Nutrition is vital for your furball's health. She's building a strong skeleton, developing supple muscles, and advancing cognitive functions. To secure a powerful head start at this point, you need to make the kitty's menu nutritious. So what is the best kitten food to buy? I'm here to help you make sense of the seemingly endless list of options!
What Kitten Food Do Vets Recommend?
You wouldn't feed a newborn baby a steak, would you? Even the premium healthiest food, like chicken breast or greek yogurt, is not actually suitable for babies. They need mother's milk or professional substitutes to remain healthy and develop quickly in the first few months of their lives.
This simple analogy should answer most of your questions about the best food for kittens.
No, you should not try to feed your newborn kitties table scraps. Their tummies are far from ready for that sort of a meal.
No, you cannot go with the usual kibble your older cats love. Newborn kitties have a different set of nutritional requirements.
Yes, you should consult a reliable veterinarian if you can't make up your mind and choose the best kitten food for the new addition to your family.
The sooner you realize food is the single most important factor for your kitten's health, the better. Good kitten food should include protein, healthy fat, and a moderate amount of carbohydrates with vitamins and microelements to boot. While the quantities might seem insignificant to you, even a tiny dose of the right elements can make a huge difference in your kitty's eyesight, fur, and energy level.
With basic requirements in mind, let's see which products are worthy of your attention.
Here Are Top 10 Healthiest Kitten Food in 2021
Among hundreds of varieties, we've selected the best kitten food options to suggest to the new additions to your feline family. Our analysis encompasses ingredients, packaging, customer reviews, complaints, allergies and other adverse reactions.
Pros - Delicate texture perfect for weaning - Good for kittens and nursing cats - Includes DHA and other supplements
Cons - High-end pricing - Some ingredients are questionable
This mousse is a perfect fit for pregnant cats, newborn kittens, and nursing tabbies. The formula is designed to support immune health, brain development, and healthy digestive development. While the price might be a bit steep, Royal Canin is among the best kitten food brands and boasts plenty of positive reviews.
Unlike many other feline products, this formula includes 70% of animal ingredients combined with 30% of vegetables. Such balanced contents will help kittens get vital nutrients, grow up fast, and stay healthy. Considering the product is grain-free, there's little risk of food allergies and digestive issues. As any vet will tell you, preventing a problem is much easier than solving it.
Pros - Grain-free recipe light on starches - Chicken-first formula enhanced with fruit and veggies
Cons - Sole can size option (3 oz) - Pate texture isn’t everyone’s favorite
Protein is irreplaceable for developing muscles, and this food is the best example of a health-conscious formula. The chicken comes first on the ingredients list, and there are zero grains to prevent digestive troubles from the first days. With this formula, your kitties will develop shiny coats in no time thanks to Omega acids from flaxseed and fish oil. There's no denying it also tastes good, as many cat parents are happy to attest.
Pros - Extra rich in protein and fat - Mixed animal-based protein sources - LifeSource Bits stuffed with vitamins, minerals, and more
Cons - Legumes may cause digestive issues - Tapioca starch high on the ingredients list
Another great contender on our list, this dried kitten food has a great reputation. With plenty of Omega acids, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals, this formula supports your young hunter's healthy immune system. Chicken supplies the protein, while carbohydrates are represented by veggies and fruits with no grain in sight. Outstanding smell and taste that kitties love is also a huge point in favor of this product.
Pros - High protein and fat content - Chicken is No1 ingredient - Free of artificial colors and flavors
Cons - Crumbly and oily kibble - Plenty of corn inside
This formula contains a balanced combination of nutrients, in much the same proportions as in the mother's milk. Chicken is there for healthy muscle growth, and Omega acids are there for brain development. What's inside besides that? Vitamin E for the immune system, taurine for a sharp vision, and calcium for strong bones.
Pros - Vet-approved protein-rich formula - DHA, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals inside - No artificial colors, flavors, preservatives
Cons - High-end pricing - Sole flavor option
Digestible and delicious – that's what many happy buyers are saying about this formula. There are no fillers, just the good stuff: quality chicken protein, healthy supplements, and no grains. This kibble comes without artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives, so it's a perfect fit for your pregnant tabby, a new nursing mother, and the newborn furballs. Purina is arguably the best kitten food brand, and it's definitely worth trying, even if some cats may find the food without the yucky stuff too bland.
Pros - Super affordable - Stuffed with animal-based protein - Vitamins and minerals included
Cons - Includes artificial flavors and colors - Ambiguous ingredients (meat by-products)
Unlike many entries on our shortlist, this mousse is not chicken, but fish-based. Salmon and other types of fish are prominent on the ingredients list. You can either mix and match this product with others for added variety or switch to it entirely. However, you should check for allergies and taste first. If your kittens do not enjoy fish, they might ignore this food altogether. The same is true for nursing tabbies. Get a couple of cans for your trial run before ordering a large batch.
Pros - High-quality ingredients - Rich in fish and poultry protein - Suitable for the kitty’s first twelve months
Cons - Pricy without a promotional price - Some protein comes from soy
This product comes with a fair share of pros and cons. Customers are usually satisfied with the delicious smell, a good choice of ingredients, and a great appetite kitties show when tasting the food. Those who complain usually point out the grains on the ingredients list that might cause digestive disorders. Besides, some distributors do not pay attention to the best-by dates and deliver spoilt cans. We would let all other downsides go if only this variety were a bit more affordable.
Pros - Protein-dense chicken-first formula - Grain-free with no artificial colors or flavors - Affordable pricing
Cons - Overpowering smell - The brand has a spotty reputation
This product is tasty, with a lot of chicken inside, a very soft structure, and a delicious smell. With no grains, artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives included, this formula is as safe for young kitties as it can get. While it's not the most popular brand or product, the combination of mid-range price, balanced ingredients list, and safety makes us believe it's a solid choice.
Pros - Multiple high-quality protein sources - No grains, soy, or other fillers - No artificial flavors and colors
Cons - Quality management issues - Dried potatoes high on the ingredients list
The chicken comes first on the ingredients list, supported by potatoes and other veggies, along with salmon oil. These ingredients work great to provide nutrition for outdoor and indoor cats. While the food looks good on paper, some buyers share horror stories about this product that make us wary. Kitties can get sick after tasting this kibble. We believe the problems are caused by individual reactions to some of the components. Still, you should keep a close eye on your kitty after buying this food and stop using it if you notice any health issues.
TOP 3 Dry Kitten Food
Kibble is the most affordable and easy-to-use option, especially when your feline family suddenly multiplies by a factor of four or six. To help your kitties grow strong without breaking the bank, check out our three choices:
Instinct Original Kitten Grain-Free Recipe is a well-balanced formula, a perfect fit for kittens' everyday nutritional needs. Besides the good composition, it has recognition from customers, who say their kitties grow strong and healthy, enjoying the taste. This variety is known to manage diarrhea, gases, and other digestive issues. Finally, the smell is pleasant without being overpowering.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Chicken Recipe relies on the same optimal balance of chicken protein, vegetables, and zero grains, making it an option worthy of attention. If full, healthy, and satisfied kitties are all you need, this product is the one to try.
Hill's Science Diet Kitten Chicken Recipe Dry Cat Food is a good fit for growing kittens. The benefit of this formula means you can feed the mother and the kitties. This kibble incorporates a well-thought-out set of ingredients to deal with a healthy appetite while supporting and establishing a powerful immune system.
TOP 3 Wet Kitten Food
Many vets recommend combining wet food with kibble for the optimal health of young kitties. The proportions vary, but 70% dry + 30% wet food is considered universal. You can always consult your vet to learn the most suitable ratio for your furballs. Our trio of quality top rated kitten food options includes:
Quality and well-balanced ingredients, soft texture, and hundreds of positive reviews make Royal Canin Kitten Food one of the best canned recipes for you if you have a small kitty, a pregnant tabby, or a nursing mother. Besides, it offers outstanding value for money.
As we've mentioned, NUTRO Soft Loaf Kitten Wet Cat Food has a nice balance of ingredients. However, that's not the only benefit. This product comes with a pleasant structure, sweet smell, and the ability to make little kitties happy and healthy, with shining fur and alert eyes.
Despite a couple of bad reviews, Purina has a reliable reputation. We recommend trying Purina Pro Plan Kitten Canned Food after checking the ingredients list and making sure there is nothing your kitty wouldn't like. Start with a couple of cans before you splurge on bulk order.
TOP 3 High-protein Kitten Food
Protein is vital for building muscles and bringing up an agile and strong feline. While wet food is good for digestion, kibble is where you'll find the highest protein content. Our preferred picks when it comes to protein are:
Instinct Original Kitten Grain-Free Recipe boasts the highest protein content among all the listed products. It's a whopping 42.5% minimum. It might seem too high, but when mixed with other kibble varieties and wet food, you get just the right amount.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Chicken Recipe is also a protein champion. It makes up 40% of nutrients. Kibble size is just right, easy to chew and swallow. With the value for money you get with this product, it's a very solid choice.
Whole Earth Farms Grain-Free Dry Cat Food should have taken this place, with 40% of protein. Having read conflicting reviews, we cannot recommend this product in good conscience; that's why we choose Iams ProActive Health Kitten Dry Cat Food. It's high in protein and safe for your little furball.
Let's Recap Our Top Kitten Food Review
With so many pros and cons, it may still be challenging to select one option to try among the ten we shortlisted. If the final choice gives you trouble, use our handy checklist to ensure the food is what your kitty needs.
The best kitty food meets these requirements:
High nutritional value with a balanced combination of protein, fat, and carbs.
Allergen-free formula without grains, artificial flavors and preservatives.
Kibble size suitable for tiny mouths and teeth.
Unobtrusive smell and pleasant taste.
Genuine detailed reviews that list both positive and negative aspects of the food.
So what's the best kitten food?
The following three options fit the demanding requirements we've set forth and are instant hits with millions of happy feline parents, both experienced and new.
Royal Canin Kitten Food has everything to be great for your kitty: excellent ingredients, soft texture, pleasant smell, and positive reviews from kitty parents across the globe. Worth a try if you're looking for wet food to add to the usual kibble menu.
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat Food comes with a high protein content, required for muscle growth, and a boatload of healthy supplements. It's easy to chew and has the highest rating among the buyers.
Instinct Original Kitten Grain-Free Recipe is another good choice to create the foundation of your small hunter's menu. This food is full of protein, as the main ingredient is cage-free chicken, and it has a lot of health supplements, easy-to-eat form, and a good reputation.
You can find both scathing and glowing posts among the best kitten food reviews. We've tried to remain objective and compare the products rationally, weighting nutritional information, personal experience, and genuine reviews. The final choice is yours.
How often should I feed my kitten?
In the first weeks, you might need to schedule up to six meals spread throughout the day at regular intervals. As your kitty grows, she can tolerate longer pauses between feedings, so you can gradually lower the number of feedings to three or two per day.
What is the best organic food for my kitten?
Any organic kibble or wet food with the right combination of protein, fat, fiber, vitamins, and minerals will do. You can choose any brand mentioned in my best kitten food review shortlist or consult the vet for a professional recommendation.
What type of food is best for a 9-month-old kitten?
At nine months old, your kitty can be fully transitioned to adult cat food. You can choose any kibble or canned food formula as long as it complies with AAFCO nutritional guidelines and is free of questionable ingredients. Your vet should be able to recommend a brand or two to try out.
What is the best food for a 5-month-old kitten?
At five months, your kitty is still far from adulthood, so you need to keep him on kitten food. Both dry and wet formulas are acceptable as long as they are intended for developing felines and have enough nutrients to build a strong foundation for your cat’s health and immunity.
What is the best food for a 3-month-old kitten?
Choose canned or dry kitten food of high caloric value with enough protein to build lean muscles, calcium and phosphorus to grow strong bones, and a full vitamin and mineral complex to ensure long-term health. Premium kitten food brands are best due to quality ingredients, but you can opt for an affordable option if you keep an eye out for suspicious ingredients.
When should my cat begin solid kitten food?
You can introduce kibble as soon as the kitty is fully weaned. However, the vets recommend adding solids to wet food gradually, as kittens’ digestive systems are not ready to deal with hard kibble right after switching from milk.
Is Taste of the Wild that very cat food your feline craves? Check this article to learn their ingredient quality, and recall history, and more.