Royal Canin Cat Food Unbiased Review

Our Review Process

Our reviews are based on extensive research and, when possible, hands-on testing. Each time you make a purchase through one of our independently-chosen links, we’ll receive a percentage of the proceeds. Read more about how we’re supported here.

We’ve taken a close look at Royal Canin and graded it according to the We’re All About Cats standard, evaluating the brand on species-appropriateness, product variety, price, ingredient quality, customer experience, and recall history.

Overall, we give Royal Canin a C grade. It receives high marks for product variety and some of its veterinary diets have a reputation for treating specific health conditions, but for regular feeding, you could find much more carnivore-appropriate foods at a lower price.

The We’re All About Cats Standard—Rating Royal Canin on What Matters

We’ve rated the brand on six key criteria for quality.


  • Species-Appropriateness – 6/10
  • Ingredient Quality – 4/10
  • Product Variety – 8/10
  • Price – 6/10
  • Customer Experience – 8/10
  • Recall History – 5/10

Overall Score: 6.3/10

In total, we give Royal Canin cat food a 6.3/10 rating or a C grade.

Royal Canin Cat Food Explained

About Royal Canin

In the 1960’s, veterinary surgeon Jean Cathary was operating a practice in Aimargues, a village in the Gard region of southern France. Troubled by the scourge of skin and coat conditions in local pets, Jean started experimenting with homemade foods as a nutritional solution. After trying out several recipes and baking them in an oven in his garage, Jean found that a cereal-based recipe consistently helped to alleviate the skin and coat issues plaguing the village animals.

It was such a success that Jean trademarked the food “Royal Canin” and shuttered his veterinary practice. It was time to go into the pet food business. Royal Canin imported an extruder from the United States and became one of Europe’s pioneering companies. They were the first manufacturer of dry pet food in France and the first European company to use an extruder.

Following its sale to the Guyomarc’h Group in 1972, Royal Canin blasted through Europe, with subsidiaries popping up in Italy, Belgium, Sweden, Spain, Germany, and Denmark. After almost three decades of expansion, a bank buyout, and time on the Paris stock exchange, the company was sold to Mars, Incorporated in July of 2001.

Royal Canin is now a global company with distribution and production facilities all over the world. Its worldwide headquarters are still in Aimargues, France.

Sourcing and Manufacturing

Royal Canin sources ingredients from around the world and doesn’t release information about countries of origin or specific suppliers. Their products are manufactured in company-owned manufacturing facilities dotting the globe. Royal Canin factory locations include the United States, Canada, Brazil, France, Russia, China, South Africa, Argentina, Poland, and the UK.

All of these manufacturing facilities are owned by Mars, Incorporated.

Recall History

Royal Canin has been recalled three times.

The most recent recall took place in 2007, when the company announced a voluntary recall of eight Sensible Choice dry dog foods and seven Kasco dry dog and cat food products. That year, Royal Canin learned that their foods contained trace amounts of a melamine derivative from tainted rice protein concentrate. Earlier that year, they recalled several other products due to melamine contamination, including Veterinary Diet feline hypoallergenic.

In 2006, the company issued a recall of several cat and dog food products due to excess levels of vitamin D3.

What Kinds Of Cat Food Does Royal Canin Offer?

Royal Canin currently sells over 100 varieties of cat food. These are formulated, or at least marketed, for specific life stages, body sizes, lifestyles, health conditions, and breeds. They’re available in wet and dry types.

Royal Canin Cat Food – Top 3 Recipes Review

All nutritional information in this table and hereafter is taken from the manufacturer’s guaranteed analysis. Exact nutritional percentages are not available. All calculated values are determined using these minimum and maximum published values and may differ from actual values. Royal Canin is the ultimate authority on their products, so please contact the company for more nutritional information.

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#1 Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Urinary SO Moderate Calorie Dry Cat Food Review

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Urinary SO Moderate Calorie Dry Cat Food

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One of Royal Canin’s most popular formulas, the SO Moderate calorie recipe targets two common feline health issues—weight management and urinary tract health. Ironically, it’s a dry food, so it doesn’t contribute the moisture your cat needs to maintain good urinary tract health.

Unlike some foods that contain acidifiers to prevent struvite crystals but fail to address calcium oxalate crystals, this food was developed to increase urine output and reduce both struvite and calcium oxalate crystals. Note that a high-moisture diet would also increase urine output without flooding your cat’s body with carbohydrates.

The food’s first ingredient is chicken by-product meal, followed by a mix of plant ingredients, including brewers rice, corn, corn gluten, powdered cellulose, and wheat gluten. A combination of chicken fat and fish oil serves as the food’s primary fat source.

Between the use of chicken by-products rather than clearly-named cuts of chicken and heavy doses of low-value plant ingredients, this isn’t the highest-value ingredient list nor the most species-appropriate for your carnivore.

While it doesn’t tick the boxes you’d usually look for in a cat food, this type of veterinary diet is sometimes the only solution for cats with recurrent urinary tract disease.

The food is available by prescription only, so you’ll need your veterinarian’s approval before purchasing it.


Brewers Rice, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn, Chicken Fat, Corn Gluten Meal, Wheat Gluten, Psyllium Seed Husk, Natural Flavors, Dried Chicory Root, Egg Product, Potassium Chloride, Fish Oil, Calcium Sulfate, Sodium Pyrophosphate, Monocalcium Phosphate, Fructooligosaccharides, Dl-Methionine, Choline Chloride, Vegetable Oil, Salt, Taurine, Hydrolyzed Yeast, Vitamins [Dl-Alpha Tocopherol Acetate (Source Of Vitamin E), L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (Source Of Vitamin C), Niacin Supplement, Biotin, Riboflavin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Vitamin A Acetate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement], L-Lysine, Trace Minerals [Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Oxide, Manganese Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite, Copper Proteinate], Marigold Extract (Tagetes Erecta L.), Rosemary Extract, Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols And Citric Acid.

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein29.0% min
Crude Fat13.0% min
Crude Fiber4.7% max
Moisture8.0% max

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Urinary SO Moderate Calorie Nutritional Breakdown

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Urinary SO Moderate Calorie Nutritional Breakdown

Ingredients We Liked: Fish Oil, Chicken Fat, Dl – Methionine

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: Brewers Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Corn, Wheat Gluten

Common Allergens: Chicken


  • Cats like the way this food tastes
  • May be able to help some cats with urinary tract disease


  • Contains concentrated plant protein
  • High in carbohydrates
  • Dry food can never provide adequate hydration

#2 Royal Canin Gastrointestinal Fiber Response Dry Cat Food Review

Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Gastrointestinal Fiber Response Dry Cat Food

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As a high-fiber diet, this GI food is geared towards cats with constipation.

Although most vets agree that cats do best on a meat-based diet whether they have digestive issues or not, this food is heavy on plant ingredients. Its first ingredient is brewers rice, a low-value byproduct of rice milling.

This ingredient is followed by chicken by-product meal. Though it’s good to see a meat ingredient near the top of the ingredient list, chicken by-product meal is a salvaged product and may not be as high-quality as selected cuts of chicken. The rest of the recipe includes corn, corn gluten meal, and wheat gluten as plant-based sources of carbs and protein, chicken fat as its main fat source, and egg product as a secondary source of animal protein.

Psyllium seed husk is a source of fiber and may help to combat constipation, while dried chicory root and fructooligosaccharides serve as prebiotics.

While this food’s plant-heavy ingredient list, low protein content, and high carbohydrate count are all far from the carnivore-appropriate ideal, it may be a good option for some cats—at least temporarily.

According to customer reviews, this food works. Many customers say the food helped to eliminate their cat’s constipation, encouraging better overall digestive health. One reviewer on Chewy even said their “cat poops mountains now”.

All Royal Canin gastrointestinal diets are supposed to be particularly palatable, which theoretically encourages unwell cats to eat.


Brewers Rice, Chicken By-Product Meal, Corn, Chicken Fat, Corn Gluten Meal, Wheat Gluten, Psyllium Seed Husk, Natural Flavors, Dried Chicory Root, Egg Product, Potassium Chloride, Fish Oil, Calcium Sulfate, Sodium Pyrophosphate, Monocalcium Phosphate, Fructooligosaccharides, Dl-Methionine, Choline Chloride, Vegetable Oil, Salt, Taurine, Hydrolyzed Yeast, Vitamins [Dl-Alpha Tocopherol Acetate (Source Of Vitamin E), L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (Source Of Vitamin C), Niacin Supplement, Biotin, Riboflavin Supplement, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Vitamin A Acetate, Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement], L-Lysine, Trace Minerals [Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Oxide, Manganese Proteinate, Ferrous Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite, Copper Proteinate], Marigold Extract (Tagetes Erecta L.), Rosemary Extract, Preserved With Mixed Tocopherols And Citric Acid.

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein29.0% min
Crude Fat13.0% min
Crude Fiber4.7% max
Moisture8.0% max

Royal Canin Gastrointestinal Fiber Response Nutrient Breakdown

Royal Canin Gastrointestinal Fiber Response Macronutrient Chart

Ingredients We Liked: Chicken Fat, Fish Oil, Egg Product

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: Brewers Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Wheat Gluten

Common Allergens: Chicken, Eggs


  • Cats seem to enjoy the flavor of this food
  • Can help cats with constipation
  • Gets very positive customer reviews


  • Very plant-heavy
  • High in carbohydrates
  • Low protein content
  • Expensive

#3 Royal Canin Feline Health Nutrition Adult Instinctive Thin Slices in Gravy Canned Cat Food Review

Royal Canin Feline Health Nutrition Adult Instinctive Thin Slices in Gravy Canned Cat Food

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While it’s not universally one of the most popular Royal Canin foods, I’ve selected this product as an example of one of the company’s non-prescription diets.

This canned recipe is made for generally healthy adult cats and, according to Royal Canin, was created with the “optimal balance between proteins, fats, and carbohydrates to support long-term palatability and work as the perfect nutritional complement to kibble”.

The formed meat slices are composed of a slurry of by-products and other cuts of meat, containing pork by-products, chicken by-products, chicken liver, pork liver, and salmon. These ingredients represent the food’s primary protein sources.

In addition to these meat ingredients, the food contains wheat flour, wheat gluten, gelatin, powdered cellulose, modified cornstarch, and carrageenan. While none of these ingredients are nutritionally essential, carrageenan stands out as particularly questionable. This seaweed-derived thickener may contribute to inflammation and is potentially carcinogenic, making it an ingredient worth avoiding.

On a dry matter basis, the food is approximately 61% protein, 11.9% fat, and 27.1% carbohydrate. It’s a high-protein, high-carbohydrate, and relatively low-fat product.


Water Sufficient For Processing, Pork By-Products, Chicken By-Products, Chicken Liver, Pork Liver, Salmon, Wheat Flour, Wheat Gluten, Gelatin, Pork Plasma, Powdered Cellulose, Natural Flavors, Modified Corn Starch, Calcium Sulfate, Guar Gum, Potassium Chloride, Sodium Tripolyphosphate, Carrageenan, Taurine, Vitamins [Dl-Alpha Tocopherol Acetate (Source Of Vitamin E), Thiamine Mononitrate (Vitamin B1), Niacin Supplement, Biotin, D-Calcium Pantothenate, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Vitamin B6), Riboflavin Supplement, Folic Acid, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement], Trace Minerals [Zinc Proteinate, Zinc Oxide, Ferrous Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Sodium Selenite, Calcium Iodate], Choline Chloride.

Guaranteed Analysis

Crude Protein10.5% min
Crude Fat1.9% min
Crude Fiber1.8% max
Moisture81.5% max

Royal Canin Adult Instinctive Dry Matter Nutrient Breakdown

Royal Canin Adult Instinctive Dry Matter Nutrient Breakdown

Ingredients We Liked: Chicken Liver, Pork Liver, Pork Plasma

Ingredients We Didn’t Like: Wheat Flour, Wheat Gluten, Powdered Cellulose, Modified Corn Starch, Carrageenan

Common Allergens: Chicken


  • High moisture content promotes hydration
  • Cats love the taste of the food
  • Contains nourishing meat ingredients
  • Relatively high in protein


  • Contains wheat gluten as a high-protein plant additive
  • High in carbohydrates
  • Expensive

What Do Customers Think Of Royal Canin Cat Food?

Royal Canin is one of the world’s most popular and most well-respected pet food brands. Along with Hill’s Pet Nutrition, Royal Canin is the food most often recommended by veterinarians. Some say that Royal Canin veterinary diets save lives.

Generally, customers like Royal Canin and their cats like it, too. Royal Canin doesn’t get a lot of negative reviews.

That said, a number of customers have recently reported that their cats became sick after eating Royal Canin’s Urinary SO recipe.

With no formal investigation and Royal Canin remaining adamant that there’s nothing wrong with the food, it’s hard to gauge the legitimacy of these complaints. That said, we do feel a responsibility to cover the issue. These reports appear on Consumer Affairs and have reached the comment section of this article, making them particularly hard to ignore.

So what do the reports say?

Most complaints involve cats experiencing digestive distress—vomiting, diarrhea, and sometimes lethargy and other symptoms—after eating the Royal Canin formula.

For example, Lia of Lachine, Quebec wrote on Consumer Affairs that two of their cats became sick after eating Royal Canin’s Urinary SO formula. A week after their first cat fell ill, Lisa says that “our other cat begins to vomit and have diarrhea after eating his food. Both cats were lethargic, vomiting and overall, not doing very well. After spending over $4000 bringing our cats in to try and figure out what was going on, we realized it must be from their food.”

Lia’s conclusion wasn’t confirmed by a vet or laboratory—again, all of this remains purely speculative—but their experience seems to align with that of other reviewers on Consumer Affairs. 

Kat of Cornwall, Ontario said that her cat “was vomiting the RC food every time I fed him after feeding him the food for about 2 months which worried me.”

While some reports come from new Royal Canin customers, others are long-time Royal Canin buyers who’ve noticed a change. 

Lori of Leominster, Massachusetts wrote on January 27th, 2020 that “My 12 to (sic) cat has been on Royal Canin urinary SO since he was 4. The past year he has been sick after eating it and now he wont eat the wet food at all from most recent case purchased. I dont know what to do.”

While some claim that these issues coincided with a formula change around January of 2020, similar complaints date back to early 2019. Although these reports are unsettling and worth paying attention to, we haven’t been able to find any confirmation that Royal Canin’s Urinary SO food is making cats sick. Again, thousands of people feed their cats Royal Canin without complaint and the majority of customer reviews are positive on Chewy and other retail sites. 

Overall, these reports are inconclusive and don’t provide any compelling evidence against the safety of Royal Canin cat food.

Royal Canin performs routine testing of their products and has not identified any quality or safety issues. Given the company’s history of quality control, there’s no reason to believe that there’s any reason for concern.

While it doesn’t appear that there’s any significant health risk, we advise caution and will continue to monitor the situation. 

To get an idea of what customers are saying about Royal Canin, here are a few reviews selected from several popular recipes listed on Amazon and Chewy.

Positive Reviews

“My vet prescribed this food for my Lucas after he was diagnosed with stones in his urinary track and was very sick. He has been eating this food since and has his issue has been under control. Food is expensive but worth it.” Fmc008, reviewing Royal Canin Urinary SO Moderate Calorie

“…The switch to this food was nothing short of amazing. Sure, my geriatric cat did not suddenly turn into a kitten, but she’s no longer needing eye drops for the glaucoma, supplements for the arthritis, and her urine output is much reduced (better kidney function).We also have a 2 year old cat that also eats the same food. He LOVES it, too. A win all around.” L.A.H, reviewing Royal Canin Feline Nutrition Indoor Cat Food

Negative Reviews

“I am absolutely shocked that this food is supposedly manufactured by a veterinarian. I would never take my cats to the person that designed this dry food. I bought the food since my cat is having urinary tract problems only to see that the food only has 6% crude protein and that the rest is pure filler and not even grain free filler but filled with Corn, Corn Meal and rice. So basically this food will take the urinary crystals out of the cats pee but will provide the cat nutrition to the equivalent of a bag of Doritos. Cats CAN NOT DIGEST CORN; a cat eating corn is like a human being eating cardboard so why would a veterinary health formula be made of such garbage. Going to get my money back.” – Alexandra Lebron, reviewing Royal Canin Urinary SO Moderate Calorie

“Gave it two stars because my vet confirmed this was a great brand for cats and my guy loved it but it seemed to give him indigestion or gas. He threw up way more than I was comfortable with on this. I took him to the vet in a panic and had x-rays and bloodwork done only to find out he was perfectly healthy. As soon as I changed his food the problems went away.”Amazon Customer, reviewing Royal Canin Indoor Adult Dry Cat Food

How Much Does Royal Canin Cat Food Cost?

Your expenses will vary depending on which type of Royal Canin food you purchase. In general, however, Royal Canin foods are a bit pricier than others with similar ingredient lists.

For example, Royal Canin’s popular Urinary SO dry cat food costs about $0.30 per ounce, adding up to a daily feeding cost of around $0.60 per day for an average cat. That places it on the lower end of the premium price spectrum. The wet version of the same recipe—Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Urinary SO Loaf in Sauce—costs $0.40 per ounce and would cost about $3.60 per day if feeding a 10-lb cat.

Moving away from prescription diets, Royal Canin’s Adult Instinctive Thin Slices in Gravy recipe is, oddly, more expensive than some of the recipes in the Veterinary Diet Line. At $0.48 per ounce, this food would cost about $4.32 each day if feeding a typical cat.

Why Is Royal Canin Cat Food So Expensive?

Many Royal Canin foods are considerably higher-priced than other products with similar ingredient lists.

After decades as one of the two brands that are recommended most often by veterinarians, Royal Canin has a reputation that justifies its price. It’s one of the few brands that offer condition-specific products, which makes Royal Canin easy to recommend to frustrated patients and has earned it a place in veterinarian offices around the world. This lends the brand status and respect that goes beyond the veterinary line.

Overall, Is Royal Canin A Good Choice?

Some people think that humans don’t fully understand how whole foods nourish the body. It’s impossible to break down food into macronutrients and micronutrients and assume that a synthetic reproduction and reassembly of those components will have the same benefits as the natural composition of a freshly-killed rabbit.

Another school of thought believes that foods are no more than the sum of the parts that humans understand. They are bundles of amino acids, fats, starches, minerals, trace metals. They can be broken down and recreated under controlled conditions. According to this thought system, an ingredient list isn’t where you get the important information about a food. The nutrient analysis is what matters.

Royal Canin appeals to those in the second category, saying that “we need to focus on the nutrients our pets need for optimal health, not on the ingredients.”

So let’s ignore the fact that Royal Canin foods contain bogeyman ingredients like corn gluten meal, wheat gluten, and cornmeal. Let’s focus on the nutrients instead. Royal Canin foods still aren’t ideal nutrition for most cats, who are metabolically adapted for higher metabolism of proteins and lower utilization of starches.

When other foods don’t provide the results you need, Royal Canin foods may be able to help your cat feel better. For general nutrition, however, Royal Canin cat food is overpriced and under-nourishing.

Royal Canin may be able to help sick cats, but it floods their bodies with carbohydrate-heavy plants, low-value proteins, and increases their chances of developing the chronic problems that necessitate Royal Canin’s big-ticket prescription diets. Too much plant protein may contribute to kidney disease. Dry diets may increase a cat’s chance of developing lower urinary tract disease.

In a Royal Canin world, developing these illnesses means that it’s time to switch to another specially-formulated prescription diet. In reality, a simple meat-based, hydrating diet might have prevented the problems in the first place.

Where Is Royal Canin Cat Food Sold?

Royal Canin cat food is widely distributed in pet specialty retailers and veterinary hospitals around the world. Use Royal Canin’s store finder to find a retail location near you. You can also purchase it online through retailers like Chewy and Amazon.

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Click here to shop for Royal Canin cat food on Chewy.

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.

44 thoughts on “Royal Canin Cat Food Unbiased Review

  1. AvatarLinda Navarra

    Please notify your customer base that many cats and dogs are having issues on Royal Canin SO food. The pets become ill with vomiting and diarrhea and many have died. I am have finally got Royal canin to star an investigation but need pet owners having issues with Royal Canin food to call Royal Canin. Unfortunatley my cat passed away yesterday but we can stop others from having the same issue if we get the word out.

    Thank you.

    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      Hi Linda,

      First off, I’m sorry to hear about your cat’s death. I imagine you must feel distraught and disgusted.

      I’ll definitely be doing some more research and keeping up with the story as more information comes to light. For now, anyone reading this can learn more from the reports on Consumer Affairs:

      Thanks for sharing this, Linda. It’s much appreciated.

      Take care,


    2. AvatarCatherine Bannister

      Just wondering if this is since they changed the wet food packaging from the green label, as my cat has been fine for over a year (other than getting older – 14 nearly 15) and since they have changed to the gold label she has really struggled to eat any of it – managed to find some old stock green labels and she has gone back to eating that however I will have to change to another food {cant have her not eating)
      The Urinary S/O biscuits have not been a problem with either of my two cats for the past 12 years. (Its just one cat we have had to put onto wet food pouches – green label urinary s/o)

      1. AvatarAngela Mitzner

        Fact: Royal canin literally has only made changes to packaging, the formulas are still the same (3/2020)

    3. AvatarTanya

      I have been feeding my 3 cats and now 2 of my cats are very Ill, and the 3rd is not himself. I was told and it’s on the bag that the food has S/O index I was using the gastro low calorie, the vet and the company saying the food was good for gastro and urinary.
      But it’s lies!! I was told tonight that food a little amount of S/O
      I am MAD! My cats may not pull though and have vets bills plus I have spent 333.00+ on the food.
      I need to talk with someone!

      1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

        Hello Tanya,

        First off, I hope your cats are feeling better. In my opinion, prescription foods are rarely the best choice for cats with gastrointestinal issues. There’s no guarantee that a prescription diet will cure or treat GI problems or any health concern, regardless of what’s on the label.

        Do you suspect that the food made your cats sick? In addition to telling other cat guardians, reporting the issue to both Royal Canin and the FDA is the best way to make sure that your complaint is heard and addressed.

        The FDA explains how to report a pet food complaint:

        Wishing you all the best,


    4. AvatarDebra Boltersdorf

      Yes I agree and Royal Canin SO recently changed their formula and many cats are getting sick from this food! Many are dieing and my 12 year old cat is one of them!! He has been on Urinary SO dry for 9 years and never a problem till Jan. 2020!!! Many are commenting with a batch number and warning not to feed to your cat! Well that is the batch number on our bag!! This has to be looked into before a whole lot more cats die!!! This is unbelievable especially the price for this food and that we TRUST these Companies to provide safe foods for our pets who are our precious family members! We are their VOICE!

      1. AvatarStephanie

        OMG My cat is losing weight !!!! been on this food for a years now. I just spent $1600.00 trying to find out what’s wrong with him !!!! Cant get a answer on what’s going with him !!!! What is the batch on the food????? My cat is 14 He’s lost 3 pounds in 3 months !!!

        1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta Post author

          Hi Stephanie,

          We recommend that you contact Royal Canin to let them know about your experience. If possible, be sure to mention the expiration date of the last food your cat ate. If possible, it’s also a good idea to save a sample of your cat’s food along with its packaging. If you decide to investigate further, you may submit that sample to a lab for testing. Information from the package will also help you and others to understand what’s happening.

          Contact Royal Canin here:



          1. AvatarStephanie

            I contacted Royal Canin and left a formal complaint, Gave them all the information on the bag including the expiration date. I have saved a sample of the food. I have also left a review on the consumer affairs website about Royal Canin. Ever since they changed to the gold bag, nothing but problems. I took away the Urinary SO food immediately and changed to another brand ! I have 4 cats. Since I changed the food, the vomiting has stopped completely and so has the diarrhea !! I also told my Vet about what I found online.

        2. AvatarKristen Leedom

          Hi Stephenie, could you tell me the food you switched to? I’ve been feeding royal canin for many years but with thy the recent huge increase in prices I know I can find better for less. I breed sphynx and royal canin has always offered breeders to buy large bags and pay less then retail however not the case anymore and I have also has issues with 25 percent of my cats puking and soft stool every since they changes the packaging and the formula. Since using royal canin I’ve been through two formula changes but with this last change they never fully got over it. If you could let me know what you changes to it would be appritiated.

          1. AvatarStephanie

            Hi I now use Simply Nourish from Pet Smart. I have 4 cats. They all like it. I tried a few different foods with high protein and grain free, this is the one they liked. The puking has stopped, with the exception of hairballs.

      2. AvatarAngela

        Royal canin has not changed the formulas at all, only the packaging. If you cat is getting sick it is due to other reasons.

        1. AvatarStephanie

          Yes They Have !!!!!! Compare the Green bag with the gold bag……I called Royal Canin and they said on the phone that they have changed the Ingredients !!!!!!!

          1. AvatarStephanie

            So My cat of 14 years passed away august 24/2020….He had kidney failure. I am heart broken. I believe it was this damn food !!!! This food is poison !!!! How many animals have to die before they do something !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          2. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta Post author

            Stephanie, I’m sorry to hear about your loss. It’s impossible to say at this point whether or not the Royal Canin food played a role in your cat’s kidney failure, but if you see evidence that the two were connected, I would recommend talking to your veterinarian for more insights. Wishing you all the best.

      3. AvatarWendy

        Hi I am going through the same thing with my big boy ,he’s now in the hospital with bladder issues,blockages and ECT…. What have royal canin done with their urniary so food ,it smells and looks spoiled. I have 3 cats and none of them would eat it and if they did someone was vomiting,they have been on this food for a long time with no previous issues til the past year or two. My big boy was also hospitalized last March 2020 with bladder issues and vomiting ecttt. Also during the summer he had bladder /blockages issues again if you go on chewey website any royal canin food that’s for urinary,renal, gastorial is temporary unavailable, That’s all forms of. These types of food even. treats. I find that very suspicious !!!! There is definitely something going on with the food. Every review is the problems something needs to be done! my other two are going to be checked next week. What do we need to do this food is tainted

  2. AvatarCatherine Bannister

    Hi, my 14 year old cat has enjoyed the Urinary S/O (Green label) soft food, for over a year now and enjoyed it. It has recently changed its packaging (gold label)and was not meant to have changed the ingredients HOWEVER she refuses to eat the new packaged (yet the same stuff inside the package) food. Either I have an ultra intelligent cat – that knows her colours and doesnt like gold – or there is some ingredient that has actually changed. {I managed to get some remaining green label packages and she has gone back to eating it and I would like to know WHAT CHANGED} Would like some feedback as I will have to move her over to some other food when the final packets run out – thanks

    1. Mallory CrustaMallory Crusta

      Hi Catherine,

      That’s puzzling!

      I contacted Royal Canin and asked about your experience. The person on the phone confirmed that the S/O packaging change did coincide with formulation changes, but without knowing which recipe you’re feeding, she wasn’t able to give any definitive answers. She did mention that they’ve changed their sodium source and mentioned that the morsels in gravy recipes have a new consistency.

      So…something has definitely changed, but we still don’t know exactly what or why your cat’s rejecting it. You may be able to get more information by contacting Royal Canin and providing specific details about your experience.

      If you don’t find solutions there, you may need to switch to a new food. This article on the best cat food for urinary tract health might be able to help you make a decision:

      Thanks for sharing your experience and hope you find more answers soon!



  3. AvatarKrista

    My female Maine Coon, adopted as a kitten in 2005, has never been a pukey kitty. She never ate royal canin food before. Since my vet recommended a switch from grain free diets, she has been put on 100% royal canin food. And she is throwing up.

    So can you please enlighten me, at the expense level of her royal canin diet, why I am now cleaning up puke? Could it be connected, by any chance , to the wheat gluten content of this diet that may well be more expensive than what I eat myself?

    How divorced from the welfare of the cats you feed are you, royal canin? How much profit is enough for you to remove an unhealthy ingredient from the top three on the list?

    1. AvatarNatalie

      I had my cat on Oral Care dry food, along with various wet Royal Canin foods. He much liked the Instinctive formula. However, he too threw up a lot. I was worried and he was on the thin side of normal too. The vet said to monitor it and suggested if it persists to perform tests. Well, I did some research, noting the consistency and colour of the vomit to be consistent with the dry. In my reading I found most cats do not chew dry food, so the large kibble of Oral Care wasn’t good for him. I’ve changed his food and the vomiting stopped. However, I now have been told he’s on the bigger side of normal as he’s eating and keeping it down. I can’t win! I now have to use a low calorie food and be even more diligent with portion control!

  4. AvatarKrista

    When I left a message for my vet asking which royal canin food I should feed Niki, she said one without wheat gluten. The ONLY foods royal canin currently sells without wheat gluten are the foods to determine food allergies.

    Thanks, royal canin, for picking my pocket while giving my cat indigestible food.

  5. AvatarKrista

    Looking at the comments that preceded mine, I am seeing a pattern, one that my vet described when I discussed wheat gluten with her. She said cats seem to do well with corn gluten but wheat gluten makes them throw up. Why are you doing this to cats? Is wheat gluten that much cheaper and your profit margin so much better that you at royal canin think it’s a decent trade for the lives of the animals we have entrusted you with?

    I’m disgusted.

  6. AvatarChristina

    We had 4 cats eating Royal Canin Urinary SO for most of their lives since 2 of them, siblings had UTI problems that were chronic and the food seemed to help. ( something called Tinkle Tonic- really helped) as the cats reached the age of 14 years one by one they all got sick and died. 2 of cancer, 1 of a stroke and the last of upper respiratory treated with a strong antibiotic cipro related that made her deathly ill. None of these dear cats got to get old looking or acting- just sick and then gone. I have seen cats live longer on Cheap cat food. But our foods are all poisoned with Monsanto’s Round up especially the grains so that is what many of us are facing. Illnesses in our 50-60s…. beware of this food!

  7. Avatarben amick

    I have two cats who have been on Royal Canin Urinary SO and have loved it and been fine for years. Recently opened a new bag (the gold packaging…used to be green) and my two cats over the course of 2 weeks have stopped eating it, have diarrhea and were throwing up…they are lethargic and not themselves. Called RC and gave them the batch number and they said they would test it and reply back. That was two days ago (January 3, 2020). Not sure how long that will take but I am not confident they will return my call with any info or responsibility. The lady on the phone was nice, but said there was nothing wrong with the food. I told her I was seeing lots of complaints about it online and she said, “Well, sir, you know with social media lots of people say a lot of things…” I honestly do get that, a lot of people get very brave behind a keyboard, but there is a pattern and a LOT of people are having issues…and that’s just those of us who take the time to write/post. I asked her if I truly was the FIRST person to call with a complaint and she said YES. I can’t believe that. Everyone having issues needs to post reviews but ALSO CALL RC and complain. I’m very worried about my cats. And I don’t think RC will own up to anything. Meanwhile, I’m about to be neck deep in vet bills. My cats are indoor cats only. We don’t feed them table food or anything else but this expensive prescription food. We have switched prescriptions to HIlls Science Diet’s version of the same thing and they are barely eating that. It’s like they are scared to eat because that causes pain. The pet food industry is a scam…they know we love our pets and will do almost anything for them ($$) and they exploit that. It’s big business and they have too much at stake to admit anything unless forced to do so. My vet said that they have to have “a certain number of complaints” before they are required by law to report it. Please write your reviews and call RC. The batch number on my bag in question – 07MAR2021 19250001 RFT F1 07:12. I returned the bag to PetSmart and they gave me a full refund…but I saved some of it in the event this needs to be tested by an independent source. If enough of us have problems perhaps a class action lawsuit is in order? Please help to put RC (and the pet food industry) on notice. This is unacceptable and inhumane and very irresponsible. To say I’m mad is a gross understatement.

    1. AvatarDebra Boltersdorf

      Yes this has happened to my cat as well but he died on Feb. 13th. We purchased anew bag on Jan.1st. and he starting throwing up. Lots of vet visits and tests and meds. And sleepness nights and even paid to give subq fluids at home! Cat was very healthy and NEVER SICK till eating this new firmula of Urinary SO! Many are posting the batch number and saying do not feed this to your cat!! Ifound this out after my cat died!!! Royal Canin needs to test this food immediately!!! There is somethi g toxic in their new formula!!!!

      1. AvatarLisa Wilson

        I can’t believe all the complaints regarding RC Urinary SO wet cat AND dog food. Sometime in July or August of 2020, my cat started to vomit and it increased from once every 2 weeks to several times a week. He never vomits. He eats anything but at times would smell it, cover it walk away but would eventually eat it. 1000’s in vet bill’s. His tests showed possible pancreatitis. He’s still eating this food but has so many problems now. He’s losing the hair on his ears and is constantly biting his belly, legs and paws, so more bald spots. The vet is stumped and now thinks he may be allergic to the food, he was fine before July 2020. Now he’s having leaking from his eyes and still vomits but not as often. I better see the vet immediately to discuss this. This many complaints, something is seriously wrong. How many people have sick cats not linking the issues to the food? My poor cat. Vet can’t find anything wrong with him!!!

  8. AvatarChristina Reeve

    I had two cats, eight years of age. Last year one cat had tartar build up on her teeth, so the vet professionally cleaned them. After the cleaning the vet suggested that I switch their food to Hill’s Prescription Diet ORAL Care dry kibble. One cat became lethargic in December after eating this food for two months, then in January she became very ill. Vet said she had a fever, and antibodies were very low. She vomited several times a day, then refused to eat the Hill’s Oral Care kibble. It smelled sour! The freshness date said good until Feb. 2021. I switched them to the Royal Canin i/d digestive dry cat food, but sadly she died after two weeks of treatment with antibiotics and Zantac and an appetite stimulant meds. My other cat has been sick for two weeks now – lethargic, vomiting. I exchanged bags (different batch lot number) of the Royal Canin i/d digestive dry cat food but this new bag also smells sour! I think Royal Canin and Hill’s Prescription Diet cat foods are toxic. Cats should not vomit daily! I’ve spent $3,000 in vet bills!

  9. AvatarTiffany

    My Bengal ( he had a blockage surgery and has to be on urinary diet food now ) and muted gray calico has stopped eating prescription Royal Canin S/O wet ( loaf ) entirely. I thought I was insane to think I was the only one out there thinking my cats were the only two rejecting their food since they went from the green label to the gold label. The formula has changed! The texture has changed, there’s displeasing odor about the food ( no, it’s not spoiled ), the gravy used to look like gravy and now it looks like some gray glob “stuff” from a kid’s science project. I buy six cases of this food a month at $60.00 a case only to have my cats now not touch it!?! They both get sick off Purina urinary and Hills. I’m ticked off at Royal Canin because I have cats that aren’t receiving healthy nutrition anymore, and cans upon cans of nasty food that I spent hundreds of dollars on laying around my home. I don’t know what to feed my kitties. I tried Core Wellness they seemed to like it, but I’m worried the Bengal will have issues with crystals again. 🙁

  10. AvatarTom Hughes

    The new formula killed one of my cats, and the other is vomiting almost daily. All that started after the first of the year.

  11. AvatarElliot Horn

    My Cat also got sick from the new formula! He was on the Weight care food for years and when I purchased his last bag I noticed the shape of the kibble was different. I assumed it was a cosmetic change as nowhere in the bag did it say it was a new formula but that same day I noticed my cat throwing up. He’s sensitive to food changes like many cats, and now I don’t know what to do since I can’t properly transition him to a different brand. I purchased a different Brand of high quality wet food and am hoping it being lighter in his stomach will be enough for him to handle the transition. He’s doing better now but I’m still keeping an eye on him. When I went to the Petco reviews there were comments from Royal Canin employees insisting it was just a cosmetic change below every review warning customers of the formula change. This is NOT a coincidence. I contacted them on their website with my story, but I highly doubt they’ll own up to is unless regular media picks it up.

  12. Avatarmitu

    This is not about a cat but about my dog. She did great on royal canin hypoallergenic for three years. Last year I bought a new bag (new formula) and she became ill . I noted the difference in the bag and contact Royal Canin right away. They assured me no changes had been made and something else had to be causing my dog to be so ill. The vet and even an internal vet checked her out, they say she is the most healthy dog in the world! Over $ 2.500 in vet bills but worse my baby having to go through all the tests 🙁 a few months later I noticed other reviews people saying the formula in fact had changed. Called RC again and the admitted some small changes in nutrionals. And this is where it gets interesting, after many phonecalls I managed to get my hands on a bag of food with the old formala and my dog is back to her old self! Done a lot of research but still no answers. The only thing I can think of is that the fact that they added potassium chloride to the food causes the symptoms. Type on google potassium chloride bad for dogs. Im at my wits end. As long as I dont know which ingredient is causing the symptoms I cant help my baby girl. By now RC told me they will no longer answer my questions. They also said I was the only one with a complaint while I found thousands of bad reviews!

  13. AvatarSally Dehlinger

    Our cat Tabby had crystals and bloody urine about 3 years ago. The vet put her on SO Royal canin soft food. She did better for those years. But this year since after the switch to the gold can label, she has lost 3 lbs and is throwing up and has diarrhea. We took her to the vet last week and he checked her blood work and it was fine. She continues to throw up and have diarrhea and has refused to eat the new cat food. We can’t figure out what is wrong with her after spending $350 for her vet bill last week.

  14. AvatarScott Knitter

    Royal Canin Gastrointestinal resolved my cat’s constipation; I was able to stop her meds for this and she’s been doing fine for a year. She’s a little tired of the flavor, so I alternate now or mix it with something she likes currently. Still doing fine, litter-box wise.

  15. AvatarJessica Slone

    Royal Canin Fiber Response has been a life-saver (literally) for my cat for several years…until they changed the formula a couple months ago . Since then, he has been hospitalized twice. This new formula is terrible and refuses to eat it. I understand from my vet that I I am one just example of her patients for which she is now frantically looking for an alternative because Royal Canin destroyed a good thing. I can only guess this was a way for them to save a dollar because they certainly didn’t improve the formula. Not to mention they can’t get their story straight… each of us have gotten responses from, “yes, we changed the formula in all our veterinary cat brands and we have no plans of changing it back” to we only changed the bag” with a mix of responses claiming minimal ingredient changes in between. So sad because I would have recommended Royal Canin to anyone…. before now.

  16. AvatarAndrea

    I have a cat who is almost 21 years old. She has been on royal canin rabbit since she was 14 due to food allergies. She loves it and I’m convinced is part of the reasons why she has lived as long as she has. She still LOVES to eat and gobbles up nearly two cans a day in her old age. Not sure why all the negative reviews and accusations. I’m in the healthcare field and able to perform research myself. With the exception of a few shortages in recent years and some have smelled spoiled (and thrown out), overall no complaints.

  17. AvatarFlybear

    my kitten’s breeder used Royal Canin kitten so I bought a bag. I also have three other cats on a grain free premium cat food. We never had any issues, my cats are not picky, healthy and had several other brands in the past – they will eat about anything! The kittens started to throw up a few days after bringing them home so they went to the ER – received fluids and meds but tested negative for parasites and Parvo and the vet couldn’t;t find anything wrong… after another week they started really smelly diarrhea … again … trip to vet who recommended that we’ll only feed the kitten food ( the reasoning was that the kittens might be sick from eating our other cats food and the food transitioning??) … 24 hours later and ALL 5 cats had the most stinky diarrhea- yuck! Our adults have never been sick and never had a food reaction … just strange! We gave it a few days but the kittens kept loosing weight and the adults refused to eat so we simply switched them all to the grain free adult food and … with a day or two everyone had normal poop and . … The kittens are gaining weight on the adult food and seem 100% healthy now … If a food makes 5 cats sick ( with no known food allergies ) – I can reasonably assume that this food is no good !… It is no wonder … the kitten food consists of by- product meal, rice and grain products and fillers! . Royal Canin should be ashamed of selling such low quality ingredient at premium prices!

  18. AvatarSabrina

    My cats have been on the fiber response diet for years now and it absolutely changed the life of the cat who was chronically constipated. Fur is thicker than its ever been, no more miliary dermatitis, energy like a cat ten years younger. But in the past month or so, they’ve both had issues with gas. No parasites, no infections, just stinky LOUD gas when in the litter box. I really don’t want to stress them out changing their food, or risk a recurrence of constipation, but their gas issues are really upsetting.

  19. AvatarZeshin

    I’m pretty certain that Royal Canin Urinary S/O was was the cause of my cats having stinky diarrhea, constipation, URI and lethargy. Not sure if it’s because of the recent formula change I’ve heard about from other people complaining online or if it has to do with supply chain disruption from the pandemic, but since they changed to the golden packaging my cats went from eating regularly to poorly, to dull rough coats and then these various maladies. Soon as I switched to a different brand of food most of these issues noticeably stopped, and when I let one of them try eating some again she had diarrhea the next day. Seeing others online experiencing similar problems encourage me to write down my experience, Royal Canin seriously needs to investigate to see if something’s up with their ingredients before more cats get sick.

  20. AvatarChris

    My cat has been on Royal Canin (Digest Sensitive, and over the past 2 years switched to Adult Instinctive as she is getting older) cat food for the past 6 years, both dry and wet food. She always has a non-empty bowl of dry food, and gets fed morning and night wet food. No other reason than the vet recommended Royal Canin, and it was about the time that Blue Buffalo got bough out which I had been feeding her the previous 5 years. Over the past year, she has been throwing up more and more often. It started on a monthly basis and I thought she was just getting into things. It started to occur more frequently, weekly, daily, and then she stopped eating the food I bought. I buy them in 24 packs, so I thought it may have been a bad batch, so I bought some more. She wouldn’t eat it any more, and she was being aggressive about trying to get table food like I have never seen before, and like she was starving. During the past year she has dropped about 5lbs, and was so skinny you could feel her bones, she had diarrhea all the time and was pooping up a storm. On a whim I switch to a non-Royal Canin brand(, and its been two weeks, she has not thrown up once, and she has gained some weight. She also eats all her food, and has seemed to return back to her normal self. Im 100% convinced there has been a change in the ingredients of Royal Canin over the past 1-2yrs which was negatively affecting my cat.

  21. AvatarMandy

    Can someone please tell me what new foods exactly you switched your cat on, I have a 9 month old kitten that recently been having diarrhea on and off and puked a bit today, he’s not very fond of eating the royal canin development kitten wet food or purina kitten wet food at all… but the royal canin dry gastrointestinal one he seems to like…. but I’m still not sure if I’m doing anything right. And I’m also not sure if he even has any allergies because he’s new to the family and a stray.

    I want him to at least like some wet food and dry altogether and not having these stool changes … the puking is very rare tho as he tends to eat really fast at times ….


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