This post may contain affiliate links. We may earn a small commission when you buy something using the links in this post, thanks!
Long gone are the days of limited options and low quality products for our beloved pets. The best holistic cat food is more widely available than ever.
Sure, some companies have jumped on the bandwagon and have only gone half way with the quality they are offering. This makes finding the best holistic cat food that bit harder. Your friends at Conscious Cat Care are on hand to give you some of the better options to feed your feline companion.
Since you clearly care about what goes into your cats meals, only the highest of quality foods will do. We will look at what holistic means when it comes to food and some things to look out for, as well as avoid.
What Is Holistic Cat Food?
Never-mind the best holistic cat food, what even is it? It takes more than some clever marketing to make a good product. The word natural isn’t enough anymore – it is becoming one of the most overused words in the industry!
There aren’t actually any rules around the wording so companies can get away with just about anything. So, expect them to stick the word holistic wherever they want. As this just damages the conscious pet owners chances of finding a genuinely holistic food, there are some other things that you can look for.
- All natural ingredients
- No preservatives
- No artificial colors
- Only beneficial ingredients
- No filler
- Quality meat
- Whole grains
Anything that looks out of place or has been included to bulk out the recipe is not holistic. Neither are carbs that are difficult for your cat to digest. Also look out for rendered fats, wheat gluten, food dyes, corn syrup and especially meat by-products.
Keep your eyes peeled for anything that doesn’t look right, not every brand is as honest as they make out.
What Goes Into The Best Cat Food?
It is a well known fact that Cats need meat based proteins in their diet to survive.
Still, Cats require a balance just like humans. With fats also important and a small amount of carbohydrates also necessary as they find it difficult to digest them.
Carbs can still be a good source of other nutrition and vitamins so anything that contains gluten free and easily digestible variants. PFMA.org advise that starchy portions of plants such as rice, wheat, corn and barley are easily digested by cats when cooked. Although these aren’t great sources, the fact that they are better when cooked should not be ignored.
The best holistic cat foods will contain less than 10% carbohydrates. Since some dry foods contain carbs that can take over half of their recipe, 10% is a good amount to aim for. An average product might include around 30%.
The term ”grain free’ can be deceiving. This is a way for a lot of companies to replace grains with a load of other carbs like potatoes which aren’t any better really.
You want your cats protein to be animal based and when considering a holistic food, organic and from a good source is even better. Poultry, fish and meats are all well tolerated and beneficial for your cats diet.
Fatty acids should also not be ignored. Again they need to be of high-quality and from the likes of animal sourced fats. Fish remains a popular and reliable source with Sardines, Krill Oil and Salmon Oil being good examples.
Since Cats cannot create these on their own, getting them into their diet is important for the prevention and treatment of various diseases.
The main takeaway here should be that the best holistic cat foods on the market will be clean, contain quality animal proteins, free from any rubbish and made up of high quality ingredients.
Why Shouldn’t Cat Food Contain Animal By-Products?
An animal by-product can be deemed as a part of an animal that your cat wouldn’t go near in the wild. Any by-product meat is the result of an unhealthily raised animal that is likley to be kept in cruel conditions. They can also be pumped full of hormones and transfer such junk into your cat.
Always make sure the first ingredient in any cat food is meat and look for brands that do not contain animal by-products as a general rule.
How To Switch A Cat Onto A New Food
Unlike dogs who will eat anything, cats can be fussy when it comes to their food. Introducing a new food can be tricky and they will often turn their cute noses up at something they are unfamiliar with.
There are certain things you can do to disguise the new food before it becomes used to the scent and taste.
- The easiest way to make the transition is by mixing a bowl of 25% new food with 75% of the food they have usually eat.
- Try this for a few days then mix in 50% of both the old and new for a few more days.
- After another few days, mix 75% of their new food with 25% old. Then, you guessed it, after a few days give them the new food only.
This isn’t a foolproof way of introducing a new food but it is a common method that has worked for many cats. Hopefully, it will help yours enjoy her new holistic cat food.
Best Holistic Cat Foods
Few brands get the word holistic right in the same way as this brand.
They say all the right things and have made this a grain free option, but what makes it so special?
We’re taking a closer look at the Dry Chicken Meal product. This contains Salmon oil, a great source of Omega-3 but it is what it doesn’t include that makes it so impressive. All ingredients are natural and there are as many premium nutrients as you are going to see in a Cat food.
Holistic Select Natural Dry Cat Food is free from meat by-products, artificial colors, flavors preservatives or fillers. It also contains no corn.
Lean muscle is a must and this is what your Cat will get. The single source protein makes this a high quality option. The crude protein levels are over the 33% mark making it a good level of what your Cat needs. The chicken meal recipe is a firm favorite here at CCC.
The dry version comes in 4 versions. There are 2 adult recipes as well as a recipe for indoor cats that is optimized to help your cat stay at a healthy weight. Then there is also a recipe that is suitable for Cats and Kittens alike.
They have been making quality foods for Cats and Dogs for over a decade which is why they have made such a unique food. The prebiotics and probiotics help your Cat to breakdown this food and absorb the nutrients better.
It is a well thought out and high quality product that will really benefit any well-loved Cat.
Holistic Select Cat Food Pros
Holistic Select Cat Food Cons
Packed full with between 50 – 75% animal ingredients depending on the recipe, Acana makes some of the most impressive cat food available.
Sourced from local farms, ranches, and waters Acana uses all different parts of animals to ensure your cat gets a balanced and nutrient-rich diet. What prevents a lot of brands from being holistic is that they use low-quality vegetables, but here we get the likes of pumpkin and squash rather than fast sugars like potato and tapioca. The formula is biologically appropriate which is something most brands can’t say.
There is twice as much protein as a lot of other brands making this an ideal holistic cat food for all life stages of your cat. Sourced from grass-fed lamb, free-run quail, and freshwater trout. Expect zero preservatives, only ingredients that have been delivered fresh or raw to their kitchen in Kentucky.
ACANA Regionals Grasslands Dry Cat Food Pros
ACANA Regionals Grasslands Dry Cat Food Cons
It all begins with real Turkey for this natural cat food and can call itself a quality option for fussy eaters. Because it is grain-free and contains limited ingredients we believe it is one of the best holistic cat foods and doesn’t cost as much as some of the other brands in the niche.
The combination of pea fiber and pumpkin makes for more comfortable digestion and the inclusion of food that is enhanced with vitamin A & E enables it to support a healthy immune system. So it’s making all the right noises with what it does give you, but how about what it leaves out? For a start, there are no artificial colors, preservatives, or flavors (we did mention it is a limited ingredient formula). There are also no animal by-products, soy, wheat, eggs, or corn to name a few.
Your cat will get everything she needs for a healthy coat with added ingredients to support the immune system although the protein is always from a single, quality animal source, we’d prefer a little more than 30%.
Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Pros
Blue Buffalo Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Grain-Free Cons
Although it isn’t perfect, we chose this because it is one of the best budget-friendly holistic cat foods. There are zero-grains so it starts with a positive but also, it does not contain animal by-products and chicken is the #1 ingredient. Cats with sensitive stomachs will appreciate that it is gluten-free and there are also no artificial preservatives, flavors, or colors to worry about.
For the price, the 12 lb bag is great value and with 34% crude protein, there are products that give you a little more but not in this price range. Because of the Taurine, your cat will get everything she needs. Because of the added vitamins and minerals, it is known for being easily digested by cats. With small kibble sized pieces it is easy to consume as you will see when the bowl is empty in no time.
We’d prefer to see organic ingredients and less potato but we also like the value considering everything it does right.
Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Dry Cat Food Pros
Rachael Ray Nutrish Zero Grain Dry Cat Food Cons
Sometimes holistic cat food sounds so good that you get great satisfaction from watching them eat the wholesome meal. This variety pack features 4 high-quality and delicious flavors that cats seem to love. You get to give them one of Catalina Catch, Chicken Cacciatori, Monetary Medley, and harbor harvest in the easy to open tins of wet food.
Grain-free and high in quality protein such as salmon, and wild-caught tuna that is rich in omega-3 to promote a healthy coat. There are plenty of vitamins in the carrots and peas included in every bite and plenty of amino acids in every tin. Thre are 12 tins in total and although some are nutritionally better than others there are no artificial colors or preservatives, and each one is rich in animal protein and made with named meats.
Earthborn Holistic Wet Cat Food Variety Pack Pros
Earthborn Holistic Wet Cat Food Variety Pack Cons
It’s time for cat owners to rejoice – we’re spoilt for choice! Holistic cat food is more than a trend and hopefully, more people will catch onto the fact that a higher quality cat food is better for your feline friend, inside and out.