15 Best Dry Cat Foods in 2021
In this article, you’ll find the best dry cat food options to offer to your four-legged friend. Also, let’s reveal the benefits of dry food for cats, learn how to choose healthy dry cat food, and answer the pet owners’ most frequently asked questions on the topic.
For this guide to be unbiased, I did my best to consult several vets, analyze the most popular cat kibble reviews by authoritative bloggers and veterinary nutritionists and examined the information from the best dry cat food brands’ representatives.
Top Dry Cat Foods Reviewed in 2021
One of the most protein-rich dry cat food recipes, this formula is worth trying for cats in love with natural ingredients. The #1 ingredient here is cage-free chicken, and, together with other wholesome components, it composes the well-balanced nutrition for our felines.
Instinct Original is among the best dry cat food brands designing their formulas with probiotics (for healthy digestion) and omega fatty acids (for strong bones, healthy skin, and bright coat). No grains, potato, wheat, soy, corn, or any by-product meals are here to make sure cats only get natural food.
The manufacturer insists that even the pickiest eaters will love this formula, as it’s coated in freeze-dried raw for better taste. No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives are here, which makes this recipe safe for both adult cats and kittens to consume. All the ingredients for this formula are US-made, from real meat, and minimally processed.
- Type: adult, grain-free
- Protein: 41% min
- Weight: 2.2 lbs, 5 lbs, 11 lbs
- Calories: 505 kcal/cup
Thanks to a real, U.S. farm-raised chicken as the #1 ingredient and no by-product meals and fillers inside, this formula has reserved its place in the list of must-try cat kibble brands. With 14% fats and 9% moisture, the food contains biotin, taurine, and all the necessary vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Despite so many useful nutritional elements in the formula, it’s not as calorie-rich as some other recipes. Given that, it’s OK to give to cats on a diet, dealing with weight problems.
This Super Premium Dry Cat Food contains no wheat, corn, and soy. Also, there are no artificial flavors and preservatives inside. With omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, as well as calcium, zinc, and phosphorus, this dry cat food will provide a cat with healthy bones, strong muscles, and energy for an active and happy life.
- Type: adult, premium
- Protein: 34% min
- Weight: 3 lbs, 6 lbs, 14 lbs
- Calories: 386 kcal/cup
High-protein and calorie-rich, this dry cat food formula fits all life cycles and comes with chicken and pork ingredients for better taste and maximum nutrients. According to its guaranteed analysis, the food contains 18% fats and 12% moisture, making it the most solid cat food of this review.
Dr. Elsey’s Cleanprotein Formula promotes a healthy, active lifestyle for all cats. Added vitamins and minerals satisfy a feline’s appetite and help her maintain a healthy metabolism and ideal weight. Biotin and taurine are also in the formula for a cat’s healthy eye, heart, and muscles. Please pay attention that the recipe contains salmon oil and dried egg product: They can be sensitive ingredients for cats with allergies.
This dry cat food is 100% grain- and gluten-free. It contains omega fatty acids for healthy skin and coat of our felines. As well as all AAFCO-approved cat food recipes, this one shares transition and feeding recommendations on the package for maximum benefits. The amount of food to give daily will depend on a cat’s age, size, and activity level.
- Type: adult, grain-free
- Protein: 59% min
- Weight: 2 lbs, 6.6 lbs
- Calories: 544 kcal/cup
As seen from the name, this formula will fit indoor cats best. We know that indoor cats are usually less active than their outdoor fellows, and so they need fewer calories in the diet to avoid weight problems. Purina Cat Chow promotes a healthy weight with its ingredients: Garden greens help control hairballs, and 25 essential vitamins and minerals in the formula work to provide a feline with a 100% complete and balanced diet.
Thanks to its “light” ingredients, Cat Chow Indoor is not that caloric as most of this review’s items. At the same time, it provides the necessary 30% of protein and can boast with 12% of moisture, so critical for cats to consume when eating dry food only. Sure enough, the formula contains taurine (one of the must-have elements for cats’ eye and heart health).
The antioxidants in the formula help a cat support immune health, and real chicken as one of the core ingredients gives the energy to stay active for indoor games with humans. Whole-grain corn, wheat, and corn gluten meal in the ingredients list may sound confusing for pet owners, but no worries: Purina Cat Chow Indoor meets the nutritional levels established by the AAFCO. It means the formula serves well to maintain an adult cat’s dietary needs.
- Type: adult, indoor
- Protein: 30% min
- Weight: 3 lbs, 6 lbs, 15 lbs
- Calories: 358 kcal/cup
The brand sets itself up as a super premium cat food, but please don’t let this fact confuse you: It’s not about price but quality. Kirkland Signature’s cat kibble is an excellent option for those looking for dry cat food on a budget, given that its ingredients and guaranteed analysis are hard to name so.
The formula features chicken and chicken meal as primary ingredients. Unlike most budget foods, this one contains probiotics and prebiotics for a cat’s digestive and immune systems health. There are no artificial colors or harmful preservatives in the recipe, though a mix of white and brown rice adds some extra carbohydrates to it.
Omega fatty acids, taurine, biotin, and other essential elements for a cat’s health are in this formula too. More than that, the manufacturer takes care of a cat kibble size here, optimizing it so both kittens and adult felines could consume the food with comfort. The crunchy texture of kibbles helps to support teeth and gums healthy.
- Type: adult and kittens, premium
- Protein: 30% min
- Weight: 25 lbs
- Calories: 405 kcal/100 g
Blue Buffalo has been among the best dry cat food brands for a long time already. Pet owners know and love it for real-meat ingredients, exclusive LifeSource Bits, and the finest natural components they use in recipes. Their Indoor & Weight Control formula has all chances to become the best cat kibble option for your feline.
First, it’s a source of high-quality protein for a cat to maintain strong muscles. It’s wheat- and soy-free, containing wholesome grains and garden greens only. No by-products, artificial colors or flavors, and harmful preservatives are in the recipe.
Second, this kibble cat food blends natural fiber sources for hairball control. It’s not too calorie-rich, combining the optimal amount of proteins and fats for a cat to maintain ideal body weight. The above-mentioned LifeSource Bits, the blend of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants selected by vets and animal nutritionists, helps support immune system health and oxidative balance.
Blue Buffalo Indoor & Weight Control contains gut-friendly probiotics, DHA, EPA, and omega-6 fatty acids for a cat’s happy life and overall well-being.
- Type: adult, indoor, weight control
- Protein: 30% min
- Weight: 3 lbs, 7 lbs
- Calories: 363 kcal/cup
We know Hill’s as a vet-approved and -recommended pet food brand. Here goes their dry formula for kittens, and it’s worth mentioning in this review thanks to high quality and specific balance of the ingredients.
First of all, let’s pay attention to primary components. The given recipe includes real chicken, formulated for indoor kittens, but the brand also uses real lamb and salmon as a source of animal protein for cats. All the ingredients are natural, US-made, and provide young felines with all the essential vitamins and minerals for a healthy brain, muscles, and bone development.
Vitamins C and E support the immune system, DHA works for a healthy eye and heart, and fiber’s right balance helps support digestive health. All the ingredients are clinically proven so that we won’t find any artificial preservatives or harmful by-products here. Also, it stands to reason that kibble size is relatively small in this formula for kittens to consume it with comfort. The recipe is calorie-rich: Young felines require a more nutritious diet than adults for proper growth and development.
- Type: kitten dry food
- Protein: 33% min
- Weight: 3.5 lbs, 7 lbs, 15.5 lbs
- Calories: 568 kcal/cup
This one is a natural food for adult cats, with added vitamins, minerals, and taurine. With many flavors available from the brand, I’ve decided to review Turkey & Duck here to diversify our cats’ diet a bit.
First and foremost, it’s worth mentioning that Wellness CORE works with vets and scientists to develop the healthiest dry cat food for our felines. Each recipe contains real meat as a primary ingredient and source of protein. Probiotics, omega fatty acids, taurine, and other essential vitamins and minerals in the formula help a feline stay healthy and active.
As seen from the name of this product, Wellness CORE is grain-free, which means there’s no wheat, corn, or soy in their recipes. By-products, artificial flavors, harmful preservatives, and fillers are absent here too. Each cat kibble of this food consists of meat and real nutrients (flaxseed, cranberries, and probiotics). Thanks to high-quality ingredients inside, this dry cat food is OK to feed at all life stages (kittens, adult, and senior cats).
The formula is calorie-rich, thanks to its 18% fat and just 10% of moisture. So, please make sure to feed it according to the manufacturer’s recommendations and ensure your cat has free access to clean water.
- Type: adult, grain-free
- Protein: 38% min
- Weight: 2 lbs, 5 lbs, 11 lbs
- Calories: 496 kcal/cup
This kibble cat food is a must-try for adult cats with sensitive stomachs. Natural elements and real chicken as the #1 ingredient in this formula also help cats maintain a healthy weight and digestion.
Nutro Wholesome Essentials features natural fibers and has no GMO ingredients inside. (The brand works with trusted farmers and suppliers to ensure their customers get the high-quality product.) Vitamins and minerals, including omega-6 fatty acids for healthy skin and shiny fur, provide felines with complete nutrition.
It stands to reason that Nutro’s dry cat food doesn’t contain corn, soy protein, wheat, or any by-product meals and artificial preservatives. The necessary elements, such as biotin and taurine, promote a cat’s healthy eyes, heart, and muscles. Feeding guidelines are on the package, suggesting the amount of food that depends on a feline’s weight. Nutro also shares tips on transitioning a cat to their diet: If feeding for the first time, consider blending this recipe with your old cat food for a week.
- Type: indoor, sensitive stomach
- Protein: 33% min
- Weight: 3 lbs, 5 lbs, 14 lbs
- Calories: 429 kcal/cup
Only Natural Pet is among the dry cat food brands promoting biologically appropriate, natural feeding for our felines. Their formulas are grain-free, protein-rich, and made with wholesome ingredients. Plus, all their products are AAFCO-approved and 100% guaranteed.
The given recipe comes in two flavors: Fish & Fowl Dinner and Poultry Dinner. Both contain natural ingredients only, including the PowerBoost Blend coating of probiotics and enzymes. Essential amino acids, such as omega-3 and omega-6, promote healthy bones, skin, and fur; taurine works for eye and heart health; the group of vitamins (A, B, D) and minerals provide cats with complete nutrition they need for a happy life.
Most cat kibble reviews describe this food as the one with low glycemic carbohydrates, no by-products, no artificial preservatives, and no ingredients from China. The manufacturer insists they test every batch for safety and quality, and promises to pay back if a cat doesn’t love their dry food formulas.
- Type: adult, grain-free
- Protein: 45% min
- Weight: 10 lbs
- Calories: 445 kcal/cup
Specially designed for indoor cats, this formula from IAMS helps them control weight and hairballs formation. Given that indoor felines are less active than outdoor ones, this food is not as calorie-rich as other brand products to prevent obesity in cats. Thanks to L-Carnitine in the formula, it supports metabolism and helps to burn fat; prebiotics and beet pulp in the ingredients promote healthy digestion and support our cats’ heart health.
This dry cat food’s primary ingredient and protein source is chicken, promoting strong muscles and giving a cat the energy for play. Other components include turkey, dried egg product, chicken by-product meal, and whole-grain corn. Thanks to essential nutrients (including calcium and potassium) and 10% less fat than in IAMS’ original recipe, this one can serve as a part of the weight loss diet. Also, it helps reduce hairballs, which is critical for indoor cats to deal with.
As well as any other AAFCO-approved healthy dry cat food, this one shares feeding and transition guidelines on their every package. With only 10% moisture in the recipe, ensure your feline drinks enough clean water every day.
- Type: indoor, weight control
- Protein: 30% min
- Weight: 3.5 lbs, 7 lbs, 16 lbs
- Calories: 302 kcal/cup
Depending on your cat’s taste and dietary needs, feel free to choose among Salmon & Ocean Fish, Chicken, or Salmon & Chicken Indoor formulas of CRAVE kibble cat food. All are animal protein-rich and grain-free to promote healthy and active lifestyles of our cats.
With Salmon & Ocean Fish recipe as an example, let’s reveal the benefits of CRAVE food. Besides real salmon as the #1 ingredient, the food contains chicken meal, fish meal (menhaden), and protein-rich vegetables (peas and potato). Thanks to the absence of by-products, wheat, and soy in the recipe, it provides a cat with all the necessary nutrients and helps to maintain a strong immune system, a lean body, and the energy to play.
Sure enough, essential amino acids, such as taurine and omega-6, are present in the formula to promote healthy eyes, heart, bones, and teeth. In case your feline is allergic to sea products, feel free to choose Chicken flavor for her: As well as other recipes from CRAVE, it’s protein-rich (40% of crude protein min) and nutrient-dense.
- Type: adult, grain-free
- Protein: 40% min
- Weight: 2 lbs, 4 lbs, 10 lbs
- Calories: 401 kcal/cup
With this recipe, Purina worries about the health and diet of felines with sensitive skin and stomachs. Palatable, easily digestible, and crafted with natural ingredients, this kibble cat food allows our four-legged friends to get all the necessary nutrients through thick and thin.
Real turkey is a primary source of protein in the formula. Together with other high-quality ingredients like chicken, whole-grain corn, dried carrots, and peas, it delivers tons of vitamins and antioxidants to support a cat’s immune system. Taurine promotes healthy eye and heart, and omega fatty acids work to encourage healthy skin and shiny coat. Also, please pay attention to the crunchy texture of kibbles here: Removing plaque and tartar from teeth and gums, it promotes extra oral hygiene for cats and helps prevent gingivitis.
Purina ONE offers 100% complete and balanced nutrition a cat needs. With 20+ vitamins and minerals in the formula, adult felines will stay healthy and active for a happy life. Feeding and transition guidelines from the manufacturer go with every package, as well as tips on how to store dry cat food right.
- Type: adult, sensitive stomach
- Protein: 34% min
- Weight: 3.5 lbs, 7 lbs, 16 lbs, 22 lbs
- Calories: 430 kcal/cup
This one from IAMS is specially designed for our senior felines to help them support healthy muscles and stay active. For older felines to feel their best, the formula is protein-rich (real chicken is a primary source of protein here) and with 2x more antioxidants than the brand’s regular recipes for adult cats.
One of the healthiest dry cat foods on the market, this formula is veterinarian-recommended as it contains no fillers, providing senior felines with 100% complete & balanced nutrition. L-Carnitine helps cats maintain a healthy weight; vitamin E restores immune systems; and, nutrients like calcium and potassium support healthy joints and strong bones.
Experts recommend this food for cats over 11 years old and say it’s good enough to feed without adding vitamin and mineral supplements. Cat kibble’s crunchy texture of the formula helps with oral hygiene, reducing plaque and tartar build-up. Feeding guidelines will depend on a cat’s weight (see the instructions on packages). Also, please have clean water available for a cat at all times.
Did you know? You can install a drinking fountain for your cat that will keep the water fresh and clean for up to 10 days
- Type: senior
- Protein: 34% min
- Weight: 3.5 lbs, 7 lbs, 16 lbs
- Calories: 467 kcal/cup
This natural cat food from Whole Earth Farms provides felines with 100% complete and balanced nutrition. Besides Chicken, flavors include Salmon, Turkey & Duck, Whitefish & Tuna, as well as separate formulas for kittens and adult indoor cats. Choose yours, depending on a feline’s life stage, dietary needs, and taste.
The manufacturer insists all the ingredients are US-made. Real meat is a primary source of animal protein here, and fresh fruits and vegetables help support healthy digestion and hairball control. All the recipes in this formula are grain-free and contain no by-products, artificial colors, or harmful preservatives. Together with taurine, omega, and other essential acids, the complex of vitamins and minerals guarantees the balance of necessary nutrients in a cat’s diet.
Whole Earth Farms dry cat food is not too calorie-rich if compared to other formulas of the same quality. Given that, it’s OK to use it in weight control diets. Feeding and transition instructions are available on packages, for both dry food alone and combination feeding.
- Type: adult, grain-free
- Protein: 35% min
- Weight: 2.5 lbs, 5 lbs, 10 lbs, 15 lbs
- Calories: 346 kcal/cup
How to choose the best dry cat food
For a dry cat food to do good for our feline’s health and overall well-being, let’s consider the following steps:
Step 1 – Make sure it matches the cat’s life stage and special needs
As well as humans, cats require different nutrition through different stages of life. Thus, kittens and pregnant/nursing cats need high-quality kitten food; adults require regular cat food formulas; and, senior cats will thank you for specific recipes made for their particular needs. When choosing the healthiest dry cat food, check a label to see if it meets your cat’s life stage.
Some dry cat food formulas are prepared for all life stages, making it easier for owners to buy the same food for their several cats of different ages.
Also, consider your feline’s individual needs. If she is allergic to some products, has a sensitive stomach, suffers from obesity, kidney disease, or other health problems or even smelly poop she will need corresponding diets. Consult your vet and choose dry cat food accordingly.
Step 2 – Remember about proteins
Cats are obligate carnivores, and that means they need nutrients from animal meat to thrive. When choosing a dry cat food for your four-legged friend, please check the ingredients for the formula’s primary source of proteins and fats. There should be no less than 30% of protein on a “dry matter basis” in the recipe.
Avoid the options with artificial preservatives and too many grains, as they won’t provide a cat with any proteins at all.
To learn the information about protein sources and amount, check the list of ingredients (listed by weight, the first four or five elements will help you understand the food’s overall quality) and guaranteed analysis.
Step3 – Consider the carbs
A cat’s proper nutrition is protein-rich, fat-medium or -low, and with very little to almost no carbohydrates. The thing is that a cat doesn’t need carbs in her diet, and that is why the best cat food brands are proud of their grain-free formulas.
When checking the ingredients and guaranteed analysis on food labels, make sure it doesn’t contain too many carbs. The fewer, the better. Too many carbohydrates in a cat’s diet may lead to weight issues.
Instead, check if the formula contains fatty acids (omega-3, omega-6) and amino acids (taurine, arginine). Together with other vitamins and minerals, they are essential to a cat’s health.
Step4 – Check if it’s AAFCO-approved
AAFCO is the Association of American Feed Control Officials, including local, state, and federal agencies. They provide pet food manufacturers with the standards in producing products and require them to provide all the nutritional information on packages.
AAFCO’s subcommittee, Feline Nutrition Expert, has developed basic nutritional requirements for pet food to have so that a cat or a dog could get the correct balance of nutrients and calories. So, all foods carrying an AAFCO-approved nutritional guarantee are OK for pets to eat.
Labeling regulations by AAFCO include nutrient profiles (ingredients and guaranteed analysis) and feeding protocols. Also, there should be information such as brand and product names, quantity statements, and what species the food is for. When checking the label of dry cat food, make sure all the necessary information is present.
Step5 – Choose cat kibble flavors your cat loves
As well as people, cats may have their own preferences in food. So, once you’ve determined that a product is balanced and AAFCO-approved, feel free to focus on the flavors your feline loves most. It can be poultry, fish, or meat – just make sure your cat isn’t allergic to any components in the formula, and it’s OK for her to eat them.
Sometimes, kibble size matters too. For example, if you have kittens or Persians, small kibbles will be more natural for them to consume. The same is true for senior cats: Problems with teeth and gums make it more challenging for them to eat big and hard food pieces from cat kibble brands.
Related guide: How to soften dry cat food to make it more palatable.
So, try several options to choose flavors your cat loves most, and feed with them. Consider mixing flavors from time to time: Cats love the diversity in food, too.
Benefits of dry cat food:
1) It’s safer to use
Unlike with wet cat food we can store for up to 48 hours with refrigerated specialized feeders, the best dry cat food is more lasting and, therefore, safer to use. You can put a portion to a cat’s bowl and leave it for a day with no fear your feline will eat rotten products. Dry cat food is more comfortable to keep, and it remains fresh for a longer time than other cat food types.
2) It’s more affordable
Thanks to its specification and quantity statement, dry cat food is more affordable for pet owners. It’s calorie-dense, so a cat won’t consume as much food as she would do that in the case of wet food for cats. Also, you can buy more dry food for less money – and save it for later.
3) It’s more convenient
Dry cat food brands make their products more convenient because they understand the demand for dry formulas is higher than for wet ones. Larger quantities for less money, more comfortable, and longer in charge – these are among the top benefits for most owners when it comes to feeding their felines.
4) It cleans a cat’s teeth
Thanks to its crunchy texture, kibble cat food helps remove tartar and bacterial plaque from your felines’ teeth. Plus, it allows a cat to strengthen jaw muscles and massage gums so you won’t rely on chew toys only. Together with dry cat food, feel free to use other treats promoting healthy teeth and fresh breath of your four-legged friend.
5) Some picky eaters prefer kibbles
Though most cat kibble reviews say that all felines prefer wet food formulas, I can say firsthand that some cats are picky eaters choosing nothing but dry cat food only. My Rambo is one of them. So, when you choose dry food for feeding, you can be sure your feline will eat it with gusto.
6) It better fits automatic cat feeders
Some owners use automatic cat feeders outdoors to make it easier to control their felines’ diet. And that’s where dry cat food wins because most auto cat feeders are designed to store the kibble, and it will last for longer. On the contrary, wet cat food can be stored for up to 48 hours only, and there are only a few feeders that allow even this duration.
The healthiest dry cat foods
The healthiest dry formulas for your cat will be those protein-rich, grain-free, and recommended (or even designed) by vets. Understanding a feline’s nutritional needs for a healthy and happy life, specialists focus on the recipes that will provide a cat with the right balance of proteins and fats, as well as vitamins and minerals.
The healthiest dry cat foods to try:
- Iams Proactive Health Healthy Senior Dry Cat Food
- Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Recipe Dry for Cats
- Dr. Elsey’s Cleanprotein Formula Dry Cat Food
- CRAVE Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
For cats with allergies or sensitive stomachs, specific dry cat food formulas will be the healthiest ones:
- Purina ONE Sensitive Systems Adult Dry Cat Food
- Nutro Wholesome Essentials Indoor and Sensitive Digestion Dry Cat Food
- Hill’s Science Diet Dry Cat Food, Adult, Sensitive Stomach & Skin
Best dry cat food for indoor cats
According to the recommendations from AAFCO, cat kibble brands should specify a cat’s life stage, health issues, and lifestyle on the label for us to see which one to choose for our particular feline. On that basis, the best option will be to consider “Indoor Cats” formulas.
First, they are less caloric than regular formulas (to prevent weight issues, since indoor cats are usually less active than their outdoor fellows). And second, recipes for indoor cats are designed to help them reduce hairball formation (as far as they shed continuously and swallow hair during grooming).
The best dry food for indoor cats are:
- Blue Buffalo Indoor Hairball & Weight Control
- 9 Lives Dry Cat Food Indoor Complete
- Purina Cat Chow Indoor
- Meow Mix Dry Cat Food Indoor Health
- NUTRO Indoor Cat Adult Dry Food
Vet-recommended dry cat food brands
First, let’s clear out what dry cat food we consider as “vet-recommended.” As stated by AAFCO, for a formula to become vet-recommended, it must be approved by most vets in a “statistically sound” survey. For some brands to get a “vet-recommended” label, it took a survey of around 300 veterinarians.
These dry cat food brands are:
- Hill’s Science Diet and Hill’s Prescription Diet formulas
- Royal Canin Veterinary Diet
- Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets
- IAMS Proactive Health line
Yet, the conventional “vet-recommended” cat food refers to “prescribed” formulas, meaning they are only available with a vet prescription. Your vet knows your cat’s health and medical history to recommend the food that will manage your feline’s condition best.
“Your pet’s veterinarian is the only one who should be making recommendations about putting your cat on a special diet,”
“We love Hill’s Science Diet because it’s AAFCO-approved and made with simple ingredients.”Dr. Hyla Gayer from West Chelsea Vet in New York City
Best tasting dry cat food
Tastes differ, so we can’t say whether this food is best-tasting or not until a cat tries it. Some picky eaters choose fish kibbles only, while others eat nothing but wet food from poultry. To determine the best tasting dry cat food for your four-legged friend, try several options with different flavors, and see which of them your cat loves more.
According to most dry cat food reviews, the best tasting dry cat food formulas are these:
- Kirkland Signature Chicken and Rice Cat Food
- Only Natural Pet Dry Cat Food
- Tiki Cat Born Carnivore Dry Cat Food
Before choosing the flavor, please make sure your cat doesn’t have any allergies or sensitivities to its ingredients.
Calories in dry cat food
The best cat kibble food is more calorie-rich than wet formulas. That’s because dry formulas lack moisture: There’s around 10% of the water in kibbles, which is not enough for a cat to thrive. So, being substantial and providing your feline with all the necessary nutrients, dry food still intends pet owners to control calorie intake (to prevent weight and health issues in a cat) and provide a feline with free access to fresh water.
A typical range of calories in dry cat food is about 500 calories per 8-ounce cup of food. For indoor cats of 10 pounds (5 kg), it’s too much to consume daily. So, make sure to control your feline’s diet, providing her with 1/3 to 1/2 cup of food each day.
The calorie intake depends on your cat’s weight, lifestyle, and health. Ask your vet to help you count the necessary amount of calories for your cat, and feed with dry cat food formulas accordingly.
How much dry food should I feed my cat?
It depends on your cat’s weight, health, and lifestyle. Lazy indoor cats need fewer calories than active outdoor felines; otherwise, they risk suffering from obesity. Also, smaller cats need less food than big ones. Please read feeding instructions on the food label, and count the number of kibbles accordingly. And don’t forget to read our guide on how much to feed a cat.
What dry cat food is best for indoor cats?
As a rule, indoor cats are less active than their outdoor fellows, so choose formulas with fewer calories. Also, check a label: According to the AAFCO recommendations, the best dry cat food brands will specify the cat species for which this food is for. Choose “Indoor” cat formulas: Purina Cat Chow Indoor and Blue Buffalo Indoor Hairball & Weight Control are great to start.
How long does dry cat food last?
Speaking of storage, please keep in mind that expiration dates only apply to sealed bags. So please always check the label for food’s expiry. As a rule, you can keep dry food (sealed) for up to 3 years. Once opened, cat kibbles in a bag will stay fresh for up to 1-2 months.
How long can you leave out dry cat food?
Once in a bowl, dry food lasts 4 hours (if temperatures are above 50 °F) and 7-10 hours in lower temperatures (40 to 50 °F). Please don’t leave cat kibbles in a bowl for more than 10 hours, even if your feline doesn’t consume them. Change them for fresh ones regularly.
When can kittens eat dry cat food?
By the age of 5 to 6 weeks, kittens are ready to try kibbles. Please choose specific formulas for kittens and don’t feed with the recipes for adult cats. Even if your kitty is still nursing and eats a milk replacement formula, introduce dry food gradually, mix it with water to make it more comfortable to consume, or choose formulas with small kibble size.
At the end of the day
Thanks to its numerous benefits, dry cat food is the most popular feline nutrition option among pet owners. It’s more affordable, convenient, and safer to use. It’s easier to store than wet food, and some cats eat nothing but dry formulas as they are more palatable to consume.
With that in mind, I’ve crafted this guide, reviewing the best dry cat food brands with their 15 most balanced formulas for healthy nutrition of our felines. Feel free to choose any of them according to your cat’s life stage, dietary needs, and flavors she loves.
But remember: Always check the package before purchasing. Please read the ingredients to make sure they are natural and safe for a cat to consume. Check the guaranteed analysis to ensure the formula is protein-rich and full of essential vitamins and minerals, and follow the manufacturer’s feeding instructions so that your feline would get enough calories.
When fed and stored right, dry cat food promotes a healthy and happy life for our four-legged friends.