Cat won't eat wet f...

Cat won't eat wet food, but will eat dry  

Originally Answered: Cat won't eat wet food, but will eat dry

We adopted our cat almost a year ago and he's currently 3. We want to feed an all wet diet, but the problem is, he's so picky. When we first brought him home, he wouldn't eat wet, but he would eat dry. My guess is that he wanted to stress eat too. And we always feed him wet for every meal, and he does really great for a while, and then he decides that he doesn't like the kind of food that he was eating. I've read about all the bad things that can happen if they don't eat enough. So if he refuses to eat wet I give him some dry, which he scarfs down. We've given him other flavors in the same brand, and we've worked through various brands: Weruva, American Journey, Tiny Tiger, Instinct, Wellness, Whole Earth Farms, even Friskies and Fancy Feast. He also has different textures: Pate, shreds, chunks in gravy. Of course he loves to lap up the gravy, but sometimes that's it. He'll eat some of these sometimes, but not other times. I'll ask the next time I bring him in for a checkup, but he's not not eating, he's just preferring dry. 

Dr. Joanna Woodnutt, MRCVS
Originally Answered: Cat won't eat wet food, but will eat dry


My name is Dr Woodnutt, hopefully I can help answer your question.

Firstly, cats can be picky, and they develop strong food preferences at an early age. In other words, if they don't try new foods as a young kitten, they may always reject them. Since you don't know your cat's history, it's possible this is what's happened with him. Cats will also reject foods that they associate with a time they felt ill or a time they were in pain.

It's possible that he simply doesn't like wet food - and that's actually fine. Whilst my personal views are that cats should be fed 3/4 wet food, with a little dental-specific dry diet, the science is a little less clear about what's best for cats. Some studies have said dry food is better for cats' teeth, but it may be less good for urinary health and is a risk factor for obesity. Dry food contains all the right nutrients to provide everything your cat needs, so if he won't eat wet, it's not the end of the world. 

You may want to increase your cat's water intake from other sources, though. Make sure he has lots of water bowls of various types, and maybe a water fountain. Consider adding a water supplement to see if this increases his drinking.

Whilst picky cats can be frustrating, it's actually extremely common for cats to be fussy. However, he can eat 100% dry food if he wants - especially if you can get him to take in fluids from other places. 

I hope that helps!


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