Is there a type of cat food that's like the consistency of baby food?
August 2, 2016 7:53 AM   Subscribe

I took a look on Amazon but didn't exactly find what I'm looking for. Is there a prepared cat food that's like the consistency of a thin milk shake or baby food? Not the packets of broth or the kind with lots of gravy - just one consistency throughout.

We have found a few different brands of wet food at the pet store that feature lots of gravy but sometimes she doesn't want that either and I'm not sure what kind of nutrition is just in the gravy part; she doesn't eat any of the solid parts. I have been sometimes blending up food to get her to eat but this is time-consuming and disgusting for me.
posted by bleep to Pets & Animals (18 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I searched "liquid cat food" and found a few different things--I have no personal recommendations but they are out there. You may want to talk to a vet as they are likely to have some pre-made options for ill or convalescing animals.
posted by tchemgrrl at 8:06 AM on August 2, 2016

Our sickly and picky elderly cats enjoyed Natural Balance canned cat food, with the pink label. It's not thin, per se, but the consistency is a uniform paste and we would regularly thin it by stirring in a spoonful or two of warm water. It doesn't have chunks of veggies in it like other brands that would make our cats ill. Edit to add that our vet recommended thinning canned food with water like this when our cats went through some tummy problems and it worked quite well, plus it was good for them to have the extra hydration. If you don't want to use water, using "tuna juice" (the water strained from a can of tuna) would be a lovely treat to thin the food.
posted by cuddles.mcsnuggy at 8:07 AM on August 2, 2016

When I had a sick elderly cat I stuck to the pate kind and just mixed it with a little water. Sometimes warming it up a smidge makes it more palatable too.
posted by clone boulevard at 8:09 AM on August 2, 2016

Response by poster: Ya nothing that I have to prepare please. I just spent the morning dry heaving and don't want to do that again. She's under the care of a vet but the vet didn't have any suggestions. I just spent $100 on various brands of cat food trying to find what she'll eat, I was just hoping maybe someone already knew about what I was looking for.
posted by bleep at 8:11 AM on August 2, 2016

Sorry to say, a tablespoon of warm water is basically what is required. I had to do this for my cat when he was recovering from surgery. Sorry it's gross but unfortunately it is what it is. Edited to add: I mashed it up with a fork in a small bowl. If the cat will eat chicken and turkey as opposed to fish, the not-fish stuff doesn't smell quite so bad.
posted by Medieval Maven at 8:21 AM on August 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

To my knowledge (after many years of searching for canned foods that wouldn't upset a sickly feline and trying dozens of brands), there are no pre-prepared, nutritionally complete, cat foods that come packaged already thin like gravy. The Natural Balance brand worked out the best for our cats, but ymmv. If you haven't tried that brand you could always give it a shot and see if your cat will eat it the way it comes from the can. There are "sauce" additives you can buy to put *on* real cat food but those are not nutritionally complete and not meant to use as a cat's main diet (doing so would make them ill). There really is no "work" needed to thin out a canned food though; literally just a spritz of water from the kitchen faucet & stir it with a spoon - hardly more effort than spooning it out of the can into the cat dish which you'd be doing anyway (right?). Hold your breath if it smells icky.
posted by cuddles.mcsnuggy at 8:21 AM on August 2, 2016

I haven't personally used this, but I found a recommendation for Catsure in a cat owner's forum. It's a liquid nutritional supplement (and is not intended to be the sole source of nutrition), but it could be helpful in terms of increasing the "calories in to your cat" factor while minimizing the "breakfast out of your stomach" factor.
posted by slmorri at 8:24 AM on August 2, 2016

I went through an exhaustive search to find grain-free food that my cat will eat, and in doing so found she has a preference for licking off all the gravy and leaving the morsels for pretty much any food where that is an option. What I ended up finding is the Merrick Purrfecy bistro stuff has a salmon pate that fits the bill. She is ok with the consistency and will eat it. She still licks off the bit of gravy first, but will still finish her meals most of the time.
posted by DoubleLune at 8:35 AM on August 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

Was chicken baby food one of the cat food you just tried out with her? Vets don't recommend that as a long-term solution because it doesn't include other nutrients, but it might be a useful data point as to textures she does/doesn't accept.
posted by aimedwander at 8:45 AM on August 2, 2016

Response by poster: Not to thread-sit but so I don't look like a lazy/negligent cat mom, stirred up with a spoon is still too chunky, it has to be fresh blended, no leftovers. While I am willing to spend literally all my free time feeding my cat, dry heaves or not, if I can't go to work I can't afford cat food either.
posted by bleep at 8:51 AM on August 2, 2016

I was feeding my cats Royal Canin Veterinary PV (which is venison) for a while. It was vet prescribed for food sensitivity. At any rate - the consistency to me seemed like what you are asking for. All one consistency as if puréed. It was very lightweight and/or spongy for lack of better descriptors. Really easy to get a fork through it to mash it up. I used it after my cat had dental surgery as it was easy for her to lick it. It reminded me of baby food. And the cats loved it. Truly - loved it. It's a pain that it requires a prescription - but was pretty easy to get at PetSmart and/or delivered from someplace like Chewy.
posted by rdnnyc at 9:02 AM on August 2, 2016

Do you have access to Purina/Friskies Classic Pate cans? It's not quite milkshake thin, but it is one consistency, and thinning it a little hopefully won't be too gag-inducing, basically just adding a little water and shaking the cat bowl. Our similarly finicky (recovering from dental surgery) cat happily eats this, and turns up his nose at everything else.
posted by and her eyes were wild. at 9:04 AM on August 2, 2016

Are you willing to go to actual baby food? When I had a cat who basically couldn't eat solid food for a year or so, baby food turned out to be the best easy-for-me, mostly-not-disgusting option. It needs to be a flavor without onion or garlic powder, and at least in my cat's case, had to be a meat-only flavor, none of this meat-and-rice or meat-and-vegetables nonsense.

I don't know if it would be nutritionally complete enough for years, but it was certainly fine for months, and the only way she gained any weight at all. If you're looking at this as a long-term diet you could maybe talk to your vet about the nutritional question, or maybe you could add a nutritional supplement powder to it, or maybe this could be what she eats most meals but a couple of times a week you deal with the blending-actual-cat-food grossness.
posted by Stacey at 9:20 AM on August 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

Seconding Stacey. I give my elderly cat baby food when he really doesn't want to eat anything, and believe me, we've tried every brand in the pet store too.

The other thing I feed him is Fancy Feast pate varieties -- yes, it's evil, but the vet said that if that's what will get my cat to eat, then I should keep going. He will lick out the gravy on the Marinated Morsels kind, but he will eat all the gooey pate kind, especially if I put a teeny bit of warm water in to make it more soupy.
posted by vickyverky at 10:08 AM on August 2, 2016

Best answer: My cats really like Halo wet food, specifically the Chicken and Salmon flavors. Halo is a very very wet pate, pretty close to the consistency of baby food if I remember baby food correctly. There are peas and carrots interspersed but my cats eat around them. The consistency is such that it will drip off the spoon as I'm dividing among the three plates. The Beef/Chicken flavor is drier. I haven't had the opportunity to try any of the others.
posted by janey47 at 10:27 AM on August 2, 2016 [1 favorite]

We use Wellness 5oz cans of turkey pate. It's a pate with a hefty proportion of gravy, and mixing it thoroughly in the can with a fork yields a very baby-food-like consistency. (Not quite liquid, but spoon-drippy for sure) But the stirring is required, without that it's just like normal pate.
posted by LobsterMitten at 10:35 AM on August 2, 2016

Kitten food is often a much smoother consistency, and when mixed with water as described above is used as a transitional food for little guys just starting to eat solids. It might be a bit rich for an adult cat stomach, but if you're just worried about her eating period, this is the route I'd take. The brand I use with my fosters is Hills Science Diet.
posted by theweasel at 11:18 AM on August 2, 2016

Response by poster: Tried the Halo stuff and it was still a paté and even mashed up with water it was not appreciated by her ladyship. If anybody reading this is looking for a new business, there is apparently huge demand for this as per the comments I've read - tasty liquidy cat food that's nutritionally complete.
posted by bleep at 11:20 PM on August 6, 2016

« Older Prague - A birthday treat on a tight budget   |   Best no-scratch solution for wood floors? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.