune system and your cat is no different, as their skin is the first part of this system. It is considered both non-specific as well as non-adaptive in that it is designed to keep everything out and it does not change even after repeated attacks.

The skin of your cat produces and than secretes antibacterial substances that will counter attack and hinder the growth of bacteria, viruses, or fungi. But it does not stop with the skin, as it also includes stomach acid produced as a defense, as well as mucous in the respiratory system.

The adaptive portion of your cat’s immune systems is the back up to the innate form and reacts much more different and is very sophisticated. It has a memory that keeps tract of any type of invasion and if attacked again, it reacts much quicker than the original attack; it also reacts differently to each type of attack and adapts as needed.

Working together these systems prevent most types of attacks, but just like any system, they can fail or get out of sequence.

Causes of immune problems:

Most cats will suffer from some type of an allergy during their lifetime. Allergies are simply an over reaction by your pets system to some type of an allergen. When these allergens attack your cats system, it reacts rapidly and releases histamine as a defense. If it reacts to the wrong type of infection or an attack, it is called autoimmunity; if it over reacts, it is called hypersensitivity.

However, if there is a complete breakdown of the system, it is than called immune deficiency. Other than some extreme reaction to a drug or some type of a genetic deficiency in your cat, most of all immune deficiencies are caused by either poor nutrition or by the restriction of protein or calories in your cat.

Natural Treatments:

There are several herbs that have been used for thousands of years that can help protect your cat’s immune system from ever becoming compromised; or help to improve those that have. There are also several vitamins that are newer but are producing the same results.

Shiitake or Maitake Mushrooms:

These mushrooms have been used for hundreds of years and have recently been backed by modern research that has proven that they have extremely powerful properties in immune enhancement in cats. The compounds contained in these mushrooms not only stimulate immune functions, but also help to inhibit the growth of tumors.

These compounds contain polysaccharides which stimulate white blood cells, as well as high molecular sugar polymers. This is critical as the higher the sugar polymers are the stronger the polysaccharides can react in building the immune system. As a result, they have powerful antioxidant and anti-microbial qualities. They can be used as a supplement separately or be components of immune supplements for your cat.

Cats Claw:

This very powerful herb has both immune boosting and anti-inflammatory properties. The alkaloids in this herb help with the critical function of producing white blood cells and research has shown that it has stronger qualities than most fruits, vegetables or other medical plants when it comes to the immune system. The most common form of this herb is as an extract.

Astragalus:

This is another century old herb that contains several antioxidants which protect your cat from cell damage by either free radical damage or from by products of cellular energy. It is especially important in protecting your cat’s immune system in fighting colds and upper respiratory infections. It also is a very powerful stringent in preventing diabetes and overall protection of the liver.

It also acts as a diuretic in that it helps eliminate fluid from your cat’s body that can become toxic if not drained properly. It has also been shown to help extend the life expectancy of cats. It is found in supplement forms or as additives in an immune system supplement.

Milk Thistle:

This herb is a very powerful and contains a flavonoid called silymarin and is often used as a tonic in building the immune system back once it has been compromised. However, it also helps the immune system as a powerful antioxidant in its ability to help with the preservation of glutathione, which is stored in your cat’s liver.
Glutathione naturally dissipates as your cat ages and as a result speeds up the aging process and breaks down the immune system. Milk Thistle helps to prevent both.

Vitamins C, E, and A:

All three of these vitamins are proven antioxidants and immune system boosters. Vitamin C assists in cell damage from toxins and in aiding in white blood cell growth. Vitamin A enhances the infection fighting abilities of these white blood cells.

Vitamin E has several immunity building attributes but its strongest role is in building and then protecting the normal functions of all cellular activity, especially important to your cat’s immune systems.

Summary:

Your cat’s immune system is a very powerful set of systems that work in tandem with each other. However, they can become weak or malfunction and protecting these systems with natural treatment will provide years of protection for your feline companion.

I am an avid lover of pets and my wife and I have had several pets throughout our years. We are especially fond of dogs, and we have a 12 year old Dalmatian (our 3rd) and a “mutt” that we rescued when someone threw him away to die in a vacant field.