But why is there grain in pet food anyway?
Face it, grains are more easily produced and have a lower cost. If you think about it, grain is the filler for pet food, as grain isn’t even really a part of a dog or cat’s natural diet. While grains may be healthy for human consumption (unless you believe in the Paleo diet), it may be detrimental if fed to animals whose original diets do not include grains.
Grain-free pet food does not technically hew to the idea that grains are a bad food ingredient in itself. However, some pets might be sensitive to grain or grain products in their food. Grain intolerance can lead to vomiting, bloating, and other digestive concerns. It’s also believed that grains can make skin disorders and allergies worse in the long-term. For pets that are allergic to grains in this manner, it’s really better to stick to non-grain sources of carbohydrates.
Better for some sicknesses
Some cats that have the animal versions of diabetes and cancer also do much better when put on a grain-free diet. This may be because they have less sugar and more protein to absorb. After all, in normal cats, grain-free food can boost energy levels, improve skin health, give a better coat quality, and improve the cat’s muscle tone.
Nursing pets will also benefit from grain-free food, as the extra nutrients and protein can promote better milk for nursing cats, and better health for kittens overall.
Grain-free food, pound for pound, is definitely more expensive than standard cat food. However, the cat will usually eat less, having already imbibed the required amount of proteins and other nutrients from a smaller serving.
Types of Grain-free Food
Cat owners who are interested in trying a grain-free diet have many types of food to choose from, including the following:
• Canned food and dry food
• Raw and freeze-dried food
• Dehydrated food
You can even make your own recipe for grain-free food. Just go online and do a search for grain-free pet food recipes. It may be important to talk with your vet when you prepare your own mix, so that your particular brand of grain-free food will be perfectly suited, nutrient-wise, for your cat.
Just because you remove grains from cat food does not mean that the carb count is lower. In fact, it may even be higher, depending on what replaces the grain, such as potatoes. So it’s possible that you can have high-carb, high-protein, grain-free cat food.