Is Wet or Dry Cat Food Better?

When you first get a feline, deciding between wet or dry cat food might be tough. If served in an adequate quantity, both are wonderful suppliers of nutrients, and many feline owners choose to combine both.

You’ll have to determine how much to serve your feline once you’ve found the proper sort of canned wet food. There are basic rules for what amount of wet food to give to your felines of all shapes and sizes. A five-pound feline having a thin body shape, for instance, requires around 170 calories each day, whereas a 10-pound feline with a thin body shape requires approximately 280 calories each day.

Naturally, each sort of meal has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. Here’s everything you have to understand to make the best decision for your feline.

wet or dry cat food, which one better?
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Should You Feed Your Cat Both Wet and Dry Food?

Firstly, decide whether you’ll be giving your feline-only wet food or perhaps a combination of wet and dry food. Although feeding 100% wet food to felines is the holy grail, some felines prefer dry food or may restrict calories if exclusively provided wet food. Furthermore, because dry food is less expensive, serving a portion of dry food would be beneficial.

If you’re giving your feline a combination of wet and dry food, you’ll need to do some mathematics to be certain she’s receiving enough calories. One simple thing to begin is to reduce the everyday suggested feeding quantities for each sort of food.

After you’ve decided about the wet-to-dry proportion, you’ll need to figure out how many calories the dish contains. Ensure you’re feeding a high-quality, AAFCO-approved “healthy and sufficient” meal. Then figure out how many calories are in each serving.

Wet vs Dry

Feline food is divided into three categories based on the quantity of moisture in it:

Dry food (14%), wet food (>60%), and semi-moist foods (14–59%) are the three types of food. This last classification does not include treats.

Wet food is sterilized by cooking at extreme temps, giving it a better shelf expectancy than dry foods before unpacking, but it is more vulnerable once exposed. Wet food comes in a variety of textures, including mousse, bread, gravy bits, and jellies. The machined meal is most commonly used; however, it could also be cooked. Wet meals are costlier than dry meals if you look at calorie servings.

Benefits of wet food

Cats originated in dry environments, and instead of drinking extra water, they focus their pee as a result of low-hydration meals. The water level of normal feline prey is greater than 60%, but it has been recommended that giving wet food instead of consuming water is indeed a better approach to delivering hydration to felines.

wet or dry cat food, which one better?
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Dehydration in felines has also been linked to a number of illnesses, particularly renal damage. But, it is unclear if eating dry food causes insufficient or even worse rehydration than offering wet food. The effects of providing dry vs. wet meals on the hydration state of felines have been studied in numerous ways, with mixed findings.

Wet meals are especially better for:

Urinary health – Wet meals are excellent for promoting more concentrated urine, which really is beneficial for preventing bladder disorders – the notion being that the most concentrated urine would lead to a drop in the concentration of irritating elements in the kidneys.

Weight management – Since water contains zero calories, soggy food seems to have a lower fuel content (calories) compared to dry food. Normal dry meals supply higher than 3–4 kcal/g (certain meals even more), but wet food offers 0.8–1.5 kcal/g, including some weight reduction programs giving far less. As a result, the moist meal is more filling and therefore can aid in weight reduction or obesity management.

Constipation – Constipation is caused by dehydration, and eating a wet meal could help. It is popular advice to provide packaged food to felines who are struggling with this condition.

Wet Food: The Downside

However, there are several drawbacks to the packaged versions. Wet food is often more expensive due to its bulk, thus animal owners on a tight budget might choose dry food over wet food. When keeping opened cans, use properly fitted covers to make them last longer and avoid stench from spreading throughout the fridge. However, because some felines hate frozen food, pet parents might have to reheat their packaged meals in the oven for 3-15 sec prior to feeding. If your feline isn’t eating, she might keep wet food leftovers in her dish or on the dish, which must be thrown away if she has been out for further than 4 hours.

You may be hesitant to serve the wet feline meal to a long-haired or light-colored feline since it could get around her paws and face. Felines, on the other hand, are diligent groomers who would generally wipe their own mouths, and your feline should grow to be somewhat dirty eating with time. If you own a feline who is a bit lazy and doesn’t wash as often as you’d like, consider feeding them meals on a plain board and buying some feline-safe disinfectant towels to assist them to wash up after themselves.

How Much Wet Food Does Your Cat Need?

The caloric requirements of your feline are determined by a number of things. Your feline’s bodyweight might help you figure out how often to offer him. But, determining your feline’s bodily health is critical. A stable diet for a slim, athletic feline with a massive head is 15 pounds. To stay at an ideal level, this feline would need more nutrients. On the other hand, a 15-pound feline with a more compact build would be obese and require fewer calories. The obese feline must be treated based on her desired weight rather than her body weight.

The quantity of calories required is also determined by your age and degree of exercise. An older or mature feline requires far more nutrients than a developing kitten. An energetic feline who jumps and explores regularly would require more energy than a feline who is mostly inactive. A breastfeeding mother requires additional energy in order to make milk and maintain her wellness.

wet or dry cat food, which one better?
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If you want to be precise when estimating how much nutrients to give your feline, try to determine the exact calories your feline requires. A broad dietary recommendation for felines is provided by the National Research Council:


  • Felines between the ages of 2 and 6 months are quickly developing and have significant dietary requirements.  Make careful to provide kitten-specific food, as infants have distinct vitamin and iron needs from older felines.
  • As their growth stops, many kittens’ dietary requirements would start to decline at six months of life.

Lean Domestic Cats

  • A 5-pound feline using a fit body requires around 170 calories each day.
  • A 280-calorie-per-day diet is required for a 10-pound feline to have a slim body shape.
  • A 15-pound feline having a fit physique requires around 360 calories each day.
  • A 20-pound feline having a fit body requires around 440 calories each day.

Overweight Domestic Cats

  • A 5-pound obese feline requires roughly 180 calories each day.
  • A 10-pound obese feline requires roughly 240 calories each day.
  • A 15-pound obese feline requires roughly 280 calories each day.
  • A 20-pound obese feline requires roughly 310 calories each day.

Pregnant Cats

Maternal felines must eat their normal food and nutrients for the next 4-5 weeks post-mating. Then they could be moved to a young feline or development diet, as well as the quantity of food given to them must be raised.

  • A lactating feline weighing 5 pounds requires roughly 240 calories each day.
  • A lactating feline weighing ten pounds requires around 390 calories each day.
  • A lactating feline weighing 15 pounds requires roughly 510 calories each day.
  • A lactating feline weighing 20 pounds requires roughly 610 calories each day.

Nursing Cats

  • Lactating felines must be given training or breastfeeding food on a free-choice basis.
  • The quantity and maturity of the offspring would impact the feline’s calorie consumption.
  • Some felines having huge litters might require 3-4 times the normal calorie intake.
  • Felines, unlike canines, continually lose some weight when feeding their babies, even if they consume more than they could.

Read also:

Why my cats vomiting?

Why my cat drooling so much?

Why my cat stops eating and drinking?

Benefits of dry food

The key advantages of canned kibble are its simplicity, accessibility, and low cost. Hundreds of thousands of felines throughout the globe are given dry kibble (whether entirely or in a mixture) and enjoy extended and productive lives. Free feeding is possible with dry kibble, and the meals could be kept outside for extended durations of time. Some felines like to nibble their meals throughout the morning instead of at fixed timings, and this is the most common feeding technique when using soft food. As a form of ecological enhancement and cognitive concentration, dry food is better to utilize with feeding dispenser devices.

Certain dry diets might help with oral health by minimizing tartar development or delaying plaque and gingivitis, the others are done mostly by manual scrubbing. But, not every dry meal has the right kibble quality to combat bacteria, but if they did, they may not work on all dental regions. There seems to be a paucity of evidence to demonstrate the advantage of dry kibble over wet meals in terms of dental health. In any event, teeth cleaning is the holy grail for maintaining good oral health. If you wish to eat a balanced food that reduces biofilm buildup, look for goods with the Veterinary Oral Health Council stamp of approval.

The energy content of dry food is greater than that of wet food. It could be an issue for felines that are unable to control their calorie consumption, and the incidence of unhealthy lifestyles in felines is significant enough to indicate that many felines are unable to do so.

Dry kibble, on the other hand, would give necessary minerals in a focused, tiny quantity, increasing the essential intake in felines who are underweight and/or possess a selective taste, which occurs in certain healthy felines and is connected with the condition.

Dry Food: The Downside

A dry diet might not be quite as healthy as the dried diet for felines with medical issues, in particular since it lacks the overall moisture level that packed meals give. A visit with a doctor is recommended at this point to assist you in selecting the appropriate diet for your feline’s requirements. Remember that elderly felines could have a tougher difficulty consuming dry meals than wet meals, particularly if they have jaw or oral infections. The smooth texture of tinned feline meal might make it simpler for elderly cats to consume than the hard grain they used to consume.

How to make your cat consume more water with a dry diet?

Encouraging water consumption in felines who eat a dry (or largely dry) diet is essential, particularly to avoid urinary issues. A steady flow of new, safe drinking water must be accessible at all times. Water consumption could also be influenced by the following factors:

Location of water bowls: Remove the drinking dish from the feeding and litter tray. Pick a calm location wherein your feline would not be bothered when drinking.

Choice of water bowl: While plastic could leave a bad taste in the mouth, felines tend to prefer clay or metal. Because some felines like their claws not to contact the pitcher, choose a broad, flat dish.

Multiple drinking stations: Several stations could aid in the consumption of water and therefore are recommended in multi-cat families to guarantee that this item is not hampered by fighting.

Water fountains: Because some felines enjoy rushing drinking, drinking fountains are a useful choice in these situations. These must be sanitized on a regular basis, and the filtration must be replaced as directed by the supplier.

Add water to the dry food: To attain equal moisture as a wet meal, the proportion should be 2–3 cups of water per 1 cup of dry kibble.

Flavored water: To increase water intake, introduce chicken stock (excluding ginger or onions) or sardine ‘water’ in the feline’s drinkable water.

Final Thought

Both dried and moist meals have advantages and disadvantages. The wet meal is far more costly and more difficult to manage, but it can help felines with urinary tract infections (UTI disorders, diarrhea, and obesity). The dry meal is an effective technique to deliver nutrients to lean felines with limited meal quantity, and it enables the usage of meal riddles and toy distributors. A comprehensive dietary examination, comprising diet record and overall health rating, should be performed by your veterinarian to determine which would be optimal — this is commonly done in regular check-ups.

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