We feed our cats a raw diet, which we make ourselves. We buy chicken, as well as chicken hearts and livers from the Amish, and make our own cat food with that (bones and skin included) and supplements we purchase at the store. It’s a gross project, but it’s worth doing to us.
It’s true that a lot (read: basically all) of cat food brands in supermarkets are bad, which is because of what is in them. Cats are obligate carnivores, meaning their bodies are not designed to digest plant matter. If you read the ingredients list of most cat foods you will find:
Whole Grain Wheat (Plant), Corn Gluten Meal (Plant product), Pork Fat, Powdered Cellulose (Plant), Pea Bran Meal (Plant product), Dried Egg Product, Wheat Gluten (Plant product), Dried Beet Pulp (Plant product), Chicken Liver Flavor, Lactic Acid, Soybean Oil (Plant product), Calcium Sulfate, Potassium Chloride, Fish Oil, Choline Chloride, Iodized Salt, Taurine, vitamins (Vitamin E Supplement,L-Ascorbyl-2-Polyphosphate (source of vitamin C), Niacin Supplement, Thiamine Mononitrate, Vitamin A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin Supplement, Biotin, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Vitamin D3 Supplement), L-Carnitine, minerals (Ferrous Sulfate, Zinc Oxide, Copper Sulfate, Manganous Oxide, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), Oat Fiber (Plant product), Mixed Tocopherols for freshness, Phosphoric Acid, Beta-Carotene (Derived from, you guessed it, cool stuff like carrots and potatoes), Natural Flavors, Dried Apples (Plant), Dried Broccoli (Plant), Dried Carrots (Plant), Dried Cranberries (Plant), Dried Peas (Plant).
(That is the ingredient list from Science Diet Dry Food)
Even grain free food still has plant products in them (Science Diet Grain Free contains potatoes, pea protein, potato starch, beet pulp, apples, cranberries, carrots, broccoli, flaxseed, etc.)
I will say, I am not a vet. But based on my research, it stands to reason that cats suffer (whether it be from obesity or whathaveyou) while on dry food because of all the plant products in them. They are just not designed naturally to eat that stuff. I mean..we all know that if they eat grass they puke, lol.
My little cat, before we switched them, would eat, bloat, and go lay miserably under the bed to digest his food. He had a terrible time and suffered from severe diarrhea (like..leaked it all over the place, it was awfullllll). My other cat was very fat and would literally sit and eat all day if he could. Since we have switched them, they are more playful, alert, the vets are totally impressed, they are the weights they should be, their coats are better, and just overall their health is much better than it was when we fed them dry food. 🙂