Best Grain Free Cat Food?

All cat owners want the best for their cats, including following research about the newest discoveries for cats optimal health and wellness. One of the growing trends of the last few years has been grainfree cat food.

Wellness CORE Natural Grain Free Chicken & Turkey Pate High in protein Good value for the price Free from artificial colors and preservatives Check Latest Price Premium Choice Food Type: Wet Container Size: 5-ounce cans Main Ingredients: Salmon, chicken

These cans contain plenty of protein, vitamins, and minerals to keep your cat strong and healthy. The high levels of omega-3 fatty acids are great for your cats coat and skin. Food Type: Dry Container Size: 3-ounce can Main Ingredients: Chicken, turkey

Good value for the price Free from artificial colors and preservatives High in protein Food Type: Dry Container Size: 5-ounce cans Main Ingredients: Chicken, turkey You can rest assured that your cat is getting the nutrients that they need and none of the extra stuff thatthey dont.

The high moisture content will also help keep your active cat hydrated as they play. Food Type: Dry Container Size: 5-pound bag Main Ingredients: Chicken, turkey, fish This formula is specially tailored for kittens, with its high levels of protein, nutritious oils, and omega-3 fatty acids.

All of these beneficial ingredients help promote healthy growth and set your kitten up for an active, long life. A little expensive Kittens may have an easier time eating wet food Food Type: Dry Container Size: 5-pound bag Main Ingredients: Duck, peas

Our pick for the best grainfree dry cat food is Natural Balance Limited Ingredient . This highly nutritious formula is a solid choice for cats with sensitive stomachs or allergies. This food is also high in omega-3 fatty acids to promote a shiny, silky coat and itch-free skin.

Food Type: Dry Container Size: 4- and 12-pound bags Main Ingredients: Chicken, turkey, eggs Around 90% of the content comes from animal ingredients, which will appeal to your cats natural carnivorous dietary needs. This product is also climate pledge friendly, so you can feel confident that your purchase comes from a company that cares about the planet.

Food Type: Dry Container Size: 5- and 11-pound bags Main Ingredients: Salmon, chicken, peas Blue Buffalo Wilderness Salmon Recipe is a good commercial grainfree option for your cat. However, this food will provide your cat with plenty of protein, vitamins, and minerals to keep them healthy.

Food Type: Dry Container Size: 5- and 12-pound bags Main Ingredients: Turkey, chicken It contains essential proteins, omega-3 fatty acids, and antioxidants to protect your cats good health and energetic nature. This food does contain mainly poultry, so it might not be the best choice for a cat that is picky and prefers salmon or other flavors for their kibble.

Food Type: Dry Container Size: 3-, 5-, and 11-pound bags Main Ingredients: Hake, chicken It is marketed as a whitefish and egg formula but lists chicken meal as the second ingredient. This isnt a bad thing if your cat doesnt have a problem digesting poultry.

Food Type: Dry Container Size: 5-, 5-, 10-, and 15-pound bags Main Ingredients: Chicken, turkey However, for higher energy cats, its a good food thats rich in nutrients and protein. Offers multiple bag sizes, so your cat can try it out first High in protein No artificial colors or preservatives

The problem with many grainfree cat foods is that manufacturers will remove grain fillers, which is a good thing. Then, make sure the food you select has chicken, turkey, salmon, or another type of meat as the primary ingredient. You also want to make sure the food is free from artificial colors because these can be bad for your cats health.

If you have a picky cat that will only eat wet or dry food, dont worry, there is plenty of options for both. If your cat isnt choosy, you can feed them a mixture of wet and dry food .

Is grain free food bad for cats?

Are Grain-Free Diets Dangerous for Cats? For cats and their owners, grain-free diets do not pose a health risk. Although there is a suggested link between grain-free dog food and canine heart disease, no such link appears to exist in cats.

Is grain free recommended for cats?

Some pet food companies and other sources have suggested that grain-free diets are good options for cats with allergies. Overall, food allergies are much less common than many pet owners believe and when they do occur they are usually caused by animal-sourced ingredients such as chicken, milk, fish, and eggs.

What is the healthiest food for cats?

Weruva Paw Lickin’ Chicken Formula. ….Purina Beyond Dry Cat Food (Salmon) ….Merrick Purrfect Bistro Canned Pâté (Chicken) ….Rachael Ray Nutrish Kibble Recipe (Chicken) ….American Journey Dry Cat Food (Salmon)

What is a good brand of grain free cat food?

Purina Beyond Simply Natural Cat Food. ….CRAVE Grain Free High Protein Dry Cat Food. ….Purina Beyond Grain Free Cat Food. ….Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Grain Free Cat Food. ….Halo Grain Free Wet Cat Food. ….Rachael Ray Nutrish Super Premium Dry Cat Food.

Cats can suffer from allergies just like humans can. Some of these allergies can include grains such as wheat, rice and corn. Perhaps your cat has been diagnosed with a grain allergy or you are looking to cut grains out of their diet to naturally replicate more of what they would eat in the wild but what do you do if thats the case? You will want to invest in a grainfree food for your cat, but with so many on the market, it can be difficult to know which one is the healthiest, will still give your cat the nutrition they need, and will be tasty enough for them to want to eat it.

4.2 out of 5 6) Rachael Ray Nutrish Super Premium Dry Cat Food wholesome brown rice, vegetablesEssential vitamins, minerals and amino acids 4.6 out of 5 7) Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Cat Food Starts With Real Chicken4.7 out of 5 8) Natural Balance L.I.D.

4.6 out of 5 9) Iams Proactive Health High Protein Adult Cat Food Chicken is the #1 ingredientHelp support strong muscles 4.7 out of 5 10) Hill’s Science Diet Dry Cat Food Made with natural ingredientsMade in the USA with global ingredients you can trust 4.6 out of 5 13) Purina Beyond Grain Free Wet Cat Food Vegetables And A Savory Gravy Contains Real Beef And Chicken

4.8 out of 5 15) Rachael Ray Nutrish PEAK Wet Cat Food High-protein With no grain, gluten or filler ingredients Some of the symptoms include itchy or inflamed skin, excessive grooming, hair loss or bald patches, and sores and scabs. If your cat experiences any of these things, you can take them to your vet and they will be able to establish which ingredient it is, if any, that is causing these allergic reactions by a process of elimination.

Owners who suspect a grain intolerance in their cats have reported a lesser amount of vomiting after switching to a grainfree diet. This protein can come from a range of animals, such as chicken, beef, eggs, venison, lamb, salmon, sardines, mussels and duck. By taking out the ingredient that is causing an allergy within your cat, your kitty will be both happier and healthier and enjoy life more!

However, cats are often able to meet their nutritional needs with smaller portions when consuming grainfree food, so the price can sometimes work out to be the same. The Association of American Feed Control Officials has set out guidelines that cat food companies must follow. You should stay away from ingredients that are sourced from a cheap location or are vague or nondescript, because they may be unhealthy and could worsen health problems within your cat, including diabetes, kidney disease, cancer, and obesity.

Cats do not have the same enzyme in their saliva that humans have called salivary amylase which assists in the breakdown of grains before they reach the stomach. The food contains natural fruit and vegetable accents harvested from nutrient rich soil as well as egg, pea protein and yeast as excellent sources of amino acids. Included in this food are barley and rice, providing high-quality carbohydrates for energy, as well as oat meal and pea fiber that supports healthy digestion.

Key Features: Natural Limited Ingredient Add extra variety and flavor Support hydration This protein gives them the nutrients they need for developing muscle, aiding digestion and supporting a healthy immune system, just like they would eat in the wild. This food gives them energy and helps them maintain a lean body, so you do not need to worry about weight issues within your cat.

With eggs as well as a source of protein, this food helps your cat to maintain lean muscles, as well as having a balanced ratio of fat, carbohydrates and essential nutrients to help support a long, healthy life and provide 100% complete and balanced nutrition for adult cats. This food also comes in different flavors Icelandic Arctic Char, High Protein Pacific Tuna, and Salmon, Egg and Sweet Potato. Key Features: High protein cat food With real ocean whitefish as the #1 ingredient Support hydration

Also included are BLUEs exclusive LifeSource Bits a precise blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals carefully selected by holistic veterinarians and animal nutritionists to support immune system health, life stage requirements and a healthy oxidative balance. Formulated for the health and well-being of your cat, only natural ingredients make up this food, enhanced with vitamins and minerals. Key Features: Packed With Real Chicken Grain Free Cat Food With Lifesource Bits

Key Features: Sustainably Sourced Highly Digestible And Nutritious Designed For Adult Cats This food contains brown rice that provides an excellent source of nutrients for your cat and wholesome fiber, but there are no traces of ground corn, wheat or soy ingredients. With beat pulp, this food is a wholesome fiber source that naturally provides prebiotics which help support healthy digestion and there is also taurine present that is another essential amino acid for kitten and cat health, supporting kitten growth and your cats heart and vision throughout their life.

Key Features: wholesome brown rice, vegetables Essential vitamins, minerals and amino acids U.S. farm-raised chicken as the #1 ingredient This Blue Buffalo cat food is made with no grains that contain gluten, and is formulated with delicious, real chicken as the first ingredient to help build and maintain strong muscles. There is an optimal blend of omega-3 and 6 fatty acids to help promote healthy skin and a shiny coat.

This formula contains BLUEs exclusive LifeSource Bits, a blend of antioxidants, vitamins and minerals that help to support immune system health, life stage requirements, and a healthy oxidative balance. This food is enhanced with vitamins and minerals to help support your cats immune system and it never contains chicken or poultry by-product meals, corn, wheat, soy, artificial flavors or preservatives. Also present is taurine, as essential amino acid for cats that helps maintain their heart and eye health.

Key Features: Starts With Real Chicken Grain Free Cat Food With Lifesource Bits The singular source of protein in this cat food is duck, also providing essential amino acids that helps maintain strong muscles and a healthy skin and coat. lso present are peas that provide fiber to support healthy digestion and complete and balanced essential vitamins and minerals to help meet all your cats nutritional needs.

Chicken is the number one ingredient in this protein-rich Iams Proactive Health cat food to help support strong muscles and provide healthy energy for play. A tailored fiber blend with prebiotics and beet pulp support your cats ability to absorb nutrients and an optimal omega 6:3 ratio help with healthy skin and a shiny coat. Key Features: Chicken is the #1 ingredient Help support strong muscles Provide healthy energy for play

In this easily digestible food there are no grains and only natural fibers for improved stool pick up, making it much easier on your cats stomach. It also helps to fuel a grown cats beneficial gut bacteria and also supports a balanced microbiome. Salmon is the number one ingredient in this food and this high-quality protein helps your cat maintain lean muscles in their older years.

This grain free food from Wellness Core gives your cat complete and balanced nutrition. Essential nutrients promote healthy eyes, teeth and gums too and fruit and veggie antioxidants improve your cats overall nutrition. With added glucosamine hydrochloride and chondroitin sulfate, your cats joints are supported and there are no meat by-products, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives as well as no grains.

Key Features: Savory Food Cats Love Elevated Nutrition For A Lifetime Of Wellbeing Whole Body Health The main source of protein in this food is high-quality salmon and herring, helping your cat to maintain strong and healthy muscles. Also included are omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, found in flaxseed, to help with any shedding problems and maintain your cats shiny coat.

Key Features: Enjoy A Lifetime Of Wellbeing Together Specially Made For Indoor Cats Whole Body Health It comes with added vitamins, minerals and nutrients alongside vegetables and a savoury gravy for a well-rounded recipe. This cat food also comes in a range of flavors, including Arctic char, chicken and sweet potato, duck, cod, tuna, herring, salmon and ocean whitefish.

The Pruina Fancy Feast wet cat food comes in packs of thirty with three different flavors beef, chicken and turkey. Without grains, these food cans are made to support your cats overall health with each serving delivering 100% complete and balanced nutrition. Key Features: Tender pate offers delightful texture 100 percent complete Balanced nutrition for adult cats

With no grains, gluten, poultry by-product meal or other filler ingredients, your feline is getting only the healthiest in this food to keep them active. There are added vitamins, minerals and taurine, an essential amino acid that helps with your cats heart and eye health. Key Features: High-protein With no grain, gluten or filler ingredients Natural wet cat food

The proteins are carefully balanced with calories of fat, ensuring your cat reaches and maintains a healthy weight. Of course, there are no grains such as corn, wheat or soy so your kitty will not suffer from an upset stomach, and there are also no chicken or poultry by-product meals and no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. The NUTRO Perfect Portions Grain Free Natural wet cat food comes in a variety of flavors beef tuna and chicken with high-quality protein being the foundation, helping your cat stay lean, active and healthy, as well as supporting healthy skin, a shiny coat and good digestion.

The easy-to-chew food is easy on your cats mouth and stomach and there are no grains as well as no corn, wheat or soy protein, chicken by-product meal or artificial preservatives, colors or flavors. Chicken is the first ingredient in this food, offering high-quality protein for your kittys muscles as well as a delicious taste.

As a cat parent, you want to be sure you choose a healthy diet for your beloved feline. Grainfree diets are touted by manufacturers as healthy for pets, but whats the real story about grainfree cat food?

Overall, food allergies are much less common than many pet owners believe and when they do occur they are usually caused by animal-sourced ingredients such as chicken, milk, fish, and eggs, Heinze said. Made with real ocean whitefish as the primary source of protein, this nutrient-packed dry food is grainfree, high in moisture, and supplemented with natural fibers to aid digestion.

Manufactured by Merrick Pet Care, the Whole Earth Farms brand is designed for affordability while still providing high-quality products like this chicken recipe dry food. Featuring cage-free white meat chicken and fresh pumpkin, this minimally processed wet food is complete and balanced for adult cats and supplemented with fiber and essential nutrients. Loaded with premium roasted meats like venison and salmon, this grainfree dry food is nutrient-rich and highly digestible to nourish your cats body from the inside out.

American Journey is Chewys in-house brand and this grainfree recipe contains a blend of deboned chicken and turkey for protein-rich nutrition and maximum flavor.

Our Review Process Our reviews are based on extensive research and, when possible, hands-on testing. Each time you make a purchase through one of our independently-chosen links, well receive a percentage of the proceeds. Read more about how were supported here.

If you take a closer look at the product names, however, youll start to notice keywords like natural, holistic, and grainfree. You may also be aware of FDA reports linking grainfree diets to an increased risk of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), a form of heart disease, in dogs.

In this article, well explore the subject of grainfree diets to learn what they are and whether theyre good for your cat. Made with real animal protein as main ingredients Nutritionally balanced for adult cats Packed with moisture and low in carbohydrates Rich in animal-based protein and moisture Made with all-natural ingredients Packed with healthy omega fatty acids

Brand Name: Smalls Made In: United States Food Form: Fresh Guaranteed Protein: 21.20% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: $1.60 Smalls is a fresh cat food delivery services that uses human-grade ingredients including premium proteins like chicken, turkey, and fish. Smalls cat food is delivered frozen, so youll need to thaw the first package overnight in the fridge before feeding.

Though Smalls uses high-quality proteins and other natural ingredients in their formulas, there are a fair number of customer complaints regarding the digestibility. Smalls has also had some issues with fulfillment including delayed shipments and some customers have trouble changing or canceling their subscription through their online account. Featuring chicken thigh, breast, and liver as the top three ingredients, this fresh food is packed with premium animal protein.

Green beans, peas, and kale are the only carbohydrate ingredients and they are naturally grainfree and rich in nutrients. In addition to being high in protein and low in carbohydrates, this formula is rich in moisture which helps support digestion as well as healthy skin and coat. Overall, this minced chicken recipe is a high-quality source of balanced nutrition for cats in all life stages.

Chicken Thigh, Chicken Breast, Chicken Liver, Green Beans, Peas, Water sufficient for processing, Chicken Heart, Kale, Vegetable Oil, Calcium Carbonate, Dicalcium Phosphate, Choline Bitartrate, Salt, Taurine, Magnesium Gluconate, Potassium Chloride, Zinc Gluconate, Ascorbic Acid, Copper Gluconate, Vitamin E Supplement, Manganese Gluconate, Ferrous Gluconate, Niacin, Thiamine Hydrochloride, Vitamin A, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Selenium, Dried Kelp, Biotin, Vitamin B12. Brand Name: Open Farm Made In: United States Food Form: Wet Food Guaranteed Protein: 8.0% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: Unknown When it comes to reducing litter box odor, the quality of your cats diet matters.

This Open Farm formula is our premium pick because it features wholesome, high-quality ingredients that are 100% human-grade and ethically sourced. This wet food formula features humanely raised turkey as the primary ingredient and the sole source of protein. Because turkey is a novel protein for many cats, it may help relieve digestive issues related to food allergies or intolerance.

Youll also find turkey bone broth as a main ingredient which provides moisture and may help support healthy digestion. In addition to being rich in animal protein, this formula is completely free from fillers, animal by-products, and vaguely named ingredients as well as the artificial additives that often contribute to litter box odor. It contains more plant ingredients than wed like, but the dry matter carbohydrate content of the formula as a whole is still fairly low.

Humanely Raised Turkey, Turkey Bone Broth, Pumpkin, Carrots, Spinach, Red Lentils, Agar Agar, Non-GMO Cranberries, Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas), Chicory Root, Sunflower Oil, Coconut Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Salt, Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin E Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Riboflavin Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Sodium Selenite, Dried Kelp, Potassium Chloride, Dandelion Greens, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Turmeric. Single source of high-quality animal protein No fillers, animal by-products, or vaguely named ingredients Contains the moisture your cat needs for hydration Made from 100% human-grade, ethically sourced ingredients Fairly expensive compared to the average cat food Contains several plant-based ingredients

Brand Name: Wellness Made In: United States Food Form: Canned Food Guaranteed Protein: 12% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: $3.60 Formulated for adult cats, this canned food is completely free from grains including low-quality fillers. Youll also find cranberries for their urinary tract benefits as well as flaxseed as a natural source of omega fatty acids and dietary fiber.

The only downside is that it is a little bit pricey and the size of the 3-ounce can may be a little deceiving based on the weight it holds. Chicken, Turkey, Chicken Broth, Chicken Liver, Chicken Meal, Turkey Liver, Dried Ground Potatoes, Natural Flavor, Cranberries, Guar Gum, Ground Flaxseed, Potassium Chloride, Salmon Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Choline Chloride, Taurine, Cassia Gum, Xanthan Gum, Dried Kelp, Chicory Root Extract, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Magnesium Sulfate, Iron Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin E Supplement, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Niacin, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Potassium Iodide, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract. Made with real animal protein as main ingredients Nutritionally balanced for adult cats Packed with moisture and low in carbohydrates

The Instinct brand is formulated to mimic your cats natural ancestral diet which is built on high-quality animal proteins. This recipe contains minimal added carbohydrates which are limited to fresh veggies for a total of under 7% carbs. In addition to being loaded with animal-based protein and moisture, this formula contains chelated minerals and added vitamins to ensure nutritional balance for adult cats.

Youll also find additional fruits and veggies at the end of the list which provide natural sources for key nutrients as well. Though it may be above average in price, however, it is free from grains and low-quality fillers and doesnt contain any artificial additives. Chicken, Turkey, Chicken Liver, Chicken Broth, Ground Flaxseed, Montmorillonite Clay, Egg Product, Peas, Carrots, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Minerals (Iron Proteinate, Zinc Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Potassium Iodide), Choline Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid), Taurine, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate, Menhaden Fish Oil (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols), Artichokes, Cranberries, Pumpkin, Tomato, Blueberries, Broccoli, Cabbage, Kale, Parsley.

Rich in animal-based protein and moisture Made with all-natural ingredients Packed with healthy omega fatty acids Packed with real animal protein including flavorful chunks of chicken, this Weruva recipe is our top choice for picky eaters. What we love about this recipe, aside from its rich protein content, is that it is completely free from grains, fillers, and carrageenan.

It doesnt contain antibiotics, growth hormones, GMOs, or MSG and it is produced in a human food facility. In addition to being a great source of real animal protein and moisture for your cat, this Weruva recipe is also available in larger cans than many weve reviewed. Meat-based recipe very high in protein Low in carbohydrates, estimated under 8% No grains, fillers, or artificial additives

High in protein and animal-based ingredients Free from grains, fillers, and artificial additives Contains muscle meat, organs, and bone Rich in animal-based protein Highly digestible natural ingredients Free from grains, fillers, and artificial additives Primarily made from nutritious animal-based ingredients High in protein from quality sources Relatively low in carbohydrates for a dry food

Brand Name: Dr. Elseys Made In: United States Food Form: Dry Food Guaranteed Protein: 59% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: $0.80 Our top pick overall for the best grainfree dry cat food is this cleanprotein recipe from Dr. Elseys. Gelatin also acts as one of the foods sources of structure which is a replacement for grain-based options like grains or legumes.

In addition to being packed with protein, this dry food recipe contains moderate fat and above average fiber content. Chicken, Dried Egg Product, Pork Protein Isolate, Gelatin, Chicken Fat (Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols), Flaxseed, Natural Flavor, Salmon Oil, Potassium Citrate, Calcium Carbonate, Fructooligosaccharide, Calcium Carbonate, Choline Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Acetate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid), Minerals (Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Calcium Carbonate, Manganous Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Sodium Selenite, Cobalt Carbonate, Ethylenediamine Dihydroiodide), Potassium Chloride, Mixed Tocopherols (Preservative), Taurine, Salt, Rosemary Extract. Meat-based recipe very high in protein Low in carbohydrates, estimated under 8% No grains, fillers, or artificial additives

Brand Name: Kirkland Signature Made In: United States Food Form: Dry Food Guaranteed Protein: 32% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: $0.20 This recipe does contain several sources of added carbohydrate, but they are grainfree and generally fairly digestible for cats. We also like that this formula contains guaranteed levels of probiotics to support your cats health and digestion.

Though it was once only sold in Costco stores, you can now buy Kirkland cat food online on Amazon. Other facts you should know about this brand include a product recall from 2012 due to potential salmonella contamination. This recall also affected other brands produced by Diamond Pet Foods including Chicken Soup for the Soul, Taste of the Wild, and 4Health.

This formula contains over 45% carbs measured on a dry matter basis and over 38% by caloric weight. Salmon Meal, Ocean Fish Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Peas, Potatoes, Pea Protein, Canola Oil, Natural Flavor, Choline Chloride, Dl-methionine, Taurine, Dried Chicory Root, Tomatoes, Blueberries, Raspberries, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Dried Bifidobacterium Animalis Fermentation Product, Zinc Proteinate, Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Manganese Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Zinc Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Vitamin A Supplement, Biotin, Potassium Iodide, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin (Vitamin B2), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Manganous Oxide, Sodium Selenite, Vitamin D Supplement, Folic Acid. Brand Name: Ziwi Peak Made In: New Zealand Food Form: Air-Dried Guaranteed Protein: 43% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: $2.70

Ziwi Peak is a premium pet food brand based in New Zealand. This particular recipe features whole, blue mackerel which is 100% sourced from ethical farms as well as grass-fed lamb. It contains 96% meat, fish, organs, and New Zealand green mussels which puts it under 5% carbohydrate.

Because it is air-dried rather than extruded like traditional kibble, the ingredients retain more of their original nutritional content. The higher nutritional quality accounts for the high price point of this recipe which is about $1.75 per ounce. It does contain synthetic essential nutrients, but the majority of the main ingredients come from muscle meat, organs, and bone.

High in protein and animal-based ingredients Free from grains, fillers, and artificial additives Contains muscle meat, organs, and bone When it comes to supporting your cats healthy weight loss, its important to find a highly digestible recipe that is rich in real animal protein and this Tiki Cat formula fits the bill. Youll also find dried egg as a supplemental protein source and a limited number of digestible grainfree carbohydrates.

Though this recipe contains a relatively limited number of carbohydrate ingredients compared to some formulas, its still a little higher in carbs than wed prefer. We do appreciate, however, that it is grainfree and doesnt contain any low-quality fillers like corn, wheat, or soy and it is completely free from artificial additives and by-products as well. Rich in animal-based protein Digestible high quality ingredients Free from grains, fillers, and artificial additives

Relatively high carbohydrate content Low in moisture (like all dry foods) Brand Name: Solid Gold Made In: United States Food Form: Dry Food Guaranteed Protein: 42% Min Life Stage: Adult Typical Cost Per Day: $0.35 If you have a picky eater, youll need a recipe that is packed with real animal ingredients, so it has an appealing flavor and aroma.

In addition to being made primarily from animal proteins, this Indigo Moon recipe has a significant number of positive customer reviews. Cats and their owners alike seem to be big fans of this recipe and it is surprisingly low in carbohydrates for a dry food, estimated under 20%. The first ingredient in this grainfree cat food is chicken meal, a concentrated source of animal protein.

Youll also find fresh chicken, dried eggs, and ocean fish meal as supplemental sources of protein. Chicken Meal, Potatoes, Canola Oil (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Peas, Chicken, Dried Eggs, Ocean Fish Meal, Natural Flavor, Carrots, Potassium Chloride, Pumpkin, Salmon Oil (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (Source of Vitamin C), Niacin, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid), Taurine, Minerals (Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Zinc Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate), Blueberries, Cranberries, DL-Methionine, Choline Chloride, Dried Chicory Root, Rosemary Extract, Dried Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Dried Enterococcus Faecium Fermentation Product, Dried Lactobacillus Casei Fermentation Product. Primarily made from nutritious animal-based ingredients High in protein from quality sources Relatively low in carbohydrates for a dry food

Brand Name: Open Farm Made In: United States Food Form: Dry Food Guaranteed Protein: 37.0% Life Stage: All Life Stages Typical Cost Per Day: $2.75 Youll also see herring meal in the third slot on the ingredients list which makes this recipe protein-rich in the whole. In addition to being packed with animal-based protein, this formula contains herring oil as a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids.

The formula is, however, completely free from fillers, animal by-products, and vaguely named ingredients as well as artificial additives. Ocean Whitefish, Ocean Whitefish Meal, Herring Meal, Garbanzo Beans (Chickpeas), Coconut Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Green Lentils, Herring Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Pumpkin, Natural Flavor, Red Lentils, Non-GMO Cranberries, Apples, Dried Chicory Root Extract, Choline Chloride, Salt, Dandelion Greens, Taurine, Turmeric, Potassium Chloride, Tricalcium Phosphate, Dried Yucca Schidigera Extract, Mixed Tocopherols (a natural preservative), Calcium Carbonate, Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Copper Proteinate, Manganese Proteinate, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate, Vitamin E Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Niacin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Biotin, Vitamin A Acetate, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Rosemary Extract. When a pet food manufacturer removes grains from a product, they often replace it with another carbohydrate like potato, lentils, peas, or tapioca.

In many cases, grainfree products are loaded with high-glycemic carbs that can cause your cats blood sugar to spike. Your cat is an obligate carnivore which means hes evolved to follow a primarily meat-based diet. You can, however, estimate the carb content of a cat food recipe using the information provided in the Guaranteed Analysis.

Add up these five percentages and subtract from 100% that will give you the estimated carb content of the recipe. Ideally, you want the carb content to be close to zero, but were generally happy with commercial diets that contain less than 10% estimated carbohydrate. You should always be checking the list of ingredients for red flags and do a quick calculation on estimated carbs to determine whether a product is worth considering.

It may be true that you wont find a lion munching on grains in the wild, but grains can be used as a natural source of vitamins, minerals, and energy in a nutritionally balanced commercial cat food recipe. As long as the recipe meets your cats needs for protein and doesnt go overboard on carbohydrates, theres nothing terribly wrong with it. Common symptoms of food allergies in cats include itchy skin, hair loss, and digestive issues.

If your cat is exhibiting these symptoms, talk to your veterinarian and consider an elimination diet using a limited ingredient or single source protein recipe. In July of 2018, the FDA announced the launch of an investigation into reports of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in pets following grainfree diets. Its worth noting, however, that the diets in question contained a high proportion of peas, lentils, legumes, and potatoes.

The concern is that the FDA received a significant number of reports of DCM for breeds of dog that werent previously known to possess a genetic predisposition for the disease. The FDA issued several updates over the course of the next two years but failed to provide concrete evidence leaning one way or another. In September 2020, the FDA issued another update regarding a study involving 150 dogs diagnosed with DCM in an attempt to identify potential causative factors.

The results showed that DCM is a complex issue with multiple potential variables including breed, age, weight, and more. Dietary changes were not judged responsible for dogs that experienced full or partial recovery. In other words, the analysis revealed no definitive relationship between grainfree and legume-rich diets and the incidence of DCM.

Taurine is an essential amino acid and deficiency in this nutrient is a well-documented potential cause for DCM. Its important to remember that grainfree diets are primarily a marketing tool used by pet food manufacturers the incidence of grain allergies in cats is actually fairly low. Though cats require animal-based sources for the majority of their nutrition, they have some ability to metabolize high-quality carbohydrates like whole grains and vegetables.

What Makes a Good Grain-free Cat Food?

This food is formulated to be appropriate for cats in all life stages. This means it can also be eaten by kittens. The one drawback to this is that it’s a little higher in calories and fats than some other options. This might not be ideal if you have lazy older cats. However, for higher energy cats, it’s a good food that’s rich in nutrients and protein.

What Kinds of Grain-Free Food Are Available?

There are many types of grainfree food out there. If you have a picky cat that will only eat wet or dry food, don’t worry, there is plenty of options for both. Freeze-dried foods tend to have the fewest ingredients but are more expensive. If your cat isn’t choosy, you can feed them a mixture of wet and dry food. Wet food helps sneak more moisture into your cat’s diet and can help if they have urinary tract issues.

Best Grain-Free Cat Food – Comparison Table

A grainfree diet is where the food contains no wheat, rice or corn. Although grain allergies in cats are very rare, they are still possible. Some of the symptoms include itchy or inflamed skin, excessive grooming, hair loss or bald patches, and sores and scabs. If your cat experiences any of these things, you can take them to your vet and they will be able to establish which ingredient it is, if any, that is causing these allergic reactions by a process of elimination. Of course, some cats don’t necessarily have an allergy, but an intolerance to grains. Owners who suspect a grain intolerance in their cats have reported a lesser amount of vomiting after switching to a grainfree diet.While grains are something that can be cut out of your cat’s diet, there are certain things that your cat must eat to survive. Mentioned above, cats are carnivorous and require primarily animal-based proteins to survive. This protein can come from a range of animals, such as chicken, beef, eggs, venison, lamb, salmon, sardines, mussels and duck. Organ meat, such as chicken or beef liver, is also a bonus. Unlike dogs, cats do not thrive well with carbohydrates in their diet and so the first five ingredients of the cat food should be meat.There are also many nutrients like antioxidants, minerals and vitamins in vegetables and therefore manufacturers include them in cat food. Some manufacturers will include vegetables in the fist five ingredients which is fine, but at least three out of the five ingredients should be animal products.

Advantages

The first advantage of switching to a grainfree recipe is, if your cat suffers from a grain allergy, a no-brainer! By taking out the ingredient that is causing an allergy within your cat, your kitty will be both happier and healthier and enjoy life more! Switching to a grainfree diet also replicates a cat’s diet in the wild more closely. In the wild, cats choose not to eat grains out of choice and are wired to eat meat and protein.Often in cat food, manufacturers use grains as a filler. These filler ingredients such as wheat, corn and rice bulk up the food and boost the carbohydrate count in the food, but they are not always of great quality and are often taking the place of better, more nutritious ingredients. By staying away from grains, you are more likely to find healthier and better quality ingredients on the packet.

Disadvantages

However, there are disadvantages to grainfree cat food too. By removing the grains from cat food, something has to be put in their place. This can often be fats and is something to watch out for to make sure your cat is still getting a balanced diet. Otherwise, they are more likely to become overweight. Another disadvantage to grainfree cat food is that they are often more expensive than regular cat food. However, cat’s are often able to meet their nutritional needs with smaller portions when consuming grainfree food, so the price can sometimes work out to be the same.A good grainfree pet food should, of course, contain no grains but still contain all the other ingredients that your cat needs for a nutritional diet. The Association of American Feed Control Officials has set out guidelines that cat food companies must follow. As mentioned above, your cat needs three main ingredients that you should look for in their food — high protein, high moisture and low carbohydrates. Good fats are also a great ingredient for cat food. These can be found in the meat proteins, but can also be supplemented in the food. This includes omega-3 fatty acids, also known as EPA, DHA and ALA.You should stay away from ingredients that are sourced from a cheap location or are vague or nondescript, because they may be unhealthy and could worsen health problems within your cat, including diabetes, kidney disease, cancer, and obesity.You can give your cat dry or wet grainfree food — it will depend on their preference. Sometimes, wet food is best if your cat does not drink as much water as they should, as it gives them the moisture they need but while they are eating. The type of pet food you give your cat will also depends on your cat’s preference and taste buds. There are so many different types of grainfree cat food on the market these days that you will be able to find one your cat loves and if you can’t, ask your vet for their help.Cats do not have the same enzyme in their saliva that humans have — called salivary amylase — which assists in the breakdown of grains before they reach the stomach. However, they do have amylase secreted by the pancreas, allowing them to break down grains in the intestines as digestion occurs. This makes it possible for them to absorb carbohydrates from grains, but in the wild this would only be in very small amounts.If you’re ready to switch your cat to a grainfree diet, take a look at the best cat food we recommend below, all available to you on Amazon.

Purina Beyond Simply Natural Cat Food

In the Purina Beyond Simply Natural cat food, chicken is the number one ingredient. Wheat-free, this high protein food helps support your cat’s strong, lean muscles. The food contains natural fruit and vegetable accents harvested from nutrient rich soil as well as egg, pea protein and yeast as excellent sources of amino acids. Included in this food are barley and rice, providing high-quality carbohydrates for energy, as well as oat meal and pea fiber that supports healthy digestion.However, this food is free of the grain wheat, as well as corn and soy and there are no artificial colors of flavors in this food. All the ingredients are sustainably sourced and the recipe is free from poultry by-product meal. This cat food also comes in the flavor of salmon and brown rice.

Purina Beyond Grain Free Cat Food

The Purina Beyond grainfree cat food consists of premium natural ingredients, with the first ingredient being sustainably sourced ocean whitefish from the Pacific Ocean. With eggs as well as a source of protein, this food helps your cat to maintain lean muscles, as well as having a balanced ratio of fat, carbohydrates and essential nutrients to help support a long, healthy life and provide 100% complete and balanced nutrition for adult cats.The recipe for this cat food is 100% grainfree are there are no poultry by-product meal, artificial colors, flavors or preservatives, so your cat is only getting the best ingredients from trusted sources. This food also comes in different flavors — Icelandic Arctic Char, High Protein Pacific Tuna, and Salmon, Egg and Sweet Potato.

Halo Grain Free Wet Cat Food

Show your cats that you love them and want them to be healthy with this grainfree wet cat food from Halo. The variety pack is perfect for picky cats and homes with multiple cats. You can try all of the different recipes and see which ones your cats love. You get 12 cans per package, with each can holding 5.5 ounces to serve as a full meal. Halo does not use any GMO ingredients and relies on healthy ingredients that can improve the look of your cat’s fur. The ingredients can also improve your cat’s overall health along with its eyes and heart.

Natural Balance L.I.D. Cat Food

This Natural Balance L.I.D. cat food stands for “limited ingredients”, meaning the food is made with only one source of protein without containing any grains or fillers. This food allows you to choose the precise ingredients you feed your cat and allow you to specify your cat’s sources of protein and carbohydrates, ensuring they are getting the healthiest and most balanced nutrition possible. The singular source of protein in this cat food is duck, also providing essential amino acids that helps maintain strong muscles and a healthy skin and coat.lso present are peas that provide fiber to support healthy digestion and complete and balanced essential vitamins and minerals to help meet all your cat’s nutritional needs. There are no potatoes, corn, wheat or soy and no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. This food also comes in three other flavors — green pea and chicken, green pea and salmon, and green pea and venison.

Hill’s Science Diet Dry Cat Food

Especially designed for cat’s with a sensitive stomach and skin and to support the digestive health with prebiotic fiber, the Hill’s Science Diet dry cat food is made from natural ingredients without any artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. In this easily digestible food there are no grains and only natural fibers for improved stool pick up, making it much easier on your cat’s stomach. It also helps to fuel a grown cat’s beneficial gut bacteria and also supports a balanced microbiome.Salmon is the number one ingredient in this food and this high-quality protein helps your cat maintain lean muscles in their older years. With clinically proven antioxidants such as vitamin C and E, you can be sure that this food is supporting your kitty’s immune system, plus DHA from fish oil supports brain health and eye development. Balanced minerals also promote strong teeth and bones. There is no byproduct meal in this food and the food is made in the USA with global ingredients you can trust.

Weruva Classic Cat Food

Featuring cage-free white meat chicken and fresh pumpkin, this minimally processed wet food is complete and balanced for adult cats and supplemented with fiber and essential nutrients.

Wellness Natural Grain-Free Wet Canned Cat Food

The Wellness brand is dedicated to holistic nutrition and this chicken recipe features natural ingredients like chicken, fresh cranberries, and ground flaxseed.

American Journey Turkey and Chicken Recipe

American Journey is Chewy’s in-house brand and this grainfree recipe contains a blend of deboned chicken and turkey for protein-rich nutrition and maximum flavor.

Our Review Process

When walking through the cat food aisle at your local grocery store, it may seem like one cat food is the same as any other. There are differences in packaging from one brand to another, but if you were to open up any two bags the product inside would look pretty similar.If you take a closer look at the product names, however, you’ll start to notice keywords like “natural,” “holistic,” and “grainfree.”Claims like these are common on pet food labels but they can be a little misleading for pet owners.When you see a product labeled “natural,” for example, you might wonder whether other brands are somehow not natural. When you see “grainfree” on the label, you may wonder whether a product that contains grains is somehow worse.Unfortunately, the answer to this question is not a simple “yes” or “no.”The popularity of grainfree diets for pets has skyrocketed in recent years but there’s a great deal of misinformation out there about what “grainfree” really means and whether grainfree diets are any better or worse for your cat. You may also be aware of FDA reports linking grainfree diets to an increased risk of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM), a form of heart disease, in dogs.In this article, we’ll explore the subject of grainfree diets to learn what they are and whether they’re good for your cat. You’ll also see our recommendations for the top 10 grainfree cat foods, wet and dry.

Ingredients:

Please Use FIRSTSUB20 For First Subscription Order To Save 20%When it comes to reducing litter box odor, the quality of your cat’s diet matters. This Open Farm formula is our premium pick because it features wholesome, high-quality ingredients that are 100% human-grade and ethically sourced.This wet food formula features humanely raised turkey as the primary ingredient and the sole source of protein. Because turkey is a novel protein for many cats, it may help relieve digestive issues related to food allergies or intolerance. You’ll also find turkey bone broth as a main ingredient which provides moisture and may help support healthy digestion.In addition to being rich in animal protein, this formula is completely free from fillers, animal by-products, and vaguely named ingredients as well as the artificial additives that often contribute to litter box odor. It contains more plant ingredients than we’d like, but the dry matter carbohydrate content of the formula as a whole is still fairly low.

Ingredients:

Buy On Chewy Buy On AmazonFormulated for adult cats, this canned food is completely free from grains including low-quality fillers. In fact, five of the first six ingredients are all animal-based including two whole sources of fresh poultry (chicken and turkey), two organ meats, and chicken meal.The primary source of carbohydrate in this formula is dried ground potatoes which, though a little high in starch, are a digestible source of carbs for cats. You’ll also find cranberries for their urinary tract benefits as well as flaxseed as a natural source of omega fatty acids and dietary fiber.Overall, this Wellness grainfree formula is a nutritious choice for adult cats. The only downside is that it is a little bit pricey and the size of the 3-ounce can may be a little deceiving based on the weight it holds.

Ingredients:

Buy On Chewy Buy On AmazonThe Instinct brand is formulated to mimic your cat’s natural ancestral diet which is built on high-quality animal proteins. True to their promise, Instinct’s GrainFree Real Chicken Recipe packs a punch with protein, listing three animal-based proteins as the top three ingredients.Fresh chicken, fresh turkey, and chicken liver make up the first three ingredients in this formula, contributing to a crude protein content of 10% which converts to over 45% dry matter basis. This recipe contains minimal added carbohydrates which are limited to fresh veggies for a total of under 7% carbs.In addition to being loaded with animal-based protein and moisture, this formula contains chelated minerals and added vitamins to ensure nutritional balance for adult cats. You’ll also find additional fruits and veggies at the end of the list which provide natural sources for key nutrients as well.The primary downside to this recipe is the cost. Though it may be above average in price, however, it is free from grains and low-quality fillers and doesn’t contain any artificial additives.

Ingredients:

Packed with real animal protein including flavorful chunks of chicken, this Weruva recipe is our top choice for picky eaters. In addition to being loaded with real animal protein, it is high in moisture and very low in carbohydrates, though not as low as some of the recipes we’ve chosen (about 12%).What we love about this recipe, aside from its rich protein content, is that it is completely free from grains, fillers, and carrageenan. It doesn’t contain antibiotics, growth hormones, GMOs, or MSG and it is produced in a human food facility. We should note, however, that this facility isn’t located in the United States. Weruva canned foods are produced in Thailand.In addition to being a great source of real animal protein and moisture for your cat, this Weruva recipe is also available in larger cans than many we’ve reviewed. It comes in 3-ounce, 5.5-ounce, and 10-ounce cans with a recommended feeding of 1 ounce per pound of bodyweight. For a 10-pound cat, you’d only need to feed one 10-ounce can per day, ideally divided into two or more feedings.

Ingredients:

Buy On Chewy Buy On AmazonOur top pick overall for the best grainfree dry cat food is this cleanprotein recipe from Dr. Elsey’s. Though Dr. Elsey’s is best known for their cat litter, they also offer two dry cat food recipes and a small assortment of canned foods. This chicken recipe dry food contains 95% protein from animal sources with a guaranteed protein content of 59%.The first ingredient in this grainfree dry cat food recipe is fresh chicken. It’s followed by dried egg, pork protein isolate, and gelatin, all of which are animal-based sources of protein. Gelatin also acts as one of the food’s sources of structure which is a replacement for grain-based options like grains or legumes.In addition to being packed with protein, this dry food recipe contains moderate fat and above average fiber content. Dietary fiber offers limited benefit to cats, especially when it comes from plant-based sources but 4% shouldn’t be high enough to bother your cat’s digestive system.

Ingredients:

Grainfree cat food is often more expensive than the alternative, but Kirkland cat food is one of the most economical brands on the market. This particular recipe features protein-rich salmon meal as the first ingredient and contains several supplemental proteins including ocean fish meal.This recipe does contain several sources of added carbohydrate, but they are grainfree and generally fairly digestible for cats. We also like that this formula contains guaranteed levels of probiotics to support your cat’s health and digestion.Though it was once only sold in Costco stores, you can now buy Kirkland cat food online on Amazon. Other facts you should know about this brand include a product recall from 2012 due to potential salmonella contamination. This recall also affected other brands produced by Diamond Pet Foods including Chicken Soup for the Soul, Taste of the Wild, and 4Health.Another downside to this recipe is its high carbohydrate content. This formula contains over 45% carbs measured on a dry matter basis and over 38% by caloric weight. It still contains over 30% protein, however, which makes it a biologically appropriate choice for adult cats.

Ingredients:

Buy On Chewy Buy On AmazonZiwi Peak is a premium pet food brand based in New Zealand. This particular recipe features whole, blue mackerel which is 100% sourced from ethical farms as well as grass-fed lamb. It contains 96% meat, fish, organs, and New Zealand green mussels which puts it under 5% carbohydrate.In addition to being packed with protein and animal-based ingredients, this air-dried formula is nutritionally dense. Because it is air-dried rather than extruded like traditional kibble, the ingredients retain more of their original nutritional content.The higher nutritional quality accounts for the high price point of this recipe which is about $1.75 per ounce. That being said, the food is very calorie-dense, so you’ll only need to feed your cat about 2 ounces per day. This makes Ziwi Peak’s dry food much more affordable than their canned food.We love that this formula is made with high-quality, natural ingredients in a pure and simple formula that is ideal for sensitive stomachs. It does contain synthetic essential nutrients, but the majority of the main ingredients come from muscle meat, organs, and bone.

Ingredients:

Buy On Chewy Buy On AmazonWhen it comes to supporting your cat’s healthy weight loss, it’s important to find a highly digestible recipe that is rich in real animal protein and this Tiki Cat formula fits the bill.This dry food recipe is packed with real animal protein including deboned chicken, chicken meal, and dehydrated chicken as the first three ingredients. You’ll also find dried egg as a supplemental protein source and a limited number of digestible grainfree carbohydrates.Though this recipe contains a relatively limited number of carbohydrate ingredients compared to some formulas, it’s still a little higher in carbs than we’d prefer. We do appreciate, however, that it is grainfree and doesn’t contain any low-quality fillers like corn, wheat, or soy and it is completely free from artificial additives and by-products as well.Like Weruva, Tiki Cat produces many of their foods in Thailand. They describe their facilities as “award-winning human-grade canning plants” and we’re inclined to believe it. Thailand is quickly becoming one of the primary locations for pet food manufacturing (particularly wet foods) and, for the most part, follows high standards.

Ingredients:

Buy On Chewy Buy On AmazonCats are notorious for being picky when it comes to their diet, but some cats are pickier than others. If you have a picky eater, you’ll need a recipe that is packed with real animal ingredients, so it has an appealing flavor and aroma. Our top grainfree pick is this Indigo Moon recipe from Solid Gold.In addition to being made primarily from animal proteins, this Indigo Moon recipe has a significant number of positive customer reviews. Cats and their owners alike seem to be big fans of this recipe and it is surprisingly low in carbohydrates for a dry food, estimated under 20%.The first ingredient in this grainfree cat food is chicken meal, a concentrated source of animal protein. You’ll also find fresh chicken, dried eggs, and ocean fish meal as supplemental sources of protein. We’d prefer to see fewer starchy carbs like potatoes and peas in this formula but, again, the total carb content is fairly low and it is still a grainfree recipe that doesn’t contain any low-quality fillers.

Ingredients:

Please Use FIRSTSUB20 For First Subscription Order To Save 20%This high-protein formula features wild-caught seasonal whitefish as the primary ingredient, supplemented with ocean whitefish meal as a concentrated source of animal protein. You’ll also see herring meal in the third slot on the ingredients list which makes this recipe protein-rich in the whole.In addition to being packed with animal-based protein, this formula contains herring oil as a rich source of omega-3 fatty acids. That being said, coconut oil is actually the primary source of added fat and a plant-based source at that.We appreciate that the list of ingredients for this recipe is fairly limited, though there are a few more plant-based ingredients than we’d like to see. The formula is, however, completely free from fillers, animal by-products, and vaguely named ingredients as well as artificial additives.

Is Grain-Free Cat Food A Good Choice?

Before getting into the details of whether grainfree cat food is a good choice for cats, let’s take a moment to explore what grainfree diets are.As the name suggests, a grainfree diet is one that doesn’t include any grains. That means no wheat, barley, rye, rice, corn, or oatmeal. The thing you need to realize about grainfree diets is that they are not necessarily carbohydrate-free.When a pet food manufacturer removes grains from a product, they often replace it with another carbohydrate like potato, lentils, peas, or tapioca. In many cases, grainfree products are loaded with high-glycemic carbs that can cause your cat’s blood sugar to spike. This can be particularly problematic in cats with feline diabetes.Your cat is an obligate carnivore which means he’s evolved to follow a primarily meat-based diet. The majority of his nutrition needs to come from animal sources, not plants. Whether you’re considering a grainfree or grain-inclusive diet, it’s important to determine the total carbohydrate content.Unfortunately, this can be a little tricky because pet food manufacturers don’t list the carb content of their foods. You can, however, estimate the carb content of a cat food recipe using the information provided in the Guaranteed Analysis.To estimate the carb content of a cat food recipe, add up the values for Crude Protein, Crude Fat, Crude Fiber, and Moisture. You’ll also need to add the Ash content, if listed. If it isn’t listed, you can estimate about 7% for dry food and 3% for wet food. Add up these five percentages and subtract from 100% – that will give you the estimated carb content of the recipe.So, as long as a grainfree cat food is primarily meat-based and provides for your cat’s nutritional needs, there’s no reason not to choose it. You should always be checking the list of ingredients for red flags and do a quick calculation on estimated carbs to determine whether a product is worth considering.

Controversy And Misconceptions Surrounding Grain-Free Cat Food

Though there’s theoretically nothing wrong with grainfree cat food as long as it provides for your cat’s nutritional needs, there’s still a great deal of controversy and misinformation surrounding the issue.Until recently, grainfree diets were primarily found in veterinary offices and marketed as specialty diets for cats with food allergies and certain health problems. During the early 2000s, low-carb and gluten-free diet fads became popular and, along with them, a rise in the popularity of grainfree diets for pets.It may be true that you won’t find a lion munching on grains in the wild, but grains can be used as a natural source of vitamins, minerals, and energy in a nutritionally balanced commercial cat food recipe. As long as the recipe meets your cat’s needs for protein and doesn’t go overboard on carbohydrates, there’s nothing terribly wrong with it.

What About Cats With Food Allergies?

If your cat is allergic to grains, a grainfree diet is certainly a better choice than the alternative. That being said, food allergies are rarer in pets than the general public seems to believe and grain allergies are less common than allergies to animal proteins like chicken, beef, and fish.Common symptoms of food allergies in cats include itchy skin, hair loss, and digestive issues. If your cat is exhibiting these symptoms, talk to your veterinarian and consider an elimination diet using a limited ingredient or single source protein recipe.

Do Grain-Free Diets Cause Heart Disease?

In July of 2018, the FDA announced the launch of an investigation into reports of dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in pets following grainfree diets. It’s worth noting, however, that the diets in question contained a high proportion of peas, lentils, legumes, and potatoes. As a group, these are referred to as ‘BEG’ i.e. boutique companies, exotic ingredients, or grainfree.The concern is that the FDA received a significant number of reports of DCM for breeds of dog that weren’t previously known to possess a genetic predisposition for the disease. In response to customer complaints, the FDA’s Center for Veterinary Medicine (CVM) collaborated with the Veterinary Laboratory Investigation and Response Network to investigate the claims.The FDA issued several updates over the course of the next two years but failed to provide concrete evidence leaning one way or another. In fact, their methods of data collection left much to be desired.In September 2020, the FDA issued another update regarding a study involving 150 dogs diagnosed with DCM in an attempt to identify potential causative factors. The results showed that DCM is a complex issue with multiple potential variables including breed, age, weight, and more. Dietary changes were not judged responsible for dogs that experienced full or partial recovery.In other words, the analysis revealed no definitive relationship between grainfree and legume-rich diets and the incidence of DCM.