It can be difficult to find the right type of cat food that does not flare your cat’s irritable bowel syndrome symptoms. Allergies are a major factor that can trigger IBS in cats. Therefore, it is recommended to choose hypoallergenic foods as a solution for your cat. Many vets will prescribe a protein-based food for cats who are suffering from IBS to ease some of the uncomfortable symptoms your cat will experience.
If your cat is vomiting, suffers from diarrhea, constipation, bloating, and chronic inflammation, then they may have a case of IBS. In this case, wet cat foods with minimal carbohydrates are a good choice. The food should exclude allergens, and since cats are carnivores, the food should contain wholesome protein such as duck or venison. Always consult a veterinarian if your cat may be showing signs of IBS.
We have chosen some high-quality cat foods and picked the top products that vets recommend for this condition.
A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites (2023)
|Best Overall||Smalls Human-Grade Fresh Cat Food Subscription||
||Click to Save 40%|
|Best Value||Reveal Grain-Free Wet Cat Food||
|Hill’s Prescription Digestive Cat Food||
|Purina Pro Plan Cat Food||
|Hill’s Science Diet Dry Kitten Food||
The 9 Best Cat Foods for Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS)
1. Smalls Human-Grade Fresh Cat Food Subscription – Best Overall
Smalls produces several premium recipes for cats, but the Fresh Other Bird was our 1st best overall food for cats with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS). Cats suffering from IBS benefit from low-fat meals enriched with minerals and vitamins. This recipe also has a higher moisture level, ensuring your cat stays hydrated. Fresh Other Bird contains less crude fat (6.6%) than any Smalls’ recipes. Its primary protein sources are turkey (skin on) and chicken livers which contain essential vitamins and minerals. Smalls brand does not add artificial colors, fillers, or preservatives. This is what makes it the overall best cat food for irritable bowel syndrome.
2. Reveal Grain-Free Wet Cat Food (Pack of 24) – Best Value
The Reveal grain-free wet cat food has the best value for money. It features limited ingredients and comes in the form of a 24-pack of canned, wet cat food. It contains natural ingredients with no artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives. Furthermore, this food has quality ingredients, and each recipe contains a single high-quality protein source that is completely grain-free. It helps to promote a natural and balanced diet without flaring chronic IBS symptoms in cats. It has a delightful tuna flavor that many cats will love, which helps encourage a healthy appetite.
3. Hill’s Prescription Digestive Care Veterinary Diet Cat Food
The best overall product is Hill’s digestive care cat food. It has been formulated for chronic irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and other issues that cause the lining of your cat’s stomach to become inflamed. It has been specifically formulated by Hill’s nutrients and veterinarians to support your cat’s digestion and help to improve it. It also helps to improve your cat’s stool quality, whether it’s constipation or diarrhea. It features highly digestible ingredients with an optimal balance of fiber to help support regularity.
The addition of prebiotic fiber helps promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in your cat’s gut which is important for such an uncomfortable condition. The clinically proven antioxidants also help to support your cat’s immune system. A vet’s approval is required before you purchase this food, and you need to provide your pet and vet’s information at checkout.
4. Purina Pro Plan LiveClear Allergen Reducing Cat Food
Our premium choice is the Purina Pro Plan cat food as it reduces allergens and aids in supporting cats with chronic stomach inflammation. It is the first cat food that can reduce allergens simply and safely by neutralizing Fel D1 which is a common allergen in cat saliva by using key proteins from eggs. Salmon is the main ingredient in this food which helps to support your cat’s skin and coat health. It significantly reduces a major allergen in cat hair and dander after the first few weeks of feeding. It is a safe and nutritious cat food that is fortified with live probiotics for digestive and immune health.
5. Hill’s Science Diet Dry Kitten Food
This kitten food excludes many allergens such as corn, wheat, and soy which is gentler on your kitten’s stomach. It is a dry food with DHA from fish oil to support healthy brain and eye development in a growing kitten. It contains a source of high-quality protein to help kittens build and maintain lean muscle. This kitten food also features balanced minerals to keep your kittens’ bones and teeth healthy. It is made with natural ingredients with the exclusions of allergen-causing grains to help support kittens suffering from IBS.
6. Purina ONE Sensitive Systems Dry Adult Cat Food
This food has been formulated for adult cats that have sensitive stomachs and skin. Turkey is the first ingredient in this food, so a large percentage of the food is based on the health benefits of real, high-quality turkey. It features an easily digestible formula for cats with sensitive stomachs. This food also contains omega-6 fatty acids for skin and coat health which can also benefit cats who have sensitive skin. Purina sensitive systems is veterinarian recommended, which increases the quality and trust of this food.
7. Royal Canin Digestive Sensitive Loaf in Sauce Wet Cat Food
This is an adult wet cat food loaf that is soaked in a tasty sauce. It has been formulated for cats over 1 year of age with sensitive stomachs. This food contains highly digestible proteins that help cats absorb nutrients better while reducing stool odor. It helps maintain an ideal weight in cats using specially formulated nutrition. The precise blend of vitamins and minerals in this cat food also helps keep your cat in optimal health. Overall, it a good for mature and adult cats who suffer from IBS and other digestive issues.
8. Blue Buffalo True Solutions Digestive Care Wet Cat Food
This cat food is made of highly digestible ingredients with the addition of a prebiotic fiber that has been clinically proven to support a cat’s digestive health. The main ingredient in this cat food is chicken with the inclusion of other wholesome ingredients such as fruits and vegetables. Fiber sources have also been included to be gentle on your cat’s digestive system. It is made without wheat and has no corn, soy, artificial flavors, and preservatives. No chicken by-products have been added to the formula, to make the food gentle on your cat’s stomach. The downside is that this food contains a high amount of fat.
9. Purina Cat Chow Gentle Sensitive Stomach Adult Cat Food
This food is made from real turkey and a blend of natural fiber to support your cat’s digestive health. It also provides your cat with 25 essential vitamins and minerals to support its well-being. This food is 100% balanced nutrition-wise and is suitable as a long-term diet for a cat with mild IBS symptoms. This food does not contain any added flavors or preservatives, which makes a decent percentage of the food natural. It does contain a large portion of grains if that’s an ingredient you want to avoid feeding to a sensitive cat. It seems to have a high number of filler and by-products added into the recipe.
Buyer’s Guide: Picking the Best Cat Foods for Irritable Bowel Syndrome
When you are searching for a food that is suitable to feed a cat suffering from IBS, the ingredients list is the first most important place to start. You want to ensure that the food contains little to no allergens, such as corn, wheat, and soy. You also want to check that the food contains no artificial flavors and preservatives which could further upset your cat’s stomach.
Food high in protein is ideal for cats suffering from IBS. Cats are carnivores and a large portion of their diet is based on protein-rich foods such as chicken, turkey, or fish. Cat food with a single protein source as the first ingredient will most likely be high in healthy proteins. Avoid foods high in fillers and allergens, as these ingredients can be harsh on your cat’s stomach. Look for labels on the products that specify if the food is digestive friendly or hypoallergenic, as these foods are better for cats with IBS.
What Types of IBS Friendly Cat Foods Are There?
There are primarily two types of foods for cats suffering from IBS, namely:
Dry Cat Foods
This is a standard diet for cats and typically contains all the nutrients your cat needs. A downside is that dry food is high in carbohydrates and calories. Some cats will struggle to digest dry cat foods as they are more likely to contain allergens like wheat and gluten. The label should specify if the food in question has been formulated for cats with sensitive stomachs.
Wet/Canned Cat Foods
These types of cat foods will generally contain fewer ingredients in comparison to dry cat foods. Allergens are rarely found in wet cat foods, which makes them better for cats with IBS.
This type of food has been specifically formulated for kittens who have trouble digesting other types of cat foods. It can be either dry or wet. Most kitten foods are high in protein to aid in their growth, which is beneficial as cats with IBS benefit from a protein-rich diet.
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Our top pick in this category is Smalls Fresh Bird since it is human grade and comprised of limited ingredients. Reveal Grain-Free Wet Cat Food is our value choice which also has a great selection of natural, healthy ingredients.