Choosing the best cat food for your furry friend can be overwhelming with so many options available in the market. From dry to wet, from grain-free to organic, there are numerous choices to consider. To help simplify the decision-making process, we have compiled a list of some of the top cat food brands and formulas that have received rave reviews from pet owners and experts. Whether you're looking for a specific dietary requirement or simply want to provide the best nutrition for your feline companion, this article will guide you through the different types of cat food and help you choose the most suitable option.
Purina Pro Plan LiveClear Probiotic Chicken & Rice FormulaThis popular dry cat food option on Amazon, known as an Amazon Choice product, features chicken and rice as its primary ingredients. It is specifically formulated to promote a healthy coat and aid in digestion. The brand incorporates dried egg product as the sixth ingredient, claiming that it helps to minimize cat allergens. With a remarkable average rating of 4.7 stars from an impressive 1,347 reviews, this Purina offering is highly regarded by customers.
Purina Cat Chow Complete Dry Cat FoodPraised by the brand as a high-protein recipe suitable for cats of all ages, this dry cat food consists of farm-raised chickens as its main protein source. Purina proudly asserts that it is enriched with omega-6 fatty acids, carbohydrates for energy, and an assortment of 25 vitamins and minerals. Garnering an outstanding average rating of 4.7 stars from a remarkable 3,343 reviews on Amazon, this cat food is clearly beloved by many.
Iams Proactive Health Indoor Weight & Hairball CareIams presents this dry cat food option, intended for cats that are at least 12 months old. Branded as Proactive Health, this formula boasts a high protein content derived from a combination of chicken, turkey, and salmon. The recipe includes beet pulp, which aids in reducing hairballs, along with L-carnitine, a natural compound that facilitates the conversion of fat into energy. Hailed as a top choice by purchasers, this product has acquired an impressive average rating of 4.8 stars from a staggering 32,422 Amazon reviews.
Friskies Classic Pate Poultry PlatterDesigned for both kittens and adult cats, this nourishing pate recipe is crafted to deliver complete and balanced nutrition. Highlighting its benefits of providing extra moisture to your feline companion's diet, the brand sources poultry, meat by-products, liver, and fish as the primary ingredients for this wet canned food. With an impressive average rating of 4.6 stars based on 15,787 reviews, this Friskies offering has gained the recognition and satisfaction of numerous cat owners.
Royal Canin Kitten FoodAccording to Kornreich, an expert in feline nutrition, kittens require a diet rich in energy and protein content. Royal Canin Kitten Food strives to fulfill these needs by providing an abundance of essential amino acids for healthy development, as well as taurine to support digestion and toxin elimination. Additionally, Royal Canin ensures that their blend of vitamins and minerals promotes optimal bone growth, blood health, and excellent coat and skin condition. This particular product has an impressive average rating of 4.7 stars from 4,540 reviews on Amazon.
Wellness Complete Health Adult Dry Salmon Recipe (5-lb. bag)Key protein sources: Salmon, salmon meal, herring meal, menhaden fish mealOther noteworthy ingredients: Rice, barley, oatmeal, ground flaxseed, tomato pomace, cranberriesFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 36% protein, 18% fat, 3% fiberCaloric value: 472 kcal/cup
Merrick Purrfect Bistro Real Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe (4-lb. bag)Key meat protein sources: Deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, dried eggOther noteworthy ingredients: Brown rice, barley, oatmeal, potato protein, pea proteinFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 36% protein, 17% fat, 3.5% fiberCaloric value: 397 kcal/cup
Our top recommendations for complete and balanced wet cat food come from Instinct, Merrick, and Wellness. Chewy; Insider When comparing wet food to dry kibble, the former tends to be pricier. In terms of nutrition, wet food distinguishes itself by its significantly higher moisture content, typically ranging from 75% to 78%, compared to 10% to 12% in dry food. This increased moisture content contributes to a more satiating meal, making wet food a favorable option for cats prone to excessive eating.
However, for typical adult cats, substituting or supplementing dry food with wet food does not yield any specific health advantages, according to Dr. Valerie Parker, a veterinary nutritionist and professor at The Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. The choice to incorporate wet food into a cat's diet should be based on its preferences and the owner's budget.
To prevent spoilage, it's important to refrigerate any unused portions of wet food and consume them within a few days due to its limited shelf life once opened.
Wellness Gravies Salmon Entree (3-oz. cans, 12-pack)Key meat and fish protein sources: Salmon broth, turkey, salmon, turkey liver, egg whitesOther noteworthy ingredients: Peas, carrots, flaxseed, cranberriesFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 51% protein, 22% fat, 14% fiberCaloric value: 68 kcal/3-ounce can
Merrick Purrfect Bistro Chicken Recipe Pate (3-oz. cans, 24-pack)Key meat protein sources: Deboned chicken, chicken liver, dried egg productOther noteworthy ingredients: Alfalfa meal, salmon oil, ground flaxseedFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 45.5% protein, 23% fat, 4.5% fiber Caloric value: 96 kcal/3-ounce can
Instinct Original Salmon Recipe Grain-Free Pate (3-oz. Cans, 24-pack)Key meat and fish protein sources: Salmon, pork liver, egg productOther noteworthy ingredients: Ground flaxseed, carrots, cranberries, pumpkin, tomato, blueberries, broccoli, cabbage, kaleFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 48% protein, 18% fat, 9% fiberCaloric value: 90 kcal/3-ounce can
Natural Balance, Merrick, and Go! Solutions offer a selection of dry and wet cat food formulated specifically for indoor cats. Chewy; Insider According to Dr. Korinn Saker, an expert in clinical nutrition at the College of Veterinary Medicine at North Carolina State University, indoor-only cats do not have unique dietary requirements compared to cats with outdoor access. However, indoor cats may be less physically active, which could increase their susceptibility to weight gain and related health issues.
Foods designed for indoor cats often have reduced calorie and fat contents to assist in weight management. Thus, it is crucial to consider the total calories per cup and follow the feeding guidelines on the packaging to maintain your cat's ideal weight. When in doubt, consult your veterinarian for guidance.
Assessing your cat's body condition score (BCS), a visual evaluation of its body fat on a scale of 1 to 9, can also be helpful in determining if weight loss or gain is necessary.
Natural Balance Platefulls Turkey, Salmon, and Chicken in Gravy Indoor FormulaKey meat and fish protein sources: Turkey broth, turkey, salmon, chicken, chicken liver, dried egg whitesOther noteworthy ingredients: Potatoes, salmon oil, ground flaxseed, cranberriesFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 42.3% protein, 26.1% fat, 1.8% fiberCaloric value: 80 kcal/3-ounce pouch
Go! Solutions Skin and Coat Care Salmon PâtéKey meat and fish protein sources: Deboned salmon, chicken, chicken broth, salmon broth, chicken liver, dried egg whites Other noteworthy ingredients: Cranberries, flaxseedFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 38% protein, 29% fat, 1.4% fiber Caloric value: 185 kcal/6.4-ounce carton
Merrick Purrfect Bistro Complete Care Weight Control Real Chicken and Sweet Potato RecipeKey meat protein sources: Deboned chicken, chicken meal, turkey meal, chicken fat, dried egg productOther noteworthy ingredients: Sweet potatoes, potatoes, peas, probioticsFeeding trials: Not conductedNutritional breakdown: 36% protein, 15% fat, 8% fiberCaloric value: 348 kcal/cup
If your cat experiences gastrointestinal upset, consider feeding it with products from Purina, Royal Canin, or Hill's. Purina; Chewy; Insider Similar to humans, some cats have more sensitive stomachs than others. Should your feline companion have a food allergy or intolerance, it may suffer from unwanted gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting, diarrhea, or excessive gas.
While it is essential to consult your veterinarian before making any changes to your cat's diet, introducing a food specifically formulated for sensitive stomachs may be beneficial. These specialized foods generally contain moderate to low levels of fat and rely on processed protein sources, such as chicken meal or chicken byproducts, which can aid in better nutrient absorption. Furthermore, it is advisable to choose products with a reduced fiber content and easily digestible carbohydrates, like whole wheat, corn, or white potatoes.
Additionally, sensitive stomach formulas often incorporate omega fatty acids to alleviate inflammation and pre- and probiotics to support digestive health.
Royal Canin Care Digestive Thin Slices in GravyProtein sources from meat and fish: Pork byproducts, chicken byproducts, chicken liver, pork liver, salmon, pork plasma, hydrolyzed chicken liverOther notable ingredients: Powdered cellulose Testing for feeding: NoBreakdown of nutrition: 44.4% protein, 17.4% fat, 5.5% fiber Caloric value: 66 kcal/3-ounce can
Hill's Science Diet Sensitive Stomach and Skin Adult 1-6 Salmon and Yellow Peas RecipeProtein sources from meat: Salmon, chicken, chicken fat, chicken mealOther notable ingredients: Yellow peas, potatoes, pea protein, cranberriesTesting for feeding: YesBreakdown of nutrition: 35% protein, 21.9% fat, 1.1% fiberCaloric value: 507 kcal/cup
JustFoodForCats satisfies all requirements for a complete and balanced fresh cat food. Chewy; Insider Fresh pet food is a relatively new trend in which entire meats, vegetables, essential vitamins, and minerals are combined, then preserved by freezing to preserve their freshness. Some fresh pet foods are available through convenient subscription and delivery services, while others can be found in the freezer section of pet stores.
While fresh cat food is more expensive than dry or canned foods, the discrepancy between them is apparent. In fresh foods, the whole ingredients are visible to the naked eye and have a texture that rivals a home-cooked meal.
Several fresh cat food companies meet AAFCO standards, but only two have a full-time veterinary nutritionist on staff: Freshpet and JustFoodForDogs. According to our experts, this is an essential quality to consider when selecting food for your pet. While Freshpet was previously one of our top cat food recommendations, we are currently not endorsing it due to two recalls in 12 months for potential salmonella contamination.
Just Food For Dogs Just Cats Fish and Chicken (18-oz.)Protein sources from meat and fish: Alaskan Pacific wild-caught cod, whole Atlantic sardines, chicken thighs, chicken hearts, chicken liverOther notable ingredients: Dried yucca rootTesting for feeding: YesBreakdown of nutrition: 52% protein, 19.5% fat, 2% fiberCaloric value: 288 kcal/cupSave 35% on your first purchase and 5% on recurring auto-ship orders.
Shop at Just Food for Dogs These kitten foods from Wellness, Now Fresh, and Hill's contain additional nutrients such as vitamin A, calcium, and phosphorus. Chewy; Insider Kittens under a year old require a different combination of nutrients to support their rapidly developing metabolism and growing bones. An AAFCO complete and balanced kitten food contains a minimum of 30% protein, 9% fat, as well as extra vitamin A, calcium, and phosphorus. These formulas also contain docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), an omega-3 fatty acid that supports brain development. DHA is found in fish, fish oil, and fish meal. Kitten formulas also meet AAFCO's standards for pregnant and lactating adult cats, who require additional calories and nutrients.
Regardless of whether a kitten is fed dry food, wet food, or a combination of both, introducing them to various types of food at a young age may prevent them from developing picky eating habits later in life. Regardless of the chosen type of food, cats benefit from using a puzzle feeder instead of a regular bowl. The mental stimulation provided by problem-solving and play while extracting food from a puzzle feeder is vital for a kitten's development. The more energy kittens expend on puzzle toys, the less likely they are to become bored and engage in destructive behavior.
Hill's Science Diet Kitten Chicken Recipe (15.5-lb. bag)Protein sources from meat: Chicken, chicken fat, egg productOther notable ingredients: Brown rice, wheat gluten, oats, wheat, barley, flaxseed, apples, broccoli, carrots, cranberries, peasTesting for feeding: YesBreakdown of nutrition: 33% protein, 19% fat, 3.5% fiberCaloric value: 568 kcal/cup
Now Fresh Kitten Recipe With Turkey, Salmon, and Duck (3-lb. bag)Protein sources from meat: Deboned turkey, whole dried egg, deboned salmon, deboned duckOther notable ingredients: Peas, potatoes, flaxseed, alfalfa, tomato, apple, carrotsTesting for feeding: NoBreakdown of nutrition: 33% protein, 20% fat, 2.5% fiberCaloric value: 437 kcal/cup
Wellness Complete Health Kitten Chicken and Chicken Meal Recipe (5-lb. Pound bag)Protein sources from meat: Deboned chicken, chicken mealOther notable ingredients: Oats, barley, rice, flaxseed, salmon oil, cranberriesTesting for feeding: NoBreakdown of nutrition: 40% protein, 17% fat, 4% fiberCaloric value: 383 kcal/cup
These senior cat foods from Hill's, Nutro, and Purina include beneficial additional nutrients such as omega fatty acids. Chewy; Insider Once a cat reaches 7 years of age, they begin to show signs of aging. By the time they reach 12 years old, they enter their senior years. Senior cats have the same minimum nutritional requirements as younger adult cats according to AAFCO, but reduced activity levels can lead to weight gain. And as a cat becomes overweight, the risk of developing conditions such as diabetes, liver disease, arthritis, and pancreatitis increases.
To help your senior cat maintain a healthy body weight, you can closely control their portion sizes or switch them to a senior diet with fewer calories than typical adult formulas. However, it is important to check the calorie content, as some senior foods may actually have more calories and still require portion control.
Senior formulas also contain omega-3 fatty acids and other nutrients that are not required in regular adult cat foods. These ingredients help reduce inflammation, improve cognitive function, and support the immune system. As long as the senior food is labeled as AAFCO complete and balanced, it will provide the necessary vitamins and minerals for older cats without the need for additional supplements.
Different cats have different needs as they age, so it is recommended to consult your veterinarian before switching to a senior diet or determining if additional supplements are necessary.
Nutro Wholesome Essentials Senior Chicken and Brown Rice Recipe (14-lb. bag)Protein sources from meat: Chicken, chicken meal, chicken fatOther notable ingredients: Brown rice, brewers rice, alfalfa meal, oatmeal, flaxseed, beet pulpTesting for feeding: NoBreakdown of nutrition: 36% protein, 17% fat, 6% fiberCaloric value: 386 kcal/cup
Purina Pro Plan Prime Plus Salmon and Rice Formula (5.5-lb. bag)Protein sources from meat: Salmon, poultry byproduct meal, beef fat, fish meal, dried egg productOther notable ingredients: Rice, cassava root flour, soybean meal, fish oilTesting for feeding: YesBreakdown of nutrition: 38% protein, 17% fat, 2.5% fiberCaloric value: 603 kcal/cup
Purina Beyond Organic Chicken and Carrot Recipe (3-oz. cans, 12-pack)Protein sources from organic meat: Chicken, chicken broth, chicken liverOther notable organic ingredients: CarrotsTesting for feeding: NoBreakdown of nutrition: 32% protein, 23% fat, 4.5% fiberCaloric value: 109 kcal/3-ounce can
Castor & Pollux Organix Organic Chicken and Chicken Liver Recipe (3-oz. cans, 24-pack)Protein sources from organic meat: Chicken, chicken liver, dried egg product Other notable organic ingredients: Peas, pea protein, coconut flour, flaxseed, cranberries, dehydrated alfalfa mealTesting for feeding: NoBreakdown of nutrition: 41% protein, 23% fat, 4.5% fiberCaloric value: 174 kcal/3-ounce can
Castor & Pollux Organix Organic Turkey Recipe (3-oz. cans, 24-pack)Protein sources from organic meats: Turkey, chicken, chicken liver, dried egg product Other notable organic ingredients: Peas, coconut flour, flaxseed, carrots, salmon oilFeeding trials: NoneNutrition breakdown: 41% protein, 23% fat, 4.5% fiberCalorie count: 104 kcal/3-ounce can
The top-rated foods to manage hairballs include recipes from Iams, Hill's, and Purina. Hill's; Iams; Chewy When cats groom themselves, they often ingest loose hairs. Some hairs can pass through their digestive system without any issues. However, certain hairs can clump together and form hairballs. It is normal for most cats to cough up a hairball once every week or two. However, there are cases where hairballs can become too large and cause a serious blockage in a cat's digestive system.
For cats that struggle with managing their excessive fur, a specialized food for hairball control might offer relief. While these foods cannot prevent cats from grooming or swallowing hair, they often contain higher levels of insoluble fiber, which may help prevent loose hairs from becoming trapped in the digestive system. Insoluble fiber does not dissolve in the digestive system and can help "carry along" hairs during the elimination process. Popular sources of insoluble fiber include wheat bran, psyllium husks, cellulose, rice hull, and pea fiber.
In addition to hairball control foods, regular brushing and consulting with a veterinarian about remedies for hairball control can also be effective in reducing hairballs.
Purina One Indoor and Hairball Ocean Whitefish and Rice RecipeProtein sources from meat and fish: Ocean whitefish, fish broth, chicken, liver, pork lungsOther notable ingredients: Powdered celluloseFeeding trials: YesNutrition breakdown: 45.6% Protein, 22.2% fat, 9.7% fiberCalories: 77 kcal/3-ounce can
Hill's Science Diet Urinary Hairball Control Savory Chicken EntreeProtein sources from meat and fish: Chicken, turkey liver, pork byproducts, pork liver, turkey heart, fish mealOther notable ingredients: Powdered cellulose, fish oilFeeding trials: NoNutrition breakdown: 36.3% protein, 21.1% fat, 9.2% fiberCalorie count: 84 kcal/2.9-ounce can
AAFCO nutritional adequacy statement: The most basic measure of a nutritionally complete cat food is an AAFCO statement on the label. AAFCO is a nonprofit organization that establishes the standard nutritional requirements for pet food and animal feed. A cat food carrying an AAFCO statement is guaranteed to be complete and balanced for cats at different life stages. For more information about AAFCO standards, refer to the next slide.
Guaranteed analysis and nutrient profiles: The guaranteed analysis provides the percentages of protein, fat, and other important nutrients in a food. A cat food formulated for adult cats who are not pregnant should contain a minimum of 26% protein, 9% fat, and essential nutrients such as amino acids (like taurine), fatty acids, minerals, and vitamins. Adult cats who are not pregnant do not have a minimum requirement for fiber or carbohydrates, and a complete and balanced food does not require additional essential nutrients, according to Okada.
Swanson disclosed that cats with impaired kidney function require low-protein diets. Limiting protein intake in cats with kidney problems can minimize the accumulation of waste products in the blood, which can make them sick.
When comparing wet food to kibble, the guaranteed analysis of wet food alone does not provide a complete picture of the amounts of these vital nutrients present. For more information on how to interpret the guaranteed analysis for wet food, read the section on How to read a cat food label.
Expert formulations: We prioritized brands that have a dedicated nutrition expert on their team, in line with WSAVA guidelines. Both of the veterinary nutritionists we spoke to agreed.
Always look for pet food manufacturers with at least one full-time board-certified veterinary nutritionist or an animal nutrition expert holding a master's or doctorate degree.
Brands that create their products with the guidance of a veterinary nutritionist who is not on their team may have difficulty maintaining the highest quality standards.
"Pet food production requires in-depth knowledge of pet nutrition, pet food ingredients, processing methods, and their impact on nutrients, as well as a thorough understanding of physiology, chemistry, mathematics, microbiology, and biochemistry," says Okada. "I am particularly concerned about very small companies that may have good intentions but limited experience and technical expertise."
Ingredients list: The ingredients on a pet food label are listed in order of weight. Proteins, such as whole meat or meat meal, should be listed first. However, the order of subsequent ingredients is not as critical.
Manufacturing standards: When selecting a cat food brand, it's crucial to consider a manufacturer's quality control measures and the types of facilities where they produce the food. Parker suggests that this information should be readily available on a pet food company's website. If not, you should be able to obtain prompt answers by contacting the company directly.
Some smaller pet food companies produce their food in facilities shared with larger, more established manufacturers. This arrangement ensures food quality and safety, according to Okada. When in doubt, choose a larger manufacturer with a long history of producing pet food. "If a problem arises, it will likely be detected sooner if the product has widespread distribution," says Okada.
Calorie content: The calorie content of cat food is measured in kilocalories (kcals). WSAVA states that the average cat weighing between 8 and 10 pounds should consume between 230 and 270 kcals per day. A cat food's calorie content should be clearly stated on its packaging.
Hound & Gatos Lamb, Chicken & Salmon - Best Wet Cat FoodMain ingredients:
Lamb, Chicken, Lamb Broth, Salmon, Agar-Agar
199 kcal/5.5 oz can
The Hound & Gatos 98% Lamb, Chicken & Salmon Grain-Free Canned Cat Food is a wet food without plant protein, making it ideal for a cat's carnivorous diet. This recipe is made with high-quality lamb, chicken, and salmon, with 98% of the protein derived from animal sources. It follows a limited key ingredient formula and does not contain added carbohydrates. The pate-like texture of this food is highly appealing to most cats, although some may find it too thick. Adding a small amount of water can help adjust the consistency.
This recipe has a strong aroma and may contain a significant amount of gel on top. This might not be suitable for finicky eaters.
Vital Essentials Rabbit Dinner Patties - Best Freeze-Dried Raw Cat FoodMain ingredients:
Rabbit, Rabbit Liver, Rabbit Heart, Rabbit Kidney, Rabbit Lung
The Vital Essentials Rabbit Dinner Patties Grain-Free Limited Ingredient Freeze-Dried Cat Food is our top choice for dehydrated and freeze-dried raw cat food. These patties offer a limited-ingredient formula, perfect for pet owners seeking to reduce their pet's exposure to heavily processed food. It contains a novel protein source, rabbit, along with organ meat such as liver, heart, and kidney. This formula is free from additional flavorings, fillers, and artificial ingredients. The raw meat recipe undergoes freeze-drying during manufacturing to preserve nutrients and freshness.
This formula includes bones in the patties, which should be taken into consideration when feeding cats. Some bones may be larger and could pose a potential risk if not handled properly. Additionally, like most freeze-dried food, this product requires rehydration before serving, which can be time-consuming.
The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Grain-Free Chicken Cat FoodMain ingredients:
Chicken, Sweet Potatoes, Potatoes, Flaxseed, Whole Eggs
128 kcal/ 1 oz packet
The Honest Kitchen Dehydrated Grain-Free Chicken Cat Food is a chicken-based food made in the USA. It contains whole food ingredients such as free-range chicken and sweet potatoes. Simply add warm water to rehydrate this meal, which expands to four times its weight. The formula does not contain preservatives, fillers, or GMO ingredients. It also includes probiotics to support digestion and utilizes bone broth for added flavor and protein. While suitable for kittens and adult cats, this formula may not meet the nutritional needs of active or senior cats.
Compared to other options on our list, this recipe is higher in carbohydrates. It has average protein content and higher fat levels.
Ziwi Peak Venison Recipe Canned Cat FoodMain ingredients:
Venison, Venison Tripe, Venison Liver, Chickpeas, Venison Lung, Venison Heart
222 kcal/6.5 oz can
The Ziwi Peak Venison Recipe Canned Cat Food is a venison-based formula that includes muscle meat, broth, and organs like liver, lungs, and heart. As with most Ziwi Peak recipes, this formula features their signature green-lipped mussels, providing a source of glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health. This recipe contains a single protein source and no cheap fillers. Ziwi Peak sources their meat ethically and sustainably.
The cans of this product use tin with an internal lacquer. These cans are labeled as "BPA-NI," which means they are made without intentionally adding BPA to the lacquer, although they are not explicitly labeled as BPA-free.
This formula contains chickpeas, which contribute to its carbohydrate content and make it moderately high in carbs.
Tiki Cat Succulent Chicken in Chicken Consommé Canned Cat FoodMain components:
Chicken, Chicken Broth, Sunflower Seed Oil, Calcium Lactate, Dicalcium Phosphate
63 kcal/2.8 oz can
The Tiki Cat Puka Puka Luau Succulent Chicken in Chicken Consomme Grain-Free Canned Cat Food is crafted with genuine chicken and immersed in a hydrating chicken broth to enhance your cat’s hydration levels. It is made without any artificial coloring or flavors. Its shredded texture is similar to canned chicken, but it may vary depending on cats' preferences.
This formula incorporates sunflower seed oil as the third most prominent ingredient. While it is often added to canned food as a fat source, its diversity in comparison to other carnivore-appropriate fatty acids, such as fish oil, is limited.
This recipe contains zero carbohydrates, which may not be as healthful as it seems. Cats require energy derived from protein, fats, and carbohydrates. Carbs may assist in achieving a proper metabolic feeding balance.
Weruva Press Your Dinner! Chicken PatéMain components:
Chicken, Chicken Broth, Natural Flavor, Sunflower Oil, Xanthan Gum
93 kcal/ 3 oz can
The Weruva Classic Cat Paté, Press Your Dinner with Chicken Wet Cat Food is prepared using wholesome ingredients and delicately pureed into a texture that cats may either adore or detest. The consistency is akin to pudding, making it an ideal choice for senior cats or those with dental issues. It comprises real chicken and chicken broth, offering a high-protein and hydrating meal. With 82% moisture content, it promotes urinary tract health and ensures your kitty receives the necessary hydration for optimal well-being. Additionally, this formula is devoid of artificial colors, flavors, and MSG.
There may be occasional inconsistency among cans, ranging from slight variations in scent to coloration, which could impact cats' interest.
Stella & Chewy’s Tummy Ticklin’ Turkey Dinner Morsels Freeze-Dried Raw Cat FoodMain components:
Turkey With Ground Bone, Turkey Liver, Turkey Gizzard, Pumpkin Seed, Potassium Chloride
Stella & Chewy’s Tummy Ticklin’ Turkey Dinner Morsels Freeze-Dried Raw Cat Food combines the advantages of a raw diet with the convenience of freeze-dried meals. You can serve these morsels as-is or rehydrate them with water. Rehydration is an excellent option if you know your cat is not obtaining sufficient hydration from its water bowl. This formula is prepared in a US-based kitchen using responsibly sourced, cage-free turkey and organic fruits and vegetables. The recipe comprises 98% turkey, organs, and bone. It is free from artificial preservatives or added colors.
Rehydrating the morsels may take some time, and occasionally, they may not mix seamlessly with water. Some customers have reported crumbly consistency upon delivery.
Primal Chicken & Salmon Formula Raw Freeze-Dried NuggetsMain components:
Chicken With Ground Bone, Chicken Livers, Salmon, Organic Pumpkin Seeds, Organic Sunflower Seeds
Primal Chicken & Salmon Formula Nuggets Grain-Free Raw Freeze-Dried Cat Food consists of antibiotic and hormone-free chicken meat and organs. Chicken constitutes a significant portion of the protein in this recipe, while wild-caught salmon adds omega-fatty acids to the mix. This formula prioritizes whole-food nutrition and does not contain synthetic vitamins or minerals. It is quick and simple to serve when rehydrated with water or Primal Raw Goat Milk. Furthermore, this formula is not excessive in bone content and does not contain artificial ingredients.
This recipe emphasizes fruits and vegetables, which may not align with the dietary needs of your carnivorous feline.
Buyer’s Guide: Tips for Selecting the Finest Cat FoodsAre you still feeling overwhelmed by the abundance of cat food choices available? Raw, wet, dehydrated – how can you determine which type of food is best suited for your cat's requirements? Keep reading to learn more about how to select the optimal cat food for your beloved feline family members.
Raw Food DietsA raw food diet for cats sparks much debate. While your kitty's wild ancestors undoubtedly feasted on raw fare to survive, that doesn't necessarily mean your highly pampered domesticated kitty shares the same nutritional needs.
A raw diet revolves around unprocessed foods made with natural ingredients. You are already aware that your obligate carnivore necessitates animal tissues to thrive, and raw foods fulfill this requirement by emphasizing uncooked meat and organs. Many raw diets also incorporate ground bone as a source of calcium and phosphorus.
Raw diets generally offer high-quality nutrition with fewer processed ingredients, potentially facilitating improved digestion.
It's imperative to note that the presence of the term "raw" on your cat's food package does not automatically guarantee its healthiness.
The primary concern with a raw diet is the potential risk of infectious diseases for both your cat and yourself. A one-year study examined commercially available raw foods for bacteria and discovered that nearly 25% of the samples tested positive for bacteria such as Salmonella spp. and Listeria monocytogenes.
Raw diets may expose your cat to nutritional imbalances and foreign body hazards (e.g., bones).
Image Credit: Africa Studio, Shutterstock
Dehydrated & Freeze-Dried Food DietsFreeze drying involves freezing food and subjecting it to a vacuum to remove water content. The resulting product is then sealed in an airtight package to eliminate any remaining moisture, providing shelf-stable food. Freeze-dried cat food is not cooked or pasteurized, making it raw.
Dehydration, on the other hand, entails using heat to remove moisture, achieving a long-lasting shelf life. However, the dehydration process does not cook the food.
Both freeze drying and dehydration are popular methods as they preserve the nutritional value and vitamins of the ingredients without the need for cooking.
Feeding your cat dehydrated or freeze-dried diets poses the same concerns as a raw diet regarding contamination, as pathogens capable of causing illness may survive the freeze-drying and dehydration processes.
There may be a risk of nutritional deficiencies due to dietary imbalances, although this can be avoided by choosing a food labeled as complete and balanced. Many dehydrated and freeze-dried cat foods are designed to be used as meal toppers and not as the sole source of nutrition, as they may lack the necessary vitamins and minerals for your cat's well-being.
Image Credit: Seattle Cat Photo, Shutterstock
What About Dry Food?You may have noticed that the previous list provided no mention of dry food. The answer lies in the following factors:
- It contains low moisture levels.
- It has high carbohydrate content.
- Protein primarily comes from plants rather than animals.
- It may encourage overeating.
How do I select the right type of cat food?"When choosing the appropriate food consistency for your cat, factors such as age, breed, and health undoubtedly play a role, as well as your cat's personal preferences," says Dr. Simpson. Dry cat food, known as kibble, comes in various shapes and textures and can assist with dental concerns, such as tartar control. Additionally, dry food is cost-effective and convenient for pet owners who are on a budget or short on time.
Conversely, wet food has higher moisture content, which can benefit cats requiring more hydration in their diets, such as those with diabetes, chronic kidney disease, and lower urinary tract disease, according to Dr. Simpson. The consistency of wet food, ranging from pates to stews, is easier for cats with fewer teeth to chew. If your cat does not prefer the texture of just one, you can even mix a small amount of dry food with wet food.
What should I avoid feeding my cat?Aside from standard dry, moist, and wet cat foods, Dr. Simpson advises against feeding cats all-raw or homemade diets. The former offers no nutritional advantages over regular commercial cat food and may lead to nutritional deficiencies and foodborne illnesses. Meanwhile, the latter puts cats at risk of nutritional deficiencies as well. If you are interested in preparing your cat's food at home, Dr. Simpson recommends consulting a veterinary nutritionist through the American College of Veterinary Nutrition.
Consulting an expert is the best approach if you are unsure about the best dry or canned food for your cat. "With numerous brands available and potentially misleading advertising and online information, it can be bewildering and frustrating to select the best diet for your cat," says Dr. Simpson. "The most reliable way to choose an appropriate diet is to ask your veterinarian for a recommendation."
FarminaThis brand may not have the same level of name recognition as Purina, but its nutritional expertise certainly places it on the map. Farmina's Vet Research team collaborates with independent veterinarians to develop its recipes in pursuit of continued advancement in pet nutrition. These recipes utilize ingredients sourced from meticulously vetted farms and producers, guaranteeing that your cat enjoys healthy and high-quality meals.
Through the utilization of high-quality ingredients and the continuous expansion of our in-house Health and Nutrition Advisory Board, VetDiet remains steadfast in its commitment to promoting the well-being and vitality of your feline companion. As a long-standing, family-operated business that has been serving the industry for over two decades, we take pride in crafting delectable meals that cater to cats of all life stages, from the playful innocence of kittens to the wisdom of older feline friends. Our extensive range also includes specialized options for bolstering the immune system and managing weight. Moreover, we extend our offerings to include a delightful selection of wholesome feline indulgences, perfect for rewarding your esteemed companion's exceptional behavior (which is, quite honestly, a regular occurrence).
In conclusion, when it comes to choosing the best cat food for your furry friend, there are plenty of options to consider. From Purina Pro Plan to Merrick Purrfection and Hill's Science Diet, each brand offers unique formulas that cater to different needs and preferences. Whether you opt for wet food, freeze-dried raw food, or a dry food diet, it's important to prioritize your cat's health and well-being. As a responsible pet parent, make sure to avoid feeding your cat harmful substances and consult with your veterinarian to find the best option for your feline companion. With the right choice of cat food, you can ensure that your beloved pet stays happy, healthy, and purrfectly satisfied.