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Premium Dry Cat Foods for Adult Cats

Containing No By-Products, Chemical Preservatives, or Unnamed Protein Sources


Since a number of premium dry cat foods have been introduced recently, my picks have been significantly changed. I would feed any of these foods to my cats, and they rotate through several of these selections, not necessarily in this order. Alternate with premium canned food for a well-balanced diet for your cat.

Please keep in mind your own cats' age, medical condition, and nutritional needs, as there is no "one-size-fits-all" solution for feeding our cats. Also keep in mind cats' individual tastes - some cats may dislike some of these foods immediately, and some will tire of the same formula in time.

Innova EVO Dry Cat Food

Food Falling into Cat Bowl
Jeffrey Coolidge/The Image Bank/Getty Images
Innova Evo cat food is closer than other commercial dry cat foods in matching the nutritional quality of a raw food diet. It is very palatable and my test cats eagerly ate it. For cats without a medical intolerance for high protein (such as kidney disease), it's well worth the effort to look for Innova Evo in a feed & grain or other specialty store. My own cats rotate EVO as part of their dry food diet, along with other foods in this list. Top listed ingredients: Turkey, Chicken, Turkey Meal, Chicken Meal, Potatoes, Herring Meal, Chicken Fat.

Wellness CORE Dry Cat Food

Wellness Core Grain-Free Cat Food
Photo Credit: Courtesy of PriceGrabber

In my opinion, Wellness CORE is neck-and-neck with Innova EVO in providing a dry food closely aligned to a raw diet, and my cats enjoyed both equally. CORE is grain-free and has a high protein content.

Top Listed Ingredients Deboned Turkey, Deboned Chicken, Chicken Meal, Whitefish Meal, Potatoes.

Guaranteed Analysis: (Not converted to dry matter)

Crude Protein: Not Less Than 50.0%, Crude Fat: Not Less Than 18.0%,Crude Fiber: Not More Than 3.0%, Moisture: Not More Than 11.0%, Calcium: Not More Than 1.8%, Phosphorus: Not More Than 1.45%, sium: Not More Than 0.10%

Review pending.

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Wellness Complete Health Salmon Dry Cat Food

I tested this product with my own cats and they loved it. It's now part of their rotation.

First Listed Ingredients: Salmon, Salmon Meal, Whitefish Meal, Rice, Ground Barley, Ground Rice, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, a natural source of Vitamin E), Deboned Turkey, NatUral Chicken Flavor, NatUral Fish Flavor, Cranberries, Olive Oil, Chicory Root Extract, Cranberry Extract Powder, Cranberry Fiber, Flaxseed, Potassium Chloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Ascorbic Acid (Vitamin C), Thiamine Mononitrate,

Guaranteed Analysis: Crude Protein Min 36.0%, Crude Fat Min 18.0%, Crude Fiber Max 3.0%, Moisture Max 11.0%, Ash Max 6.5%, Magnesium Max 0.098%, Taurine Min 0.2%

Natural Balance Ultra Premium Cat Food

Natural Balance Dry
Photo Credit: Courtesy of PriceGrabber

Natural Balance Ultra Premium contains 34% protein, from four meat sources: chicken (and chicken meal), duck, lamb meal,and fish meal. Natural Balance is rated for all life styles, including kittens and lactating queens.

First named ingredients are Chicken, Chicken Meal, Brown Rice, Duck, Lamb Meal, Potatoes, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols, Vitamin E).

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Innova Dry Cat Food

Innova Adult Cat Food Dry
Photo Credit: Courtesy of PriceGrabber
Innova contains fresh, wholesome ingredients from each of the five food groups (that's right - even fruit). Even the most persnickety cat will cozy up to his food dish when it's full of Innova.[p]Top Listed Ingredients: Turkey, Chicken Meal, Chicken, Potatoes, Egg, Barley, Chicken Fat.

Evolve Dry Cat Food

Evolve Maintenance Formula Dry Cat Food
Photo Credit: Courtesy of PriceGrabber
Evolve's main protein sources are Chicken and Chicken Meal, and carbohydrates are supplied by Brown Rice and brewers rice. Other interesting additions include menhaden herring meal, flaxseed meal, yogurt, dried kelp, vegetables, and cranberries. Its high protein content of 35% helps reserve a prominent space on this list.
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Nature's Variety Instinct Dry Cat Food

Nature's Variety Instinct is grain-free for cats with food allergies.

Chicken Variety First Ingredients: Chicken Meal, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols and Citric Acid), Tapioca, Pumpkinseeds, Salmon Meal, Alfalfa Meal, Montmorillonite Clay, Chicken Liver Flavor, Chicken Liver, Dried Kelp, DL-Methionine, Vitamins (Choline Chloride, Vitamin E Supplement, Ascorbic Acid, Biotin, Niacin Supplement...

Guaranteed Analysis: (Not converted to dry matter)

Crude Protein (min): 50.0%,Crude Fiber (max): 2.8%,Moisture (max): 10.0%.

Nature's Variety recommends gradually introducing any new food by mixing it with the cat's regular food, and avoiding overfeeding.

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California Natural Chicken and Rice Cat Food

Cats seem to like the taste, and the company prides itself on maintaining exacting standards. Consumers looking for "natural" cat food will like this product. Top listed ingredients are Chicken, Chicken Meal, Ground Brown Rice, Chicken Fat, Sunflower Oil, Flaxseed.

Timberwolf Serengeti Herbal Feline Diet

First Listed Ingredients: Chicken Meal, Fresh Chicken, Chicken Fat (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Low Ash Salmon Meal, Potatoes,Tuna Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols) Dried Eggs, Dried Chicken Liver, Dried Whole Milk, Dried Whey Extract, Kelp, Hydrated Alfalfa Leaf, Casein, DL Methionine, Potassium Chloride, Lecithin, Taurine, Lysine, Carnitine, Choline Chloride, Creatine, Probiotics: (Lactobacillus Acidophilus Fermentation Product, Bifidobacterium Thermophilum Fermentation, Bifidobacterium Longum Fermentation Product, Enterbacter Faecium Fermentaion Product, Bacillus Subtillus Fermentation Product, Blueberries, Cranberries

Guaranteed Analysis: Protein: 38%, Fat: 18%, Fiber: 2.5%, Moisture: 9%, ASH: 5%

Felidae Cat and Kitten Formula

Four "human grade" named meat meals provide a protein source of 32%, and the addition of ingredients such as herbs, fruit, kelp and probiotics, not only offer good taste, but other health benefits. This food is also a favorite of About Cats forum cats, and my own test cats include it in their rotation of dried foods, with "six paws up." Top ingredients are Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Brown Rice, Lamb Meal, Chicken Fat, (Preserved with mixed Tocopherols), Herring Meal, Eggs.
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