Buyer’s Guide: Important Things to Consider When Seeking the Top Dry Cat Foods of 2021
To help your special feline live a lifetime of health and wellness, understanding the important things to look for in a quality dry cat food can make a big difference. Read on to learn what makes a top dry cat food of 2021.
Paying careful attention to what you put in your cat’s bowl will not only keep them looking in top condition but feeling awesome too! Feeding your cat high quality nutrition could be seen as a form of preventative medicine, potentially saving your cat from future illnesses, and helping it live a long and happy life.
Too Many Dry Food Choices
With so many products available to buy it can be overwhelming to know which one will be the best for your cat.
So, what are the key factors to consider when selecting a quality dry cat food?
Here are what we suggest you think about when considering an appropriate diet for your pet cat:
Consider the Unique Needs of Cats
Cats are carnivores, meaning they eat meat and have greater protein requirements than other mammals… even dogs! Cats get the nutrients they need through eating meat, nutrients they simply cannot get from foods that are plant based. Such nutrients include arachidonic acid, taurine, vitamin A and B12. Without a constant supply of these nutrients, cats can suffer from hearing loss, skin irritations, heart problems and liver problems.
Generally, all brands will offer complete and balanced nutrition, however, some brands will use substandard plant-based proteins in their formulas. Choosing a product with a high protein meat will ensure a meat-taste that cats love, and that the recipe provides the cat with their natural carnivore needs for best health.
Complete & Balanced Dry Food
Cats require a range of other nutrients to maintain perfect health. These nutrients- carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, minerals, fatty acids and amino acids– are in addition to the nutrients meat provides. These nutrients need to be in the right balances based on the age of your cat and how active it is.
Choosing the right dry food product that gives the correct balance of nutrients and calories is essential.
Buying a nutritionally balanced commercial food is a much easier way to feeding your cat than trying to balance optional nutrition for your cat with your own home preparation of food.
Legal Requirements for Manufacturers of Top Dry Cat Foods of 2021.
Manufacturers are required to ensure every recipe they produce meets the basic minimum nutritional requirements for cats. What the manufacturer states on the package, needs to be true to what is contained in the packet. This is a requirement of AAFCO (Association of American Feed Control Officials).
Read the Dry Food Ingredient List
Always read the ingredients list when deciding upon a dry cat food. Like with all food products, the ingredients are listed in order of relative weight.
Here is what to look for:
- Meat (poultry, beef, fish) listed as the 1st ingredient with concentrated meat meals as the 2nd and 3rd ingredients. With meat as the main ingredient you can be confident that the food is likely to contain enough protein, essential amino acids and fatty acids.
- Ingredients you would want to avoid: ‘by-products’, ‘meat and bone meal’, added sugar, chemical preservatives (BHA, BHT, ethoxyquin, propyl gallate), and artificial flavors and colors. All these are harmful to cats.
- The less fillers in the list the better. To keep costs down, companies will bulk up their products with grain fillers (corn, wheat, soy, rice). Also using vegetables such as peas and sweet potatoes is common. These all add fiber, natural sugars and carbohydrates to the recipe, but must not be overdone, as cats are essentially carnivores not omnivores (like us humans!).
- Avoid dry cat foods that contain “CARRAGEENAN”.
Carrageenan is carcinogenic (causes cancer) and can damage organs and the digestive tract.
- Cats do not take so well to excessive vegetable oils. Some pet companies like to put overdo this oil in their products. Better oils for cat food are fish oil (again, not overdone) and krill oil. These come loaded with omega fatty acids which are essential for healthy cats.
Look for What Other Health Benefits the Food Offers?
Every cat owner will want their pet to be in optimal health so their cat will feel and look their best- and to prevent expensive veterinary visits. A healthy skin, a shiny coat, strong immune system, and a functioning digestive system can all be achieved by giving your cat a complete and balanced high-quality dry cat food, with the addition of supplements and superfoods.
High-quality extra ingredients in the best dry cat food include:
- Omega fatty acid rich foods that promote a healthy skin and coat. Look for salmon oil or flaxseed.
- Dietary fiber to support a healthy digestive system and firm stools.
- Prebiotics, such as chicory root extract, help enhance digestion- better food absorption.
- Probiotics for a healthy gut biome. Look for Lactobacillus and Enterococcus in ingredient list.
- Cranberries help prevent urinary tract infections.
- Chondroitin Sulfate and Glucosamine support joint health.
- Added Vitamin E and Vitamin A that help the immune system.
What We Suggest You Do Now?
Below our Dry Cat Food Tab we give numerous articles…
We research cat foods, answer our viewers’ questions, provide comprehensive buyer’s guides and product reviews.
Top Dry Cat Foods of 2021 Product Reviews- click the links to view the full reviews!
WholeHearted make it convenient to find the right food for your best furry friend. No matter age, size, or breed, when your cat requires a nutritious balanced meal, you can count on WholeHearted. With animal protein as the main ingredient; no artificial flavors or colors; thoughtful analysis of nutrients, and a range of vitamins and minerals in each tin or bag, you can fill their bowl with food that will be healthy for them. Read about the ‘5 Best Wholehearted Cat Foods’ HERE.
Outdoor cats are more active than their indoor cousins and they will be battling the elements of cold and heat, therefore outdoor cats require greater calories. It is important to, not only give your cat meals that are equivalent to their natural wild diet (mice, lizards and birds), but to feed them food that is nutritious and free from ingredients that carnivores won’t tolerate. Read the ‘6 Best Dry Cat Food For Outdoor Cats 2021’ review HERE
The best low carb cat food contain a less carbohydrates than some more traditional cat foods. As obligate carnivores, cats only require a small amount of carbohydrates in their diet and a very high level of protein.
Perhaps your feline has been recommended a low-carb diet by your veterinarian, for instance, if they have diabetes. Or they are overweight, so you need to control Carbs input. Read ‘The Best Low Carb Cat Food’ review HERE.
Veganism has become very popular in many places in the world. The health benefits gained from a balanced diet of fruit, vegetables, grains and nuts are embraced by health-conscious humans. Ethically, eating a plant-based diet helps preserve animals from slaughter. Humans are omnivores and can thrive without meat in their diets, but what about cats? Is their such a thing as a Vegan Cat? Read ‘Vegan Cats’ review HERE.
In this article we Consider Urinary Matters in Cats and Review the Best Cat Food for Urinary health. The health of our cats is vital! With proper care, a cat can live for a long time without having health challenges; however, there are times when they undergo health challenges beyond our reach. One such health issues is the urinary tract infection which puts cats in considerable discomfort. Read ‘Best Cat Food for UTI Health’ article/review HERE.
Articles Answering Frequently Asked Questions- Click the links to view the full articles!
Satisfying a fussy cat can frustrate pet owners who are seeking a food that is nutritionally balanced, whilst trying to appease the choosy palate of their feline. Cat Food Advisor delves into the question, ‘Is Dry Food Bad for Cats?’ Read ‘Is Dry Cat Food Bad for Cats?’ article HERE
There seems to be a much debate around whether cats should eat grains or not. Some pet owners are in full support of cats eating grains. There exists another set of cat lovers who detest the thought of giving grains to cats. Many people believe that feeding grains to cats will harm them in the long run. But what is the correct stance? Can cats eat grain? Read ‘Can Cats Eat Grain?’ article HERE.