Best dry cat foods (with caveats)

eating dry food1 300x225 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)

NOTE: As of 2013, this dry food list is not  updated (except EVO was recently removed due to several recalls). The wet food list is updated more often.

ALSO: Please avoid feeding the high-protein DRY foods listed on this page to cats with kidney trouble or elder cats who are vulnerable to kidney trouble.

I like people who want to find the best food for their cat, because I have come to believe that cat food choice alone can actually prevent diseases and extend a cat’s life.

It’s important to know that many cat health & nutrition experts do not recommend dry kibble cat food because:

  • it’s more of a strain on kidneys and urinary system over time (because it’s dehydrating) and could lead to health problems
  • the extrusion process of creating dry cooked food results in a less digestible protein
  • most dry cat foods have a lot of carbs, which are particularly fattening for indoor cats
  • most have grains, which can wreak havoc on a cat’s digestive system over time (possibly leading to IBD and lymphoma, I believe)

Having said all that:

  • there are some quality low-carb, grain free dry cat foods–listed below
  • feeding dry cat food on a rotation basis (eg, wet food at night, dry in the morning) or only occasionally (eg, when you are rushed) may be a reasonable compromise

For the purists who believe kibble should not even be discussed, I understand where you are coming from, but here’s where I’m coming from:

I provide this list because I know most people (and mainstream vets) choose dry cat food at least some of the time and I want to make sure that these people can at least help their cat avoid diabetes and digestive diseases (possibly even intestinal lymphoma) by making better dry food choices.

To find out more, see the post on how I selected these foods.

A good alternative to these dry foods is the raw dry cat food ZiwiPeak, listed in Best canned and raw cat foods.

If your cat has special health needs, please be sure to consult with a good vet about their food.

To assure you these food reviews are unbiased, I never use an affiliate (referral) link for a cat food.

BEST
DRY CAT FOODS

WHAT’S
TO LOVE

COST

SPECIAL
CONCERNS & TIPS

Orijen
grain free  orijen 150x150 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)
  • Meats are certified free of antibiotics and
    artificial hormones; sustainably farmed. Fish are wild-caught.
  • Grain free, low-medium starch (about 17%)
  • Low cost compared to others on list
For kidney and urinary health, use dry food only occasionally or in rotation with wet food. 
Several experts say dry foods are too dehydrating for cats with kidney problems.
Young Again 50/22, dryyoungagain 150x150 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)
  • Target pH is in ideal range for urinary
    health (generally 6 – 6.5 pH)
  • Includes omega 3′s from fish oil. To
    preserve health qualities, it’s added after cooking.
  • US-sourced meat
  • Small company, passionately advocates
    preventing feline diabetes and more through low-carb, grain free food.
  • Low starch, grain free
  • Low cost compared to others on list
Contains active dry yeast (don’t feed if cat has yeast allergy)
For kidney and urinary health, use dry food only
occasionally or in rotation with wet food
. 
Tip: I can only find it online, directly from the Young Again site.
Several experts say dry foods are too dehydrating for cats with kidney problems.
Made with “pork protein concentrate,” a new term that raises questions for some. Young Again explains that it is pork with collagen extracted, leaving behind “highly digestible pork meat which is 80% protein, 10 % fat and very low in ash.”

 

Nature’s Variety Instinct dry **Chicken
or turkey/duck formula(not
rabbit formula)
Instinct 150x150 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)
  • Target pH is in ideal range for urinary
    health (generally 6 – 6.5 pH)
  • Meats sourced from US and New Zealand
    (except rabbit)
  • Semi-low (17%) starch, grain free
  • Med-low cost compared to others on this
    list
For kidney and urinary health, use dry food only occasionally or in rotation with wet food.
Avoid the Rabbit formula, as the rabbit is processed in China.
Several experts
say dry foods are too dehydrating for cats with kidney problems.
Wellness
Core grain free drywellness core dry 150x150 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)
  • Target pH is in ideal range for urinary
    health (generally 6 – 6.5 pH)
  • Grain free, low-medium starch (about 17%)
  • Medium cost compared to others on list

Petcurean GO! cat
GRAIN FREE FORMULAS ONLY

Grain Free Chick/Turkey/Duck
Grain Free Freshwater Trout

GoNaturalGrainFree 125x150 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)

  • Target pH is in ideal range for urinary
    health (generally 6 – 6.5 pH)
  • Hormone free Meats, US sourced; Fish is
    tested for heavy metals. No by-products.
  • Slow cooked at low temperatures (better
    for digestion and retaining nutrients)
  • Low starch, grain free
  • High cost compared to others on list
For kidney and urinary health, use dry food only occasionally or in rotation with wet food. (Did I say that enough?!)
Several experts
say dry foods are too dehydrating for cats with kidney problems.
Wysong Epigen
90
, dry 
Only Epigen 90 is recommended.(I
do not recommend standard Epigen, which has gluten)
epigen90 150x150 Best dry cat foods (with caveats)
  • Organic
  • Very low starch, grain free
  • High cost compared to others on list
Introduce slowly and gradually. Minimal-starch cooked food can require time for system to adjust to.
For kidney and urinary health, use dry food only occasionally or in rotation with wet food.
Several experts say dry foods are too dehydrating for cats with kidney problems.
Wysong Archetype (raw dry) archetype Best dry cat foods (with caveats)
  • Grain, free very low starch
  • 99% meat
  • Raw, cold-processed (using proprietary technology) that makes nutrients more digestible and available
  • Very high cost compared to others on list, but similar in cost to good canned foods!
Includes ground bones, which some cats have trouble digesting.
Ground bones may also not be ideal for cats with kidney disease (check with your vet).

If your cat’s favorite natural cat food didn’t make the list…

See These natural cat foods didn’t make the “best” list: here’s why.

Many cat foods almost made this list. There were so many foods, I had to be brutal in selecting. Maybe I missed a food.

Let me know if you have questions. Looking for the Best canned and raw cat foods?

Resources

Where to find these foods

  • Only Natural Pet Store (carries most of these foods – affiliate store chosen for their reasonable prices)
  • Amazon.com also carries many of these foods and sometimes you can find good deals there
  • Many brands are available online directly from the company that makes them (like Young Again)
  • Your local pet food store (especially holistic stores) have some brands

How to get your cat to eat new foods?

Your experience? Let’s talk!

None of these foods are perfect, but they met the “best of” criteria for dry cat food.
However, every cat has different needs, just like you and I do.

I welcome your experiences, opinions, and contributions in the comments below.

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130 Responses to Best dry cat foods (with caveats)

  1. Jennifer July 19, 2014 at 8:54 am #

    Hi there!

    Just wondering if anyone is familiar with the Canadian Brand – ‘Happy Tails’ – Holistic Dry Cat Food?

    I was concerned about the fish in it – but after doing some more research it doesn’t seem to be large fish – so I’m thinking it should be ok. So much to think about – just wondering if there may be any red flags that I am not aware of?? The ingredients are listed below:

    BC GRAIN FED CHICKEN Formula:
    Chicken (BC dehydrated chicken), Brown Rice, Pacific Fish (Herring, Anchovies, Sardines) Chicken oil, (preserved with Vitamin C & E), Whole Chicken, Pacific Fish Oil, Chicken Liver, Organic Carrots, Organic Spinach, Cranberries, Nutritional Yeast, Sea Salt.

    Supplements: Yucca Plant Extract, Phosphoric Acid, DL Methionine, Choline, Potassium, Taurine, Natural Vitamin E, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Niacin, Vitamin B 12, Vitamin A, Copper Proteinate, Manganese, Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamin, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Vitamin D3, Calcium Iodate, Biotin, Folate, Natural Vitamin K1, Cobalt, Selenium Proteinate, Probiotic Acidophilus.

    Thanks so much!

  2. Kaz July 16, 2014 at 7:24 pm #

    I feed my cat the Nature’s Variety Raw along with a little bit of Nature’s Variety Dry Duck and Turkey formula. I’m just realizing that on the bag it says that there is a freeze-dried raw coating put on the food… Could this food be dehydrating my kitty more than a food that doesn’t have a freeze dried coating?

    http://www.instinctpetfood.com/product/instinct-grain-free-kibble-cat-food-duck-turkey-meal

    Description:
    81% Pure animal ingredients and nutritious oils
    19% Vegetables, fruits, and other wholesome ingredients
    0% Grain or gluten
    Grain-free and gluten-free nutrition
    Freeze dried raw coating for pure nutrition and great taste
    Probiotics to support healthy digestion
    Healthy Omega 3 and Omega 6 fatty acids for skin and coat health
    Contains antioxidants to help maintain a healthy immune system
    Complete and balanced for all life stages and all breeds

  3. Freyja June 25, 2014 at 7:53 am #

    Hi. I was wondering what your thoughts are on V.I.P. fussy cat grain free dry food. I recently saw it in a store and was wondering if it is any good. Would love to know if you have heard of it or tried it out. I’m not sure which country you’re from so I’ll just say that this was in Australia and I believe VIP is an Australian company.
    Thanks.

  4. Larry February 14, 2014 at 10:33 am #

    anyone tried Nutrisca dry cat food by Catswell?

  5. KIKI January 7, 2014 at 12:18 am #

    i want to try to give my cat eagle pack holistic feline indoor health/weight control. is it good? anybody have try before?

  6. Sally January 4, 2014 at 8:04 pm #

    I have 4 fabulous cats on both a high quality wet and dry foods. I am not sure if other people have had the same issue, but my cats have major digestive problems when put on grain free food. My cats are happy, healthy and not grain free,

    • Larry March 1, 2014 at 9:41 pm #

      What canned & dry foods do you feed?

    • Pam March 3, 2014 at 7:46 pm #

      I have found out that my two cats thrive on COMPLETELY opposite diets. I think the key is that cats and their digestions are individual; what works for one does NOT work for all. I have had to let go of my preferences to do what works instead. I am philosophically against grains in a carnivore’s diet … but my Cat #2 has proved me wrong! I am philosophically for wet food over dry food when possible … buy my Cat #1 has proved me wrong!

      – Cat #1 validates my grain-free philosophy! She NEEDS fish-based grain-free dry food (the Canidae Sea) — and she drinks a lot of water to offset the dry. If I give her wet food, even grain-free, even just a little, she vomits it up and her fur gets flaky and rough again.

      – Cat #2 validates my wet food philosophy! She NEEDS wet food with extra water, because she rarely drinks water and she holds her urine as long as possible because she worries that all three litterboxes are the other cat’s territory. On high-protein, grain-free, dry food, she gets crystals in her urine. She is OK with grain in food because she’s not allergic to it, and it adds bulk and fiber that lowers the protein ratio and acidity to levels her body can handle.

      • Marty July 23, 2014 at 5:12 am #

        Pam, How many cats do you have? I have 4 and have 5 litter boxes because I have one very old fussy cat and does not like to share litter boxes very well. They do suggest always having 1 more littler box than cats.

        • Pam July 25, 2014 at 7:08 pm #

          Hi Marty, thanks! As I said, I have 3 litter boxes for 2 cats … at different times, I have had as many as FIVE litter boxes for the same two! One cat (now 6) was a stray in our back yard when she was tiny (just 2-3 months old) … during the month she was out there, she missed on a developmental window about socializing with other cats and using litter boxes. She worries greatly that any litter box the other cat has used is off-limits for her, which means I need to clean all 3 litter boxes once or twice a DAY. This means that she holds onto her urine until I’m there to give her the a-OK … which means that she develops crystals more easily. Poor kitty.

    • mkphx July 19, 2014 at 6:51 pm #

      We had a young cat at the shelter who got the worst case of the poops if he ate anything but Kirkland. We usually wouldn’t have recommended it, but we ended up asking anyone who was interested in him if they had a Costco card.

  7. Pam November 8, 2013 at 6:25 am #

    Thank you so much for this list! Wish I’d seen it a long time ago! I have 2 cats, Cat #1 with allergies (heavyset, itchy skin, rough fur, shedding) who had dental issues and routinely gobbled and then threw up wet food; and younger Cat #2 who would eat anything. Due to barfing and food-stealing (!), I ended up HAVING to feed them both dry cat food. I had good results with California Natural Chicken/Brown Rice: no more throwing up and the allergic welts went away. Then I moved to grain-free Blue Diamond Duck and Cat #1 was no longer itchy either!!! Yay!

    The food I moved to 2 months ago is not listed here, but has been a MIRACLE food for Cat #1: Canidae Dry Grain-Free Pure Sea!! Just 7 ingredients, includes probiotics, nothing weird food-wise. Can you give an opinion on it? Cat #1 has SILKY FUR for the first time ever, and hardly sheds at all! Far fewer hairballs! We’ve had her 5 years and this is a completely new chapter for her skin health and her fur — I keep wondering if I’m petting the same cat. She has lost weight also.

    (Cat #2 is a different story — after being on dry food only for a year, and not drinking much water, she has developed struvite crystals in her urine, so I’m moving them BOTH back to mostly wet grain-free food, and with lower magnesium until the struvite crystals have dissolved.)

    Canidae Dry Grain-Free Pure Sea ingredients:
    Salmon, salmon meal, menhaden fish meal, potatoes, peas, canola oil, sweet potatoes, natural flavor, [minerals & vitamins], DL-methionine, taurine, dried enterococcus faecium fermentation product, dried lactobacillus acidophilus fermentation product, dried lactobacillus casei fermentation product, dried lactobacillus plantarum fermentation product, dried trichoderma longibrachiatum fermentation extract,

  8. Stephanie November 3, 2013 at 11:38 am #

    Thanks for your information. My vet figured out recently that my cat is allergic to chicken, and so I’ve been figuring out what foods she can have and your information has helped with some of the better brands of cat food and their pros and cons. I started feeding my cat the Nature’s Variety Limited Ingredient Rabbit, and she loves it. According to the Nature’s Variety website, only the raw and canned rabbit diets are sourced from China, and the people at my pet store say that the rabbit for the dry is sourced from the United States. I would have to look elsewhere for a raw diet for her, but their raw rabbit has contains pork, which is something else to think about.

  9. Sharon October 30, 2013 at 12:33 pm #

    Thank you for your wonderfully-informative blog! I’m happy to see not one but two Canadian companies on this list! Yey Canada! I’ve been feeding my cat a diet of half-and-half canned food and kibble in order to keep costs low (I’m a starving student). She drinks a decent amount of water, so I figured I’m not putting her at too much of a risk by giving her kibble. Anyhow, after doing a considerable amount of research, I decided on GO! Fit and Free since it’s comprised of less than 10% carbs and is considerably less expensive than Orijen (my other choice), or at least here in Canada. I was therefore surprised to see your comment that GO is expensive compared to others on your list – including Orijen. So out of curiosity, I checked online and it seems that prices in the US are, in fact, quite comparable to what they are in Canada: Orijen is about $5 per pound (for the 5-lb bag) and GO, $4 per pound (for the 8-lb bag). But this isn’t the reason I’m writing…

    I initially decided on another kibble made by a new-ish Canadian company called Boréal (http://borealpetfood.com/chicken/). Their kibble is significantly cheaper than the rest (about $3.50/lb in Canada) and the ingredients and analysis seemed pretty good. But it contains about 25% carbohydrates. This is why I switched to GO. I’m beginning to wonder if I was too hasty in switching and wondered if you could help. I see that the carbs listed in the ingredients of the Boréal kibble are things like peas and beans, which from what I understand about human digestion, are lower on the glycemic index than potatoes (what GO uses). How much consideration should I give to the quality of the carbs in a kibble? Is Boréal really that much ‘worse’ of a kibble than GO?

    Thank you in advance for any advice you can give me! I’ve spent A LOT of time doing research about cat health and cat food ingredients in order to decide on a cat food within my budget for my new cat (a 1-year old rescue). That being said, I admit that I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed by what I’ve learned — so much information! I just want my cat to live a long, healthy, and happy life!

  10. Amanda September 23, 2013 at 1:57 pm #

    I was just wondering what your opinion on the new Organix Grain-Free Indoor Adult Cat food was. I am currently feeding this to my cats and I really like it but you said that the original was high in carbs, so I was wondering about this new one.

  11. antonia September 20, 2013 at 2:54 pm #

    FOR KITTIES THAT DON’T DRINK MUCH WATER: if your cat likes wet food, try adding more water to it. I do this for my female tortie at her dinner time and at other times just mix gravy from Soulistic canned wet food (it has extra gravy) with 1-2 oz water and she laps it up. Otherwise she wouldnt drink much plain (but high quality) water.

  12. Emelia Oleson August 25, 2013 at 7:08 am #

    I wondered if there was an equation to calculate the carbohydrate content in dry and/or wet cat food? I am looking at the Guaranteed Analysis Legend on the dry cat food that I have been feeding rotationally to my cats and it’s impossible to figure it out (though not mentioned in your blog, Vet’s Choice Holistic Health Extension with Free-Range Chicken is the brand). Thank you.

  13. Cauren August 22, 2013 at 7:27 am #

    Hi,

    Is anyone here familiar with Life’s Abundance? That is what we have been feeding our cats, and I was just curious if my assumption that it is a good brand, would be correct or not. Always looking for new or second opinions :) Thanks!

    • Krystle August 23, 2013 at 5:36 pm #

      My personal opinion is I don’t like this food. It doesn’t contain actual meat only meals. Also it has a lot of grain and yeast products. “Chicken Meal, Ground Brown Rice, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, a natural source of Vitamin E), Dried Beet Pulp, Dried Egg Product, Catfish Meal, Brewers Dried Yeast, …” For the cost I’d rather use something like Pure Vita or a similar brand. “Chicken, chicken meal, peas, pea flour, chicken fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), dried egg product, natural flavor, …” This is just a small comparison. My mom likes Nature’s Variety Instinct for her 2 cats, one of whom has a very sensitive system. I tend to do a lot of research and comparisons, I hope this helps. :)

      http://www.nutrisourcedogfood.com/purevita/grain_free

      http://www.instinctpetfood.com/?gclid=CIyWtPLplLkCFTRo7AodBkAAWg

      http://www.lifesabundance.com/Popups/la_cat_ingredients.html

      Krystle

    • susan August 30, 2013 at 10:24 am #

      Hi Cauren,

      I saw your post. I too am feeding Life’s Abundance dry. I recently tried adding the canned as well,but all three of my cat’s barely will eat it. I have one male that is overweight. He also used to eat Fancy Feast canned. I’m wondering if the carb content in the dry did it,or the Fancy feast? I took him off the FF to try and get him to eat the canned. Is you cat overweght?

    • Susan August 30, 2013 at 3:32 pm #

      Hi Cauren,

      I too feed Life’s Abundance dry to my 2 older cats . I recently got a new kitten,and therefore tried to get everybody on the wet as well. It didn’t seem to be a big hit. Are you feeding wet as well? I really wanted to get my older cat off Fancy Feast wet as I think that’s what got him so fat. I need to find out the carbs in the dry,but as far as I know it’s a good food. At least no recalls yet. (fingers crossed) :-)

  14. Julie July 23, 2013 at 1:31 pm #

    Hi Liz:
    Can you provide your opinion on Chicken Soup for the Cat Lovers Soul dry food. It is not entirely grain-free but it doesnt contain corn or wheat. Main starches are barley, rice and oatmeal. She has eaten this for several years now. I tried Blue Buffalo and Evo and my cat would not eat either. She does have intestinal cancer so I am very concerned about her food. Thank you, Julie

    • Liz-cat July 23, 2013 at 4:35 pm #

      Julie, I avoid any food with any grains now because I believe they are all harder on cat digestion – gluten ones like wheat barley & oatmeal especially, but the other grains (like rice) also contain disaccharides which feed the bad bacteria at the root of inflammatory bowel conditions. For cancer in particular, I would avoid foods with carbs because they feed cancer cells too. Wet foods are ideal – lower carb, more hydrating. However, I know that just getting a cat with cancer to eat can be difficult, and we can only do the best we can. I’ve been there and I feel for what you are going through with your kitty having cancer.

  15. Grey July 3, 2013 at 12:03 pm #

    Hi, Liz. Thank you so much for sharing your research! I just wanted to share what I learned today with you. Although the rabbit in Nature’s Variety frozen and canned formulas is sourced from China, the rabbit in their dry kibble is sourced from France. At least that’s what Shannon from Nature’s Variety told me today.

  16. Maggie June 25, 2013 at 10:10 am #

    I am wondering what your thoughts are on the Innova EVO with the recent recalls due to possible salmonella contamination. My cats have enjoyed the food, as a supplement to a primarily wet diet, like when we are gone for a day or two, or they are hungry mid-day. But having gotten a replacement bag, and now expanding the recall, I just don’t know that I can continue with it, but it is the lowest starch grain-free I can find locally.

  17. Kimberly Maxwell June 24, 2013 at 12:16 pm #

    We feed wet and dry, but had to switch out our dry choice after 6 years (after 4 recalled bags and issues, I finally had enough). The store suggested Precise Holistic complete turkey and chicken… but it’s 1st 3 ingredients are Turkey MEAL, Chicken MEAL, spring yellow peas… We want to use grain free, but I don’t feel like I’m done searching yet. I had to leave with something to feed my two and out of what the store had, this was the best choice and my cats eat it. Any thoughts? (other than yelling at me for feeding dry kibble). They did not have ANY of the other dry food on the list :(

    http://precisepet.com/cat-formulas/precise-holistic-complete/dry/grain-free-turkey-chicken-with-spring-yellow-peas/

  18. Darren June 9, 2013 at 4:30 pm #

    Thanks for the great website and all the effort researching this information! Our two new kitties are happily eating Orijen Cat & Kitten mixed with Nature’s Logic Rabbit formula. They get a “treat” once or twice a day of canned food, such as Nature’s Variety Instinct, Fromm, Evanger’s or other premium brands I can find easily at local stores. I really hoped they’d take a liking to the Ziwi Peak “dry” food, but so far neither one has done more than nibble a few pieces before losing interest. They do like it better than Honest Kitchen Prowl, which neither one would even try after sniffing it. That one looked great on paper, but oh well!

  19. Fiona June 6, 2013 at 12:21 pm #

    I have just recently changed my cats from Royal Canin to the Merricks Grain Free chicken dry food. Am also trying different grain free canned foods too. What are your thoughts on the Merricks?

  20. Amanda May 30, 2013 at 9:11 pm #

    What about Evolve Maintenance Chicken? I have a limited income so I found this food at walmart (of all brands there it seems the best that I have found)

    I’m not sure if I can afford Orijen and I’m not sure where to get it close to me (Wichita KS USA)

    • Krystle June 6, 2013 at 8:58 pm #

      Personally I don’t like evolve because of how much rice and yeast it has in it (listed 5 times) as well as all of the super highly processed chemicals. I like simpler not as processed ones(personal non-expert opinion). I like Pure Vita (its only $8 more than evolve) because its simpler and is grain free, cats aren’t meant to eat grains. I’m on a limited budget as well but I’ve learned the hard way that spending the money on healthy food saves money on the vet and emotions because the cats (or dogs) feel better and enrich our lives that much more. Nature’s Variety is another good one that my mom uses for her cats who have issues with the fillers and “crap” in the lower quality foods and its not horrendously expensive, it usually runs about $32. As far as where to get them try googling pet stores. I did that and found a great store near where I moved that I would never had known about otherwise, if that doesn’t work you can always try online, some places do free shipping etc. It depends on the site. I hope this helps, good luck :)

  21. Krystle May 13, 2013 at 10:53 pm #

    Has anyone heard of/familiar with pure vita?? I was using california natural and needed to switch since the quality has markedly decreased the past few months and this was recommended by a natural food store. My cats defintely prefer it to the california natural as they are picking out the pure vita and ignoring the california natural but I want to make sure its a good food. Also they won’t eat raw or natural meat that I try to supplement with, I’ve never had a cat refuse the meat I eat before when its plain so I’m not sure how to get them to eat the meat. Any ideas??

    • Hazel May 16, 2013 at 3:25 am #

      I’ve been feeding my two cats Pure Vita since we adopted them a year ago, and at the start we were a bit worried as there weren’t any proper reviews of it online, but due to lack of choice we decided to give it a try. It’s grain free and relatively affordable. We’ve tried both the chicken and the fish flavour, but ultimately decided to stick with chicken as the cats seemed to prefer it, and apparently feeding fish too often to cats isn’t the best idea. My cats never had any issues with it, and are as healthy and happy as they can be~ :)

  22. Wanda May 12, 2013 at 7:47 pm #

    Hello!
    I was looking through your list and I did see that you had the Nature’s Variety Instinct but not the Salmon Meal. Is there something wrong with that one? My cat really only likes the dry food when it’s a seafood type.

    Thanks!

    • Krystle June 6, 2013 at 9:01 pm #

      It might be because of the mercury and other chemicals in fish. I’ve heard of different people saying that was why they won’t use it long term or at all; or because of its source like China instead of US type deal

  23. Chelsea May 12, 2013 at 8:28 am #

    What about Blue Buffalo Weight Control with life source bits? This was recommended to me at a natural foods store (along with wet foods) and I’m wondering if it is truly a good option. My cat is bigger (not necessarily overweight) so I want to find a good food for him for weight control. Any suggestions?

  24. Krystle May 4, 2013 at 9:58 pm #

    The only fish free food i’ve found thats decent is california natural chicken and rice my cats do quite well on it but it technically isnt grain free as it has rice in it but it doesnt have corn, wheat, or soy so I guess it was a good compromise( for me @ least)

    • Deep Search July 6, 2014 at 3:55 pm #

      I was getting the chicken and rice formula for my cats as they really liked it and I liked that it had limited ingredients and helped give them a nice coat. But I switched to the grain-free California Naturals since it does not have grains and it still has the limited ingredients. My cats like it a lot and I felt better feeding it to them along with their wet food. The only drawback is it is a bit more expensive, but I think it’s worth it. Other brands that are less pricey seem to contain fish meal and potatoes and added starches. Though a new food by Catswell, Nutrisca grain-free chicken recipe, looks like a very good option without fish and is low in carbs, gluten-free, is a low glycemic food, and is made in the USA.

  25. Jasmine May 2, 2013 at 5:14 am #

    Hi!

    My cat’s on Evo at the moment (which he absolutely loves, but then he is a dry food addict and we are trying to wean him off). I received a sample of Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost (which has freeze-dried pieces of raw food) today. What is your opinion on dry food that incorporates raw food into it? I’ve never come across such a thing before and I personally thought that freeze-dried foods needed to be supplemented with water. My cat has dehydration issues (he tends to forget he needs water and has been hospitalised twice for dehydration in his 11 years, even though we change his water bowl thrice a day)

    Would food such as this be detrimental to his health? Any advice or opinion would be appreciated, not necessarily in relation to my cat but in general as well. Thank you very much for everything you’ve done so far!

    • Liz May 25, 2013 at 4:58 am #

      Hey Jasmine, Not food related but I noticed my cats weren’t drinking enough water and saw somewhere online that if their food dish is beside the water dish they will not drink from it, so I moved their water dish to a different room from the food and they can’t get enough!

      • Krystle May 25, 2013 at 6:19 pm #

        Something I’ve found with cats and water is that cats don’t like standing water. When I had a regular water bowl my three weren’t drinking much water, so I decided to get them a fountain and now they are drinking quite a bit of water. I have a ceramic fountain to avoid the chemicals in plastic but also because it has an adjustable motor. I have it low enough that my timid cat is comfortable with it but it’s still moving the water, and my other 2 just drink the water directly from the bubbler and the slide.

  26. yuri kamila April 14, 2013 at 8:00 pm #

    I’m changing from Royal Canin to Nature’s Variety Instinct now, because they’re grain free and also have the rawboost type of food. My cat is healthier than ever. Very good products.

  27. Janine April 9, 2013 at 9:25 am #

    Here’s another con to high protein dry food according to Dr Jean Hofve:

    “Protein provided in its natural form, as meat, also comes with a great deal of moisture. Canned food contains about 78% water; a prey animal contains 65-70% water. The cat’s body is designed to handle that. Feline kidneys are extremely efficient and are able to retain most of that water. Cats have no nutritional requirement for carbohydrate. Nor do they have an upper limit on protein, although in practical terms protein is balanced with fat. Fortunately, nature provided cats’ natural prey with perfect nutrition: a rat is about 55% protein and 40% fat.
    Grain-free dry foods tend to be higher in protein than regular dry foods (which are already dehydrating), and are therefore more dehydrating.”

    So cats eating high protein dry food that don’t drink a lot of water might be more susceptible to uti’s than cats eating dry foods that are not super high in protein.

    • Pam July 25, 2014 at 6:59 pm #

      Janine, that was definitely my experience with one of my two cats. After being on a high-protein, grain-free dry food for 7-8 months, she developed struvite crystals in her urine, and that was the exact reason the vet gave. I got a water fountain and put her on mostly wet (grain-free) food and within 2 months she was totally clear. My other cat drinks tons of water and has no problems.

  28. Rachael April 4, 2013 at 8:41 am #

    I decided to go with Young Again. Thank you for this AWESOME information!

  29. Janine March 31, 2013 at 8:11 pm #

    The first one listed, Orijen, lists 5 different kinds of fish in it! That’s too much fish in my opinion as it can contribute to uti’s and can have mercury and other toxins.

    • Mr Matthews March 1, 2014 at 4:49 pm #

      In addition to the fish-based Orijen, there is the regular Orijen 80/20 Cat & Kitten Biologically Appropriate Cat Food. The latter is mostly chicken and turkey, with small amounts of healthful fish (herring, walleye, salmon).

  30. Katie March 25, 2013 at 10:30 am #

    Hello

    I recently purchased the Nature’s Variety: Instinct Raw Bites (Chicken) for my cat. Is that as good as just the plain dry kibble? Also my cat REFUSES to eat wet food. Can you recommend a wet food that nearly no cat has turned down??

    Thank you!

  31. Katie March 25, 2013 at 10:28 am #

    Hello

    I recently purchased the Nautre’s Variety: Instinct Raw Bites (Chicken) for my cat. Is that as good as just the plain dry kibble? Also my cat REFUSES to eat wet food. Can you recommend a wet food that nearly no cat has turned down??

    Thank you!

  32. lydia March 23, 2013 at 1:49 pm #

    My cats eat a primarily canned food diet, but I do give them a little dry kibble per day. I recently found Planet Earth Organics Cat Formula. It was recommended by the pet store. What is your opinion on this food?

    • lydia March 23, 2013 at 2:05 pm #

      Oops! I just realized that I wrote the wrong name. It is called Natural Planet Organics Cat Formula.

  33. melanie March 18, 2013 at 12:44 am #

    What are your thoughts about Innova ‘Prime’ grain free (chicken and turkey formula)? I noticed a reader was looking for a fish free food. you listed the Innova ‘Evo’ above, but not this one, so i was wondering if it didn’t make the cut. If that’s the case, I’d like to know, so I can switch foods. I had chosen this one as I had read fish sometimes causes very aromatic feces and I have a Scoopfree litter box which makes this an important factor (if you are familiar with this type of box).

  34. Courtney February 9, 2013 at 8:48 am #

    I’ve noticed all of these foods have fish in them. Are there any that you recommend that don’t?

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