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7 Best Diabetic Cat Foods in the UK – 2024 Reviews & Top Picks

Kerry-Ann Kerr Profile Picture

By Kerry-Ann Kerr

British shorthair cat eating

It can be scary when your cat is diagnosed with diabetes, which can leave pet parents scouring reviews for diabetic diets, worried about how they will manage this condition. Diabetes has adverse health implications, but you’ll be relieved to know it is manageable with proper nutrition.

A healthy diet can control your cat’s blood sugar levels, so they’re not too low or too high. But what are the best foods? These reviews will help you better understand what is out there, so you can figure out what’s best for your feline.

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A Quick Look at Our Favourites in 2024

Rating Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Farmina Natural Chicken Farmina Natural Chicken
  • Rich in animal protein
  • Low in carbohydrates
  • High-quality ingredients used
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Purina Pro Plan Vet Diet DM Purina Pro Plan Vet Diet DM
  • Maintains blood glucose levels
  • Promotes a healthy immune system
  • Specialized diet for diabetic cats
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Lily’s Kitchen Chicken Casserole Complete Lily’s Kitchen Chicken Casserole Complete
  • Uses natural ingredients
  • High-quality protein used
  • Naturally grain-free recipes
  • Best for Kittens
    Ziwi Peak Daily Cat Cuisine Ziwi Peak Daily Cat Cuisine
  • Sustainably sourced meat
  • Air-drying technology used
  • No added nasties
  • Purina Pro Plan Diabetes Management Purina Pro Plan Diabetes Management
  • Formulated by vets, researchers, & nutritionists
  • Tasty
  • Promotes urinary health
  • The 7 Best Diabetic Cat Foods in the UK

    1. Farmina Natural Chicken Dry Cat Food – Best Overall

    Farmina Natural Chicken Dry Cat Food

    Main ingredients: Boneless Chicken, Dehydrated Chicken, Sweet Potatoes, Chicken Fat, Dried Whole Eggs
    Protein content: 44%
    Fat content: 20%
    Calories: 412 kcal/cup

    Farmina Natural Chicken is the best overall diabetic cat food. 94% of the protein is from quality animal sources; protein is required for energy and maintaining glucose levels. It also means that if your cat is overweight, it can shed some of the weight naturally. The formula is a low glycemic recipe, so it’s the perfect option for cats that need a diet that won’t spike their blood sugar. It is quite an expensive option, but if it is in your price range, it’s worth it.

    This product is grain-free, and it’s worth noting that the FDA launched an investigation into the link between grain-free diets and dilated cardiomyopathy (DCM) in 2018. The research centers around recipes that use a high proportion of ingredients like chickpeas, lentils, and peas instead of grain. However, there isn’t enough known to make any solid conclusions, and they don’t advise you to avoid grain-free diets.

    Pros
    • Rich in animal protein
    • Low in carbohydrates
    • High-quality ingredients used
    Cons
    • Expensive

    2. Purina Pro Plan Vet Diet DM Canned Cat Food – Best Value

    Purina Pro Plan Vet Diet DM Canned Cat Food

    Main ingredients: Water, Chicken, Liver, Wheat Gluten, Meat By-Products
    Protein content: 12.5%
    Fat content: 4.5%
    Calories: 158 kcal/can

    Purina Pro Plan Vet Diet DM Canned Food is the best diabetic cat food for the money. It has been specifically formulated with low carbohydrates and high protein levels to support the nutritional needs of your diabetic cat. This combination helps your cat stay active while also managing its diabetes. The specialized diet prevents the development of calcium oxalate crystals and struvite and promotes better urinary health.

    We aren’t overly fond of the ingredient “meat by-products” since “meat” is an anonymous source. We would much prefer to know the source, especially as it appears in the top five list of ingredients.

    Pros
    • Maintains blood glucose levels
    • Promotes a healthy immune system
    • Specialized diet for diabetic cats
    Cons
    • Anonymous meat source used

    3. Lily’s Kitchen Chicken Casserole Complete Adult Dry Cat Food – Premium Choice

    Lily’s Kitchen Chicken Casserole Complete Adult Dry Cat Food

    Main ingredients: Fresh Chicken, Chicken Liver, Potato, Egg, Chicken Gravy
    Protein content: 27%
    Fat content: 17%
    Calories: 392 kcal/100g

    Lily’s Kitchen Chicken Casserole Complete Cat Food is a premium dry cat food that consists of 70% chicken (65% fresh chicken and 5% chicken liver). While Lily’s Kitchen is not designed for diabetic cats, it uses a variety of complex carbohydrate sources which are low GI and full of natural ingredients.

    Regular mealtimes are crucial for diabetic felines to stabilize blood sugar, and the yummy recipe will entice your cat to eat. The ingredients have a slow release of energy which helps maintain stable blood sugar levels.

    This is an expensive option, and some might want to use it as a supplement to wet food. However, you can feed it to your cat by itself.

    Pros
    • Uses natural ingredients
    • High-quality protein used
    • Naturally grain-free recipes
    Cons
    • Expensive

    4. Ziwi Peak Daily Cat Cuisine Mackerel and Lamb Pouches – Best for Kittens

    Ziwi Peak Daily Cat Cuisine Mackerel and Lamb Pouches

    Main ingredients: Mackerel, Lamb, Lamb Heart, Lamb Tripe, Lamb Liver, Lamb Lung
    Protein content: 43%
    Fat content: 25%
    Calories: 273 kcal ME/level scoop

    Ziwi Peak Daily Cat Cuisine Mackerel and Lamb Pouches are suitable for all life stages, and the wonderful thing about that is if your kitten loves this food, you won’t need to swap it out for something else when they’re grown.

    It is ideal for your diabetic cat. Ziwi uses an air-drying technology that preserves the goodness and nutrients from the raw ingredients. This technique also prevents pathogenic bacteria. It contains 96% fish, meat, organs, and New Zealand green muscles. The recipe is also free from hormones, carbohydrates, antibiotics, and growth promoters, which are harmful to a diabetic cat.

    Pros
    • Sustainably sourced meat
    • Air-drying technology used
    • No added nasties
    • Muscle meat and organ meat used
    Cons
    • Expensive

    5. Purina Pro Plan Diabetes Management Dry Cat Food

    Purina Pro Plan Diabetes Management Dry Cat Food

    Main ingredients: Poultry By-Product Meal, Soy Protein Isolate, Corn Gluten Meal, Soy Flour
    Protein content: 51%
    Fat content: 15%
    Calories: 592 kcal/cup

    The Purina Pro Plan Diabetes Management formula not only meets the nutritional requirements for your diabetic cat because it is low in carbs and high in protein content, but it’s also super tasty.

    Vets, researchers, and nutritionists came together to create this formula, which has been clinically proven to reduce insulin requirements in some cats. It’s rich in antioxidants which promote a healthy immune system.

    We aren’t overly fond of the ingredient “poultry by-product’ and would prefer some clarity on the source of this ingredient.

    Pros
    • Formulated by vets, researchers, and nutritionists
    • Tasty
    • Promotes urinary health
    Cons
    • Anonymous meat source used
    • Requires vet approval

    6. Orijen Dry Cat and Kitten Food

    Orijen Dry Cat and Kitten Food

    Main ingredients: Chicken, Turkey, Whole Mackerel, Turkey Giblets (Liver, Heart, Gizzard), Flounder, Chicken Liver, Whole Herring
    Protein content: 40%
    Fat content: 20%
    Calories: 463 kcal/cup

    Orijen Dry Cat and Kitten Food will satisfy your cat’s need for meat with strong nourishing proteins. The muscle and organ meats are excellent protein sources packed full of vitamins and minerals. Compared to muscle meat, organ meat also has higher levels of B vitamins.

    Fish is rich in omega fatty acids, which support your cat’s coat and skin health, and this diet also improves heart health thanks to the amino acid taurine, which is found in proteins. The pieces are small and perfect for tiny mouths. Pet parents have noted that the bags are not resealable, which is a problem, and you might need to find a way to reseal your bag or invest in a reusable bag to ensure it stays fresh.

    Pros
    • High-quality ingredients
    • Excellent protein sources
    • Packed with vitamins and minerals
    Cons
    • Bags aren’t resealable
    • Pricey

    7. Royal Canin Glycobalance Vet Diet Dry Cat Food

    Royal Canin Glycobalance Vet Diet Dry Cat Food

    Main ingredients: Chicken By-Product Meal, Barley, Wheat Gluten, Corn Gluten Meal
    Protein content: 44%
    Fat content: 10%
    Calories: 320 kcal/cup

    Vets and nutritionists came together to create Royal Canin Glycobalance Dry Cat Food to combat the spike in blood sugar levels your cat experiences when it eats. It contains a high protein level to maintain muscle mass, and this formula promotes a urinary environment unfavorable to calcium oxalate crystals and struvite.

    This food combines fibers and probiotics to manage fluctuations in glucose levels to support post-prandial glucose levels. Post-prandial blood sugar is simply the measurement of glucose concentration in the bloodstream after eating a meal. Every time your cat eats, there is a spike in its blood sugar levels.

    Pros
    • Supports urinary health
    • Manages glucose fluctuations
    • Formulated by vets and nutritionists
    • Rich in proteins and antioxidants
    Cons
    • Expensive

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    Buyer’s Guide: Choosing the Best Cat Food for Diabetes

    Diet is extremely important for pets with diabetes. Alongside insulin, your cat’s diet will keep its weight under control, which is crucial when managing diabetes. But what else do you need to know when considering a diet for your cat?

    Weight and Diabetes

    If your cat is overweight, it will need to lose the excess pounds, and in some cases, it can actually reduce the severity of diabetes. Your vet will advise you on which diet best suits your cat.

    You might decide to do some research on your own, and while these reviews are helpful, you might be wondering how to choose from so many options. It’s also important to note that before making changes to your cat’s diet, speak to your vet.

    Carbohydrate Content

    First and foremost, the food you choose should feature more proteins and fewer carbs. Ideally, you’re looking for a diet with 50% protein and 10% carbohydrates. When your cat consumes a diet with reduced levels of carbohydrates, its blood sugar will go down.

    This will require you to monitor your cat’s blood sugar levels because if they’re going down and you continue with the usual dose of insulin, the health effects could be catastrophic, such as permanent brain damage or even death.

    Calorie Intake

    Calorie intake is something you should be concerned with regardless of the health of your cat, but it is especially important when it concerns a cat with diabetes. Achieving the ideal body weight is best for your cat’s diabetes management.

    If your cat is overweight, you will need to monitor the calories in its diet to ensure it sheds weight gradually. Overweight cats can end up developing insulin resistance, which will eventually lead to higher doses being required.

    If your pet is underweight, it should avoid high-carbohydrate diets to manage its diabetes. Aim for a diet with a higher calorie count to put on weight. If you are worried about your cat’s weight, ask your veterinarian for advice.

    cat eating on porch
    Image Credit: Kudryashova Vera, Shutterstock

    Tips for a Healthy Diet

    Whichever brand you choose for your cat, follow these basic rules to ensure diabetes control:

    • Be consistent. Feed your cat the same amount of food each time of the day to avoid fluctuations in blood glucose. If your cat prefers grazing, discuss it with your vet.
    • Maintain a high-protein and low-carb diet. Choose foods with a high-quality protein source that is also easily digested, like meat or eggs, instead of corn gluten or soybeans.
    • Feed your cat before you give them an insulin shot. That way, you can modify the treatment’s dose if they eat less than usual.
    • Work closely with your vet to determine exactly how many calories your cat should be consuming each day to determine its optimal weight.

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    Final Thoughts

    Our pick for the best overall dog food is Farmina Natural, which is rich in animal-based proteins and low in carbs. Purina Pro Plan wet food is the best value for the money because it offers the perfect specialized diet without breaking the bank. Our premium choice is Lily’s Kitchen, which uses high-quality protein sources. Next, we have Ziwi Peak, which is best for kittens. Lastly, Purina Pro Plan dry food is formulated by vets, researchers, and nutritionists.

    We hope these reviews have helped you gain a better understanding of what to look for when it comes to finding the perfect diet for your diabetic cat. It can feel like there are countless choices, but hopefully, we’ve helped you narrow down your search.


    Featured Image Credit: Olena Yakobchuk, Shutterstock

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