Choosing the Best Sensitive Stomach Cat Food
If your cat is beginning to show signs of food sensitivity, you may feel a tad hopeless at first. Of course, it’s not easy to see your cat struggle to keep their food down or experience allergic symptoms.
The reason behind your cat’s sensitive stomach could definitely boil down to their diet. The first point of action is to consult with your veterinarian – that way you can get down to the root cause of the digestive issues.
Once you discover the underlying cause for stomach sensitivity, you can take the next step in determining the best cat food. If you have recently switched foods, consider if an abrupt change in diet might be the cause of vomiting or diarrhea. A change in your cat’s diet should be made by gradually mixing the new food with the current diet, increasing the amount of the new food and decreasing the amount of the old food, over the course of about a week.
Keeping a ‘food log’ during this process helps keep track of any changes in reaction and gives a reference point to compare down the road. Remember that even a new treat counts as a change in diet.
That’s why we have culminated our top considerations to factor in your decision-making before committing to food that could continue to cause more problems down the line.
Does it have Quality Ingredients?
As you look for cat food that will mix well with their sensitive tummy, the first thing you can look out for is the endorsement from The Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
After that it’s about ensuring the ingredients are all-natural and free of artificial flavours and preservatives. The highest quantity of any ingredient should be animal protein, and ideally this should be from a single source instead of mixed. Try chicken, fish, beef, turkey, lamb or duck. Ultimately, the less ingredients there are, the less it will irritate your cat’s stomach. And that’s what we want to see!
Is it Digestible?
The easiest way to tell if cat food is digestible is to observe if it features probiotic supplements. This can aid in maintaining your cat’s GI tract health by encouraging the growth of ‘good’ bacteria in the gut.
Other digestive friendly ingredients include vitamins C and E which help to settle upset stomachs. And omega-6 fatty acids are helpful in promoting good coat and skin health at the same time.
What food should I avoid?
While evaluating your food choices or contemplating if you should add certain foods to their diet, this list is off limits for felines with sensitive stomachs:
- Raw fish;
- Chives and onions;
- Fatty foods;
- Bones; and,
- Dairy (most cats are lactose intolerant).
How are the Customer Reviews?
While every cat is different, you can still gage how well a product fares with most felines based on how positive the customer reviews are.
Top Cat Food for Sensitive Stomach
We’ve done the research so you don’t have to! Below are some of the best food options for cats with sensitive stomachs. Just keep in mind that any final decision and diet change should always be approved by your vet.
Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DM Savory Selects Dietetic Management Formula Canned Cat Food
Delivering a balanced meal, low in fat and high in protein, Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DM Dietetic Management Feline Formula is optimized for cats with special dietary requirements. Proudly made in the USA, this canned wet cat food is thoughtfully formulated with quality sources of protein, vitamins and minerals.
Felines suffering from diabetes require daily monitoring, an active lifestyle as well as watching what they eat. It is crucial for pet parents to ensure diabetic kitties consume the correct amount, and type of nutrients, in order to prevent or lessen the effects of diabetes, enteritis, loose stools, etc. If you have a cat with special needs in your care, consider Purina Pro Plan’s diabetic canned cat food.
Water Sufficient for Processing, Chicken, Liver, Wheat Gluten, Meat By-Products, Corn Starch-Modified, Soy Flour, Artificial and Natural Flavors, Calcium Phosphate, Potassium Chloride, L-Lysine Monohydrochloride, Taurine, Salt, Choline Chloride, Added Color, Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin E Supplement, Niacin, Copper Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Calcium Pantothenate, Vitamin A Supplement, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source of Vitamin K Activity), Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid, Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Potassium Iodide.
1,095 kcal/kg, 171 kcal/5.5oz can
Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DM Dietetic Management Formula Dry Cat Food
Help your furry friend take on diabetes with Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets DM Dietetic Management Feline Formula Dry Cat Food. This great-tasting dry food is specially formulated to help support the unique nutritional needs of diabetic cats. It is crafted in collaboration with nutritionists, researchers, and veterinarians in a high protein and low carbohydrate recipe that supports urinary health. This dry cat food is paw-fect for all breeds of cats in any stage of life and features a defense against the development of both struvite and calcium oxalate crystals as well as healthy antioxidants for your amigo.
Developed with a high protein and low carbohydrate recipe that supports urinary health.
Poultry By-Product Meal, Soy Protein Isolate, Corn Gluten Meal, Soy Flour, Animal Fat Preserved with Mixed-Tocopherols (Form of Vitamin E), Corn Starch, Animal Liver Flavor, Calcium Carbonate, Phosphoric Acid, Fish Oil, Potassium Chloride, L-Lysine Monohydrochloride, Dl-Methionine, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Powdered Cellulose, Salt, Vitamin E Supplement, Zinc Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Niacin, Manganese Sulfate, Vitamin A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine Mononitrate, Copper Sulfate, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Vitamin D-3 Supplement, Calcium Iodate, Biotin, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex (Source of Vitamin K Activity), Sodium Selenite.
Inactive Ingredients: Disodium Edta, Docusate Sodium, Pcmx, A Monosaccharide Complex (L-rhamnose, D-Galactose, D-Mannose), and FD&C Blue #1.
4,118 kcal/kg, 592 kcal/cup
Primalix Number 2 for Diarrhea in Dogs and Cats
Made with high-quality human grade, organic ingredients, Primalix Number 2 was created especially for cats and dogs suffering from diarrhea. When used under the supervision of a trusted veterinarian, a unique blend of calendula flowers, barberry root bark, marshmallow leaf and oregon grape root assists in easing diarrhea symptoms in felines.
Organic herbs are suspended in a mixture of kosher, food grade, GMO-free apple cider vinegar, vegetable glycerine and citric acid. To ensure freshness and quality, Primalix utilizes amber glass bottles, in order to prevent damage caused by UV rays. Because of the nature of this herbal supplement, it’s best to store Primalix Number 2 in the refrigerator upon receipt, as well as after opening.
Because of this product’s liquid nature, when compared to tablets or pills, this herbal tincture is 5 times more absorbable by the gut. Pet parents only need to add ½ dropper, two times per day to their kitty’s food. Alternatively, cat owners may administer by mouth, for up to 14 days. Once symptoms begin to subside, consult your vet, or simply stop using Primalix Number 2.
Barberry Root Bark
Oregon Grape Root
Other Ingredients: Purified Water, USP Kosher Food Grade GMO-Free Vegetable Glycerine, Apple Cider Vinegar and Citric Acid.
Cats and small dogs (up to 20 lbs.) 1/2 dropper twice daily
Medium dogs (21 to 60 lbs.) 1 dropper twice daily
Large dogs (61 to 100 lbs.) 2 droppers twice daily
Giant dogs ( 101 lbs. and up) 3 droppers twice daily
Refrigerate after opening.
Treat daily for 10 days to 2 weeks or until symptoms are eliminated.
Administer by mouth or add to food.
The best cat food to support those sensitive tummies is formulas that will aid with digestion. You need to look for food that:
- Is not irritating. Look for food that contains botanical anti-inflammatories. Omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids are especially helpful in this regard.
- Is high in pure, premium animal protein. Since cats are obligate carnivores, it’s much easier for them to digest animal protein. This includes organs and muscle meat, not by-products.
- Has supplemental fiber to assist with digestion, especially diarrhea symptoms.
- Is packed with prebiotics, probiotics and digestive enzymes.
- Has no artificial flavors, colors or preservatives. Aim for food labeled by the AAFCO for being nutritionally complete.
Ultimately, your cat needs quality food that will comfort upset stomachs while providing the nutrients your cat needs to be healthy.
To help your cat’s sensitive stomach, there are ingredient dos and ingredient don’ts. If you’re trying to get your cat on a healthy path again, avoid feeding your cat the following:
- Meat such as beef, lamb and sometimes white fish can cause sensitivity issues in some cats.
- Any diary, grains, soy or corn.
- Treats – at least for a while until your cat feels better. Or ask your vet for some treat recommendations that won’t irritate a sensitive stomach.
- Human food – it’s tempting to offer your cat pieces of your dinner, but it’s best to refrain from this in the meantime.
You can either source food that meets all of the needs mentioned above but in some instances, manufacturers will make food formulas to cats with sensitive stomachs. If you change to other named meat protein sources – this can also help your cat’s digestion. Diet is one of the main ways you can help your cat get on a better path. Your cat needs to eat, so feeding quality food that contains less ingredients will help their stomachs adjust in no time.
Even with good intentions, a sudden change in diet can still trigger stomach issues. If you’re trying to experiment with other food options, you need to tread with caution. Your cat already had some digestion sensitivity so they’re more vulnerable to it if you switch their diet too fast.
Start by mixing around 25% of the new food with their old food and observe any progress. Ensure you feed them at the same times every day. Then if all goes well, after a few days incorporate up to 50% and so on. If the symptoms don’t improve or your cat’s sensitivity increases – consult your vet right away.
There are some tell-tale signs and symptoms you can keep watch for to see if your kitty is having tummy issues. Don’t jump to conclusions until checking with your vet.
- Lethargy and weakness
- Smelly or loose stools
- Bloating and gas
- Unexplained weight loss
Sensitive stomach issues can be either acute or chronic. Acute symptoms will be more short-term and chronic symptoms will be brought on slowly and may last a while. Keep an eye on your cat and track the symptoms you’re noticing and how often they occur. Then talk to your vet.
As a pet owner, it can feel hopeless when your cat is suffering and throwing up after they eat what you’re putting in front of them. But fear not, there’s probably something happening in their digestive system. A couple of common reasons behind sudden nausea and stomach sensitivity could be:
Food allergies or sensitivity
Your cat may be having an allergic reaction to food. It could be due to a newly introduced food product or even food that they have been regularly eating. Allergies and intolerances can come out of the blue. Once you know the underlying cause of the allergy, you can better control what you’re feeding your cat to keep their tummy happy.
A more common root of gastrointestinal problems, intestinal parasites occur from contaminated food, dirt, prey or even mother’s milk for kittens.
Inflammatory bowel disease
This is a potentially more harmful condition and it occurs when the mucus stomach lining changes your cat’s ability to digest some foods.
Diet may be one of the main things in your control to help your cat’s digestion issues. However, there are some other ways to help your cat heal besides quality food.
Water and moisture rich food will help digestion, in addition to hydrating internal organs. Ensure your cat has access to plenty of water, either through a running source (such as a mini water fountain) or through a wet food intensive diet.
We know – treating pets is a pet owner’s favorite pastime. But in this case, it could potentially harm your cat’s stomach more. Too many treats can quickly upset the stomach. That’s why treats should not ever make up more than 10% of a cat’s daily calorie intake.
Just as stress contributes to a lot of health issues in humans, it can also exacerbate issues for cats. Maintain a quiet, relaxing atmosphere and don’t be too overbearing with your cat while they eat. And place their food in an area of the home that won’t cause them disturbance.