Max's House

Tuna and Cats: Nutritional Facts

Nutritional Value of Tuna Compared to AAFCO Nutrient Profiles For Cats

Nutrient/165 gram can

Tuna, light, canned in water

AAFCO Nutrient Profiles for Adult Cats

Nutrient Level


191.4 kcal

45-65 kcal/kg BW



22 g/100 kcal

6.5 g/100 kcal



681 mg/kg/diet as fed (avg)

2000 mg/kg/diet as fed


1. Taurine deficiency in the cat results in Feline Central Retinal Degeneration (FCRD).  When taurine is deficient, the photoreceptor cell membranes
become disrupted and dysfunctional, which eventually leads to cellular death and the loss of cells.  Complete blindness ensues with full degeneration of
the retina and attenuation of retinal vessels. Structural changes within the retina are permanent.   2. Taurine deficiency in the cat also results in the
development of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM).  This degenerative disease causes decreased myocardial contractility, which eventually leads to cardiac
failure.  3. Taurine deficiency adversely affects the cat's immune response against infectious organisms (viruses, bacteria, parasites) and
malignant and metastatic disease.


141 mg/100 kcal

125 mg/100 kcal


Excess phosphorus can result in bone loss, uroliths, decreased weight gain, decreased feed intake, calcification of soft tissues, secondary
Levels of phosphorus exceeding 0.6% (DMB) are associated with lower plasma phosphorus concentrations, reduced creatinine
clearance and decreased magnesium absorption.  Continued feeding of high levels of dietary phosphorus may be detrimental to renal function.


9.5 mg/100 kcal

150 mg/100 kcal


Inadequate calcium intake produces hypocalcemia, which stimulates release of PTH, which in turn stimulates production of
1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol, resulting in a higher fractional absorption of calcium and phosphate, and lower calcium but higher phosphate
concentration in urine. PTH acts with vitamin D to promote bone resorption and turnover, which may lead to pathologic fractures.

Calcium-to-Phosphorus Ratio




A food grossly deficient in calcium, but adequate in phosphorus can cause secondary hyperparathyroidism.  


1.32 mg/100 kcal

2 mg/100 kcals


Iron is essential for the production of hemoglobin, the oxygen-carrying component of red blood cells. Iron deciciency can result in anemia, anorexia, weight loss, decreased serum albumin concentrations, hepatic dysfunction, and hemosiderosis.


293.5 mg/100 kcal

50 mg/100 kcal


Excess sodium and chloride can cause excessive thirst, puritis, constipation, seizures and death.
with decreased renal function can only vary sodium excretion over a limited range, which narrows progressively as GFR declines. Thus, cats
with renal failure cannot tolerate excessively high or low dietary sodium intake levels. If excessive sodium is ingested, sodium retention with expansion
of extracellular fluid volume can occur and produce or worsen pre-existing hypertension, fluid overload and edema.


23 mg/100 kcal

10 mg/100 kcal


Excess magnesium can result flaccid paralysis and in struvite crystalluria and urolithiasis in neutral to alkaline urine.


.63 mg/100 kcal

1.9 mg/100 kcal


Zinc deficiency adversely affects a number of diverse physiologic functions.  Some of zinc's primary functions include: 1) nucleic acid metabolism, 2) protein synthesis, 3) carbohydrate metabolism, 4) immunocompetence, 5) skin and wound healing, 6) cell replication and differentiation, 7) growth and 8) reproduction.  Zinc deficiency results in anorexia, decreased growth rate, alopecia, parakeratosis, impaired reproduction, depressed immune function and growth disorders of the skeleton.
Vitamin A 92 IU/100 kcal 125 IU/100 kcal Deficient

Vitamin A deficiency results in ocular lesions nyctalopia (night blindness) and xerophthalmia (extreme dryness of the conjunctiva). Other signs include anorexia, weight loss, ataxia, skin lesions, increased susceptibility to infection, retinal degeneration, poor coat, weakness, increased cerebrospinal fluid pressure, nephritis, skeletal defects (periosteal overgrowth and narrowing of foramina) and impaired reproduction.

Vitamin D


13 IU/100 kcal


Signs of vitamin D deficiency are frequently confounded by a simultaneous deficiency or imbalance of calcium and phosphorus. Clinical signs generally include rickets (young animals), enlarged costochondral junctions, osteomalacia (adult animals), osteoporosis (adult animals) and decreased serum calcium and inorganic phosphorus concentrations.  Clinical studies of vitamin D deficiency in cats has produced neurologic abnormalities associated with degeneration of the cervical spinal cord.  Other signs included hypocalcemia, elevated PTH concentrations, posterior paralysis, ataxia and eventual quadriparesis.

Vitamin E


10.75 IU/100 kcal


In general, the neuromuscular, vascular and reproductive systems are affected most commonlyby vitamin E deficiency.  Signs of vitamin E deficiency are mostly attributed to membrane dysfunction as a result of the oxidative degradation of polyunsaturated membrane phospholipids and disruption of other critical cellular processes.  In cats, vitamin E deficiency signs include immunodeficiency, dermatosis, anorexia, mypoathy, steatitis, focal interstitial myocarditis, focal myositis of skeletal muscle and periportal mononuclear infiltration in the liver.


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