6 Best Cat Food for Senior Cats

This article was reviewed by JoAnna Pendergrass, DVM

senior cat food

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Senior cats need delicious, calorie-dense meals that are loaded with high-quality nutrition. That entails plenty of ultra-digestible protein, anti-inflammatory ingredients to soothe achy joints, and a soft texture that’s easy on bad teeth.

At a Glance: Best Cat Foods for Older/Senior Cats To Buy

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Want a quick look at the products reviewed in this article? In the comparison table below, we’ve highlighted some of the most important features of each product. You’ll find more detailed information about each product later in the article.

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Top Pick

Feline Natural Chicken & Venison Feast
  • Rich in highly-digestible protein
  • Contains omega-3 fatty acids EPA, DHA, and ETA
  • Contains multiple sources of animal-sourced nutrition
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Best Budget

WholeHearted Chicken Recipe Flaked in Gravy
  • This food offers mid-range quality at an economical price
  • Doesn’t contain carrageenan
  • Rich in highly-digestible animal protein
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Premium Pick

Nom Nom Chicken Cuisine
  • Fresh, high-quality protein sources
  • Relatively low phosphorus content
  • Extremely palatable
50% Off First Order
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Best Low-Phosphorus

Weruva TruLuxe Grain-Free Steak Frites
  • Low carbohydrate content
  • Rich in highly-digestible animal protein
  • Free of potentially-inflammatory artificial ingredients
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Best for Sensitive Stomach

Hound & Gatos Rabbit Canned Cat Food
  • Made with wholesome rabbit meat
  • Packed with necessary moisture
  • Contains salmon oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids
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Best Dry Cat Food for Seniors

Dr. Elsey’s cleanprotein Chicken Formula
  • Guaranteed levels of the omega-3 fatty acids
  • A rich, calorie-dense food to support lean muscle mass
  • Easily-digested animal ingredients
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Why You Should Trust Us

We’ve reviewed over 80 cat food brands, including most of the biggest brands on the planet. We’ve read customer reviews, spoken with market insiders, and tested foods hands-on.

Based on that research, we’re bringing you an updated list of the best cat food brands and products in the industry. The following foods earn their place with outstanding ingredient quality, nutritional merits, and safety records.

After researching the needs of senior cats and studying the market, we’ve chosen Feline Natural Chicken & Venison Feast as the best cat food for senior cats.

With an abundance of nourishing animal-based protein, anti-inflammatory ingredients, and not too much phosphorus for aging kidneys, this food has all the qualities we seek in a senior diet.

Keep reading to learn more about this Feline Natural food and the rest of our recommendations. Before we get into the reviews, let’s learn about the essentials of feeding a senior cat.

All of the foods on this list were chosen with senior needs in mind. They’re rich in biologically-appropriate animal protein, feature minimally processed ingredients, and have a soft, moist consistency that’s easy to eat.

#1 Overall Best: Feline Natural Chicken & Venison Feast

Feline Natural Chicken & Venison Feast Canned Cat Food

Buy On Chewy

Read Our Full Brand Review

Overview:

  • Brand Name: Feline Natural
  • Made In: New Zealand
  • Guaranteed Protein: 9.0% min
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $6.57/day

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Heart, Venison Kidney, Venison Liver, Venison Blood

This food from Feline Natural satisfies several requirements for senior cats. The recipe starts with super-nourishing organs, muscle meat, and even blood. All of these ingredients are readily digestible by your senior cat’s body, where they support lean muscle mass and overall health.

New Zealand green mussel serves as a source of omega-3 fatty acids, which help to reduce inflammation. If your cat has arthritis or another inflammatory condition, this inclusion could help him to feel better.

Guaranteed Analysis:

Crude Protein9.0% min
Crude Fat5.0% min
Crude Fiber0.2% max
Moisture82.5% max
Ash1.5%

What We Liked:

  • Rich in highly-digestible protein
  • Contains several omega-3 fatty acids: EPA, DHA, and ETA
  • Contains multiple sources of animal-sourced nutrition
  • Doesn’t contain any commonly-inflammatory ingredients

What We Didn’t Like:

  • One of the higher-phosphorus foods on this list
  • Expensive

#2 Best Budget: WholeHearted Chicken Recipe Flaked in Gravy

WholeHearted All Life Stages Canned Cat Food - Grain Free Chicken Recipe

Buy On Petco

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Read Our Full Brand Review

Overview:

  • Brand Name: WholeHearted
  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 10% min
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $1.52/day

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Chicken Broth, Water Sufficient For Processing, Tapioca Starch, Sunflower Oil

If you want to save money without sacrificing quality, consider this food from WholeHearted. While most cheap foods rely on animal by-products and have questionable digestibility, this food uses cuts of chicken muscle meat as its primary protein source.

The food contains tuna oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids, which can help to fight inflammation and soothe arthritic joints. At the same time, it doesn’t contain any common inflammatory ingredients like carrageenan, artificial colors, and preservatives.

Guaranteed Analysis:

Crude Protein10.0% min
Crude Fat2.0% min
Crude Fiber1.0% min
Moisture84% max
Ashn/a

What We Liked:

  • This food offers mid-range quality at an economical price
  • Rich in highly-digestible animal protein
  • Doesn’t contain carrageenan or other common inflammatory ingredients
  • Contains tuna oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Not all cats will enjoy it – some reviews say that their cats didn’t like the flavor

#3 Premium Pick: Nom Nom Chicken Chow Meow

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Overview:

  • Brand Name: Nom Nom
  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 18% min
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2-$6/day

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken Thigh, Chicken Breast, Chicken Liver, Asparagus, Carrot

Nom Nom prepares homemade-style cat food, portions it according to your cat’s needs, and ships it to your doorstep according to a custom delivery schedule.

Nom Nom foods are human-grade, meaning that they’re made from food-grade—not feed-grade—ingredients and prepared in human food manufacturing facilities. 

Their Chicken Chow Meow recipe is made from highly-digestible chicken thigh, breast, and liver. These protein sources are mixed with asparagus, carrot, spinach, and cantaloupe. These fruits and vegetables make the food a bit higher-carb than we’d like.

The recipe is about 0.26% phosphorus by weight.

In addition to a relatively species-appropriate formulation, personalized portions, and custom delivery schedules, Nom Nom offers something extremely helpful for pet parents—feedback. Nom Nom customers have access to a team of veterinary nutrition experts who can help you make decisions about your cat’s diet.

Guaranteed Analysis:

Crude Protein18.0% min
Crude Fat4.0% min
Crude Fiber0.8% min
Moisture73% max
AshN/A

What We Liked:

  • Relatively low phosphorus content
  • Fresh, high-quality protein sources
  • Free from synthetic additives that might increase inflammation
  • Extremely palatable, making it ideal for cats with a diminished appetite
  • Customers gain access to a team of people willing to give feedback and advice

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Requires subscription to regular cat food deliveries
  • Contains plant ingredients and is relatively high in carbohydrates
  • Doesn’t contain any fish oil or other sources of omega-3 fatty acids

#4 Best Low-Phosphorus: Weruva TruLuxe Grain-Free Steak Frites with Beef & Pumpkin in Gravy

Weruva Truluxe Steak Frites with Beef & Pumpkin in Gravy Grain-Free Cat Food

Buy on Chewy

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First 5 Ingredients: Water Sufficient for Processing, Beef, Pumpkin, Sweet Potato, Carrot

This food from Weruva’s TruLuxe line has several qualities that make it a good option for senior cats.

With beef as its primary ingredient, this food has plenty of nourishing animal-sourced protein to keep your senior strong and lean. With plenty of protein and a primarily animal-sourced ingredient list, this food adheres to a carnivorous dietary model.

Meanwhile, it manages to keep phosphorus at 1.0 mg per 1,000 calories—a rare treat among high-protein foods. With its relatively low phosphorus content, this food is a good option for people who want to keep their cats’ kidneys in the best condition possible.

Guaranteed Analysis:

Crude Protein10.0% min
Crude Fat1.3% min
Crude Fiber0.5% min
Moisture86% max
Ash2.0%

What We Liked:

  • Low in phosphorus, which may help to prevent and ease the symptoms of kidney disease
  • Rich in highly-digestible animal protein
  • Low carbohydrate content may reduce your cat’s chances of developing diabetes
  • Free of potentially-inflammatory artificial ingredients

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Doesn’t contain any fish oil or other concentrated sources of omega-3 fatty acids
  • One of the most expensive canned foods on the market

#5 Best for Sensitive Stomach: Hound & Gatos Rabbit Canned Cat Food

Hound & Gatos Rabbit Formula Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

Buy on Chewy

Read Our Full Brand Review

Overview:

  • Brand Name: Hound & Gatos
  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 11% min
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2.18/day

First 5 Ingredients: Rabbit, Water, Agar-Agar, Salmon Oil, Choline Chloride

This canned cat food uses a single animal protein source, making it a good option for senior cats with allergies and food sensitivities.

Ninety-eight percent of the recipe is composed of rabbit meat, with agar-agar and salmon oil as its only other primary ingredients. Thanks to the inclusion of salmon oil, the food is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and a promising option for cats with arthritis and other inflammatory issues.

With at least 2.5% phosphorus on an as-fed basis, this food is not a low-phosphorus option.

Guaranteed Analysis:

Crude Protein11.0% min
Crude Fat7.0% min
Crude Fiber1.00% max
Moisture78.0% max
Ash2.50% max

What We Liked:

  • Packed with necessary moisture to keep the urinary tract healthy
  • Made with wholesome rabbit meat, which is a biologically-appropriate source of protein
  • Limited ingredient recipe is ideal for cats with food sensitivities and allergies
  • Contains salmon oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids

What We Didn’t Like:

  • One of the higher-phosphorus options on this list

#6 Best Dry: Dr. Elsey’s cleanprotein Chicken Formula Grain-Free Dry Cat Food

Dr. Elsey's cleanprotein Chicken Formula Grain-Free Dry Cat Food

Buy on Chewy

Read Our Full Brand Review

Overview:

  • Brand Name: Dr. Elsey’s
  • Made In: United States
  • Guaranteed Protein: 59% min
  • Typical Cost Per Day: $2.24/day

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Dried Egg Product, Pork Protein Isolate, Gelatin, Chicken Fat

Though wet food’s softness, moisture content, and typically higher levels of protein make it the preferred option for senior cats, dry food can also be a good choice.

For example, this Dr. Elsey’s cleanprotein food has notably high levels of animal protein, extremely low carbohydrate content, and multiple sources of omega-3 fatty acids.

With no grains, legumes, potatoes, or other starchy ingredients holding it together, this kibble is not like the crunchy stuff you or your cat grew up with. Instead, it’s a relatively species-appropriate option for cats of all ages.

Guaranteed Analysis:

Crude Protein59.0% min
Crude Fat18.0% min
Crude Fiber4.0% min
Moisture12.0% max
AshN/A

What We Liked:

  • A rich, calorie-dense food to support lean muscle mass
  • Has guaranteed levels of the omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA
  • Primarily made from easily-digested animal ingredients

What We Didn’t Like:

  • Doesn’t have the moisture your cat needs
  • Expensive

Here’s what to look for in the best cat food for senior cats.

Here’s a summary of the most important dietary characteristics to look for when you’re feeding a senior cat.

The best food for senior cats is rich in highly-digestible protein.

Protein is the cornerstone of every cat’s diet. It is essential for many bodily functions, such as metabolism and tissue repair. Protein is doubly important for senior cats.

As your cat ages and his ability to absorb nutrients and metabolize energy declines, high-quality protein content can mean the difference between a healthy, fit kitty and a skinny, weak one.  Maintaining muscle mass becomes increasingly difficult with age, leaving an estimated 50% of senior cats underweight. Thus, when cats reach 10-12 years of age, their protein needs increase.

A study on the effect of protein on lean muscle mass in adult cats gives us a clear picture of what cats need. Mark E. Peterson, DVM shares the results of that study in a piece called Don’t Let Your Senior Cat Become a Skinny Old Kitty.

In the first study cited by Dr. Peterson, cats were fed three isocaloric diets with protein levels of 22%, 28% or 36% on a dry matter, or DM, basis. In this study, the protein sources for these diets included poultry, soy, fish and crystalline amino acids to meet amino acid requirements.

Only the cats on 36% DM protein were able to maintain their lean body mass, whereas the cats on the 28% and 22% protein diets lost lean body mass.”

Protein content becomes ever more important when your cat enters his senior years.

Unless that protein is highly digestible, however, it’s virtually worthless for your cat’s health. Feed your cat foods that use high-quality protein sources that honor your cat’s biological needs.

Meat protein is highly digestible and nourishing for your cat – an obligate carnivore. Cats weren’t made to consume plants. While the inclusion of plant proteins does pump up the protein percentages on the can of food, it may not deliver the nourishment that your cat needs

The best cat food for senior cats supports kidney health.

With renal failure being the most common condition affecting senior cats, a kidney-friendly diet is essential.

While you don’t want to put a healthy senior cat on a prescription renal diet, all senior cats can benefit from a kidney-friendly diet. Perhaps most importantly, senior cats should eat a controlled-phosphorus—though not necessarily low-phosphorus—diet.

Many—perhaps even most—cat foods have several times the minimum requirement of phosphorus. While excessive phosphorus is generally thought to be harmless, research done in 2018 suggests that excessive dietary phosphorus may hasten damage to a cat’s kidneys.

Keeping phosphorus close to AAFCO’s minimum required amount (0.5% on a dry matter basis) will help to prevent and control kidney damage.

What if your senior cat has been diagnosed with kidney disease? 

Feeding cats with kidney disease is a complex topic that we can’t detail in a single paragraph. If you want more information, please check out our article on the best food for kidney disease.

It helps to control inflammation.

Inflammatory conditions, including pancreatitis and arthritis, are more common among senior cats than younger cats. The best food helps to reduce that inflammation.

Look for foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids from animal sources. Salmon oil, krill oil, menhaden fish oil, and green-lipped mussels are excellent sources of these inflammation-easing fatty acids.

Your senior cat’s food also shouldn’t contain anything that will make inflammation worse. Avoid potentially-inflammatory ingredients like artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, and carrageenan.

The best foods are ultra-palatable and easy to eat.

Because many cats lose their interest in food as they age, it’s important to stimulate their desire to eat. Warm, moist foods with strong aromas can point your cat in the right direction.

A sprinkle of bonito flakes or a splash of bone broth can also encourage your older cat to get the food they need. Dental problems can make chewing a challenge, so it’s a good idea to select moist, soft foods that are easy for your cat to consume.

All of the foods on this list were chosen with senior needs in mind. They’re rich in biologically-appropriate animal protein, feature minimally processed ingredients, and have a soft, moist consistency that’s easy to eat.

With cats living longer than ever before, there’s no doubt that senior cats can be fit, healthy, and energetic.

The right diet plays a vital role in ensuring that your cat is at his best through every stage of life. In addition to the foods listed above, any nutrient-dense, meat-based food will help your senior thrive.

Remember that a cat’s nutritional needs change with age. Consult with your veterinarian if you need help finding the diet that’s most appropriate for your senior cat.

If you want more ideas, read our list of the top 10 best healthy canned, soft, and wet foods on the market.

This article was reviewed by JoAnna Pendergrass, DVM.

About the author


Mallory Crusta is a writer and adventurecat enthusiast on a mission to make cats’ lives extraordinary. She’s one of the founders of Wildernesscat – a site for happy, healthy, and adventurous cats who are fueled by nature. Visit Wildernesscat for radically natural cat nutrition, home remedies, and lifestyle inspiration.

23 thoughts on “6 Best Cat Food for Senior Cats

  1. AvatarThomas Madden

    Hi I am not sure how long ago this article was published but I do have a question that I hope you can help with. Basically your article states that only the cats that were consuming a diet with a DM basis of 36% protein were able to sustain their weight. This is all new to me so I went online and did a little research and found a calculator which allows you to determine what the Dry Matter Basis is for any value listed on the label of cat food. What I discovered is that all the different brands I checked which I considered to be lesser quality cat food all had a DMB value of over 50% protein. Initially I assumed that the cat foods you are listing in the article would have the higher protein values and that the run of the mill brands would be much lower. So what I am asking is there another factor that I am not taking into consideration? I understand that the cat foods you suggest appear to very natural and probably are very healthy for my cat but the article made me believe that the higher protein levels is what is necessary to allow my older cat to maintain lean muscle mass and potentially not lose weight.

    So in short since most every cat food brand I checked appears to have ample protein levels is there something I am missing say if I would compare lets say Fancy Feast pate to the Nutro Grain Free Soft Loaf which you list as the best food for an older cat that may be losing some weight?

    My situation is that I have a 13 1/2 year old male cat who isn’t very large ( usually averaged about 12lbs ) who has dropped about 2 lbs over the past couple of years. I had him checked out by the vet and all bloodwork, stool, and diagnostics indicated that there isn’t an apparent underlying condition. My cat is a very active indoor/outdoor cat and sometimes supplements his diet with field mice ( we live in the country ).

    So basically my wife and I thought that the protein levels in his current food may not be sufficient after reading your article but after using the calculator it appears the levels are adequate.

    Any input would be appreciated….

    Thanks,

    Tom

    Reply
    1. AvatarAll About Cats Post author

      Hi Tom,

      Thanks for reaching out.

      The biggest difference between Fancy Feast and Nutro is digestibility.

      Both have 50% or more protein on a dry matter basis, but some of the Fancy Feast protein is from meat by-products and therefore a slurry of organs, muscle meat, and indigestible tissues, so we don’t exactly know how biologically available that protein is.

      As for the 36% protein number, the cats in the study were relatively sedentary young adults. As cats get older, their protein requirements progressively increase.

      While the cats in the study needed about 28 grams of protein a day, a 12-lb senior cat might need 44 grams or more. And considering that your cat is an active country dweller, his ideal numbers could be even higher.

      Remember that part of being an obligate carnivore is the fact that cats can’t stop metabolizing protein when they aren’t getting enough in their food. They will instead cannibalize themselves from the inside out, and that’s what happens when a senior cat’s increased protein requirements aren’t met by increased levels of digestible protein.

      Bottom line: between your cat’s active lifestyle, his age, and the digestibility of his food, he might not be getting enough protein despite a healthy percentage on the label.

      Properly prepared raw meals are the most bioavailable source of protein, followed by meat-heavy cooked foods like the ones in this article. Avoid animal by-products and plant protein like corn gluten meal, pea protein, and dried alfalfa meal.

      Hope this helps!

      Reply
    2. AvatarMelissa

      All About Cats can you please share the protein calculator you use to determine the DM in cat foods based on food labels? Thanks.

      Reply
      1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

        Hello Melissa!

        Here’s the dry matter basis calculator that I typically use: http://fnae.org/dmb.html

        It’s really easy to use. Just enter the nutrient value and the food’s moisture percentage and the calculator will return the given nutrient’s dry matter value.

        If you’re ever caught without the calculator and need to calculate DM values on your own, remember that all we’re doing is removing water. Subtract the moisture percentage from 100%, then divide the nutrient value by the resulting percentage to get the dry matter value.

        The formula looks like this: % Nutrient Value / (100% – % Moisture).

        Hope this helps!

        Reply
          1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

            Hey Amy,

            The minimum or maximum percentages of protein, fat, and some other nutrients will be listed in the guaranteed analysis on the label or in the product listing. You’ll see that the food is, for example, 46% fat (minimum). This means it’s at least 46% fat. You can base your calculations on this minimum number or refer to a typical analysis. The typical analysis is not always available on the cat food container, but you can usually get it from the company’s website. If it’s not published on the site, get it from their customer support department. The typical analysis is based on testing of multiple batches and gives you an average percentage rather than the minimum or maximum amount of each nutrient.

            If you’re interested in a nutrient that’s not listed on the label—calcium, for example—, you may have to refer to the company’s website. If it’s not listed somewhere on the site, contact the company and they should be willing to provide that information to you directly.

            Hope this answers your question.

  2. AvatarGail Mahoney

    I want to try these foods, but don’t want to buy a case of any in case my cat doesn’t like the taste. Can these brands be found anywhere else in small quantities?

    Reply
    1. AvatarAll About Cats Post author

      Hi Gail,

      Most of the above-listed products are in stock on Chewy.com. They have a very friendly return policy and offer free returns for any product, used or unused, up to one year after purchase. If your cat tries their first can and doesn’t like it, Chewy will let you return the case for free.

      There are also a few online retailers who offer single cans of cat food. OnlyNaturalPet, for example, has individual cans of the above-listed Hound & Gatos and ZiwiPeak canned food in stock.

      Otherwise, don’t hesitate to contact the companies directly. Many cat food companies are willing to send small samples for free or at a discounted price.

      Hope this helps!

      Reply
  3. AvatarChris

    Hi, are you a vet? If not could you please indicate as such at the start of articles you write pertaining to animal health? There are some questionable pieces of advice on here regarding protein demands for senior cats, and your readers deserve to know that the author’s credentials regarding such an important topic. Thanks.

    Reply
    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      Hi Chris,

      Thanks for bringing that up.

      None of the articles on this site should be considered a replacement for veterinary advice and that’s now disclosed at the bottom of the article. Many of the site’s other articles on health subjects also acknowledge that fact at the top of the piece.

      To answer your question—nope, I’m not a vet. I hope no one assumes that any blog article on animal health is written by a veterinarian. Most aren’t! You could argue that this fact is fueling the spread of misinformation or misconceptions, but I believe it’s making us savvier readers. Instead of assuming that only experts can write about sensitive topics, we know not to trust anyone blindly, whether they have credentials or not. We do deeper research to find the truth.

      I’d prefer that people think of these articles like a conversation with a non-credentialed but relatively well-read friend. Take them with a grain of salt. I include reputable sources and references whenever possible to help research-inclined readers to go deeper and reach their own conclusions.

      Best,

      Mallory

      Reply
    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      LK, thanks for pointing that out. You’re 100% right.

      Though the food is primarily made from meat and organs, it does contain a small amount of chickpeas and other plant-sourced ingredients. Like most cat food companies, ZiwiPeak doesn’t disclose how much of the food’s protein content is from animal sources, but it’s likely that a percentage is from chickpeas.

      Best,

      Mallory

      Reply
  4. AvatarRona

    Hi Mallory, I’m a bit beside myself in all my research. Murphy is a 10 yo large tabby weighing 18 lbs and an indoor cat. Last night was 3rd ruptured abscess on anal sac. 2nd time on same side. I hesitate to remove them due to the risks. What is recommended to add more fiber and be sure he’s not eating the wrong food. He’s on wet & dry now. Halo wet & trifecta dry by Hills. I would like to see him drop weight & not have anymore abscesses. Thinking of trying ZiwiPeak??

    Reply
    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      Hi Rona,

      Thanks for your comment!

      First off, we’re not veterinarians and the following advice is not a substitute for consultation with a vet. Your veterinarian can evaluate your cat’s situation in depth and provide personalized expert advice.

      That said, if I was in your position, I’d start by weaning him off of the Hill’s dry and switching to wet food only. Weight loss is paramount and it’s all too easy to overeat dry food. Ziwi Peak is a good option, but it’s pretty calorie-dense, so you’d have to keep a close eye on your cat’s portions. You might prefer a lower-calorie (but equally senior-appropriate) brand like Against the Grain, Weruva, Wellness CORE Indoor, or Tiki Cat. With the exception of Wellness CORE, none of the foods from these brands are particularly high in fiber. If your cat is having some issues with stool consistency, you might consider mixing in fiber additives like psyllium husk, ground flaxseed, or slippery elm bark.

      Whether your cat’s constipated or has loose stools, a probiotic supplement may also help to normalize the situation. The probiotic yeast S.boulardii works particularly well to ease diarrhea and, in addition to fortifying your cat’s gut flora, FortiFlora will help you to entice your cat to try new foods.

      Finally, if you believe his anal sac problems are in part due to chronic digestive issues and neither probiotics nor fiber seem to help, try an elimination diet to rule out the possibility of food allergies or sensitivities.

      Hope this helps!

      – Mallory

      Reply
  5. AvatarDiana

    Hi Mallory, Really hoping you can help me out. I have a 9 year old male cat. He’s been on the same food for many years (Blue Buffalo) and seems to be a bit bored with it. I want to venture out into healthier and more natural options. My concerns are my cat had crystals when he was a kitten, so I’m definitely looking for food that will keep crystal formation low at all costs, he vomits hairballs, and he’s a skinny senior. He’s always been on the thinner side, around 9lbs, but he seems to be leaning out. Thank you for any recommendations!

    Reply
    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      Hi Diana,

      Thanks for commenting and sorry about the late reply!

      I can relate to your situation—my cat had two bouts of cystitis when he was around two and preventing a recurrence has been a priority for the last nine years. Urinary tract health is always near the top of my priority list when shopping for my cat or recommending food for other kitties.

      Since your cat has gone for around 9 years without having a problem with urinary tract crystals, it doesn’t sound like he needs a special diet. As long as you’re feeding him something moist and meaty, he should do well. Most meat-based foods have a species-appropriate pH and won’t skew your cat’s urinary pH towards alkalinity or excessive acidity. If you know your cat has a problem with struvite crystals, you can look for foods that contain Dl-methionine or other acidifiers.

      You might experiment with any of the foods on this list or our list of the best cat food of 2019: https://allaboutcats.com/best-cat-food

      You may also want to consider some of the foods on our list of the best cat foods for urinary tract health:
      https://allaboutcats.com/best-cat-food-urinary-tract-health

      Hope this was helpful!

      Take care,

      Mallory

      Reply
  6. Avatarkarla Kroll

    Hi, I just recently heard about Dr. Marty Nature’s Feast freeze-dried cat food. Have you ever considered reviewing it? I have a senior cat and I am considering trying Dr. Marty’s in an attempt to improve her overall health. Thank you!

    Reply
  7. AvatarHM

    Hi All, we have 2 senior cats – Lilly 10yrs and Marie 11yrs. We buy halo dry cat food which Lilly loves but she is a bit over weight and doesn’t care for wet food just the broth/ gravy. Marie is at wt. maybe a little under but skinny. She likes the fancy feast gravy lovers. We are looking to switch her to a better quality wet food that is all natural and beneficial to seniors. Any suggestions? We are gonna try a few listed here . Any that would be similar to fancy feast gravy lovers? She is picky and holds out for as long as she can before she will eat any dry food or other wets foods! Has anyone tried the glandex for their cats and or dogs? We thought about trying the powder for both. We use pumpkin for our blue heeler with meals but not anything for our cats. Also we are trying to get more water in diets , not big drinkers of water tho it is offered daily fresh ! We add water to broths and gravies. They won’t eat dry food if you put water in it and they don’t like wet and dry food mixed either. Suggestions? Thanks a bunch! HM

    Reply
  8. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

    Hi there HM,

    Thanks for reaching out! You have some good questions about finding the right food for Lilly and Marie.

    First off, it sounds like you’re looking for a higher-quality upgrade from Fancy Feast Gravy Lovers. It doesn’t look like any of the products on this list have that nice broth Marie loves. If she insists on food with gravy, some good senior-appropriate alternatives include Weruva, particularly the Steak Frites with Beef & Pumpkin in Gravy recipe from the Truluxe line, and WholeHearted, which is a nice nutritional upgrade that’s about the same price as Fancy Feast.

    While I can’t speak from personal experience, I know that Glandex is safe for cats and is primarily a fiber supplement. This helps to bulk up the stool, which then expresses the anal glands. Most cats, however, probably don’t need a fiber supplement. Unless a cat is on a raw or otherwise ultra-clean diet, they’re probably getting more than enough fiber already. Glandex could help and most likely won’t hurt, but you might consider other probiotics and digestive enzymes instead.

    Finally, have you tried using a water fountain? If your cats drink from dripping faucets or the toilet bowl, they might appreciate the moving water from a fountain. Otherwise, you might try giving Lilly another type of food that is neither canned nor dry—perhaps she’d like a freshly-cooked diet.

    Hope this helps. Let us know if you have any more questions!

    Take care,

    Mallory

    Reply
  9. AvatarTristen

    Hi, I have been trying my best to find a good option for my cat as she gets older. She is currently 12 and has been eating a mix of purina beyond dry food and Sheba wet food for a while now. She’s an indoor/outdoor cat and she’s very active, which I’ve seen in some of my research that senior cat food takes into account that they aren’t as active, which doesn’t really apply to my cat. I suppose I’m just confused and a little overwhelmed with all the different options and ingredients out there. Any help would be much appreciated.

    Reply
    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      Hey Tristen, thanks for your comment. You have a great question there! I think that since your cat is quite active, you should be able to continue feeding a relatively high-calorie, high-protein diet. Senior cats aren’t all the same and there’s no single diet that fits everyone. The one thing I would bear in mind is the potential for lower-quality protein and high phosphorus content to burden the kidneys. The food you’re giving your cat right now should be okay for now, but you may want to transition to a bit of a “cleaner” diet without a lot of lower-value protein sources like animal by-products and plants. Hope this helps to clear the fog a bit!

      Reply

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