Cat Food For Allergies

Cats, for the most part, are healthy. However, sometimes, like us humans, do experience some problems, even allergies. These problems can range from the itchy and dry skin to some serious ear infections. Food allergies are real. However, what most cat parents do not realize is that human allergies are different from cat allergies.

For humans, the symptoms are usually vomiting, diarrhea, nausea and stomach upsets. With cats, the main symptoms pertaining food allergies tend to overlap with symptoms of other conditions and diseases. As such, most times cats are misdiagnosed. A skilled vet is required to give the right diagnosis.

Cat Food For Allergies Comparison Table

NameMain IngredientsProteinFatFiberPricing
Instinct Limited Ingredient Diet Grain Free Recipe Natural Wet Canned Cat FoodRabbit, Water, Rabbit Liver, Pea Protein, Peas, Montmorillonite Clay, Dicalcium Phosphate12.5%4.5%3%Click Here
BLUE Basics Limited Ingredient Diet Adult Indoor Grain Free Duck & Potato Dry Cat FoodDeboned Duck, Duck Meal, Pea Protein, Tapioca Starch, Peas, Canola Oil (source of Omega 6 Fatty Acids), Pea Fiber30%14%6%Click Here
Merrick Grain Free Limited Ingredient Diet Dry Cat FoodDeboned Salmon, Salmon Meal, Potatoes, Peas, Potato Protein, Sunflower Oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Pea Fiber32%13%4%Click Here
Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets Duck & Green Pea Formula Wet Cat FoodVenison Broth, Venison, Ground Peas, Pea Protein, Brewers Dried Yeast, Canola Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Salmon Oil (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols)9%5%1%Click Here
CANIDAE Grain Free Pure Limited Ingredient Diet Cat Wet FoodCod, fish broth, vegetable broth, pea flour, dried egg product, natural flavors, calcium carbonate8%3%1.5%Click Here
Merrick Limited Ingredient Diet Grain Free Real Turkey RecipeDeboned Turkey, Turkey Broth, Turkey Liver, Natural Flavor, Pea Protein, Calcium Carbonate, Organic Alfalfa Meal9%5%1.4%Click Here
Blue Buffalo Wilderness High Protein Dry Adult Cat FoodDeboned Duck, Chicken Meal, Turkey Meal, Tapioca Starch, Peas, Chicken Fat (preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Menhaden Fish Meal (source of Omega 3 Fatty Acids)40%18%4%Click Here

Nature’s Variety is one of the top companies producing the best cat food for allergies. It has been operational for quite some time and managed to maintain great quality of the food it provides. This Instinct, Wet Canned Cat food, is among its best foods yet.

This product has been formulated for cats that are suffering from food allergies. It contains a single protein source and is free from gluten and grain. This is an added plus since the two are by far the most common allergy causing ingredients. It should be noted that this cat food, the best cat food for allergies at that, contains few yet essential and easily digestible foods. Also, it does not contain dairy, eggs, beef, chicken, potato, or soy. Its protein source is a farm-raised rabbit.

The loaf is delicious and is designed to cater to the nutrition of cats in all stages of life. Both kittens and adult cats can enjoy this food.

Pros

  • One protein source – farm-raised rabbit
  • Made in the USA
  • Does not contain most of the common food allergens
  • The ingredients are simple and easily digestible

Cons

  • The packaging look varies

As earlier pointed out, the Blue Buffalo brand is one among the best there is when it comes to limited ingredient diet. It is a company you can depend on to get through the elimination phase with your feline. Its quality is through the roof as is its efficiency in eliminating food allergies.

Now, I have noticed that cats love dining on food containing the blue buffalo ingredients. Why? Well, this is probably because the food is naturally holistic for cats. The food provides vital nutrients and essential amino acids that cats need to get through the day.

Pea fiber and pumpkin have been incorporated into the food diet to provide ample supply of complex carbs necessary for long-lasting energy. These also help in digestion, and the Omega 6 and 3 contained helps in improving the coat and skin health of your cat. Also included in the recipe is deboned duck (the single animal protein source) and potato. Note that no dairy, eggs, soy or wheat is included in the list of ingredients.

Pros

  • Does not contains grains and chicken
  • Deboned duck is the single animal protein source
  • Pumpkin and pea fiber provide complex carbs and help with digestion as well

Cons

  • Some cats do not love the taste

Merrick, though not such a popular brand amongst pet owners, it has a significant amount of market share. It has over the years carved out a niche for itself, and it has thrived. This product is a limited ingredient diet designed to help cat parents go through the elimination phase with great ease.

This food as is clear from its writing on the packaging is grain free. Additionally, the food diet consists of a single animal protein source. The source is real deboned salmon. Combine the two features (lack of gluten and grain and a single protein source), and you have food that your cat can digest with ease. It is also worth noting that the food also contains Omega fatty acids which improve the health of your cat’s coat and skin.

This food is free from poultry ingredients and is as such perfect for cats with poultry sensitivities. It is made in the USA and does not feature any ingredient from China.

Pros

  • Features number one ingredient as deboned salmon
  • It is gluten and grain free
  • Contains amino acids which improve the health of the skin and fur

Cons

  • Lacks poultry ingredients

There are several formulas on the market you can purchase. However, very few meet the quality standard that Natural Balance provides in their products. The brand is known for their quality and strict adherence to the set industry rules regarding food preparation.

That said, this is the best cat food for allergies that you can buy with confidence that it will help you through the elimination phase. It is prepared with a limited number of carb and protein sources. As a matter of fact, the food diet only contains venison as the only protein source and Green pea as the carb source.

Also worth noting is that the food does not contain preservatives, colors or flavors. Additionally, it is free of grains and as such makes an excellent diet for cats with sensitivities. You will be glad to pick this product from the store shelves.

Pros

  • Contains single protein and carb sources including venison and green peas respectively
  • It is grain free and has no artificial coloring or flavoring

Cons

  • It is slightly expensive than most Limited Ingredient foods

This is yet another best cat food for allergies as stated by cat parents and professionals. This food is grain free and provides your cat with the high-quality nutrition necessary for healthy growth.

The ingredients contained in this food are designed to be not only nutritious but also tasty. This particular food has varied options for its food sources. In this particular product, however, is Cod Morsels is the protein of choice. Your cat will inevitably fall in love.

Cod and fish broth are a high-quality protein source that is gentle on the digestive system and perfect for cats with sensitivities.

Pros

  • It has great taste
  • Has limited ingredients but a variety of types
  • It is grain free

Cons

  • Some cats may not like the food

Another quality product from the Merrick brand. This food has been designed for dogs especially, but it also works for cats. The food contains deboned meat as its first ingredient for single protein sources. The real meat provides minerals, vitamins and the amino acids necessary.

The best thing about this food is the fact that it does not contain corn, soy, and grains that potentially cause food allergies. Overall, the ingredients are simple enough to be digested and avoid digestive issues.

It is also important to note that the food does not feature artificial flavorings, colors, and preservatives. In addition to all the nutrition it provides, it helps in the hip and joint health in your cat.

Pros

  • Contains real deboned meat
  • It’s grain, corn and soy free
  • Additional minerals and vitamins, which aid in hip and joint health

Cons

  • It is slightly expensive compared to most L.I.D
  • Some cats may find it salty

This high protein adult cat food by Wilderness is inspired by lynx which is a dedicated and tireless hunter and a cousin to your cat. Well, not exactly, but you get what I mean. The food is designed with fruits, vegetable, and novel meat.

These vegetables include sweet potatoes which provide a healthy source of complex carbs. The fruits, on the other hand, include blueberries and cranberries.

It is important to note that this food does not feature any poultry meat and is also free of soy, wheat, and corn. No artificial flavoring and coloring are present in this product either.

Pros

  • A healthy source of carbs
  • Free of artificial preservative and cranberries
  • Contains fruits for added antioxidants

Cons

  • It may come in different packaging
  • Not as high in quality as other products. But for its price it is great

Food Allergies in Cats Explained

Studies show that approximately 10% of all cat allergies are related to food. Out of all the food allergies, 60% of these cause itchiness and scratching. Some of the most common allergies in cats include flea bite allergies, inhalant allergies, and food allergies. Food allergies develop at any point in a cat's life. But generally, most cats will develop allergies between the ages of 2 and six years and the allergy will be to some of the foods that they feed on frequently. Yes, allergies are quite something. They seem to target what your cat loves best.

While there is a lot of evidence pointing to the idea that most cats tend to develop allergies to the foods that they feed on most, the actual process of how the allergies develop is not fully understood. All researchers and professionals in the field know is that cats have a complex antibody response that occurs within the digestive system. Food allergies in female and male cats are equal. The same case applies to unaltered and altered cats. However, some cat breeds seem to experience slightly more food allergies compared to others. But there is no scientific proof to link these breeds to their susceptibility to food allergies.

Another fact that most pet owners do not seem to understand (you need to be a different cat parent) is that there is a difference between food intolerance and food allergies. Food allergies most often than not cause symptoms affecting the skin while food intolerance affects the gastrointestinal tract.

In humans, for instance, food intolerance would present itself as diarrhea or stomach upsets right after eating some spicy foods. On the other hand, a food allergy would trigger a chemical chain reaction in the body leading itchy skin, excessive scratching, and loss of hair in patches. The best way to differentiate itchy skin caused by a food allergy and that caused by other allergies is that food allergies may appear all year round even after an environmental change.

How To Treat Food Allergies in Your Cat

There is no two way about it. For you to diagnose your cat’s food allergies, you will have to pay close attention to him and report any, and all symptoms noticed to a professional. Your vet, after reviewing the symptoms presented may request some test to help in ruling out some other forms of allergies.

If a food allergy is found to be the cause of the symptoms manifesting, then there is only one option - to determine the allergen and removing it from your cat’s diet. Unfortunately, this process is easier said than done. The process is tedious and may take a few weeks before determining the allergen. Some of the most common culprits include wheat, corn, soy, eggs, beef, fish, dairy, and chicken. During this process, you should also bear in mind that there is a possibility for your cat to be allergic to multiple foods.

The diet and food trial mentioned above is recommended by your vet. The treatment plan lasts for several weeks. During the first 12 weeks, the goal is to get rid of all potential allergens from your cat’s body. After the 12 weeks have passed, you now introduce the allergens one at a time being keen on your cat’s response to the food. If a negative reaction is experienced, chances are you have found the culprit causing your cat discomfort. After identifying the allergens, the last step as earlier pointed out is ridding it from your cat’s diet.

How To Feed a Kitty With Allergies

During the process of elimination (trying to get your cat to feel better), you will need to keep it on a diet that is free of the common food allergens mentioned above. Unfortunately, most commercial foods contain these allergens and as such, you will need to switch to different allergens food formulas altogether. You might even have to change the brand during the elimination phase.

So what kinds of foods are you left with you ask? Well, your options may be limited, but at least you have options. Your food options include Limited Ingredient Diet. This diet includes novel sources of carbs and proteins. What is meant by novel source? These are foods that contain protein and carb sources that your cat has not eaten before and are as such unlikely to have developed an allergy. Examples of these food sources include venison, duck, and rabbit for protein and potatoes and peas for carbs.

The fact that your cat is in the elimination phase is no reason not to have a balanced diet.  He still needs to get the right nutrition in his body to maintain a healthy body. The change is difficult, I know, but it is manageable. That said, you should always be ready to compare the different cat commercial foods against each other to determine which is least likely to trigger an allergic reaction. Some of these major brands include Nature’s Variety and Blue Buffalo Limited Ingredient Diets. These are by far the best options to start with. But you are still left with the task of examining the list of ingredients.

In addition to choosing the right foods, you need to transition your cat slowly. Do not make the change sudden as this could lead to problems with your cat’s digestive system.  But ultimately, it is up to you to want to prevent these effects or not. I personally preferred to be on the safe side and took things slow.

If you do choose to take things slow, you will need to start by mixing small amounts of the current food with the new food. Start with a ratio of 25% to 75% of new food to old food. Maintain this ratio for a few days and then bump it up to 50% to 50 %. Retain this ratio for a few days until your cat is on the new food diet entirely.

Conclusion

The above is the best cat food for allergies you can trust to help you treat your beloved feline's allergies. They are designed for this specific goal. All products are natural, and most of the products are gain and wheat free. Be sure to make the transition slow and smooth to avoid getting adverse effects.

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