Did you just bring home a new, cuddly kitten? Or are you making sure that you have everything in place to bring one home soon? If so, finding the healthiest, best kitten food is probably high on your list of things to do.
There are many different features to consider when shopping for kitten food. These can include whether you’re looking for a wet, dry, or canned food, and if your kitten is just weaning off of their mother’s milk. You may also be searching for special formulas, such as grain-free, organic, sensitive stomachs, or vet recommended.
Whether you’re looking for a budget-friendly choice or would like to splurge on your new furry friend, we’ve got you covered! We’ve reviewed some of the best kitten foods in the next few sections.
Verified Review: Our Hands On Experience
We did some deep research and purchased many different brands of kitten food. We wanted to see how real-life kittens enjoyed each option and if each food seemed to actually meet their nutritional and developmental needs. Some additional observations we made about each of our top picks include:
- Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Food: We were excited to see how much our kittens enjoyed eating this food. We also liked that it didn’t seem to upset their stomachs or cause any problems. However, we were a little disappointed that a number of the cans in the pack we ordered were dented.
- Hill’s Science Diet Dry Kitten Food: We were very pleased with how our kittens seemed to develop after feeding them this food. Their eyes and coats look very healthy, and they seem to have a good amount of energy. Unfortunately, a few of our kittens didn’t seem to like the flavor and preferred canned food instead.
- Wellness Core Natural Grain Free Wet Canned Food: When we read the ingredient list on this can, we were impressed with all the high-quality ingredients it contained. We also noticed that our kittens were overall very pleased with how this food tastes. One of our kittens seemed to get an upset stomach after eating this food, so it just may not have been a good match for her.
- PetAG PetLac Milk Powder for Kittens: We liked how easy this was to use with an abandoned kitten we found. While the kitten started off pretty frail, we were able to use this formula to nurse him back to health. We only wish the powder blended a bit more smoothly.
The Top Picks for the Best Kitten Food: Ranked
#1 Overall Best Kitten Food: Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Food
- Twenty-Four (24) 3 oz. Cans - Purina Pro Plan Wet Kitten Food Variety Pack, FOCUS Kitten Favorites
- Made with real poultry or fish
- Contains DHA for brain and vision development
- Essential nutrients help nourish a kitten's developing immune system
- Specially formulated for kittens throughout the first year of life
The Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten food is formulated to be one of the healthiest options for developing kittens. This wet food includes nutrients that are essential to helping the developing immune system of a kitten. It also includes essential DHA to aid in the development of a kitten’s vision and brain.
Purina offers this food in seven tasty flavors: chicken & liver, grain-free chicken entrée, natural chicken & liver, natural ocean whitefish & salmon, ocean whitefish & tuna, and salmon & ocean fish. Each flavor is available in a pack of 24 cans, or you can also choose a variety pack with a mix of the chicken & liver, ocean whitefish & tuna, and salmon & ocean fish flavors.
Click here to check out Purina Pro Plan Focus Kitten Food on amazon.com.
Best Dry:Hill's Science Diet Dry Kitten Food
- A dry food with DHA from fish oil to support healthy brain and eye development in kittens
- A source of high-quality protein to help young cats build lean muscle
- Provides balanced minerals to give you kitten strong bones and healthy teeth
- Add variety to meal time with Hill's Science Diet Kitten Healthy Cuisine Roasted Chicken & Rice Medley
- Made with natural ingredients
If you’d prefer to get a dry food for your kitten and are looking to stick to more of a budget, consider the Kitten formula from Hill’s Science Diet. This food is formulated to offer high-quality protein, balanced minerals, and other essential ingredients to help mee the developmental needs of kittens.
Another important ingredient in this kitten food is the DHA derived from fish. DHA is important for kittens to help ensure proper eye and brain development.
Hill’s Science Diet chose save and natural ingredients when making this food. It is manufactured in United States facilities, so you can feel confident that it meets higher safety standards.
This food has a chicken flavor that kittens are certain to enjoy. You can purchase it in a 3.5-, 7-, or 15.5-pound bag.
Click here to check out Hill's Science Diet Dry Kitten Food on amazon.com.
Best Grain-Free:Wellness Core Natural Grain Free Wet Canned Food
- TURKEY and CHICKEN LIVER PATE FOR KITTENS: This natural, gain free recipe is made with cranberries and botanicals and fortified with vitamins and minerals to help support inner wellness, with a fish and flax omega blend for healthy skin and coat
- SUPERIOR INGREDIENTS: All of our wet cat food recipes include lean meats, healthy fats, fruits and veggies with no wheat, corn or soy, and no added artificial flavors, colors, carrageenan or preservatives
- HEALTHY HYDRATION: Hydration is extremely important to a cat's overall wellbeing and since cats do not have a strong thirst drive, this recipe is an easy way to increase your cat's moisture intake for urinary tract health
- A LIFETIME OF WELLBEING: Each of our recipes is crafted to promote the signs of wellbeing: plenty of energy, a lustrous skin and coat, sound digestion and immunity, plus strong teeth and healthy eyes
- WELLNESS NUTRITION: Created by nutritionists, veterinarians and animal lovers, our recipes provide an ideal balance of nature's finest ingredients, carefully selected to nourish and sustain your pet's wellbeing
If your cat has a sensitive stomach or you would just prefer a grain-free food for them, you may like the Wellness Core Grain-Free Turkey & Chicken Liver Pate. This wet food is formulated with botanicals, cranberries, and the essential vitamins and minerals kittens need. It also includes a special flax and fish omega blend to keep a kitten’s skin and coat healthy and shiny.
Wellness does not include any wheat, corn, soy, artificial flavors, artificial preservatives, artificial colors, or carcinogens in their recipes. Rather, they select ingredients such as lean meats, fruits and vegetables, and healthy fats.
As a wet food, this option has a higher moisture content. This can help ensure your kitten stays hydrated to protect their overall health, help their body function properly, and protect the health of their urinary tract.
Click here to check out Wellness Core Natural Grain Free Wet Canned Food on amazon.com.
Best for Weaning:PetAG PetLac Milk Powder for Kittens
- Recommended Food Source: For orphaned or rejected kittens
- Vitamins, Minerals, and Amino Acids: Supplies nutrition required for proper growth and development
- Kitten Milk Replacement Powder: Formulated to support newborn kittens
- Easy to Administer: Easy to use and contains easily digestible nutrients
- Excellent Care Solution: PetAg delivers top-quality products for owners and animal professionals
Did you recently adopt or find a very young and abandoned kitten that still be drinking its mother’s milk? This milk powder for kittens from PetAg ca be a good substitute for young kittens who can’t get milk from their mothers for one reason or another.
The milk powder includes an essential mix of amino acids, vitamins, and minerals to help kittens develop and grow until they’re ready to graduate to a wet food. This formula is suitable for use with kittens who are only a few hours old, as well as slightly older kittens who are working on weaning.
This formula is designed for easy digestion to prevent upset stomach in cats. It is easy to use, and you simply need to mix the powder with warm water.
Click here to check out PetAG PetLac Milk Powder for Kittens on amazon.com.
The Different Types of Kitten Food: Pros and Cons Compared
|Higher moisture content to help kittens stay hydrated||More of a splurge|
|Higher protein content||Must be refrigerated after opening|
|Easy for young kittens to chew||Only lasts a short time after opening|
|Better taste that many kittens prefer||Can lead to more dental issues|
|• Longer shelf life||• Lower amounts of protein|
|• Less of a splurge||• Not as hydrating|
|• Less likely to cause dental issues||• Can be difficult for very young kittens to chew|
|• Easier to pack for travel||• Not as flavorful for kittens|
Last update on 2021-11-19 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API
Best Kitten Food: Reviewed for 2021 FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)
What is the best food to feed a kitten?
When you’re looking for the healthiest food for your kitten, consider their nutritional needs. Check the ingredient list and consult with your veterinarian to find what nutrients are essential based on your kitten’s age. Consider whether you’re looking for food formulated for sensitive stomachs or if you would prefer to find a food that is grain-free or organic.
Younger kittens who are just weaning from their mother’s milk will do best with wet food that is easier to chew. As your kitten gets older, you may decide to transition them to dry food.
What food do vets recommend for kittens?
Vet recommended kitten foods will be formulated using nutritious ingredients that will meet the developmental needs of a kitten. The exact recommendations they may offer will vary based on the specific age and needs of your kitten and any special considerations, such as whether you’d prefer wet or dry food, if you need food for sensitive stomachs, or if you are looking for grain-free or organic options. Some vet recommended brands often include Purina, Hill’s Science Diet, Instinct, Fancy Feast, and Royal Canin.
What foods shouldn’t kittens eat?
Many human foods can be toxic to pets. Avoid feeding your kittens any of the following:
• Bread dough with yeast
• Citrus fruits
• Dairy products
• Raw eggs
• Raw fish
• Raw meat
Is wet or dry food better for kittens?
If you have a very young kitten who is just weaning from its mother’s milk, it may not have enough teeth to handle chewing dry food. In this case, you’ll want to choose wet food for your kitten. Many kittens prefer the taste of canned food, and canned food typically has more protein than dry food. However, dry food lasts a lot longer after being opened, doesn’t need refrigeration once opened, and is a more budget-friendly choice.
What flavor do most kittens prefer?
Each kitten’s tastes may vary, but some popular flavors among kittens include whitefish, tuna, salmon, shrimp, turkey, and chicken.