How to Choose the Best Grain-Free Cat Food
Choosing between a regular cat food and grain-free options is something many cat parents have to do during their time taking care of their fluffy friend. For many it is a simple decision as not only many cats tend to be picky eaters but also have digestive or allergy problems.
This is where grain free cat food comes in as rice, corn, wheat and other grains with gluten can be allergy producing for many of them. Some kitties can have intolerance to these ingredients resulting in vomiting, diarrhea, and other unpleasant symptoms.
Allergies can produce itchy and dry skin, excessive grooming and bald patches. This is also why many cat owners prefer serving cat foods that will be gentle on their cat’s stomachs and digestive systems. For the reasons above the grain-free options are now very popular and there is a big availability of them on the market.
Negative Sides to Grain-Free Diet
Choosing a balanced meal for your cat is an important aspect of keeping your feline healthy and happy. Switching to a grain-free diet could be an important step if your furry friend is allergic, but it does have some negative aspects to it.
#1) It is expensive – not being able to use grains as a filler forces food companies to include more of the expensive ingredients such as chicken, fish, fruits, and vegetables. The increase in cost might feel unnecessary for some, but many cat owners feel that the investment is worth it.
#2) Nutrient deficiency – considering that grain-free foods miss certain ingredients that more balanced meals would, your cat might be doing well on the allergy front, but he might be missing certain important ingredients that regular meals can provide. Therefore it is crucial to do your research and speak to your veterinarian to ensure a fully balanced nutritional intake is upkept.
#3) Choosing the right one – there are numerous options currently on the market which can impair your decision making process when choosing the right brand for your cat. There are many that might be free of one type of allergen while including a different one that your cat does not accept. The time it can take to choose the proper meal while also being mindful of your wallet, and finding the right mix can be a tiresome and time consuming exercise.
Our Top Picks for the Best Grain-Free Dry, Soft & Wet Cat Food
Our team has researched and reviewed what we think are the best grain-free cat foods sold in 2020 and provided our suggestions and recommendations.
Best Raw Choice: Nature’s Variety Instinct Raw Boost Grain Free Natural Dry Cat Food
For those who prefer to feed their furry friends with a raw diet, Nature’s Variety has a perfect grain-free solution called Instinct Raw Boost Grain Free Dry Food. It comes in three different flavours, with the main ingredients varying from a duck, a rabbit, and a chicken. All of the meals include high-protein kibble mixed with freeze-dried raw meat.
On top of that, you will be providing omega-3s and six fatty acids, antioxidants, and prebiotics for your cat, all of which will aid in a smoother coat, stronger immune system, and healthier digestive system, respectively. And don’t worry, this cat meal does not include any grains, wheat, soy, potatoes, or artificial colors or preservatives.
Blue Buffalo Grain Free Cat Food
The BLUE Wilderness is a proud American brand that makes our top 10 lists on a regular basis based on its commitment to providing good quality and healthy products for cats. This particular grain-free recipe contains an easily digested protein and comes in three flavours – chicken, duck, and salmon.
The food is manufactured under strict quality guidelines and manufacturing practises. It is compliant with all nutrient requirements outlined by AAFCO and the Global Nutrition Committee of the World Small Animal Veterinary Association (WSAVA).
In addition to vitamins, minerals, and high-quality proteins, the kibble is produced with blueberries, cranberries and carrots that provide immensely important antioxidants that aid in the maintenance of a healthy immune system. It is packed with other essentials for healthy hair, eyes, digestion, and strong muscles.
Best Organic: Newman’s Own Organics Advanced Formula Chicken
From the producers of the well-known, delicious, and healthy salad dressings comes this Advanced Cat Formula. Yes, the company is Newman’s Own, and this food is simply amazing. It is made out of organic chicken and many other organic ingredients and is purest to the maximum. This food formula can be given to small kittens and adult cats alike.
The taste is fantastic and the product is very popular and trusted by many cat owners in the United States and other countries. Sure it is on the pricier side, but the quality you get for the price is well worth it. It doesn’t hurt that a portion of the proceeds goes to numerous charitable organizations.
Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Cat Food
Wellness natural grain free cat food formula features a special natural fibre blend that helps move hair and already-formed hairballs through cat’s digestive system. This product has the tastiest recipes that cats always end up loving, and comes in a great combination of flavors. Wellness Complete Health Grain-Free Indoor is a complete and balanced solution diet of high quality proteins and healthy grains with a focus on nutrition for cats that live indoors.
These cats tend to gain weight (lifestyle is more sedentary), experience dry skin (from continued exposure to indoor air and heat), and have increased hairballs (from constant grooming and hair loss from dry skin).
This natural grain-free cat food is proudly made in the USA and is backed by the Wellness Guarantee. It is a delicious blend of salmon, chicken, eggs, cranberries, flax seeds and rosemary, among few others ingredients. The product is fully wheat, corn, soy, and meat by-products free. It neither has artificial flavours, colours or preservatives.
The blend is focused on helping indoor cats with a more sedative lifestyle to maintain a healthy weight and energy as well as help with digestion, skin and coat health.
Best Overall: Natural Balance Limited Ingredient Dry Cat Food
This excellent product always has green peas and a variety of proteins as a number one ingredients. Choose between chicken, duck, salmon, or venison to satisfy the taste buds of your feline friend. The list of ingredients is minimal to keep it as natural as possible and is completely grain-free. This cat meal is well balanced for everyday use and includes omega-3s and 6s for a shiny and healthy coat, together with fiber and protein for prolonged energy and healthy digestion. Your cat is sure to love one of their recipes and flavour combos!
Taste Of The Wild Cat Food
This cat food is from a trusted and well known manufacturer of quality cat food whose recipes follow the nutritional guidelines of the AAFCO Nutrient Profiles for Adult Maintenance. Taste Of The Wild is enriched with peas and sweet potatoes and packed with easily digestible quality protein. As for antioxidants, it’s full of blueberries, raspberries and has tomatoes to help with overall well-being, strong immune system, and a glowing coat.
Nom Nom Chicken Chow Meow
Nom Nom is a food delivery service that will bring straight to your door delicious homemade-style, grain-free meals on a monthly or weekly schedule. Their top chef is a top doctor and one of the 100 board certified veterinary nutritionists in the US, Dr. Justin Shmalberg, and his food is certified by AAFCO Food Nutrient Profiles. The ingredients are human-grade and minimally processed.
Instinct Grain Free Recipe Natural Wet Canned Cat Food
Once again Instinct makes our list but this time with its Original grain-free canned wet cat food. What draws us to this brand, yet again, is its focus on choosing only the best quality ingredients, making the most nutritious rich meals, and producing them proudly in the USA. The cage-free chicken is always the first ingredient, for a full 81% of real animal ingredients, the remaining 19 being vegetables, fruits and other nutritious ingredients. I am sure we don’t have to say it, by being on this list, this canned cat food is obviously made without grains, potato, corn, wheat, soy, by-product meal, artificial colors or preservatives.
Purina Pro Plan True Nature Natural Grain Free Formulas
We are also very high on this brand and the product as Purina is a standard setter in the cat food industry when it comes to quality of wet food. Purina Beyond is another example of their great product line up that’s grain-free and comes in many styles, with chicken, duck, turkey, and fish recipes. You can also opt out and buy a variety pack with most of the flavours combined.
Purina’s meals of course meet all the nutritional requirements of the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles.
Weruva Best Feline Friend Grain-Free Cat Food
With this product you can rest assured that non only you are providing your cat with a delicious and healthy meal, but also being good to the planet and the environment. Weruva’s B.F.F. is the most conscious option on our list and not only will your cat love it but so will the dolphins, as this food is dolphin-safe. You can feed your cat at any stage of his or her life as it is very high in protein, and so it is suitable for kittens. Some pet parents will be happy to hear that this particular food is carrageenan free.
Wellness CORE Natural Grain Free Wet Canned Cat Food
Wellness is a well-trusted brand on the cat food market, and their recipes are generally grain-free. The CORE makes this list specifically because it is also corn, soy, wheat, and gluten-free, and is high in protein. This cat food will be ideally suited for your feline if he or she has dry skin problems. And of course, Wellness CORE Chicken, Turkey & Chicken Liver Recipe Adult Cat Food is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles for all life stages.
Frequently Asked Questions About Best Grain Free Foods
Q: Why is grain-free food healthy?
A: Similar to humans, grains such as rice, wheat, corn, and gluten, in general, can be upsetting to cats stomachs and cause allergies. Without them, cats will digest their meals easier and with fewer complications.
Q: Do cats need grain free food diet?
A: Once again, similar to humans, only those cats who are allergic to these ingredients need to be fed grain-free food, as many cats can ingest them without any problems and complications.
Q: How do you know if your cat is allergic to grains? How do you know if your cat is allergic to gluten?
A: There are certain signs you can watch out that will hint at the intolerance to foods that contain grain and gluten. They include vomiting, diarrhea, itchy and dry skin, excessive grooming, bald spots, and other less prevalent ones. However, the best and only way to truly know if you suspect something is to seek medical advice from your veterinarian.
Q: Is grain-free food more expensive than conventional food?
A: The cost of grain-free food is generally higher than of the conventional cat meals. Consequently, before you switch your cat to this new more expensive diet it is wise to be sure that your feline friend truly needs it.
Q: What is the best grain free cat food? What is the best grain free DRY cat food? What is best grain free CANNED cat food?
A: As always, our answer is “it depends”. It depends if your cats prefer wet or dry food, are they kittens or senior cats, what flavours they prefer, etc. Above we have put together a list of Top 10 Best Grain-Free Cat Food, both wet and dry, and we believe there is something you can find for you kitty from those options.
Q: Is grain free food bad for cats? Is grain free good for cats?
A: Grain-free food is an excellent choice for cats as it contains less cheap fillers and more expensive ingredients such as protein, vegetables, fruits, and berries. They are also easier to digest and more gentle on stomachs and digestive tracts.
Q: What is the best organic grain-free dry cat food?
A: Newman’s Own Organics Advanced Formula Chicken.
Q: What is best grain free dry cat food for constipation?
A: For best grain-free cat food that help with constipation please see our entire post dedicated to that: Best Cat Food for Constipation.
Our Final Thoughts about the Best Grain Free Cat Foods For Sale in 2020
Choosing to feed your cat a grain-free diet could be a very important step in maintaining your feline friend’s health and longevity. Although it is not essential to use it if your cat doesn’t have any food sensitivities or allergies, as the food is generally pricier than meals that contain grain products.
We have put together a list of Top 5 canned grain-free foods for cats and Top 5 dry canned food for cats and we hope that this list will make your research and decision making easier. As always, we welcome all questions, comments, and concerns and will be happy to hear from you. Our team at Bella’s House and Pets hopes that you will find this information useful.