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This disorder is morphologically identical to canine DCM. It is characterized by eccentric hypertrophy and global hypokinesis (systolic dysfunction). Unlike the disorder in dogs, the potential to develop concurrent thromboembolic complications is frequent in cats.

Taurine deficiency induced DCM was previously a common cause of feline cardiac disease. With the addition of taurine to the commercial feline diets, taurine deficiency-induced DCM is now rare.

  • Cats have a taurine sink due to hepatic conjugation using taurine, whereas dogs use glycine for hepatic conjugation
  • Most commercial cat foods have increased their level of dietary taurine at least 10 fold, therefore, DCM is now a rare disorder
  • A taurine deficiency is not responsible for feline hypertrophic cardiomyopathy.

Cases of DCM identified currently are likely idiopathic (unknown etiology) or secondary to ischemic disease.