What is the best dry food for cats? What to look for in dry cat food? How do you decide which dry cat food to buy? What is the best brand of dry food for cats? Is dry cat food better than wet? What should my cat eat? What is the best dry cat food brand out there?
Many cat owners have concerns when they decide to go with dry cat food. These concerns are mostly related to nutrition. We decided to provide some guidelines and reviews of the best dry cat food brands which will help you to decide what is the best food for your cat.
In order to make sure that your cat lives a long and satisfying life, you must be ready to provide the best in everything, and this includes the best dry cat food.
What makes the Best Dry Food for Cats?
Dry food for cats usually contains more carbs than wet food. The reason behind this is the fact that many dry food brands use grains (cornmeal or rice, for example) to process the kibble.
Some brands contain vegetable protein sources and this is definitely not ideal for your cat.
High quality dry food for cats should have the best available protein source.
|Blue Buffalo Wilderness Indoor |
Chicken Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
|42%||16%||magnesium, taurine, omega 3|
omega 6, 7% fibre
|Cat Chow Naturals Indoor with |
Chicken & Turkey Dry Cat Food
|43%||10%||taurine, linoleic acid, calcium, |
phosphorus, vitamin A and E
|Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Adult |
Chicken Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
|35%||15%||magnesium, taurine, omega 3|
omega 6, 7% fibre
Taking into consideration that cats are carnivores, protein source in the best dry food for cats would be meat, fish, poultry and their by-products.
The ingredients should also include vitamins, enzymes, minerals, fatty acids and essential amino acid – taurine.
Things to look for when selecting the best dry food for cat
Lots of low quality dry food for cats contain fillers and other nasty stuff, including preservatives. These things are not a part of a cat’s natural diet.Read more about what should cats naturally eat.
These cat food ingredients are usually based on wheat and grains.
You have to make sure that you are getting the most valuable nutrition for your cat. When you buy kibble based cat food you should keep an eye on the following:
What is the specific protein source in the ingredients?
There are so many dry cat food brands that offer and advertise high protein formulas. You need to be sure that they are being clear about where that protein comes from.
If a protein source is described too generally as “meat,” for example, this is not sufficient enough.
It is best to find products that list the meat and fish protein source explicitly, for example:
It’s even better if the brand is listing more specific organs, for example – the liver.
Different by-products usually have lower quality than regular meat sources. We are not saying that they are bad. Some of the best dry cat food brands are using by-product meat to increase protein content.
What is the specific fat source in the ingredients?
Similar to what we mentioned above, it’s best if the fat source is clearly stated in the ingredients. This way you can make sure that artificial source is not where your cat’s dry food is not coming from.
If you have an older cat and you are looking for cat food for older cats, make sure that fat levels are very low. Older cats are usually less active and higher fat levels can make them struggle with digestion.
Is there a Taurine in cat food?
If the cat food contains taurine, it adds an extra benefit level to the diet of your cat.
Different studies are suggesting that adequate amount of taurine in cat’s food gives the best chance of avoiding cat heart disease and degeneration of eyesight.
Taurine has been a common ingredient in cat food for many years. If you notice this chemical sounding name “Taurine” on your cat food, don’t be afraid. It’s a good thing.
You should actually be more scared if you don’t see the name “Taurine” in your cat food.
Carbohydrates level in cat food
Dry food for cats is sometimes packed with filler ingredients. Corn or wheat are usually used to make these ingredients.
Their purpose is to keep dry cat food glued together. However, grains are not a part of cat’s natural diet.
Grain free dry food for cats is your best choice. Always look for cat food that labels itself as grain free.
Carbohydrate levels in grain-free cat food are very low. Your cat will get healthier protein by eating grain-free dry food.
Natural and Artificial Preservatives in the Dry Food for Cats
Cat food contains preservatives. That’s the fact. That is the reason why unopened packages don’t get bad even if they stay like that for months.
Some of the food gets their staying power through citric/ascorbic acid (vitamin C), rosemary, sage, tocopherols (vitamin E) and clove. These are natural ingredients and they are great! If you see these on your your dry cat food label, it’s a great sign.
Not so cat friendly ingredients are BHA, TBHQ, BHT, and ethoxyquin since these are all synthetic preservatives.
Avoiding BHA (listed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services as “reasonably anticipated to be a carcinogen”) and TBHQ, is recommended by the Center for Science in the Public Interest. The center also recommends avoiding BHT whenever possible.
All of these recommendations are for humans. However, all of these recommendations are based on animal studies. They all have, at some point, proven harmful to animals.
Artificial Flavourings and Colour in Dry Food for Cats
Artificial flavours are often added to cat food to compensate for the lack of quality ingredients. This can lead to allergic reactions in your cat. Issues like hyperactivity and allergic reactions are all linked to artificial colours.
Nutritional value from this kind of dry cat food is zero. The important thing is that the same goes for the “natural flavouring”.
Don’t be fooled by the name “natural” since it can have as much processing as artificial flavour. According to AAFCO, “natural” is the term that includes more ingredients than it excludes.
It is very likely that the protein ingredients were not of very high quality in the cat food if the manufacturer had to add extra flavour.
Garlic in the dry food for cats
Several cat food formulas are using garlic as a flavouring. Garlic is the part of Allium species (these include leeks, scallions, shallots and chives as well).
Damage to red blood cells and anemia can be caused in cats if they have a steady intake of plants in these species.
What are the best dry cat food brands?
As you can figure out from all of the things that we mentioned above, protein is the highest valued macronutrient for cats.
You should never forget that cats are carnivores and their diet in the wild consists almost entirely of protein. This should be reflected in their home food as well and this is what makes the biggest difference in the best brands of dry food for cats.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Indoor Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
Full of protein, delicious and GRAIN FREE.
Blue Wilderness produced high quality cat food. This is definitely the top contender for the best dry food for cats ever.
BLUE Wilderness’ cat food is “cold formed”. This is a process which ensures that the ingredients don’t lose nutritional value, thanks to the fact that the process avoids excess heat.
With this food you can have a peace of mind that the natural, real chicken is used as a protein source.
Their True Blue promise also states that there are no artificial colors or flavours, as well as no wheat, soy or grain.
The list of ingredients clearly shows protein sources, amino acids and fats.
This tasty cat food presents the perfect combination of health benefits and tasty, high quality ingredients for your cat.
Cat Chow Naturals Indoor with Real Chicken & Turkey Dry Cat Food
After we finished reviewing Purina’s Cat Chow Naturals Dry Food we were not surprised that this was the best selling dry food for cats at some point.
No artificial preservatives or flavours, plenty of natural fibre and the fact that it’s made from real meat is putting Purina Cat Chow Naturals among the best dry cat food brands.
This dry food has low caloric density and your cat will feel more full after consuming less calories. This is very good food for weight control.
Cats really enjoy Purina’s Cat Chow Naturals, however, it contains some grain based ingredients and therefore we can’t put this dry cat food to no.1. spot.
Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Adult Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
If you are looking for the best holistic dry cat food, Freedom Indoor will probably be your choice. Blue Buffalo manufactured dry food that is grain free and gluten free!
You can find many reviews of this cat food online. Every review of Blue Buffalo’s Freedom Indoor dry cat food is stating that it makes great improvement in fur and coat health. It also helps to maintain a healthy weight.
Ingredients are digestion friendly and gentle what makes this dry food great for cats with sensitive digestive systems.
However, you should always remember that you need to manage potions properly. There is no cat food that can provide health benefits n full unless you keep an eye on this.
Is Dry Cat Food Better Than Wet Cat Food?
People like to have strong opinions about this debate. Everyone has their own argument why is dry cat food better than wet food.
To be honest, premium dry cat food and premium wet cat food are very similar from the nutritional aspect.
When we say premium, we are referring to the food manufactured by the brands with excellent reputation.
The biggest arguing point is that the same amount of moisture content is not provided in dry cat food, as opposed to wet cat food.
If your cat is eating dry cat food only it is important to keep the water accessible all the time. A cat that eats only dry food should drink roughly one cup of water per ten pounds of its body weight, during the 24 hour window.
Combining both dry and wet food is becoming increasingly popular due to this. The same thing is with the drinking water fountains.
This ensures that cats stay hydrated all the time, regardless of their food diet.
We can’t say that dry food is better or worse than wet cat food. It comes down to your cat’s preference. If you make sure that you are using good food, with high quality ingredients, your cat should be good with either choice.