L-Tryptophan for Dogs and Cats: A Complete Guide
If you’ve ever heard of L-tryptophan, it was likely in the context of the Thanksgiving holiday and big servings of turkey meat. But lately, more people are talking about the benefits of L-tryptophan for dogs and cats, especially when combined with CBD pet calming products. So what in the world does this feasting holiday favorite have to do with our pets’ wellness?
To understand this connection and whether it can actually be used for a pet’s wellness, we need to explain what L-tryptophan is, whether it’s safe for pets, and how it can benefit your dog or cat.
What is L-Tryptophan?
L-tryptophan is an “essential” amino acid for both humans and other animals. The word “essential” indicates that our bodies (and our animal’s bodies) can’t create this amino acid, so it must be ingested through what we eat and what we feed our pets.
When it comes to ensuring your pet has enough of this important resource to stay healthy and happy, pet parents need to understand what foods provide L-tryptophan for dogs and cats and how the amino acid works within your pet’s body.
Foods That Contain L-Tryptophan
Many people attribute the post-Thanksgiving coma to the turkey being rich in L-tryptophan, but this is largely a myth. There simply isn’t enough of this amino acid in turkey to cause any level of drowsiness. People are typically tired on Thanksgiving simply because they eat too much!
That said, turkey still delivers a good amount of this essential amino acid. L-tryptophan can often be found in high-protein foods, including chicken, eggs, fish, and peanuts.
How Does L-Tryptophan Work?
Our bodies absorb L-tryptophan from food and then convert it into one of two things: 5-HTP or vitamin B3. 5-HTP is a precursor to serotonin, a hormone that impacts the nervous system, blood vessels, and mood. In cats and dogs, serotonin is known to help regulate heart and lung function, temperature, hunger, and behavior.
Is It Safe for Pets?
Of course, one of the first questions any pet parent will ask will be about safety. L-tryptophan is widely considered safe for use, and many studies have been done about the benefits of giving this amino acid to pets. When it comes to safety, it’s worth examining dogs and cats separately, and all pet owners should be aware of the risk of serotonin syndrome.
Safety of L-Tryptophan for Dogs
L-tryptophan is generally considered safe for dogs. Many studies even posit that, because it is essential for dogs and their bodies don’t make it, supplementing L-tryptophan is advisable.
When adding L-tryptophan to your dog’s diet, you should be on the lookout for gastrointestinal reactions like vomiting or diarrhea. As always, you should consult your veterinarian before giving anything new to your pooch.
Safety of L-Tryptophan for Cats
Similarly, there have been studies exploring the application of L-tryptophan for reducing stress behaviors in cats. It is generally considered safe for felines, too.
As with dogs, consult your veterinarian before introducing anything new to your kitty. You also need to carefully read the ingredient list on any product that contains L-tryptophan that you are considering administering to your cat to check the other ingredients for safety.
Beware of Serotonin Syndrome
A rare but risky side effect of some products that include L-tryptophan is serotonin syndrome, which is an unhealthy excess of serotonin in the body. It can affect dogs and cats, and some of the signs of this condition include confusion, rapid heart rate, increased temperature, and even trembling or seizures.
Serotonin syndrome often happens when a pet is taking multiple medications. This is one of the reasons it is so important to keep your veterinarian informed about any changes to your pet’s lifestyle, including the decision to add L-tryptophan to their daily regimen.
What Are the Benefits of L-Tryptophan?
L-tryptophan’s impact on the pet body offers many benefits. One of the best things about it is that it is natural rather than synthetic, so a dog or cat’s body knows how to process it. L-tryptophan is sometimes used to maintain a calm demeanor and reduce nervous behaviors, which is why it is often found in pet calming products for dogs and cats.
It’s Just an Amino Acid! All-Natural
Because it’s a natural amino acid, which your pet’s body is familiar with, you don’t need to worry about unwanted effects that might be present when giving your pet something synthetic or man-made. L-tryptophan is not new. Our bodies and our pets’ bodies have been converting it to serotonin for eons.
L-Tryptophan Helps Pets Maintain Calm
Serotonin impacts your pet’s nervous system, so maintaining a calm demeanor is often cited as one of the benefits of L-tryptophan for dogs and cats. In combination with regular exercise, a safe environment, and a consistent CBD routine, L-tryptophan can help your pet feel relaxed and at ease in their daily life.
Can Be A Supportive Tool for Healthy Lifestyle
One of the most useful qualities of L-tryptophan is that it can be used as part of a holistic lifestyle. It isn’t a resource that has to be used in an isolated way, though you need to be aware about how this amino acid interacts with the rest of your pet’s daily routine.
Many CBD pet calming products for dogs and cats include L-tryptophan, like our CBD pet calming chews for dogs. The amino acid is included in a wellness blend along with chamomile, passion flower, and ginger. When combined with CBD, these ingredients offer your pet abundant wellness support in a tail-wagging turkey flavor!
Wellness Support Using L-Tryptophan For Dogs and Cats
There are so many wellness trends and tools out there for your furry family; it can be hard to keep it all straight. Staying informed as a knowledgeable consumer is one of your most important responsibilities as a pet parent. You’re doing a great job!
L-tryptophan is a natural amino acid that can be a functional part of your pet’s daily wellness. Now that you’re aware of potential side effects and you understand how this resource can benefit your pet, especially when combined with CBD pet calming products for dogs and cats, consider adding L-tryptophan for dogs and cats to your daily routine!