How To Choose The Best Cat Food
Heres a few tips on how to choose the best food for your cat:
- Understand your cats nutritional needs: Remember, cats are carnivores. Opt for food that uses high-quality meats as the main ingredients.
- Focus on the first items of the ingredient list: Many foods use meat as their main ingredient. However, it’s often better to pick a recipe that uses several animal products. Look for meats listed as the first two ingredients, or more.
- Buy food thats appropriate for the cats age and health: Cat food is formulated to meet specific nutritional requirements based on age and overall health. For example, kittens shouldn’t be fed senior or weight management food. It will deprive them of the necessary calories for optimal development.
- Look for an AAFCO statement: The AAFCO nutritional adequacy statement guarantees your feline friend will receive a balanced nutrition ideal for their life stage and lifestyle.
- Does the company employ experts?: Pick brands that employ vets and pet nutritionists to develop recipes and oversee testing. Companies usually disclose this information on their website or should have no problem sharing if you call.
- Avoid artificial additives: Avoiding artificial colors and preservatives is always a good idea to prevent potential long-term health issues.
Best Adult Wet Cat Food
Wet cat food tends to be costlier than dry food. In terms of nutrition, wet food stands out from kibble in a few ways. It contains significantly more moisture, typically 75% to 80% versus 10% to 12% found in dry food. Because of that moisture content, wet food is more filling and may be a good choice for cats who love to eat a little too zealously.
However, Okada and Parker both agreed that feeding a typical adult cat wet food instead of, or in addition to, dry food offers no specific health benefits. It’s a decision that should be based on a cat’s preferences and a guardian’s budget.
Wet food has a long shelf life but spoils quickly once opened. Any unused portion of wet food must be refrigerated and consumed within a few days to prevent spoilage.
Best Dry Food For Mama Cat And Kittens
Nourish mama and her kitten with Iams Proactive Health Kitten food. Even though the label says kitten, this food has the whole kit and kaboodle of healthy ingredients for a momma cat and her kittens. Chicken is the primary ingredient in this protein-rich food which helps support pregnancy and kitten development. Omega-3 DHA and vitamin E support strong immune systems, skin, and bones, as well as brain development, says Dr. VanDuzer.This tasty, small bite food can be continued during nursing and until she has weaned her kittens and the kitten can also eat the food. Speaking of baby cats, these sweet little kittens are beyond adorable. If you have a dog, these are the best food brands that vets recommend.
Read Also: How Much Does It Cost To Insure A Cat
What Are Todays Most Popular Best Dry Cat Food For Diabetic Cat Models
There are many best dry cat food for diabetic cat items accessible today for men and women seeking quality and reliability. Every best dry cat food for diabetic cat model follows the same essential premise. But they appeal to various users.
Inevitably, certain products will only appeal to particular types of people. Which products are the most popular amongst customers as a whole, you could ask. If you’d want a list, we have one here. Check out our wide range of products that look to be appealing to people of various ages, genders, and places.
Best Dry Food For Indoor
If your cat isnt allowed past the front door, Dr. VanDuzer often recommends Iams Proactive Health Indoor Weight and Hairball Care Dry cat food. Indoor only cats often have weight issues and this formula helps control weight. This formula also decreases vomiting due to hairballs with the addition of beet pulp, a natural laxative that doesnt cause diarrhea. Indoor-only cats tend to develop hairballs more often than their outdoor counterparts. Longer hair that sheds in the spring, over-grooming, digestion dysfunction, or deficiencies in the diet are some causes. Find out the reasons behind all your cats silly behaviors.
Also Check: Iodine Levels In Cat Food
Are Homemade Diets Recommended
While some people choose to feed their kitten a homemade diet, it can be very difficult to do correctly. Pet owners feeding a homemade diet feel they are providing the right nutrients, but they are often not providing complete and balanced nutrition. Homemade diets are often based largely on protein and can be extremely nutritionally unbalanced. This means the food is unable to meet the specific needs of a growing kitten and puts kittens at risk of nutritional deficiencies. The best kitten food available at Petbarn is scientifically proven to provide a complete and balanced diet to benefit your pet.
Nutro Wholesome Essentials Kitten Dry Cat Food
Nutro Wholesome Essential Dry Kitten Food has chicken and chicken meal as the first two listed ingredients, with a 38% crude protein content overall. It is loaded with essential omega fatty acids to promote healthy skin and coat, antioxidants for immune support, and calcium to aid in building strong bones and joints as your kitten grows. It is free from corn, wheat, and soy and contains no artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors, and is one of the best foods for kittens out there.
This food is reported to turn even the least fussy kittens away, and the kibble size is surprisingly small and may be a potential choking hazard. It also has a comparatively low protein content for a growing kitten, and it contains plant-based proteins, like potato and pea proteins.
- Multiple plant-based protein sources
Don’t Miss: Purina Pro Plan Cat Food Chicken And Rice
Best And Worst Food For Your New Kitten
As we see everyday at Dr Pet MD, kittens grow at an incredible rate and need food that provides all the nutrients required for healthy development. Kitten food contains higher levels of certain nutrients, including fat, calories, protein, and calcium all to help your kitten grow into a strong and healthy cat. Kitten foods also often have smaller pieces of kibble and meat, so that its not too chunky for tiny mouths to handle. All kittens should eat dedicated kitten food. Food made for adult cats wont check the right nutritional boxes and could make your kitten unwell in the long run.
We reviewed dozens of kitten food brands and formulas to identify the best of the best. To find the highest quality offerings, we considered a range of features including the nutritional profile of each food, the quality of ingredients, palatability, and average customer reviews.Top Pick
Made with quality natural ingredients and no by-products, this is a top notch food for your developing kitten.$21.98
We chose Blue Buffalo Healthy Growth Natural Kitten Food as our top pick. It contains a wide range of nutrients tailored to feline development and is suited to both indoor and outdoor kittens.
Buyers Guide: Choosing The Best Dry Kitten Food
Choosing the best dry food for kittens can be challenging, especially since kittens have different nutritional needs than adult cats. Your kitten is at an important stage of growth and the balance of nutrients in their diet is crucial to a healthy development into adulthood. Before choosing food for your new kitten, here are a few points to consider.
Also Check: How Much Is It To Nurture A Cat
Foods/ingredients You Should Never Give Your Kitty
It is of course important that you know what your kitten needs in order to have a healthy kitten.
BUT, it is also important that you know what to avoid. There are a lot of ingredients and additives hiding in many mass produced pet food, even in the organic and healthy brands that are simply no good. Ingredients to look out for include:
- Dairy products
- Fat trimmings from your raw meat or raw fish, eggs
- Garlic and/or onions
For a complete list of potentially harmful substances and an explanation of why they are harmful, check this article from VetsNow.
Why Trust The Spruce
Theresa Holland is a professional writer and animal lover with extensive experience writing about cats and dogs. In addition to The Spruce, she regularly contributes to MyDomaine and Byrdie.
For this piece, Theresa interviewed Dr. Lewis Singleton, a veterinarian at Banfield Pet Hospital, to obtain more information on dry cat food. Choosing the right cat food can be a daunting task, but consulting with a veterinarian about key ingredients to look for can make the task less intimidating. To make this list, each pick’s flavor and nutrients were considered, as well as the cat’s life stage.
Read Also: Adopt A Cat Thrift Store
Best For People Allergic To Cats: Purina Pro Plan Liveclear From $23
Many people are allergic to cats, but according to Dr. Nelson, feeding these four-legged pals from the Purina Pro Plan LiveClear line lets cat lovers breathe easier. This is the first and only food proven to reduce allergens simply and safely, with a key protein sourced from eggs. This popular choice features probiotic high-protein salmon and rice.
The Best Wet Foods For Kittens
Canned kitten foods typically come in forms that are palatable for them regardless of their dental maturity. Soft pate based foods are excellent for very young kittens who would struggle with kibble. A loaf food is slightly thicker than a pate texture but is still perfect for kittens.
Regardless of the texture, each of the foods recommended here provides a nutritionally complete meal that will also go a long way to catering for your kittens hydration requirements. Below are the best wet and canned kitten foods that are easily palatable and provide all the nutrients and hydration required.
Don’t Miss: Low Cost Echocardiogram For Cats
Carbohydrates Vs Animal Proteins And Fats
A diet with too many carbohydrates is one of the leading causes of obesity and diabetes in felines. While cats do need a small amount of carbohydrate in their diets, they are carnivores by nature and their bodies thrive best on meaty proteins and fatty acids.
Dry cat foods typically contain more carbohydrates than wet food because many dry foods use grains, such as cornmeal and rice, to process the kibble. Some cat foods even contain proteins from vegetables rather than meat, which is also not ideal for your carnivorous cat.
Instead, cats need food low in carbohydrates and high in animal fats and proteins. While some dry foods do contain an acceptable amount of carbohydrate with little or no grain or vegetable products, these are often specialty brands. When shopping for cat food, read the ingredients list and try to minimize ingredients stemming from corn, rice, beans, peas or potatoes.
Regardless of whether you choose dry or wet food, your focus should be on the nutrients it contains. If you need a little guidance about what to look for, read my care guide Understanding Pet Food Labels.
Best For Cats Who Get A Lot Of Hairballs: Hill’s Science Diet Urinary Hairball Control From $20
Cats are famous for getting hairballs, which can happen after they swallow too much hair while they’re grooming. Over time, it builds up in their systems, leading to those icky tubes of hair that you’ve probably seen come out before. To help them manage this chronic problem better, Pet Supplies Plusâs Donnelly recommends Hillâs Science Diet Urinary Hairball Control, writing that it has âthe optimal level of magnesium to support the health of the whole urinary system natural fiber comfortably reduces hairballs vitamin E, omega-3s -6s for beautiful skin and fur.â
Don’t Miss: How Long Does A Cat’s Heat Cycle Last
Our Top Pick: Blue Buffalo Healthy Growth Natural Kitten Food
With so many factors to consider, choosing a quality kitten food can be baffling. If you want surefire quality, you cant go wrong with Blue Buffalo Healthy Growth Natural Kitten Food. This chicken and brown rice formula lists whole chicken as its first ingredient, with chicken meal and fish meal to pack a protein-rich punch. In addition to meats and grains, it contains a range of fruits and vegetables to provide vitamins and minerals, though its also fortified to ensure your kitten receives all the nutrients he needs for healthy growth.
The added Lifesource Bits contain a blend of antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, and are preserved at a lower temperature to avoid heat degradation. The high quality ingredients never contain any meat by-products, and artificial flavors and preservatives. The list price is around $28 for a seven-pound bag, but its often on offer for slightly less than this.
Blue Buffalo Healthy Growth Natural Kitten Food Key Features:
- Contains DHA, ARA, and choline for cognitive development
- Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids promote healthy skin and coat
- Quality proteins for muscle growth
Hills Science Diet Kitten
- Best kitten food for sensitive stomachs Item Form: Dry | Protein: 33 percent min | Fat: 19 percent min | Moisture: 8 percent max High-quality proteins Vet recommended DHA from fish oil supports brain developmentHills Science Diet Kitten Dry Cat Food has high-quality chicken as the first listed ingredient and a crude protein content of 33 percent overall.
- Fish oil, a natural source of DHA that aids in your kittens brain and eye development, is included in the meal, as well as a robust antioxidant and vitamin combination for optimal immune support.
- Its created in the United States and is free of artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives, making it ideal for kittens, pregnant, and nursing cats.
- Rice, wheat, oats, and barley are all filler foods with minimal nutritional benefit for kittens in this food.
- In comparison to some of the other items on this list, the protein content is also modest.
- Potent antioxidant and vitamin blend
- Suitable for kittens and nursing cats
- Free from artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives
- Contains grains and filler ingredients
- Comparatively low protein content
Recommended Reading: My Cat’s Poop Stinks
How Are Kittens Nutritional Needs Different From Those Of Adult Cats
Nutritionally speaking, the biggest difference between kittens and adults is the need for ultra-nutrient-dense food that will fuel early growth stages.
While all kitten foods are different, theyre generally calorie-dense with high concentrations of protein. Theyre rich in calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, vitamin A, and certain amino acids.
If youre committed to purchasing commercially available food, read the label to determine whether or not its appropriate for kittens. If the food is labeled complete and balanced for growth and reproduction OR all life stages, its been formulated according to the AAFCOs nutrient profiles for kitten health.
Avoid diets labeled simply for adult maintenance. As the label suggests, adult cat food is intended to maintain a healthy adult weight and lacks the nutritional gusto to fuel your kittens growth spurts.
While some insist that only commercially sold foods provide the nourishment a kitten requires, this isnt exactly true.
If correctly balanced, a home-cooked diet can be an excellent choice for your growing kitten. These diets offer what a kitten needs, delivering more bioavailable protein and calorie density than almost anything youll buy in a bag or a can.
Keep in mind, though, that preparing home-cooked pet foods can be time-intensive, and it can be difficult to achieve the appropriate nutrient balance. Consult with a veterinary nutritionist if you are interested in preparing homecooked food for your kitten.
How To Choose The Most Popular Best Dry Cat Food For Diabetic Cat
There are three most important factors to keep in mind while deciding on a product: pricing, quality, and popularity.One obvious consideration is price. You must make sure that the price matches your budget.To get the greatest product, you need to pay attention to the quality of the things you are purchasing.When it comes to acquiring new clients, popularity is just as important as pricing or quality, if not more so.
Read Also: What Car Is Kitt From Knight Rider
When Should I Start Feeding My Kitten Adult Cat Food
Once your kitten is approaching their first birthday, the majority of their growth and development will be complete. At this stage, you can look at switching them onto food that meets the AAFCO nutrient profiles for adult maintenance.
Its a good idea to book your kitten in for an annual check-up with your vet around the time that theyre approaching their first birthday. This way, you can ask your vet for their recommendations, and theyll let you know if your kitten is ready to transition to adult cat food.
What Should I Look For When Buying Cat Food
Similar to dog food, cat food has its own set of parameters laid out by the Association of American Feed Control Officials that determine whether a brand or formulation is nutritionally complete. As SELF has previously reported, the AAFCO isnt a regulatory body. Rather, it sets industry guidelines for a healthy, balanced diet. A good first step in finding a high-quality cat food is looking for an AAFCO statement on the foods label, and to make sure the food contains an adequate amount of protein Dr. Simpson says, AAFCO recommends commercial cat food contain at least 30% protein on a dry matter basis for kittens and 26% for adults.
She adds that the amino acid taurine is another essential nutrient for cats, and some foods contain much higher levels of protein and other nutrients than is recommended, which can lead to illnesses: Excess levels of protein, phosphorus, and sodium can exacerbate chronic kidney disease, while too much calcium may lead to the formation of urinary tract crystals and stones.
In addition to the AAFCO, Dr. Simpson points to global nutritional guidelines from the World Small Animal Veterinary Association , which specifically concern the quality of pet food manufacturers. These guidelines include several key questions you should ask about your cats food:
Recommended Reading: When Do Kittens Stop Growing