Can You Make Your Own Healthy Cat Food?

We often hear the phrase “you are what you eat,” and this is just as true for your pets! With a growing number of people making their own food, it’s no surprise that many pet owners want to do the same thing. But can you really make healthy cat food at home? We’re going to take a look at whether or not homemade cat food is safe and if there are any benefits.

What Is the Best Diet for Cats

Natural raw ingredients for homemade cat food
Natural raw ingredients for pet food on grey background. Flat lay.

When it comes to cat feeding, you have to remember that their diet is different than yours. Cats are carnivores and work well on a high protein diet with minimum carbs. They actually have more need for taurine, an amino acid found in meat sources than humans do!

Since cats are solitary hunters that only eat what they kill themselves, their optimal food source would be other animals like mice or birds. But since we’re a little squeamish about feeding our cats this diet, most commercial cat food today is made from meat byproducts.

The first ingredient in many brands of wet or dry cat food actually reads “meat,” which means it’s not the best quality and could be anything from chicken to slaughterhouse waste. If you are concerned with what your cat is eating, you should look for a food that has named meat as the first ingredient, like chicken or salmon.

You also want to avoid foods with grains and fillers like corn, wheat, and soy since these are not part of a feline’s natural diet.

So what can you do at home then? Believe it or not, your best bet is homemade cat food. But there are a few things to consider before you go out and buy all the veggies in sight!

How To Make Healthy Cat Food at Home

Homemade cat food ingredients
Panorama banner with healthy pet food ingredients with chopped raw turkey, fish, groats, greens and grains in individual bowls on brown wooden background. Flat lay.

If you have decided that making cat food yourself is right for your pet’s diet, then it’s time to take action. The first thing you need to do is to look into various homemade cat food recipes

If this sounds like a lot of work, then there are some basic rules that all homemade cat food should follow:

  • Protein content should be high, around 50%
  • Carbohydrates should be low, about 20%
  • No grains or fillers

You can achieve these goals by feeding your cat a diet of cooked meats and vegetables. Just cook some chicken, beef, or fish and add in some veggies like broccoli, carrots, spinach, green beans, etc.

  • A serving of cooked meat = around 100 grams (about a quarter pound)
  • Aim for about 25% vegetables to 75% protein content

This is all you need to know before making your own cat food, and your cat will thank you for it!

Homemade vs. Commercial Cat Food

Commercial cat food shaped into a heart
Wet cat food in the shape of a heart close-up on a white background. Top view.

When it comes to deciding between homemade and commercial cat food, there are a few things to consider. The first thing is that homemade food can be tailored specifically to your pet’s needs, while commercial foods often have fillers and byproducts. The second thing is that homemade food is typically cheaper than commercial food, and you can make large amounts to last for several days.

The only downside to homemade cat food is that it does require some preparation time. But if you’re looking for the best diet for your feline friend, then there’s no doubt that homemade is the way to go!

  1. Make sure you get your pet a veterinary exam first and rule out any underlying diseases or conditions that could make switching to homemade cat food difficult. Just remember – no matter what diet you choose, the most important thing is freshwater every day. Your cat will thank you for it!
  2. If you are unsure about making your own cat food, consult a veterinarian or veterinary nutritionist for more specific advice.
  3. Cats are carnivores and thrive on high-protein diets with minimum carbs.
  4. The first ingredient in many brands of wet or dry cat food is “meat,” which means it’s not the best quality and could be anything from chicken to slaughterhouse waste.
  5. If you are concerned with what your cat is eating, look for food that has meat as the first ingredient, such as salmon or chicken.
  6. You also want to avoid foods with grains and fillers like corn, wheat, and soy since these are not part of a feline’s natural diet.
  7. So what can you do at home then? Believe it or not, your best bet is homemade cat food. But there are a few things to consider before you go out and buy all the veggies in sight!

Tips on How to Introduce Homemade Cat Food to Your Pet

Spoon feeding a cat
Portrait of maine coon cat sniffing food on fork in male hand, cat and human food, selective focus

Now you’ve already made a fresh bowl of homemade cat food – now what’s the next step?

There are some things to remember before making this transition. Be aware that your cat might take a while to get used to her new diet, and some cats will refuse the change altogether.

How To Transition From Commercial Food To Homemade Cat Food

The first thing to do is wean off of commercial cat food, if possible, by mixing in a small amount of homemade food with their regular diet over the span of about a week. Gradually increase the percentage of homemade cat food until they are only eating that.

If your cat is used to wet food, make sure the transition from canned to cooked meat and veggies is gradual as well. Again, mix in some wet food with their homemade food.

Cats are used to eating small frequent meals, so don’t give them huge portions at once, or you might make her sick! Over time she’ll adjust and be ready for a full helping of homemade cat food!

Some cats like human foods more than others – if your cat loves tuna, then go ahead and try it in her cat food recipe, but avoid giving her anything that is toxic to felines like onions or garlic.

Final Thoughts

Cats are carnivores and work well on high protein diets with minimum carbs, so make sure the majority of their diet still comes from animal protein sources. You also want to avoid foods with grains and fillers like corn, wheat, and soy since these are not part of a feline’s natural diet.

But don’t worry – there are plenty of recipes out there that will give your kitty all the nutrients she needs! And if you’re ever unsure about what to make, consult a veterinarian or veterinary nutritionist for more specific advice.