What is colostrum for dogs and cats, what is it used for and what are its effects? Let’s find out why this food is so fundamental.
We often hear about it, but perhaps not everyone knows the true function of colostrum. It is known to be a substance supplied when babies of dogs and cats live their first hours. Its function must be absolutely fundamental for their growth, since it is provided to them as soon as they are born. We will see what its functions are at the time of breastfeeding and weaning, and what are the benefits that puppies of dogs and cats can derive during their life. Here’s all there is to know about colostrum for dogs and cats.
Colostrum for dogs and cats: what it is
Colostrum is not a food that we can find on the market, since it is a substance produced directly by the mother who has just given birth. It is good to reiterate that on the market there is no synthetic substitute with colostrum, unlike breast milk. In fact, a substitute milk food may be necessary when the litter is numerous or when the mother is unable to support all her puppies.
Colostrum one milky secretion, the first, produced by females immediately after childbirth. For puppies of cats and dogs it is made of globulins: they are large proteins that act as antibodies. To get an idea of the energy supply of these proteins, just think that when they are produced, they are twice as nutritious as the breast milk that will be given to them later.
When mom supplies her babies with colostrum, she guarantees them one immunity percentage very high, between 90 and 95%. The first protection of children is therefore precisely this substance and, once they grow up, they will have to undergo the vaccination plan (Read here: Vaccinations for dogs and cats: which are mandatory and what are the costs). Colostrum is therefore the only protection of puppies against bacteria and viruses, especially in a phase of life in which they are so delicate and ‘weak’.
What are the differences between colostrum for dogs and cats?
It is a substance different if produced by a cat mother or a bitch. On the other hand, it is an important substance but that changes according to the species, as long as it is a matter of mammals naturally. The same happens for breast milk: we think of that produced by cows. It is a less nutritious and fatter milk than that produced by females of dogs and cats: for this reason it should not be given to dogs and cats.
When is colostrum produced? Immediately after childbirth, but it only lasts up to 12 or 16 hours. For this reason all puppies must hurry to receive their ration. This substance gives them a good amount of energy. It cannot be said whether the colostrum produced by cat mothers or bitches is more nutritious, since it depends on the growth speed of the puppies.
Because it is important for puppies
Having clarified that colostrum is fundamental in the first hours of the puppy’s life, it is equally true that its immune properties begin to lose their effectiveness. In fact, the digestive system of animals will be more developed and will need more powerful immune defenses, such as vaccines. Vaccinations begin precisely from the 16th week of puppies’ life, precisely because at that moment colostrum proteins they begin to run low in their bloodstream. It is important to continue vaccinations as the dog or cat will need to protect itself from pathogens. Which can create serious damage to your health.