If you’re confused about whether wet or dry food is the better option for your kitten, then you are most certainly not alone!
Despite this being such a common question, there really isn't a clear-cut answer.
Let's get right to the point; it’s fine to feed your kitten either wet or dry food. Commercial pet foods these days comply with AAFCO standards of minimally acceptable nutritional content. This means they are sufficient on their own, regardless of the form or texture.
So then if either wet or dry is fine, how do you decide what option is best for your forever feline? Here’s a rapid-fire breakdown of the pros and cons of both foods, and why you should consider incorperating a mix.
The Best of Wet Food
- Water Galore! Since 85-90% of wet food is water, it’s packed with moisture and will keep your kitten well-hydrated. Cats are highly susceptible to kidney disease. A diet high in water can help to protect against renal disease, later in life.
- Tasty and well-recieved If you're anything like me, knowing that you're feeding your pet something that they actually enjoy is really important to you. Food isn't just about nutrition, but also offers your pet an activity and form of enrichment, so feeding somehting they find scrumptious is great for your cat and you.
The Worst of Wet Food
- $$$ Wet food is more expensive than dry food, due to the high water content, you need to feed lots of wet food to get the right calories and nutrition for your cat.
Wet food is also messier, and needs to be eaten fresh to avoid tummy upsets from spoiled food.
The Best of Dry Food
- Easy on the wallet
Since dry food has a lower water content, your kitty needs a lower volume of food. Essentially, dry food provides more bang for your buck.
- Allows for all-day grazing Dry food doesn’t spoil quickly, which means your kitty can nibble at their leisure throughout the day. Some cats actually prefer to graze feed, rather than 'pig-out' all at once
Dry food is a clean and convenient form of food. Your kitty’s face will not get dirty and it’s super easy to serve.
The Worst of Dry Food
The main hesitation towards dry foods is that it’s low in moisture. Low water intake can exacerbate kidney problems, which is a common problem in older cats.
The ideal option is to feed your kitten a combination of the wet and dry food. This may be beneficial in case your kitty needs a therapeutic/medical diet at some point in their life. Feeding them a variety of textures (gravies, loaf-style, purées) can also prevent fussiness, which can make things easier if, for instance, their favourite brand is discontinued or you’re trying to hide medication in their food.
Remember, if at any point you do decide to change your kitten’s food, remember to always gradually transition to the new food to prevent an upset tummy.