Best Cat Food for Kidney Disease: Reviews and Top Guide

orange tabby cat

Last Updated on October 13, 2020 by Kristen Chapple

Kidney disease is very common in cats, and it can develop rather quickly from something such as infection or antifreeze toxicity.

Once your cat is diagnosed or shows signs of kidney disease, using the right food can help to ease the burden on its kidneys while ensuring she remains healthy and strong.

However, selecting the right food for cats with kidney disease can be challenging because of the large selections in the market. But we are here to lend a hand.

We went out there and picked up the best cat food for kidney disease, and reviewed them. Keep reading to discover the best foods that can help to keep your cat healthier.

The American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Canned Cat Food is our favorite because of its unique formula that helps to reduce the workload on your cat’s kidneys.

The Best Cat Food for Kidney Disease Are…

ProductDetails
1. American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Cat Food

  • Proteins: 9% (minimum)
  • Fat: 3.5% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 1% (maximum)
  • Moisture content: 82% (maximum
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2. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet K+M Kidney + Mobility Support

  • Crude protein: 26% (minimum)
  • Crude fat: 18% (minimum)
  • Crude fiber: 6% (maximum)
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3. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Renal Support D

  • Proteins: 6.5% (minimum)
  • Fat: 6.5% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 2% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 79% (maximum)
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4. Weruva Cats in the Kitchen Cuties Variety Pack Grain

  • Crude protein: 10% (minimum)
  • Crude fat: 1.6% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 0.5% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 87% (maximum)
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5. Wysong Optimal Geriatryx Dry Food

  • Proteins: 34% (minimum)
  • Fat: 15% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 6% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 10% (maximum)
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6. Purina Beyond Grain-Free Chicken, Beef & Carrot Cat Food

  • Proteins: 9% (minimum)
  • Fat: 2% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 1% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 82% (maximum)
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7. Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Adult Chicken Recipe Canned Food

  • Proteins: 9% (minimum0
  • Fat: 6% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 2% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (maximum)
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8. Hi-Tor Veterinary Select Neo Diet for Cats

  • Proteins: 8% (minimum)
  • Fat: 10% (minimum0
  • Fiber: 1% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (maximum)
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1. American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Cat Food — Best Cat Food for Kidney Health

Coming top on the list is this high-efficiency American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Canned Cat Food that has become the new go-to option for cats with kidney disease and keeping cats’ kidneys in top condition.

Today, some of the most recommended methods of addressing kidney disease in cats include restricting the proteins they take and offering them food with high moisture content, and this food does precisely that. 

We also liked it because of the lovely flavor that makes even the picky cats enjoy it. Our cats also enjoyed it so much.

The food is prepared using chicken as the primary ingredient to provide healthy amino acids for body cell development. Further, it is enriched using salmon, eggs, and fish broth that helps to support lean muscles.

The high-quality proteins further work with minerals such as folic acid and vitamins that help to strengthen the immune system while keeping the workload on the kidneys minimal.

We also liked the food because it is rich in Omega fatty acids, which works with Taurine to help the cat develop a strong heart, improve the brain system and give the cat a smooth coat.

The result of using this food is a strong cat that can resist most of the common diseases and lower the risk of kidney disease. 

Specs

  • Proteins: 9% (minimum)
  • Fat: 3.5% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 1% (maximum)
  • Moisture content: 82% (maximum)

Pros

  • Salmon and chicken flavor is loved by most cats
  • Balanced combination of quality proteins, and minerals help to reduce the risk of kidney disease and other ailments
  • Enriched with Taurine that helps to strengthen your cat’s immune system and cognitive abilities
  • Provides Omega fats and essential vitamins for healthier renal, eyesight and skin systems of your feline
  • Grain-free

Cons

  • Some cats refuse to take the food

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2. Blue Buffalo Natural Veterinary Diet K+M Kidney + Mobility Support — Runner Up

One of the crucial components that you must consider is water or moisture when it comes to preventing kidney disease in cats or managing it.

This Natural Veterinary Diet Cat Food from Blue Buffalo is formulated to supply your feline with ample moisture and the right nutrients for better kidney and whole-body health.

It is one of the best foods you can use to help your cat feel natural and enjoy fast recovery from kidney disease.

If your cat is suffering from kidney disease, the food you use should have carefully balanced minerals, and Blue Buffalo did a great job in achieving it.

The food is prepared with controlled levels of proteins, low sodium quantity, and a very small amount of phosphorus, which help to reduce the kidney’s workload. Furthermore, the food is rich in Omega fatty acids for a stronger immune system. 

For a cat with advanced chronic kidney disease, the problem of diabetes can easily complicate the situation. To prevent such complications, this food is free from high carb sources such as wheat and soy. You will also like the food because it does not trigger sensitivities and allergies in your cat.

Specs

  • Crude protein: 26% (minimum)
  • Crude fat: 18% (minimum)
  • Crude fiber: 6% (maximum)

Pros

  • Prepared with controlled proteins to reduce the workload on your cat’s kidneys
  • The food is well balanced to support healthy kidneys and entire body
  • It is enriched with DHA and balanced essential minerals for strong joints and healthy brain
  • Grain-free

Cons

  • Pricey
  • Some cats are sensitive to beef

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3. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Renal Support D

This Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Canned Cat Food is another highly rated option for cats with kidney disease, but it is only available on prescription.

It is prepared with an antioxidant complex and carefully balanced ingredients for better cat’s kidney health. The formulation has made this food one of the top recommendations for cats suffering from either acute or chronic kidney disease.

While it is true that many therapeutic foods out there have poor flavors, this food rocks an enticing one, and the texture further makes it irresistible to cats.

The food is made with high-quality but controlled proteins derived from chicken by-products, pork liver, and chicken. The proteins are well balanced with controlled phosphorus, vitamins, and antioxidants, which help to lower the toxins in the bloodstream.

Therefore, your cat’s kidneys will not be overworked and the recovery from kidney disease will be faster.

Specs

  • Proteins: 6.5% (minimum)
  • Fat: 6.5% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 2% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 79% (maximum)

Pros

  • Specially prepared to help support the kidneys of your cat
  • Formulated with antioxidants and fatty acids that help to strengthen the cat’s immune system
  • Rich in DHA and EPA that help to reduce inflammation of the kidney
  • Contains the vitamins that your cat needs for healthy immune system
  • Does not contain harmful sweeteners or artificial flavors

Cons

  • Contains high levels of carbohydrates
  • Requires vet prescription
  • Contains chicken by-products

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4. Weruva Cats in the Kitchen Cuties Variety Pack Grain

Coming next on our list is this Weruva Cats in the Kitchen Cuties Variety Pack cat food, a carefully formulated food to help your cat stay in top condition.

It is a wet food prepared with high-quality proteins and high moisture content, which help to reduce the workload on your feline’s kidneys.

This is why you should consider it if your cat has been diagnosed with kidney disease or other renal complications. We also liked the food because it is priced affordably, allowing more people to buy and feed their cats.

Another notable thing about this food is that it is grain-free and offers your cat a well-balanced feast for better health. The proteins, which form the bulk of the nutrients in the food are sourced from chicken and fish.

In addition, the food contains essential vitamins, including Vitamin B3, B2, and B1, among others, which help to strengthen the cat’s immune system and replace those lost during frequent urination.

Specs

  • Crude protein: 10% (minimum)
  • Crude fat: 1.6% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 0.5% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 87% (maximum)

Pros

  • Available in different flavors so that you can select what your cat likes
  • Formulated using real animal proteins
  • Balanced with ample quantities of omega fatty acids and vitamins that help to strengthen the cat’s immune system
  • Prepared using chicken broth for healthier urinary and digestive systems

Cons

  • The protein content may be too high for some cats

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5. Wysong Optimal Geriatryx Dry Food — Best Cat Food for Older Cats with Kidney Problems

Older cats are at a higher risk of developing problems with their kidneys, so if you want the right food to prevent the problem, this Wysong Optimal Geriatryx Dry Food is one of the best options.

The food is prepared for older cats and features top-rated animal proteins, fresh fruits, and digestible carbs. Most cat owners who have used this food come back with success stories of their happy and playful cats.

The main ingredient in the food is protein, which is derived from real chicken, turkey meat, milk, and crabs.

It also contains an assortment of vitamins and minerals derived from fruits and veggies that make it more effective in lowering the risk of kidney disease and promoting whole-body health. The vitamins work with Omega fatty acids to further promote a healthy heart, and immune system.

To prevent kidney disease and other ailments from attacking your feline, Wysong nutritionists strongly emphasized on the need to have a good digestive system.

This is why they included healthy probiotics in the food, which promote better digestion and absorption of nutrients into the cat’s body. So, you can relax knowing that all the nutrients from the food will be absorbed to help strengthen the cat’s renal and immune system.

Specs

  • Proteins: 34% (minimum)
  • Fat: 15% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 6% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 10% (maximum)

Pros

  • Carefully formulated to improve the overall health of your cat
  • Ingredients are carefully selected to reduce the risk of kidney disease in your cat
  • Enriched with Taurine that helps with brain, heart, and eye development
  • Rocks a lovely chicken flavor that is liked by cats
  • Contains a wide range of vitamins for stronger immune system

Cons

  • Contains grain-based carbohydrates
  • Pricey

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6. Purina Beyond Grain-Free Chicken, Beef & Carrot Cat Food

If you were told that your cat is at high risk of developing kidney disease, what would you do? Most of us would shed tears, but would also move on to the next step and look for the best remedy to prevent the disease.

One such remedy is using top-rated foods such as the Purina Beyond Grain-Free Chicken, Beef & Carrot Recipe Canned Food. What we liked most about the food is that it helps you to lower the risk of kidney disease while promoting a healthier body, especially the renal, immune, and circulatory systems.

The food is prepared using chicken and beef as the primary ingredients that help to provide high-quality amino acids that your feline needs to reduce pressure on the kidney. Purina Beyond further enriched the proteins from chicken with liver and eggs to promote faster cells regeneration and development of lean muscles.

To keep the kidney, and indeed all body organs in top condition, the food also contains all essential minerals and vitamins from fruits and vegetables. We also liked the fact that the food does not contain junk such as gluten, soy, or corn that can result in diabetes.

Specs

  • Proteins: 9% (minimum)
  • Fat: 2% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 1% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 82% (maximum)

Pros

  • Prepared with low quantities but high-quality proteins
  • Enriched with all essential minerals and vitamins for healthy kidney
  • Packed with antioxidants and Omega fatty acids that promote a stronger immune system
  • Yummy flavor liked by many cats
  • Affordable

Cons

  • Some cats are sensitive to beef

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7. Blue Buffalo Freedom Indoor Adult Chicken Recipe Canned Food

If you have an indoor cat with kidney disease or at risk of suffering from the problem, you need food that is carefully balanced to promote the regeneration of kidney cells and overall health of the feline.

One food that fits the bill is this Freedom Indoor Adult Chicken Recipe Canned Food from blue buffalo. Its chicken flavor is also great and cats find it irresistible.

Blue Buffalo used low restricted but high-quality proteins derived from chicken to help reduce the work done by your cats’ kidneys. The proteins also promote fast cell regeneration in the kidney, allowing your cat to progressively overcome kidney disease.

You will also note the lovely mix of the proteins with fruits-derived vitamins, which make the food more effective in promoting whole-body health of your cat.

By keeping the formula free from preservatives, colors and artificial flavors, this food helps to reduce the exposure of your cat’s kidneys to harmful toxins.

Furthermore, the food is free from grains, such as soy and wheat to reduce the risk of your cat becoming overweight.

Specs

  • Proteins: 9% (minimum)
  • Fat: 6% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 2% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (maximum)

Pros

  • Carefully formulated to help indoor cats reduce the risk of kidney disease
  • Comes with a lovely flavor that cats love
  • Uses real animal proteins
  • Does not contain grain or by-product meals

Cons

  • Does not contain probiotics

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8. Hi-Tor Veterinary Select Neo Diet for Cats

Coming last on our list of the best cat food for kidney disease is this Hi-Tor Veterinary Select Neo Diet for Cats. We liked the food because its ingredients are balanced, and is sold affordably, allowing cat owners to use it as an alternative to traditional foods that are prescribed for kidney disease.

In addition to having high-quality proteins derived from chicken and fish, the quantity is reduced so that the affected kidneys will have less work of filtering wastes. The quantity of phosphorus is also controlled, and sodium levels very small to further reduce the effect they have on the kidney.

As the kidneys of your cat improve, the food also helps to supply all the required nutrients for better health. The food contains all essential vitamins and minerals, such as Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Riboflavin Supplement, Folic Acid, and Biotin that help to strengthen your cat’s renal and immune system.

Specs

  • Proteins: 8% (minimum)
  • Fat: 10% (minimum)
  • Fiber: 1% (maximum)
  • Moisture: 78% (maximum)

Pros

  • Formulated with controlled proteins, sodium and phosphorus for good health of cats’ renal system
  • Rocks tasty fish and chicken flavors
  • Prepared with no artificial food colors or flavors
  • Sold affordably
  • Helps to promote whole-body health

Cons

  • Contains meat by-products
  • The carb content is very high

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Buying Guide

After reading our reviews above, you now know about the best food options for your cat with kidney disease or at risk of suffering from the disease.

The next step is pinpointing the right food to buy and start helping your feline overcome the disease. Here is how to go about it:

Understand The Kidney Disease Well

Before you can start selecting the best food for cats with kidney disease, it is prudent to understand the problem. This information can help you promptly note when your cat has the problem, and seek help early enough before the problem escalates.

Your cat’s kidneys play a crucial role in its overall wellness. The core role of the kidney is filtering the excess proteins and protein waste from the cat’s bloodstream to form urine. They also play a crucial role in striking the perfect balance of water, acids, and salts in the cat’s body.

Kidney disease occurs when the cat’s kidneys become unable to function properly. The problem can be categorized into two: acute kidney disease and chronic kidney disease.

Acute kidney disease happens when there is an abrupt injury to the kidney that makes it impossible to filter waste in the cat’s blood. In such a situation, the cat suddenly becomes sick and may stop producing urine. The cat should be treated urgently by a qualified vet.

Unlike acute kidney disease that happens abruptly, chronic kidney disease is gradual. This problem arises when the function of your cat’s kidneys starts declining slowly.

It may happen in a few months or take years before it is noted. The main symptoms of kidney disease in cats include:

  • Increased thirst
  • Frequent urination
  • Weight loss
  • Less grooming
  • Page gums
  • Bad breath
  • Oral ulcers
  • Low energy
  • Low body temperature
  • Ocular hemorrhage

What To Look For In The Best Cat Food For Kidney Disease

Now that you know what kidney disease is, the food you select should be aimed at reducing the problem. Here is a demonstration of how to narrow down to the perfect option for your cat.

Go For Food With Restricted Or High-Quality Proteins

During digestion, the proteins are broken down from long complex chains (polypeptides) into simple amino acids that your cat can absorb and use in its body, a process that generates some waste.

Your cat’s kidneys help to filter out the waste from the bloodstream and release it as urine. When a cat’s kidneys are compromised, they are unable or find it difficult to remove all the wastes from the bloodstream. To address the problem, you should consider using food with restricted proteins.

Restricted proteins mean reducing the overall protein intake so that protein-related wastes go down, reducing the overall work that the kidney needs to do to clear it from the blood.

However, some nutritionists feel that cutting proteins by about 20% may result in deprivation, which is true because cats are obligate carnivores.

Instead, they recommend going for cat food with highly-digestible, yet low-waste proteins from animal sources, such as fish, pork, beef, lamb, turkey, and chicken.

The bottom line is that you want your cat’s kidneys not to get overwhelmed because they are already weak, but have ample time to rejuvenate or replace the inflamed cells.

Foods with high-quality and low-waste animal proteins are very effective in countering kidney disease, especially if it has not advanced to acute levels.

Look For Food With Low Sulfur Levels

As the efficiency of your cat’s kidney decreases because of kidney disease, one of the components that do not get filtered out is phosphorus.

However, a buildup of phosphorus in the blood is likely to make the cat feel more ill and further reduce the effectiveness of the kidney rapidly.

The best method of addressing the problem is looking for cat food with low phosphorus levels, which implies less damage to the cat’s body and kidneys. The food you select should contain no more than 0.5% phosphorus.

Only Buy Cat Food With Low Sodium Content

If you feed your cat with a lot of sodium, the main impact is a rise in blood pressure, a problem that easily worsens the damaged kidney.

So, you should consider avoiding foods such as salty cheese and luncheon meat, which are high on sodium content. It is because of this focus that most renal cat diets contain low sodium levels.

Select Food With Ample Omega Fatty Acids

After developing the kidney disease, your cat is likely to also develop inflammation and nephritis.

Therefore, you should look for food that is formulated with good anti-inflammation ingredients such as Omega fatty acids. If the problem of kidney disease is not severe, the fatty acids are very effective and may help to reverse it.

To get better results, you should look for foods formulated with animal-based Omega fatty acids as opposed to plant-based ones. Good sources of Omega fatty acids include menhaden fish oil, tuna, and sardine oil.

Notably, while most of the foods prepared for cats with kidney disease have some Omega fatty acids, you might want to consider including some Omega 3 fatty acid supplements.

Only Buy Food Rich In Vitamins

When a cat is suffering from kidney disease, it urinates regularly, resulting in the loss of crucial vitamins. The loss is likely to further escalate your cat’s health.

For example, loss of Vitamin B can result in the loss of appetite and poor health. So, selecting food with ample vitamins implies that your cat can easily replenish what is being lost with the urine.

Ample vitamins are also important in strengthening the immune system of the cat. The vitamins work with amino acids, and essential minerals to improve the overall cat’s health.

Buy From The Top Brands

Another crucial consideration when selecting food for cats with kidney disease is the brand.

However, the rising number of brands releasing renal foods into the market makes it challenging to identify the perfect pick. 

Remember that you cannot afford to make the mistake of selecting the wrong food because it could mean the health of the animal will deteriorate.

To avoid picking poor quality foods, consider only selecting those made by the top brands, such as America Journey and Blue Buffalo.

NOTE: Even with the top brands, you should carefully check the food they stock to ensure they are of high quality and can help your cat with the problem of kidney disease.

Again, we do not imply that newer brands cannot make good foods for cats suffering from kidney disease, but you will need to carry in-depth research to determine that their feeds are right for your feline.

Final Thoughts

Kidney disease is a dangerous problem that can easily and quickly deteriorate the overall health of your cat, so you have to do everything possible to counter it.

By understanding the problem and using the right food, it is possible to reduce the impact of the problem or even reverse it.

In this post, we have looked at the best cat food for kidney disease that you can rely on to restore the good health of your cat. They have carefully selected nutrients to help reduce the cat’s kidneys workload and enjoy fast recovery.

They are also made by top manufacturers and have a wide price range so that more cat owners can use them no matter their budget.

Although all the nine best cat foods in our reviews are outstanding (we liked them, really liked them), the American Journey Minced Chicken & Salmon Recipe Canned Cat Food was more outstanding and, therefore, our favorite. Its formula contains high-quality proteins and balanced minerals that promote good health of your cat’s renal system.

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