Cats that reach a certain age are more likely to get kidney disease, but it usually progresses slowly. There are some reasons kidney disease may happen suddenly, such as if a cat is poisoned or has a genetic abnormality, but most kidney disease cases in cats are caused due to aging.
The primary symptoms of kidney disease in felines are anorexia, weight loss, excess urination, and lethargy. A good diet is vital to managing the symptoms of kidney disease in cats, with the correct balance of potassium, sodium, and protein. This slows the progression of the disease while maintaining weight and physical condition, as well as reducing the build-up of toxins in the blood.
The reviews of the cat foods for kidney disease we list in this article will look at the levels of minerals and protein content, which stage of CKD the food is suitable for, and the opinions of cat owners who’ve fed their cats the diet. We’ve put all our findings into a list of the 10 best cat foods for kidney disease in the UK.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites in 2023
|Best Overall||Purina Pro Plan RF Dry Renal Diet||
|Best Value||Animonda Integra Protect Renal||
|Premium Choice||Royal Canin Feline Renal Wet||
|Purina Pro Plan Renal Diet With Salmon||
|Hill’s KD + Mobility Dry Food||
The 10 Best Cat Foods For Kidney Disease in the UK
1. Purina Pro Plan RF Dry Renal Diet Cat Food – Best Overall
|Main ingredients:||Maize, rice, soy meal, wheat meal, gluten meal, animal fat, digest, dried egg, dehydrated poultry protein|
Purina Pro Plan RF renal diet is formulated (with support from the International Society of feline medicine) to support your cat in every stage of renal insufficiency. It balances reduced phosphorus content with controlled but quality proteins to ensure the build-up of waste products in the blood from muscle wastage is controlled, and the workload on the kidneys is reduced.
This food is ranked one of the overall best cat foods for kidney disease in the UK, not only for its many shining reviews but also for the stories from cat owners who’ve used this product to improve their cat’s well-being.
Omega-3 fatty acids are also included to support kidney function further, and there are several bag sizes available to purchase, which adds additional value for money.
2. Animonda Integra Protect Renal Wet Food – Best Value
|Main ingredients:||(depending on flavor) chicken, beef, pork, veal, turkey, potato, grapeseed oil|
The Animonda Integra kidney food line is an excellent choice for those cat owners looking for a good value kidney food for a fussier cat. This line has many flavors to suit any palate and a pâté-like consistency, which is ideal for elderly cats with fewer teeth.
It’s also ideal for cats struggling with inappetence, as it can have warm water added to it to tempt your cat to eat. The formulation of the Animonda food is tailored to not only support the kidneys but also reduce the formation of urinary stones and support the urinary system as a whole, making it one of the best cat foods for kidney disease in the UK for the money.
There is only one flavor with a single protein in it, however, which may be a concern for cat owners whose cats are sensitive to specific proteins, and some customers mentioned that the packaging was damaged on delivery.
3. Royal Canin Feline Renal Wet Cat Food – Premium Choice
|Main ingredients:||Poultry by-products (chicken 4%), beef/salmon, pork by-products, wheat flour, pork blood products, corn starch mixture, sunflower oil, minerals, fish oil, marigold extract|
This selection box of Royal Canin Renal wet slices in gravy is our premium pick for cat foods with kidney disease because of the science-backed recipe that is perfectly balanced to support cats with kidney disease at stages 2–4. The formulation also caters to the urinary system by reducing the likelihood of certain urinary stones (calcium oxalate) and supporting the kidneys’ filtration system.
The slices of meat in gravy are purposefully crafted to release tempting aromas, as cats with CKD often don’t want to eat. The tantalizing flavors in the Royal Canin meal can entice cats to eat, helping with the continuation of treatment even if your cat is off its food.
However, this diet doesn’t have a single protein variant, and cats sensitive to specific proteins may not be able to eat it. It’s more expensive than other foods on the list but is well worth it.
4. Purina Pro Plan Renal Diet With Salmon Cat Food
|Main ingredients:||Pork (kidney, liver, trachea, dehydrated protein), chicken, pork fat, salmon (5%), flour, rice, gluten|
The Purina pro plan renal wet food with salmon offers a tasty and tempting choice for cats that love fish. Because CKD symptoms sometimes cause food inappetence (such as nausea and changes in taste and smell), cats with renal insufficiency often start to lose weight.
The Purina pro plan renal wet diet uses small bites and enhanced smells to tempt your cat into eating, as diet compliance is a vital part of CKD treatment. Controlled protein and phosphorus levels also reduce toxin build-up in the blood and improve muscle wastage, taking the workload of your cat’s kidneys.
This wet food is also reasonably priced, making it a good option for those on a budget who need wet food for their cat. It only has mixed proteins and may not be suitable for cats with sensitivities to some protein sources.
5. Hill’s KD + Mobility Dry Food – Vet’s Choice
|Main ingredients:||Cereals, vegetable protein extracts, oils and fats (fish oil 2.9%), meat and animal derivatives (chicken 6%), eggs and egg derivatives, and derivatives of vegetable origin|
The Hills KD and Mobility Dry Food is our vet’s choice for the best cat foods for kidney disease in the UK. This food not only supports the kidneys by having controlled levels of protein and phosphorus but also improves mobility.
Many older pets with kidney disease may suffer from concurrent arthritis or joint and mobility problems. This ideal diet combines fish oils with other amino acids to help support the joints and movement and protect the kidneys. Hills KD contains an advanced appetite trigger for cats not eating due to CKD, helping them stick to their diet, build muscle mass, and improve their overall health.
Hill’s is reasonably priced and made to be highly palatable. However, it has higher protein and phosphorus levels than other recipes on this list, and there’s only one flavor. Since the food is dry, you should monitor your cat’s water intake to ensure they get the water they need, particularly if they are suffering from CKD.
6. DECHRA Specific FKD Cat Food
|Main ingredients:||Maize, maize protein, pork fat, fish oil, egg powder, potato protein, animal protein hydrolysate, beet pulp, minerals and vitamins, Antarctic krill, and fish meal|
|Protein content:||23 grams|
|Phosphorus content:||0.39 grams|
|Sodium content:||0.17 grams|
Dechra Specific dry renal food is scientifically formulated for cats with all stages of kidney disease. The restricted phosphorus level helps regulate blood pressure and reduce the workload on the kidneys, while EPA and DHA fatty acids support kidney function and improve appetite. Dechra also specifies that the reduced sodium levels in this food help improve water retention, which is very important for cats with CKD as water retention presents more work for the kidneys to clear.
This food is also suitable for cats with heart problems or reduced liver function, as the recipe supports general organ health. There’s only one flavor, however, which has mixed proteins.
If your cat doesn’t find it palatable or is sensitive to any protein sources in the recipe, this food may not be suitable.
7. Hills K/D Tuna Dry Cat Food
|Main ingredients:||Derivatives of vegetable origin, cereals, vegetable protein extracts, oils and fats (fish oil 1.7%), meat and animal derivatives, fish and fish derivatives (tuna 5%), eggs and egg derivatives|
Hills created the K/D diet to lengthen your cat’s life and improve its overall quality. It protects and supports kidney function with additional omega-3 fatty acids, high levels of essential amino acids, and L-carnitine to support muscle maintenance and general health. There is a range of bag sizes available for all cats, and the biscuits are formulated to be very palatable, but tuna is the only flavor, so this diet may not appeal to cats that don’t like fish.
8. Royal Canin Renal Special Dry Cat Food
|Main ingredients:||Maize flour, rice, dehydrated pork protein, animal fats, maize gluten, vegetable fibers, maize, hydrolyzed animal proteins, wheat gluten, chicory pulp, fish oil|
Royal Canin developed the unique biscuit shape and aromatic profile of the special renal diet to encourage cats with CKD to eat, as building muscles and maintaining weight are essential parts of improving the symptoms of CKD and the kidney’s function.
This formula protects the entire urinary system by reducing not only phosphorus and protein levels but also the levels of vitamin D and calcium, which are two of the minerals that make up calcium oxalate bladder stones.
The Royal Canin special diet also features adapted energy levels, meaning your cat doesn’t have to eat as much if they’re suffering from nausea due to CKD to maintain calorie levels and weight. This is a more expensive kidney food, and because it’s a dry diet, owners should monitor their cat’s water consumption to ensure they stay hydrated.
9. Royal Canin Early Renal Wet Cat Food
|Main ingredients:||Pork byproducts, poultry byproducts, chicken meat, wheat flour, pork blood products, sunflower oil, fish oil, vital wheat gluten, dried tomato pulp, glucosamine, marigold extract, hydrolyzed cartilage|
The Royal Canin Early Renal diet does what it says on the tin. It is specifically formulated for cats in the early stages of CKD (Stages 1 and 2), as the kidneys need different levels of support in the early stages.
EPA and DHA are included alongside antioxidants and reduced phosphorus to support the continuing function of the kidneys in early renal disease. Probiotics are also included in this recipe, working with added fiber to help your cat digest their food comfortably and promote good overall digestive health.
Royal Canin provides a more holistic approach to overall wellness in the early stages of feline kidney disease. However, it’s unsuitable for cats in the later stages of CKD (stages 3–4, late-stage 2). This diet provides quality sources of chondroitin and glucosamine to support aging cats and their muscles and joints, promoting mobility.
10. Royal Canin Renal Select Dry Cat Food
|Main ingredients:||Animal fats, rice, precooked wheat flour, dehydrated pork protein, wheat gluten, vegetable fibers, maize gluten, hydrolyzed animal proteins, dehydrated fish, chicory pulp, fish oil|
Royal Canin Renal Select has a unique pillow-shaped kibble to tempt cats struggling to eat with mid to late-stage kidney disease. It is ideal for older cats, as they still get to crush the outer shell satisfyingly, but the soft inside is easier on the teeth and easier to swallow. Owners can also moisten the kibbles with water to improve palatability further.
The Renal Select diet uses adapted energy to maintain caloric intake and weight for cats with CKD who aren’t eating much. It also has controlled protein and phosphorus levels to support kidney function.
Renal Select isn’t suitable for early kidney disease, and only three bag sizes are available for purchase. It’s also an expensive diet, but it can be a lifesaver for cats refusing to eat other foods.
Buyer’s Guide: Finding the Best Food for a Cat with Kidney Disease
When looking for a kidney diet for your cat, there are a few key factors you should look out for in each recipe. Reduced phosphorus, controlled protein amounts, and reduced sodium are crucial for cats with CKD, as all three elements can significantly affect not just the functioning of your cat’s kidneys but also can affect their quality of life.
Reduced phosphorous levels help to protect the nephrons in your cat’s kidneys. The kidneys control the phosphorus levels in the blood and filter it out; having high phosphorus in your cat’s diet will give their kidney more work, which can cause more damage.
Protein levels are strictly controlled in kidney diets as excess protein can accumulate waste products in the blood, particularly urea. The more protein there is in the diet, the more the kidneys must work to filter out any excess, which can cause more damage if insufficient.
Excess protein waste products can also damage the kidneys’ filtration system. The smell of ammonia is often attributed to cats with CKD as it builds up in the blood as urea and can cause ammonia-smelling breath.
While sodium is not as important to control as phosphorus and protein in feline kidney diets, a moderately reduced sodium diet is beneficial since it helps to control excess water, further reducing the workload and protecting the kidneys.
It’s also a good idea to look at each recipe’s palatability and to slowly change your cat’s food to a kidney diet over a few days to avoid gastrointestinal upset.
Above all, always follow your veterinarian’s advice regarding kidney diets and only change your cat’s diet if directed by a vet.
We’ve looked at the 10 best cat foods for kidney disease in the UK in this article, considering key factors such as phosphorus, protein, sodium amounts, and user reviews. Our top pick for the best overall kidney food was Purina’s Pro Plan RF dry food, which combined quality ingredients with a good price and excellent reviews.
Our most budget-friendly pick was the Animonda Integra kidney food. It was the best value food in our opinion, offering lots of choice with no reduction in quality. Our Premium choice of cat food for kidney disease was the Royal Canin Feline Renal Wet Food, which provides three flavors and is scientifically developed to support mid to late-stage kidney disease.
Purina’s Pro Plan salmon is our next pick. It provides high-quality kidney food at a reasonable price that most cats will find very palatable. Finally, our vet’s choice was Hill’s KD and Mobility Dry Food, which not only supports your cat’s kidneys and urinary system but also contains EHA’s and other amino acids to support movement and joint health.
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