Kittens grow up so fast, so it’s not surprising that they need extra-nutritious food to help them keep that growth up. Kitten foods are a little harder to track down than cat foods, but there are still many great options available.
This list goes over some of the best kitten food choices in Canada. These foods are all formulated to help your kitten get the vitamins and nutrients that they need while they’re growing. Check them out!
A Quick Comparison of Our Favourites in 2023
|Best Overall||Purina Pro Dry Kitten Food||
|Best Value||Purina One Healthy Kitten Food||
|Premium Choice||Hill's Science Diet Cat Food||
|Blue Buffalo Wilderness Kitten Food||
|IAMS Perfect Portions Food Trays Kitten||
The 6 Best Kitten Foods in Canada
1. Purina Pro Plan Dry Kitten Food Chicken — Best Overall
|First five ingredients:||Chicken, brewers rice, corn gluten meal, chicken by-product meal, animal fat|
|Food Type:||Dry food|
The Purina Pro line of cat foods offers high-quality food at a reasonable price, and their kitten option follows the pattern. Purina Pro Dry Kitten Food is our pick for the best overall kitten food in Canada because it is a balanced, healthy food for a reasonable price. It is full of calcium and phosphorus, both of which strengthen bone and dental health. It also has omega fatty acids that support your kitten’s eye and brain development, probiotics that aid healthy digestion, and every other nutrient your kitten needs. Although some weaning kittens prefer wet food, this is a great dry option. However, it does rely on some egg proteins as part of its ingredient makeup, which is generally less healthy than meat proteins.
2. Purina One Healthy Kitten Food — Best Value
|First five ingredients:||Chicken, chicken by-product meal, corn gluten meal, rice flour, soybean meal|
If you are looking to get the most bang for your buck, Purina One Healthy Kitten Food is a low-cost, high-value food option. This food is a slight step down in quality from Purina Pro, but it’s quite a bit cheaper and still an excellent food choice. It comes in at 40% protein overall, with most of the protein coming from chicken, and it includes DHA, which helps brain development along with all essential vitamins and minerals.
If your kitten has allergies, this isn’t an ideal food as it contains small amounts of many different protein and grain sources, but the variety can also be good for healthy kittens. It also is fairly grain-heavy, with rice, corn, and soybeans as the top ingredients. Although newer research suggests that the grain-free diet is overhyped, lots of corn and rice isn’t ideal either.
3. Hill’s Science Diet Kitten Healthy Cuisine Canned Cat Food, Roasted Chicken & Rice Medley — Premium Choice
|First five ingredients:||Chicken broth, chicken, pork liver, carrots, wheat gluten|
The Hill’s Science Diet Kitten Healthy Cuisine Canned Cat Food is a delicious premium option if you want your kitten to have the best canned food out there. This canned food is full of healthy meats, vegetables, and grains, with an emphasis on natural ingredients where possible. Hill’s cat food is an industry leader in research, so even though this food costs a little more you can be sure their food is following the latest nutritional advice. This food is comparatively high in animal fats compared to other kitten foods, which can help with growth and nutrition during the fastest growth periods. This wet food is also ideal because it lets young kittens wean more easily through its soft texture and delicious broth. However, this isn’t ideal for every cat—some reviewers state that the smell turned off their kittens, and they had to switch to a different brand.
4. Blue Buffalo Wilderness Natural Kitten Food
|First five ingredients:||Deboned chicken, chicken meal, pea protein, tapioca starch, menhaden fish meal|
The Blue Buffalo Wilderness taps into your cat’s wild side with a grain-free, all-natural kibble. This kitten food is high in protein at around 40% and meets your kitten’s nutritional needs through a variety of animal and vegetable sources. It contains all the ingredients your cat needs to be healthy and happy as he grows. Blue Buffalo is also a grain-free food. Grains can be a healthy part of a cat’s diet, but they aren’t necessary, so that’s not necessarily good or bad.
Although there’s a lot to love about this food, it is a little bit higher in carbs despite the lack of grains, at around 40% carbs. It also gets a chunk of its protein content from plant sources like pea protein, which isn’t ideal for kittens.
5. IAMS Perfect Portions Food Trays Kitten
|First five ingredients:||Chicken, chicken broth, chicken liver, dried egg product, guar gum|
If you want a no-stress, no-mess food, IAMS Perfect Portions Food Trays for Kittens is the ideal option. Each tray contains two separate halves, so you can feed your kitten a half tray or a full tray as needed. The soft pate texture is the easiest option for weaning kittens who are still afraid of solid foods. It is also a high-protein food, with about a 40% protein content on a dry matter basis.
One major drawback of this food is that the portioning can be tricky. Although each half is one serving, the number of servings per day recommended varies between 3⅔–6 servings depending on the age of the kitten, so one tray might not equal one meal. This packaging style also leaves behind a lot of plastic waste. Finally, there are a few ingredients—such as added color—that aren’t really necessary to the cat food.
6. Applaws Kitten Can
|First five ingredients:||Chicken breast, chicken broth, rice, rice flour|
If your kitten is struggling with digestion, a limited ingredient diet may be ideal. Applaws Kitten Cans contain only four ingredients—chicken, broth, rice, and rice flour—making them perfect for owners who are trying to figure out allergies and sensitivities. This food is also great for some kittens because it is so high in protein while containing very few carbs. For kittens with health issues, this might be the perfect food. However, there are some drawbacks to the limited ingredient diet. This food is lower in fat than most recommend and is also not fortified as heavily with vitamins and minerals. Although there are good reasons to pick this cat food, it’s best chosen as a short-term solution when other foods aren’t working or with the advice of a vet.
Buyer’s Guide: Selecting the Best Kitten Food in Canada
There are lots of different ways that kitten food might be labeled. Most often, you’ll see “kitten” displayed somewhere obvious, but this isn’t always true. Some kitten foods might be labeled “for growth” or “growth formula” instead, meaning that they are designed for growing kittens. You’ll also see cat food that claims to be for “all life stages.” The difference between kitten/growth food, all life stages food, and adult/maintenance food can be pretty big.
Kitten vs Adult Food
While they are growing, kittens need different types of nutrition than adults. They need more calories relative to their size and more protein and fat as well. This is especially noticeable in older kittens, who often gobble down a ton of food to fuel their growing bodies. Kitten food is more nutrient-dense than adult food so that they get more of the protein and fat they need and less vegetable/carbohydrate matter.
Kittens also need some nutrients more than adult cats. Being nutrient deficient as a kitten can lead to lifelong health problems. Nutrients that boost your kitten’s bones, nervous system, and digestive system are especially important. Kitten foods are also often easier to digest and come in smaller bites.
On the other hand, adult cats don’t need the high-calorie diet that kittens do and feeding an adult cat kitten food is likely to lead to obesity. Some adult-formulated cat foods also have nutrients that will help senior cats stay healthy as well.
In addition to these labels, some cat foods are sold as being suitable for all life stages. These foods aren’t always ideal because they tend to average out kitten and adult foods so that they don’t perfectly match the nutritional needs of either.
It’s important to pick the best kitten foods for healthy growth but sorting through the options can be tricky. We loved Purina Pro Dry Kitten Food for its incredible nutrition, and the Purina One is a good alternative that makes your dollar stretch a little more. If you want a premium food option, the Hills Science Diet Kitten Canned Food is backed by the latest research and delicious, too. We hope these reviews can help steer you toward the choice that’s right for you.
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