WHAT’S THE BEST CAT FOOD?
The best cat food is not necessarily the winner of the year award or the most expensive brand. Usually, these brands known as “healthy” belong to big companies, and “pet food” is just a business line between so many others they have. They usually use by-products from other production processes to use in pet foods.
The best cat food is the one made by companies which business is just pet food and they have specialized only in that, working to get the best formula for cat’s needs. These formulas won’t normally contain by-products.
It’s important to mention that all companies producing pet food have to establish formulas to meet the requirements of Food and Drug Administration, (FDA) and the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
WHAT ABOUT “PREMIUM” LABELED CAT FOODS?
The main 5 ingredients in cat foods are the most important regarding nutritional profile. “Premium” labeled cat foods usually contain corn or wheat in the first 5 ingredients, and we know that grains are not good for your cat. These types of cat foods usually label “meat meal” or “meat” as the 1st ingredient and the rest will be based on grains, such as soy, wheat, corn.
“Meat meal” is a high source of proteins, but it could be any meat so you don’t know what your cat is eating. It’s better to see defined meat (it must say for example chicken” “venison”, “duck”, etc.) and a defined meat meal, (example, “chicken meal”, “venison meal”, “duck meal”) and without grains such as white rice, corn, wheat, etc. in the first 5 ingredients. Consequently, the formula has to have defined meat, a defined meal, and free of grains, such as soy, wheat, corn, white rice, rye, potatoes (except sweet), tapioca.
WHAT IS THE BEST TYPE OF CAT FOOD THEN?
It is recommendable to feed your pet Super Premium types of foods. This means they are meat-based (defined meat and defined meal), more nutritious and good balanced, including all the essential amino acids cats need and vitamins and minerals that have been designed to be more thoroughly absorbed by your pet’s body.
WHAT TO ABSOLUTELY AVOID IN THE MAIN 5 INGREDIENTS:
- Proteins from corn (“corn gluten meal” “cornmeal”)
- Proteins from soy (“soybean meal”, “soy flour”, “soy meal”)
- Grains such as wheat, white rice. They are high in carbs and wheat has gluten.
- Rye. It is very harsh to digest and it has gluten, plus, pets don’t like it.
- When 3 of the first 5 ingredients are grains
- Potatoes (except sweet potatoes). They are high-glycemic, causing peaks in the cat’s blood sugar.
- Tapioca is high-glycemic.
AVOID ANY CAT FOOD CONTAINING THE FOLLOWING INGREDIENTS:
- Menadione Sodium Bisulfate or “Menadione”. It’s a synthetic source of vitamin K that is toxic for pets (this ingredient shouldn’t be present in any type of cat formula).
- Sodium Acid Pyrophosphates (SAPP).
- Artificial preservatives and colorants.
How to Determine Grams of Nutrients with the Informed Guaranteed Analysis
If you want to know how many grams of proteins, fat, fiber, etc. your cat is eating with a determined formula, you need to multiply the percentage informed in the guaranteed analysis times the amount of food your cat eats daily. For example, if the formula contains 42% protein and your cat eats 150 grams of dry food per day, the total grams of proteins consumed by your cat would be 150 x 0.42=63 grams. This means your cat eats 63 grams of proteins daily with that particular formula.
What you can do to make your cat healthy and happy
In this article, we explain the importance of choosing healthy cat food, but only changing your cat food is not enough to keep your feline friend healthy. You must ensure the wellness of your cat in all aspects of its life as follows:
- Get the best dry and wet food possible, according to your cat needs
- Give him/her the right food intake. You can get an automatic cat feeder to accomplish this.
- Keep him/her hydrated as much as you can. If your cat doesn’t drink much water you can find excellent cat water fountains on the market. Moving water entices cats to drink more.
- Keep its litter box clean and fresh. You can accomplish this by choosing a top automated litter box, such as the Litter Robot III.
- Play with your pet on a daily basis
- Keep a nice environment with hiding areas, bedding, and toys
- A stress-free home (see Ohio State study)
LET’S START WITH CHOOSING A CAT FOOD
The first step is giving your cat the best dry and wet food possible. To help you in choosing a good dry cat food as follows you will find a list of the best cat foods which are all meat-based. These cat foods are also classified according to the main 5 ingredients because they represent the most nutritional value in the formula.
Here you will find free-grain cat foods and cat foods with grains because some cat owners don’t want any grain, while others don’t mind it as long as the cat food is: 1) meat-based, 2) with a high percentage of crude proteins 3) with low or medium glycemic grains/carbs. Besides, some people cannot afford very expensive formulas.
This list has been updated: Brands have been re-classified, not only considering if the main first 5 ingredients are high in proteins but also if the formula informs all the essential amino acids cats need in the food’s analysis. Consequently, on this update, the listing of 11 essential amino acids is a very important criterion in these reviews.
A cat food brand is very good when high in proteins, but it’s excellent if it informs all the essential amino acids cats need. These amino acids are 11 and cats need to get them from food because they can’t produce them themselves. These amino acids are arginine, histidine, isoleucine, leucine, lysine, methionine, phenylalanine, threonine, tryptophan, valine, and taurine.
If a particular cat food does not inform all the 11 essential amino acids in its nutritional analysis, it does not always mean that food does not contain some of them. The following list gives priority to the cat foods that are informing all the 11 essential amino acids in their food nutritional analysis.
New chicken-free category added: I added rotational diet cat food, special for cats that need to stay away from chicken for a while or for felines that have developed an allergy to chicken.
GOOD NEWS! You can get any of these cat foods with 30% OFF at Chewy if you are a new customer, you just need to click the qualified link and follow the instructions. *This is a Chewy affiliate link, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.
CAT FOOD LISTING ALL ESSENTIAL AMINO ACIDS
The following list contains the dry cat foods which the first 5 ingredients are either meats or meats & fish or meats & fish & eggs. The first 5 ingredients represent the biggest proportion of the formula so this is a good indicator of the cat food’s quality. Also, these formulas inform the 11 essential amino acids cats need.
Note: the exception on this list is Wellness Core Original. This formula contains one carb (peas) as ingredient #5, but due to its high level of protein and the fact that informs all the 11 essential amino acids, I decided to put it on this classification.
Petcurean Go! Fit + Free Grain-Free contains 46% meat proteins and it’s grain-free. The recipe contains a good amount of meats and fish, such as chicken, turkey, duck, salmon, and trout. Also, it adds chicken fat as a natural source of energy for cats, but not too much to prevent obesity. Listed as the first ingredient, “chicken meal” provides a concentrated source of proteins, and “de-boned chicken” and “de-boned turkey” balance the formula with a crude source of proteins.
Petcurean Go! Fit + Free Grain-Free formula includes essential fatty acids such as Omega-6 and Omega-3, fresh farm-grown fruits, and garden vegetables.
First 5 ingredients: Chicken meal, deboned chicken, de-boned turkey, duck meal, turkey meal. Go to FULL REVIEW or get it on Chewy here. *This is a Chewy affiliate link, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.
ACANA GRASSLANDS GRAIN-FREE NEW 2020 FORMULA (USA market)
The new Acana Grassland grain-free recipe has been improved regarding the previous 2016 formula. Your cat will enjoy a healthy high-in-protein dry cat food with the nutrition needed for an active adult cat. The protein level of the new formula has been increased to 36% which is excellent. Also, the “eggs” ingredient is now free of shell particles so your cat will digest it much better. Also, the Omega-3 essential fatty acid has been increased to 0.8% regarding the previous formula.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned Duck, Deboned Chicken, Eggs, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal FULL REVIEW.
ORIJEN ORIGINAL CAT NEW FORMULA (Available For USA market)
Orijen changed its formula regarding the previous 2016 recipe. The new formula keeps the percentages on the guaranteed analysis but adds more fish to the main ingredients. This dry cat food is still grain-free, high in proteins, with vitamins, minerals, and essential amino acids cats need. The ingredients are mainly locally sourced with the exception of some natural ingredients of vitamins B that are sourced overseas.
First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Turkey, Whole Mackerel, Turkey Giblets (Liver, Heart, Gizzard), Flounder. Find more details in the FULL REVIEW.
ORIJEN CAT & KITTEN CANADIAN FORMULA (Available For Canadian market)
The new Orijen Cat & Kitten Canadian formula adds 40% protein, 20% fat content, and a low proportion of 19% low-glycemic carbohydrates coming from vegetables and fruits. The formula avoids peaks in sugar blood because it doesn’t contain grains nor high glycemic carbs, such as potatoes, rice, or tapioca. It’s also a gluten-free formula.
The source of proteins are locally grown meats and fresh fish that have been kept refrigerated or flash-frozen. The formula doesn’t contain a large list of synthetic supplements and it provides a natural source of glucosamine and Chondroitin, supporting joints.
First 5 ingredients: Fresh chicken meat (18%), fresh turkey meat (7%), fresh whole eggs (5%), fresh chicken liver (5%), fresh whole flounder (4%) FULL REVIEW
ACANA MEADOWLANDS NEW 2020 FORMULA (For USA market)
The Acana Meadowlands new formula provides more proteins to the cat’s diet, changing from 35% to 36%. The addition of chicken liver as one of the first 5 ingredients makes it more tasty and easy for cats to adopt this food. The main sources o protein in the new recipe are free-run chicken and turkey, and freshwater catfish and pollock. The ingredients are locally grown or caught, keeping the tradition of Acana cat foods of working with local farmers.
Acana doesn’t use artificial preservatives, colorants, or flavors. Only vitamin E is used as a preservative.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned chicken, deboned turkey, Chicken liver, chicken meal, catfish meal. More information is in the FULL REVIEW.
WELLNESS CORE ORIGINAL CHICKEN & TURKEY FORMULA (One carb in main 5 ingredients)
Wellness Core Chicken & Turkey formula provides your cat 45% of proteins that come mostly from poultry, the closest to the natural cat’s diet. This is a grain-free and egg-free formula that will help to prevent obesity or the risk of developing egg allergies in your cat.
This formula doesn’t contain artificial preservatives, colorants, or flavors that are harmful to the cat’s body. This recipe provides essential fatty acids Omega-3 and Omega-6, vitamins A, and vitamin E, all contributing to a healthier cat’s immune system and a very shiny coat, and healthy skin.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Deboned Chicken, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Peas. FULL REVIEW
CAT FOODS THAT DO NOT LIST ALL ESSENTIAL AMINO ACIDS
The following list represents the cat foods that contain meats & fish or just fish in the first 5 ingredients. These particular cat foods are highly concentrated in proteins just like the foods of the above list. The difference is that they don’t list the 11 essential amino acids. As I stated previously, the fact that these foods don’t inform the 11 amino acids doesn’t mean necessarily they don’t contain them, but I decided to classify them apart just for this fact.
If you have a cat with urinary sensitivities or if your cat doesn’t drink very much water, I don’t recommend formulas with only fish as the first 5 first ingredients:
Dr. Elsey’s Clean Protein Chicken formula is a recipe that contains mostly animal-sourced proteins, not plant-sourced proteins which is a common issue found in several cat food formulas. Cats’ natural diet consists mainly of animal proteins and very few carbs. This cat food accomplishes this by far since the level of protein is very high with 59% and crude fat 18% as a minimum.
First 5 ingredients: Chicken, Dried Egg Product, Pork Protein Isolate, Gelatin, Chicken Fat (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols). FULL REVIEW. Get this formula on Chewy here with 30% less on your first auto-ship. *This is a Chewy affiliate link, and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.
GRAIN-FREE (WITH CARBS IN THE FIRST 5 INGREDIENTS)
This list belongs to the cat foods containing one carbohydrate within the first 5 ingredients (the 5 first ingredients represent most part of the formula). None of the following formulas inform the 11 amino acids on the guaranteed analysis, only some of them. I must mention that the following cat foods are very good formulas, they just aren’t Super Premium foods (the carbohydrate ingredient of each formula has been highlighted in red):
Note: At the end of this list you’ll find the formulas that are not currently available.
Nulo Freestyle Chicken & Cod recipe is a grain-free formula that provides 83% animal proteins and a low glycemic formula with a good source of carbs such as lentils and peas.
The recipe does not have an excess of carbohydrates and calories, controlling your cat’s weight and keeping your pet with lean muscle mass. The chickens are grain-free fed and cod provides a good flavor that most cats love.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Deboned Cod, Whole Peas. FULL REVIEW
ROTATIONAL DIETS (CHICKEN-FREE FORMULAS)
The following chicken-free formulas are special to feed your cat for a month or two to avoid allergy to chicken. Also, this type of cat food is good for cats with food allergies to poultry. For now, I have started reviewing one formula but I will continue to try more varieties to add to this category:
Go Sensitivities Limited Ingredient Duck dry cat food helps you to feed your feline friend with no chicken protein for a while. Exposing your pet to chicken protein for too long could create an allergic reaction in your cat’s immune system. It’s better to rotate with different foods to reduce this possibility. This formula reduces the inflammation in the cat’s gut and helps control constipation.
First 5 ingredients: De-Boned Duck, Duck Meal, Whole Dried Egg, Peas, Pea Flour. Check more details of this formula in the FULL REVIEW.
This is one of my favorites chicken-free dry cat foods so far. I have been feeding my cat this formula for about 2 months and she simply loves it. It provides novel proteins and a flavor that will be impossible for your cat not to eat this food. The formula is well digested by cats since it contains proteins like turkey, duck, and pork for the best flavor.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned Turkey, Turkey Meal, Peas, Pea Protein, Pork Meal. Visit the FULL REVIEW.
GRAIN-FREE (WITH 2 OR MORE CARBS IN THE FIRST 5 INGREDIENTS)
The following cat foods don’t contain grains but they have two or more carbs in the first 5 ingredients. Low glycemic carbs are much better than grains in a cat diet. Carbs are highlighted in red:
This formula contains turkey and chicken as the main source of protein. It doesn’t include eggs or fish as the main source of protein like other brands, which is a better option to avoid food allergies or excessive cholesterol from yolks. Earthborn Holistic doesn’t contain gluten, corn, soy, rice, or tapioca. The kibble is very small and rounded, suitable for cats with smaller jaws.
Earthborn Holistic Primitive Feline formula contains 40% protein and 18% fats. The first 5 ingredients of this grain-free formula are Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Peas, Chicken Fat (Preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Pea Starch. For more information check the FULL REVIEW.
Nutrisca grain-free chicken cat food offers a good balance of protein, vitamins, and minerals, ideal for the cat’s best nutrition. The formula doesn’t contain gluten or artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. It’s a low glycemic formula which means it won’t create sugar peaks in the cat’s blood, preventing the cat from developing insulin resistance.
Nutrisca chicken contains 38% of protein, most of it from real chicken. The food provides antioxidants from vitamins A and E and contains fruits and vegetables, such as cranberries and blueberries.
First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Peas, Turkey Meal, Chickpeas. FULL REVIEW
NON-GRAIN-FREE (WITH GRAINS OR CARBS IN THE FIRST 5 INGREDIENTS)
The following list mentions the cat foods that have either grains, 2 carbs, or other ingredients that aren’t meat, fish, or fat within the first 5 ingredients. These particular cat foods are not Super Premium formulas and that’s why they are not on top of the list. However, they are a good option for people that can’t afford Super Premium cat foods.
If you don’t want to feed your cat a recipe containing gluten, don’t choose the formulas with barley. Also, if you have a cat with a thyroid condition, don’t feed foods with canola oil. These cat foods don’t inform the 11 amino acids (the grains, carbs, or seeds have been highlighted in red):
This is a cat food that recently changed its ingredients and that is suitable for cats with tract urinary conditions. It doesn’t contain artificial preservatives or flavors, it doesn’t have by-products either.
Wysong Uretic provides 42% of proteins and 15% crude fat, similar to the natural cat’s diet. This recipe is labeled as for all life stages, but the formula is more suitable for adult cats.
First 5 ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Potato Protein, Brown Rice. See more details in the FULL REVIEW.
Chicken Soup for the Soul Adult Cat has been formulated to meet your cat’s nutritional needs, providing good sources of crude and concentrated protein, vitamins, and minerals, antioxidants, fatty acids, botanical and more. The recipe is tasty so if you have a picky cat with a very strict taste, this is the cat food for you. Your pet will be eating tasty food and at the same time will be getting high nutrition.
Chicken Soup For The Soul contains good quality ingredients and the grain incorporated into the formula it is a very healthy nutritional grain. This is a very good example of cat food with excellent value for money.
First 5 ingredients: Chicken, chicken meal, cracked pearled barley, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), turkey meal. FULL REVIEW
Evanger’s Pheasant and Whitefish is made with high-quality ingredients and offers a mix of proteins coming from pheasant, whitefish, and duck. This cat food is free of by-products and it does not contain cheap fillers such as corn, wheat, or soy.
Evanger’s Pheasant and Whitefish contains high levels of animal and vegetable proteins, good sources of energy, vegetables, and fruits for easy digestion. Also, the recipe includes a good source of omega-3 and taurine to support your cat’s heart and eyes. Evanger’s Pheasant and Whitefish is very tasty, so it will be easy for your cat to adapt to this new cat food in his/her diet.
First 5 ingredients: Pheasant, Whitefish, Sweet Potatoes, Canola Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Peas. FULL REVIEW
ORGANIC CAT FOOD FORMULAS
Castor & Pollux Organix Chicken & Sweet Potato Formula is USDA-certified dry cat food with 95% of its ingredients being organic. This recipe is cooked in a USA-organic-certified kitchen, free of soy, wheat, gluten, or nuts traces.
This dry cat food doesn’t contain artificial preservatives, colors, or flavors. It’s made with free-range organic chicken, free of added hormones or antibiotics.
First 5 ingredients: Organic Chicken, Organic Chicken Meal, Organic Pea Protein, Organic Sweet Potatoes, Organic Peas. FULL REVIEW
Cat foods that are not featured on the top list
The following are other cat foods reviews that are not featured on this page due to my conclusions about them:
- Solid Gold Indigo Moon Chicken & Eggs
- Nutrience Natural Ocean Fish & Duck formula.
- Halo Holistic Chicken & Chicken liver.
- Pure Vita Salmon & Peas.
Wet cat foods reviews
As this page is about dry cat foods I didn’t feature wet food formulas, but I am listing below some wet food formulas I reviewed for your information:
Dry cat food formulas that are no longer available
ORIJEN CAT & & KITTEN KENTUCKY FORMULA (Discontinued original USA formula)
The new Orijen Cat & Kitten formula made in Kentucky, USA, adds 40% protein, 20% fat content, and a low proportion of 20% low-glycemic carbohydrates coming from veggies and fruits. The formula keeps the cat’s good health because it prevents obesity and diabetes caused by high glycemic ingredients such as grains, rice, tapioca, or potatoes.
The meats are locally grown and are kept refrigerated or flash-frozen. Orijen Cat & Kitten limits synthetic supplements and provides DHA and EPA fatty acids naturally from fresh fish.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned chicken, deboned turkey, Yellowtail Flounder, whole eggs, whole Atlantic mackerel. FULL REVIEW
ACANA GRASSLANDS REGIONAL FORMULA GRAIN-FREE (Discontinued Original Canadian Formula)
Acana Grasslands Regional Grain-Free formula is meat-based cat food with lamb as the first and second ingredient, which gives cats a good and easy-to-digest source of proteins. Lamb is less likely to cause allergies as well. Other animal proteins in the recipe include duck, fresh eggs, and wild-caught fish.
Acana Grasslands Regional formula provides 70% of meat proteins and fats, such as lamb, duck, fish, and eggs, and 30% fruits and vegetables, helping the cat’s digestive system. The formula is low in carbohydrates, low in the liver, low in magnesium, and with all 11 essential amino acids, cats need to be healthy.
First 5 ingredients: boneless lamb, lamb meal, boneless duck, pollock meal, duck fat. FULL REVIEW
ACANA GRASSLANDS KENTUCKY FORMULA (Discontinued 2016 USA Formula)
Acana Grasslands Regional Grain-free formula made in Kentucky provides 75% crude proteins and fats to the total formula. The source of proteins is lamb, duck, eggs, and fish. Acana Grasslands is has a limited amount of carbohydrates to 25% of the formula. The carbs are/ low glycemic, avoiding peaks in sugar blood which is the main reason for diabetes and obesity in cats.
This recipe lists the 11 essential amino acids cats need to maintain their body functions.
Acana Grasslands Kentucky formula doesn’t add a long list of synthetic supplements because most of the nutritional vitamins and minerals are added to the ingredients.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned lamb, deboned duck, whole eggs, lamb meal, catfish meal. FULL REVIEW.
ACANA MEOWLAND CAT FOOD (Discontinued 2016 formula made in Kentucky, USA)
Acana Meowland is the new formula that replaces Acana Wild Praire, keeping the same amount of proteins and fat as the old formula. As usual with this brand, the meats and fish are local, with a standard for people consumption and using only Vitamin E as a preservative. This 2016 formula made in Kentucky provides most of the vitamins and minerals in the meats so it doesn’t use many synthetic supplements, only Choline, Zinc, and Copper.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned chicken, deboned turkey, chicken giblets (liver, heart, kidney), chicken meal, catfish meal. FULL REVIEW.
ACANA APPALACHIAN RANCH CAT FOOD (Discontinued Formula made in Kentucky, USA. Appalachian recipe won’t be back in the market).
Acana Appalachian Ranch provides your cat the nutrition it needs to grow healthy. The recipe is loaded with 35% guaranteed meat proteins and 20% fat which are ratios that mimic the cat’s natural diet.
The formula is free of grains and it doesn’t contain carbohydrates that raise the blood sugar in felines, such as potatoes or tapioca, which prevents obesity and diabetes. Acana Appalachian doesn’t contain a long list of synthetic supplements nor synthetic preservatives.
First 5 Ingredients: Deboned beef, deboned pork, deboned lamb, beef meal, lamb meal. FULL REVIEW
ORIJEN CAT & KITTEN (Discontinued Original Canadian Formula)
The Orijen formula is made with local ingredients, free-run chicken, turkey, whole eggs, and locally caught fish. All meats used in Orijen formula are fresh, free of preservatives, and never frozen. Orijen recipe is full of proteins (80%) and gives cats a very natural food as they would get in nature. The formula is also grain-free and contains very few amounts of carbohydrates that are low glycemic. Orijen provides all 11 amino acids cats need from food to keep their body functions working properly, preventing future diseases.
First 5 ingredients: Boneless chicken, chicken meal, chicken liver, whole herring, boneless turkey. FULL REVIEW
Wellness CORE grain-free formula provides your cat a good source of high quality and low-in-ash meats in its first 5 ingredients to satisfy the carnivore diet of your cat. Salmon oil and flaxseed help to maintain healthy skin in your cat and to improve its coat. This recipe does not contain meat by-products, wheat, soy, corn, artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives.
Wellness CORE formula is free of grains or fillers to ensure proper nutrition for your cat, free of the unwanted carbohydrates that contribute to obesity and diabetes in pets. Also, this formula is gluten-free. This formula offers good fats, such as salmon, whitefish meal, herring meal.
First 5 ingredients: Deboned turkey, deboned chicken, chicken meal, whitefish meal, herring meal. FULL REVIEW
HALO SPOT’S STEW CHICKEN RECIPE (NOT AVAILABLE)
Halo Spot’s Stew Chicken has a formula with natural ingredients free of artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives. They use fresh meat in the recipe and a complete package of vitamins and minerals designed to be easily absorbed into your cat’s body. They don’t use by-products and either corn, wheat, or wheat gluten. The formula “Spot’s Stew Cat Grain-Free Chicken” contains good sources of proteins and sources of energy, plus good natural flavor with vegetable broth.
First 5 ingredients: Chicken, Eggs, Pea Protein, Vegetable Broth, Chicken Fat. FULL REVIEW
PRECISE HOLISTIC COMPLETE (FORMULA DISCONTINUED)
Precise Holistic uses high nutritional standards for your pet. This brand (Wild at Heart River Line Salmon formula) has been recommended by experts to treat itchy skin or ear problems produced by Candida Albicans and “Leaky Gut Syndrome” in cats (Nzymes). They don’t use by-products in the formula and it contains real meat as a primary ingredient, 32% of crude meat, and 20% crude fat, which is very important in the natural cat diet. This formula has a package of vitamins and minerals that are easy to be absorbed by your cat’s body.
First 5 ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Meal, Ground Brown Rice, Oatmeal, Chicken Fat. FULL REVIEW
NATURAL PLANET ORGANIC (UNAVAILABLE)
This is not just “another organic food” for pets. Natural Planet Organics is certified by Oregon Tilth Certified Organic (OTCO), an internationally recognized symbol of organic integrity (this certification exceeds the United States Department of Agriculture USDA organic standards). This formula doesn’t have by-products and it has organic crude meat as a primary ingredient. If you want your cat to eat completely organic and healthy food you may want to check this pet food and see its nutritional analysis in the full review.
First 5 ingredients: Organic chicken, chicken meal, organic yellow peas, organic flax-seed, organic barley. FULL REVIEW
WILD CALLING TURKEY & SWEET POTATO FORMULA (Discontinued formula).
Wild Calling Turkey & Sweet potato will help you to detox your cat’s body from chicken. This is very important to avoid allergies since almost all dry cat foods contain chicken. This recipe contains low glycemic carbs and it offers limited ingredients which is a good way to avoid chicken addiction in cats that could lead to chicken allergy.
The kibble is small, triangle-shaped, with hard consistency which ensures healthy cat’s teeth. The taste of this food is widely accepted by most felines as I experienced this with my cat and so did other cat owners that have tried this food with their pets.
First 5 ingredients: Turkey Meal, Turkey, Sweet Potato, Lentils, Turkey Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols and citric acid). Go to FULL REVIEW
Other formulas no longer available:
- Innova Nature’s Table Grain Free Turkey & Chicken.
- Acana Pacifica Cats & Kittens
- Nutro Wild Frontier Chicken
Important points to consider about grain-free cat foods
Feeding your cat grain-free dry food doesn’t always mean your cat will be slim and healthy. Some grain-free cat foods use starch such as tapioca or potatoes in the main 5 ingredients and that means they have as many carbohydrates as the food containing grains. For example, if a cat food contains potatoes or tapioca as the second or third ingredient, that cat food is very high in carbohydrates. These carbs will load the cat’s blood sugar the same way as the foods that contain grains. However, if a grain-free formula contains low-glycemic carbs, such as lentils, sweet potatoes or green peas it’ll be a healthier recipe than formulas containing grains, especially considering that some grains contain gluten.
Is there any “perfect” cat food out there?
There is not a “perfect cat food” because there are so many factors involved when it comes to nutritional needs for cats. The best cat food will depend on whether the cat is indoor or outdoors, age, medical conditions, it will even depend on the breed and genes.
Some cats do very badly with dry foods containing any grain while other cats live until a very old age eating foods with grains. The important point here is to choose a meat-based dry cat food with no by-products or fillers such as corn or soy, wheat, white rice, artificial flavors or colorants, etc.
Also, you need to find: 1) a good balance between dry and wet food, 2) a price that fits your budget, and 3) a cat food that will make your cat healthy and happy. Most likely you will need to go through the trial-and-error method to find the best dry cat food for your cat.
Sometimes, even with excellent cat food, cats still get diseases. Cats, like people, get sick and you need to try to do your best to keep your cat healthy but nothing can be guaranteed.
How to switch to a new cat food
First Day: First meal: 3/4 old food with 1/4 new food; Second meal: 2/3 old food with 1/3 new food.
Second Day: First meal: 1/2 old food with 1/2 new food; Second meal: 1/3 old food with 2/3 new food.
Third Day: All new food.
NOTE: I have received lots of comments and questions about cat foods. Due to time availability, I won’t be able to answer all of them, but I will try to do my best. Thank you for your understanding!
This article is for educational purposes only. The reactions of cats to cat foods are very different and no cat food can be guaranteed to be the best for all cats.