Best Dry Cat Food for Weight Loss: 8 High Protein, Low-Cal, & Low Carb Diet Options

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Are you on the hunt for a high-quality dry cat food diet for your chonky kitty? This post is for you! Check out our top picks for the best dry cat food diets for weight loss below.

Best Dry Cat Food for Weight Loss: 8 High Protein, Low-Cal, & Low Carb Diet Options - Incl. brands such as Purina Pro Plan, Instinct, Nulo, Hill's Science Diet, Iams and more #catfood #kibble

Photo by g125 via Getty Images/Canva

According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention, in 2018, an estimated 60% of cats in the United States were overweight or obese. This is a serious problem as feline obesity predisposes cats to a number of devastating health complications, including (but not limited to) insulin resistance, diabetes mellitus, lower urinary tract disease, osteoarthritis, and skin problems.

Best Dry Cat Food for Weight Loss - Selection Criteria

When selecting dry cat food diet options for this post we were on the lookout for the following nutritional benefits and diet-friendly features;

  • Complete and balanced nutrition as per AAFCO guidelines for adult cats
  • A majority of calories from protein and healthy fats, instead of carbohydrates
  • Quality whole meat protein as the primary protein source (not meat meal)
  • Contains minimal starchy fillers from grains, corn, soy, and potatoes
  • Contains little to no animal by-products, or meat meal from by-products
  • Contains no chemical preservatives or artificial flavors
  • Availability of multiple flavor profiles/recipes for picky eaters
  • Made in the USA

For the purposes of this post and consumer convenience, only non-prescription weight-loss diets for adult cats were considered.

8 Best Dry Cat Food Diets for Weight Loss

Check out our top picks for the best non-prescription dry cat food diets for weight loss below, and remember, if you’re ever unsure about what food is right for your cat or how many calories they should be consuming each day, it’s always best to check with your vet.

Image via Nulo

1. NULO FREESTYLE Grain-Free Adult Trim (Salmon & Lentils)

via Amazon

Calories: 421 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 42%
Crude Fat: 12%
Crude Fiber: 5%
Moisture: 10%
Carbs (approx.): 25%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Purina

2. PURINA PRO PLAN Adult Weight Management (Turkey & Egg)

via Amazon

Calories: 460 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 43%
Crude Fat (max.): 14%
Crude Fiber: 5%
Moisture: 12%
Carbs (approx.): 20%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Instinct

3. INSTINCT RAWBOOST Healthy Weight For Adult Cats

via Amazon

Calories: 385 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 38%
Crude Fat: 16%
Crude Fiber: 6%
Moisture: 9%
Carbs (approx.): 26%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Purina

4. PURINA ONE +PLUS Ideal Weight High Protein

via Amazon

Calories: 400 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 42%
Crude Fat: 9%
Crude Fiber: 5%
Moisture: 12%
Carbs (approx.): 29%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Halo

5. HALO Indoor Cat Grain Free Healthy Weight (Wild Salmon & Whitefish)

via Amazon

Calories: 400 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 32%
Crude Fat: 13%
Crude Fiber: 5%
Moisture: 10%
Carbs (approx.): 33%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Iams

6. IAMS PROACTIVE HEALTH Indoor Weight & Hairball Care (With Chicken & Turkey)

via Amazon

Calories: 302 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 30%
Crude Fat (max.): 14%
Crude Fiber: 8%
Moisture: 10%
Carbs (approx.): 32%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Nutro

7. NUTRO WHOLESOME ESSENTIALS Indoor Cat Adult (Chicken & Brown Rice)

via Amazon

Calories: 378 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 33%
Crude Fat: 14%
Crude Fiber: 7%
Moisture: 10%
Carbs (approx.): 30%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Image via Hill’s Science Diet

8. HILL'S SCIENCE DIET Perfect Weight for Adult Cats (Chicken)

via Amazon

Calories: 315 kcal/cup
Crude Protein: 36%
Crude Fat: 9%
Crude Fiber: 12%
Moisture: 8%
Carbs (approx.): 30%

What we like:

What we don’t like:

Note: All manufacturer guaranteed analysis percentage figures specified above have been rounded to the nearest whole number for simplicity, while carbohydrate content was calculated using this formula and is an approximate figure only. Where Ash content was not specified by the manufacturer, an average Ash content of 6% was used to help calculate the approximate carb content. 

Weight loss tips for cats:

In addition to switching your cat to a high-quality weight-loss diet, you can also try the following;

  • Add water to your cat’s dry food, as research suggests that this helps to promote physical activity (it’s also beneficial for urinary health)
  • Ditch the gravity feeder to prevent overeating (portion control is crucial)
  • Monitor your cat’s daily food intake to avoid excess calorie consumption
  • Limit treats and be sure to include them in your cat’s daily calorie quota
  • Consider multiple (more frequent), smaller, portion-controlled feeds per day to reduce the risk of potential problem behavior resulting from a restrictive diet (research suggests that this may help to decrease hunger and frustration while promoting spontaneous physical activity, water intake, and urine production) 
  • Use puzzle feeders and environmental enrichment for added mental and physical exercise (especially for indoor cats)
  • Weigh your cat and evaluate their body condition score regularly to make sure you’re on the right track
  • Consult your vet if your cat is still having trouble losing weight

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Best Dry Cat Food for Weight Loss (Non-Prescription): 8 High Protein, Low-Cal, & Low Carb Diet Options - Incl. brands such as Purina Pro Plan, Instinct, Nulo, Hill's Science Diet, Iams and more #catfood #kibble
Best Dry Cat Food for Weight Loss (Non-Prescription): 8 High Protein, Low-Cal, & Low Carb Diet Options - Incl. brands such as Purina Pro Plan, Instinct, Nulo, Hill's Science Diet, Iams and more #catfood #kibble

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