High Calorie Cat Food

High calorie cat food for weight gain is special type of cat food suitable for cats of all ages. You can feed it to kittens and adult cats not only to help them gain weight but also to boost their health and wellbeing. Luckily, there is a wide range of wet and dry fattening foods for cats available these days. However, when it comes to feline health, you cannot just select any product. So, to help you select the right type of food for your skinny cat, here’s a comprehensive guide to high-calorie cat food.

Best High Calorie Cat Food

#Wet High Calorie Cat FoodCalories
1Hill’s Prescription Diet and Urgent Care183 kcal / 5.5 oz can
2Nature’s Variety Instinct Original Grain-Free Real Chicken Recipe193 kcal / 5.5 oz can
3Wellness CORE 95% Beef & Chicken (Canned)207 kcal / 5.5 oz can
#Dry High Calorie Cat FoodCalories
1Wellness CORE RawRev Original + 100% Raw Turkey484 kcal / cup
2IAMS Proactive Health Healthy Dry Kitten Food416 kcal / cup
3Crave Grain-Free High Protein (Kibble)402 kcal / cup
#High Calorie SupplementsCalories
1Oxbow Animal Health Carnivore Care Supplement8 kcal / tsp
2Miracle Vet High-Calorie Weight Gainer For Cats150kcal / oz
3NutriCal by VetoQuinol Weight Gain Paste (Supplement)15kcal / tsp

Jump to detailed reviews of best cat food and supplements for weight gain.

What is High Calorie Cat Food?

High calorie cat foods for weight gain are specially formulated recipes that offer a well-balanced diet to under-nourished or skinny cats. They usually include considerable amounts of animal protein as the main ingredient. Protein sources include but are not limited to quality beef, veal, poultry or fish.

The best cat high-calorie cat food for weight gain is more than a calorie-rich meal; it offers species-appropriate nutritional mix such as micronutrients, plentiful protein, and animal-sourced fat. These are necessary ingredients for muscle maintenance and development in any type of best cat food product.

Some of many reasons causing weight loss in cats, such as anemia, kidney diseases, stress, or a gastrointestinal infection like diarrhea, etc. Moreover, age also causes the feline to develop a loss of appetite. Or else, your cat may just be a fussy eater and have specific dietary preferences. No matter which issue is causing your furry friend to lose weight and become skinny, the answer to some of its dietary woes is high-calorie food for cats. 

Can High Calorie Cat Supplements Help?

If you feel that your cat is too skinny and merely adding high calorie cat food will not be sufficient, then including a supplement in the cat’s diet is a good idea. There are various high-quality weight supplements available for cats that quickly boost the calories and nutrients count in the food. However, do make sure to use supplements in combination with high-calorie cat food to achieve the desired results. Furthermore, always consult your vet before incorporating any food supplement in your cat’s daily diet, and only choose the highest quality supplements.

What to do If Picky Cat Needs to Gain Weight?

cat food for weight gain

If your cat is a fussy eater, there are several ways to feed it high calorie cat food. For instance, you can provide multiple meals during the day. Another good idea is to leave food out so that the cat can eat when it wants to. Also, try to feed the cat at additional times during the day to make it feel compelled to wait for food and establish a new schedule. 

As cats age, they get less active and lose appetite, which can make them fussy and picky. This is the time when cats start developing dental health problems and issues like hyperthyroidism. Due to this, cats don’t feel the urge to eat. When this happens, you can opt for liquid or canned products that can easily be chewed and swallowed. 

Which Food Can Also Help Cat Gain Weight?

Cats like to eat rich, meaty treats. You should prefer including foods that have a natural flavor and offer the right mix of nutrients to help them gain weight in your cat’s diet. Natural flavor is an additive made from hydrolyzed animal tissue and adds concentrated meat flavor to the food. Additionally, you can try incorporating flavorful high calorie cat treats like Bonito flakes, duck fat, bone broth, canned and water-packed tuna, ham, turkey, chicken, or baby beef, canned and water-packed sardines, or cooked/raw chunks of unseasoned meat.

How to Choose High Calorie Cat Food for Senior Cats?

The best high calorie cat food for weight gain cannot always address the root cause of the weight issue. This is something for the vet to determine. However, the food must provide a healthy combination of nutrients and quality calorie sources. Choosing high calorie cat food for older cats is rather tricky as they have the tendency of losing muscle mass. Hence, senior cats need high-quality protein to prevent muscle wasting. 

In the past, it was suggested to feed older cats a low-protein diet to prevent the risk of kidney failure, which becomes a possibility due to excessive protein. However, recent researches indicate that senior cats must be given a high protein cat food. It helps in preventing sarcopenia of ageing or muscle wasting that normally occurs in old age. So, most likely that vegan diet is not a good idea.

It is necessary to give your cat a good quality protein to maintain lean muscle mass. Your cat will receive sufficient nourishment through highly bioavailable protein. On the other hand, the minimally bioavailable protein will produce waste and burden the cat’s detoxification system, including kidneys. 

What About High Calorie Cat Food for Sick Cat?

During sickness, the first priority of every pet owner is to ensure the cat receive adequate nourishment to maintain energy levels high if this is something a vet recommended. You can temporarily disregard the nutritional value and calories counts when your cat is ill and creates a fuss when served food. Consider feeding your furry pet kibble, cheese, a bowl of high calories cat treats, plain meat, or something that they will happily consume.

The easiest foods for cats when they are sick are canned pate-style meals as their texture is soft and smooth so, cats can easily lap up using their tongue. 

If your cat has thyroid hormone issues, make sure to buy special prescription food for cats with hyperthyroidism.

High Calorie Wet Cat Food Vs. Dry Cat Food?

It is a misconception that since dry cat food is calorie-rich, so it will be the best high calorie cat food for weight gain. It is true that dry food is highly palatable and easy to fee. However, usually, it isn’t too ideal for weight gain. 

The reason is that high calorie dry cat food doesn’t offer sufficient moisture, and it is not a good choice for cats with poor dental health, especially senior cats. If your cat is losing weight due to dental pain, dry kibble might further intensify the problem. Moreover, compared to wet, dry cat food contains low-quality sources such as corn gluten meal or pea protein, which may not suit senior cats.  Still, kibble has many forms and advantages and best dry cat food for indoor cats will definitely have a high amount of calories to help improve your cat’s health.

When to Feed High Calorie Cat Foods for Weight Gain?

There are certain situations when feeding high calorie cat food becomes a necessity. Such as, 

  • When your pet is severely malnourished after being rescued.
  • Your feline is old or frail, has weak immune system
  • The cat has lost a lot of weight due to sickness or surgery.
  • The pet is a picky eater and isn’t receiving enough nourishment.
  • Your cat is suffering from anxiety and stress resulting from a change of environment, such as after shifting to a new home.
  • If your cat is dealing with dental problems (make sure to check our our dental cat food selection)

Pros and Cons of Wet and Dry High Fat Cat Food:

Pros

  • High caloric content due to large share of fat which has more kcal per gram than other macronutirents
  • Resembles natural diet since cats rarely eat plants and grains. They evolved into hunters and crave meat.
  • Is usually full of quality fats, fatty acids which are good for keeping energy levels high, building cells and hormones.

Cons

  • High caloric content can be a trap – it’s easy to overdo it with food amount and make your fat obese. Follow vet and producer instructions on feeding to avoid this
  • Some products include unhealthy types of fats and fat sources. Make sure to always check the label and brand reputation.

High Calorie Canned Cat Food vs. High Calorie Liquid Cat Food

high calorie cat diet

In general, canned pet foods contain high-quality ingredients, and comprise of more meat proteins and fewer carbs than dry kibble. However, these ingredients are costlier but are better for your cat’s overall health and wellbeing. Conversely, liquid cat food is easier to swallow and is the best option to feed fussy cats. Liquid food is easy to digest, as well.

Research on both commercial-fed and indoor cats, as well as stray and feral cats, indicate that cats usually self-select food sources, the result of which is a macronutrient profile with the following ranges:

  • Protein: 30% – 63%
  • Fat: 22% – 36%
  • Carbohydrate: 2.8% – 12% 

This means, cats can thrive on moderate fat, high protein, and low carb diet. So, any diet that offers this proportion of nutrition will be beneficial for your precious pet.

How to Buy the Best Cat Food for Weight Gain?

Underweight cats are at a higher risk of developing serious health issues and a lower quality of life. Therefore, it is essential to buy calorie booster foods for cat. High calorie cat food is perfect for encouraging weight gain in a healthy and controlled manner. 

To pick the best cat food for weight gain, purchase foods containing a good balance of protein and fat instead of carbohydrates. Research reveals that carbs are a good energy source; however, these aren’t a part of your cat’s natural diet since cats are obligate carnivores. Hence, to ensure your cat maintains healthy muscle mass, feed them a diet that’s optimized for their body.

Is Kitten Food Too Fattening for Adult Cats?

Kitten food is perfect for adult cats needing to gain some weight because it offers a high calorie diet to fulfill their growing dietary demands. Moreover, kitten food is highly energy-dense, is soft, and easy to consume for their sensitive digestive systems. It’s the perfect option for cats having painful conditions like stomatitis.

How We Choose the Best High Calorie Food for Cats?

We examined all the brands, compared their reviews, list of ingredients, and devised the top ten best high calorie cat food for weight gain. We analyzed almost all possible aspects to determine the right options for you, from price differences to rating and brand reputation. The foods we have listed here are top-rated and better than some of the excessively hyped products. Part of our criteria was AAFCO Rating, macronutrient profiles (including Caloric Basis and Guaranteed Analysis), per serving, and if meat was the first ingredient or not.

Top 10 Best High Calorie Cat Foods for Weight Gain

Hill’s Prescription Diet and Urgent Care

183 kcal / 5.5 oz (156 g) can

Hill’s scientists and nutritionists have come up with a prescription food formula that provides your cat with the correct nutrition to hasten recovery from injuries or illness. It features all the essential nutrition and ingredients required to give your recovering cat the help it needs to get better – and fatter. It has pate texture and can be diluted with water – make sure to follow the instructions by the producer.

Ingredients: 

Water, Turkey Liver, Pork Liver, Chicken, Turkey Heart, 

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 44% min
  • Fat: 33,2% min
  • Crude fiber: 0.4% max

NutriCal by VetoQuinol Weight Gain Paste (Supplement)

Ca. 15kcal/tsp (feed 3 tsp per 4.5 kg of weight)

This cat weight gain supplement is ideal if you have a demanding, old cat or picky eater. It contains all the vitamins to help your cat restore apetite and gain weight while maintaining a lean body form. NutriCal is rich in Omega fatty acids gel and is one of the best cat weight gain supplements for underweight cats.

Ingredients:

Corn Syrup, Soybean Oil, Malt Syrup, Water, Fish Oil, Vitamin E, Vitamin B1, Vitamin B12, Vitamin B3, Vitamin A, Folic Acid, Riboflavin and more.

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 0.4% min
  • Fat: 35% min

Miracle Vet High-Calorie Weight Gainer For Cats (Supplement)

150kcal/oz

If your cat has been losing weight due to sickness or injury or is in desperate need of gaining weight, feed it Miracle Vet High-Calorie Weight Gainer. It is highly rich in fat, containing about 150kcal per ounce. The fish oil is the primary ingredient and is a source of healthy fatty acids. It is incredibly convenient to use and feed. It’s an all-natural formula, and free of artificial flavors or additives. 

Ingredients:

Omega Fish Oil, Canola Oil, Purified Water, Dextrose, Whey Protein

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 0.4% min
  • Fat: 70 % min

Wellness CORE RawRev Original + 100% Raw Turkey

484 kcal/cup (387kcal/100g)

Wellness CORE RawRevconsists of raw pieces of freeze-dried turkey liver, which is rich in animal protein, contain healthy enzymes plus other minerals It is nutrient-dense, flavorful, and easy for cats to consume. This product has low share of plant ingredients.

Ingredients: 

Deboned Turkey, Deboned Chicken, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Herring Meal.

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 51% min
  • Fat: 20% min
  • Fiber 3.8%

Wellness CORE 95% Beef & Chicken (Canned)

207 kcal/ 5.5 oz can

Wellness CORE grain-free, high calorie canned cat food contains 95% of protein from animals. It offers a healthy mix of micro and macro nutrients, and essential amino acids. It is a 100% natural diet, without involving any artificial additives, flavors, carrageenan, or preservatives. It is also filler-free, so there is no wheat, soy, or corn present. 

Ingredients:

Beef, Chicken, Chicken broth, Water Sufficient for Processing, Cassia Gum, Xanthan Gum

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 50% min
  • Fat: 38.60% min
  • Fiber 4.5%

Crave Grain-Free High Protein (Kibble)

402 kcal/ cup (378 kcal/100g)

This wilderness formula is free of artificial flavors or fillers e.g. wheat and corn. It has a higher protein content because chicken is the meal’s main ingredient. Hence, it helps your cat develop a healthier, leaner, and more muscular body. Your cat will have the energy to run, play, and meow all day long. 

Ingredients:

Chicken, Chicken Meal, Pea Protein, Split Peas, Chicken Fat 

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 44% min
  • Fat: 42% min
  • Fiber 5% min

IAMS Proactive Health Healthy Dry Kitten Food

416 kcal/cup (399 kcal/ 100g)

Iams Proactive Kitten Food provides your kitten with the healthy diet it requires to grow strong. The formula has been specifically curated to help your cat gain healthier weight, muscle mass, and a leaner body. The easily digestible meal is yummy to taste, has a crunchy kibble that keeps the teeth clean, and reduces the risk of emerging gum disease. It is specially made to tend kittens and gestating or breastfeeding cats. It has a high calorie content of 3,990 kcal/kg.

Ingredients:

Chicken, Ground Whole Grain Corn, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn Gluten Meal, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed Tocopherols)

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 36% min
  • Fat: 22,3% min
  • Fiber 3.3% min

Oxbow Animal Health Carnivore Care Supplement

8kcal/tsp

Carnivore Care formula has been prepared with input from veterinarians and pet nutritionists.  Sick cats are very picky, fussy, and demanding. Oxbow supplement was formulated with body requirements of a sick/recuperating cat in mind. It tastes great so that the cats won’t turn away their noses, plus it has a high protein and fat content to provide a healthy diet. Furthermore, the supplement is very easily digestible, as it contains proteins of exquisite quality. 

Ingredients:

Dried Whole Egg, Poultry Meal, Fish Oil, Tricalcium Phosphate, Silicone Dioxide

Guaranteed Analysis:

  • Protein: 49% min
  • Fat: 24.5% min
  • Fiber 3.65% min

Instinct by Nature’s Variety Original Grain-Free Real Chicken Recipe

193 kcal/5.5 oz can

Nature’s Variety provides your cat with the wholesome and balanced diet required for better physical and mental health. It consists of real meat, fruits, and green vegetables which are great for building muscles, energizing cats and giving them a shinier coat.  Organically bred chicken is its primary ingredient. Instinct is entirely natural and doesn’t include manufactured products like additives, flavors, or colors. 

Best High Calorie Cat Food FAQs

How can I get my skinny cat to gain weight?

Feed your cat high calorie foods for weight gain can help. Go for foods offering higher protein percentage and high fat levels to help your feline gain weight naturally. Visit the vet to make sure your cat does not suffer from some underlying condition making it lose weight.

What is more fattening – wet or dry cat food?

ry cat food is more fattening than wet food. Water is in a higher proportion in wet food, but it doesn’t add to the food’s calorie count. That’s why wet cat food’s energy density is lower than dry food. Typically, dry food offers over 3-4 kcal/g, or higher and wet food offers 0.8-1.5 kcal/g.

Is kitten food higher in calories?

Kitten food is higher in calories because it contains some essential nutrients necessary for a growing kitten. Kittens also have a very high energy needs.  However, feeding an adult cat food designed for kittens will be equally beneficial as the cat will gain weight and receive vital nutrients. As always, make sure to portion carefully.

What to keep in mind when choosing high calorie products?

A domestic cat needs food that’s rich in animal protein and fats. So youmust ensure that sources of those calories are good for your cat. Choose high calorie cat foods rich that contain little to no grains. 

How do I know my cat is underweight?

Ideally, it would help if you visit your veterinarian to make sure that your cat is underweight. Click here to find all the information on how to assess if your cat is overweight. Example: indication that your cat could be underweight is if you feel that its ribs are suddenly too prominent and noticeable.