Petkeen is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commision. Learn More

5 Best Cat Foods For Older Cats With Bad Teeth in 2021 – Reviews & Top Picks

Nicole Cosgrove

Maine Coon cat eating food

You may not often think about your cat’s teeth, but your pet can develop oral disease just like you can. In fact, diseases such as gingivitis can often begin when your cat is still a young adult. In addition to caring for your cat’s teeth, you can help mitigate dental problems by giving your cat food formulated to remove plaque and improve dental health. As your cat ages, it’s even more important to care for its dental health. Older cats with chronic dental problems may have bad or even missing teeth, which can make eating difficult.

In this article, we have compiled some of the very best cat foods for older cats that have dental problems. We hope that our reviews will help you learn about the options available and ultimately choose the cat food that works best for you and your senior cat.

divider-cat

A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Hill’s Science Diet Adult Oral Care Hill’s Science Diet Adult Oral Care
  • First ingredient is real chicken
  • Works for adult cats of all ages
  • Reduces plaque and clean your cat’s teeth
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Blue Buffalo Healthy Aging Cat Food Blue Buffalo Healthy Aging Cat Food
  • Formulated for senior cats
  • Small, easy to chew kibble pieces
  • Comes in two flavors and two sizes
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    Now Fresh Grain-Free Now Fresh Grain-Free
  • Helps manage your cat’s weight
  • Real turkey is the first ingredient
  • Contains added vitamins and minerals
  • Purina Pro Plan Senior Wet Cat Food, Chicken & Beef Purina Pro Plan Senior Wet Cat Food, Chicken & Beef
  • Cats love the taste
  • Comes in five different flavors
  • Smaller sized cans good portion sizes
  • Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental
  • Reduces plaque buildup
  • Works for adult cats of all ages
  • Helps control hairball formation
  • 5 Best Cat Foods For Older Cats With Bad Teeth

    1. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Oral Care – Best Overall

    Hill’s Science Diet Adult Oral Care

    Food Form: Dry food
    Life Stage: Adult
    Primary Ingredients: Chicken, brown rice, corn gluten meal, chicken fat, powdered cellulose

    We think the Hill’s Science Diet Adult Oral Care dry food is the best overall cat food for older cats with bad teeth. For one thing, this food is formulated specifically to help reduce plaque in your cat’s mouth and keep its teeth clean. Another positive aspect of this cat food is that it is made with real ingredients, including real chicken.

    The one thing about this particular cat food is that it is not actually formulated for senior cats, but for adult cats of all ages. If you have multiple cats of different ages, that could actually be a positive for you; after all, it is sometimes difficult to keep pets from eating one another’s food. This cat food can not only help cats that have poor oral hygiene, but it can actually help prevent your younger pets from developing oral health issues down the road.

    Pros
    • First ingredient is real chicken
    • Works for adult cats of all ages
    • Formula specifically to reduce plaque and clean your cat’s teeth
    • Can be used for cats of all adult and senior cats
    Cons
    • Large kibble

    2. Blue Buffalo Healthy Aging Cat Food – Best Value

    Blue Buffalo Healthy Aging Cat Food

    Food Form: Dry food
    Life Stage: Mature cats
    Primary Ingredients: Deboned chicken, chicken meal, brown rice, barley, oatmeal

    While our number one choice is the best all-around cat food for adult and senior cats, we think the Blue Buffalo Healthy Aging Cat Food is the best senior cat food for the money. Unlike the Science Diet formula, this cat food was made specifically with senior cats in mind. This food also provides high-quality ingredients such as real deboned chicken for an affordable price. Cats that have trouble chewing due to dental issues should have no problems chewing this food; the kibble comes in small pieces. Something to keep in mind is that some cat owners say the formula and quality of this cat food changed after Blue Buffalo was purchased by General Mills.

    Pros
    • Formulated for senior cats
    • Real chicken is the first ingredient
    • Comes in two flavors and two sizes
    • Small, easy to chew kibble pieces
    Cons
    • Formula may have changed since Blue Buffalo was purchased by General Mills

    3. Now Fresh Grain-Free – Premium Choice

    Now Fresh Grain-Free

    Food Form: Dry food
    Life Stage: Mature adults
    Primary Ingredients: Deboned turkey, potatoes, peas, pea fiber, potato flour

    If money were no object, you would buy your cat the highest-quality cat food available, right? Now Fresh Grain-Free cat food for mature cats is a grain-free recipe that packs fresh ingredients like real deboned turkey into one food your cat is sure to enjoy.

    This cat food is specifically formulated for senior cats with a focus on weight management, but it still contains a high percentage of protein and a moderate amount of fat, which your senior kitty needs to maintain muscle mass. While this cat food is not specifically formulated for cats with oral health problems, the dry kibble will help keep your cat’s teeth clean.

    Pros
    • Real turkey is the first ingredient
    • Formulated for senior cats
    • Helps manage your cat’s weight
    • Contains added vitamins and minerals
    Cons
    • More expensive than other options
    • Some cats don’t like the taste

    4. Purina Pro Plan Senior Wet Cat Food, Chicken & Beef

    Purina Pro Plan Senior Wet Cat Food, Chicken & Beef

    Food Form: Wet food
    Life Stage: Mature cats (7+)
    Primary Ingredients: Chicken, water, liver, meat by-products, beef

    Purina’s Pro Plan Senior wet food is specifically made for senior cats. This brand offers many different options to suit your kitty’s needs; not only does it come in several different flavors, but the Pro Plan series actually includes two different formulas for cats seven years and older and 11 years and older, respectively.

    Keep in mind that this is wet food and not kibble. Despite what you may think, senior cats with very poor dental hygiene probably should not eat wet food; it can be difficult for your cat to eat and could even get stuck in its gums.

    Pros
    • Smaller sized cans good portion sizes
    • Comes in five different flavors and two formulas for cats 7+ and cats 11+
    • Cats love the taste
    • Formulated for senior cats
    Cons
    • Strong odor

    5. Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental

    Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental

    Food Form: Dry food
    Life Stage: Adult
    Primary Ingredients: Chicken by-product meal, brewers rice, corn, brown rice, corn gluten meal

    If you are looking for a cat food specifically recommended by veterinarians to help keep your cat’s teeth clean, you should consider asking your vet about Royal Canin Veterinary Diet Dental. This cat food is not just for seniors but can be given to cats of all ages. That’s a plus; it’s never too early to start paying attention to your cat’s oral health.

    However, the drawback to this food is that it does require a prescription from your vet. Something else to consider is that the kibble is too large for some cats to eat. Seniors in particular may have a difficult time eating large pieces of kibble.

    Pros
    • Works for adult cats of all ages
    Cons
    • Requires a prescription from your veterinarian
    • Kibble is too big for some cats
    • First ingredient is chicken by-product meal, not whole chicken

    divider-cat

    Buyer’s Guide: How To Select Cat Food For Older Cats With Bad Teeth

    Are you wondering how to select cat food for older cats with bad teeth? In this buyer’s guide, we will discuss some things you should look out for when comparing cat foods.

    Protein

    All cats need to eat a well-balanced, high-quality diet that includes protein, fat, and nutrients in order to stay healthy. In fact, senior cats actually need a higher percentage of protein than other adult cats to help them maintain muscle mass. Aim for 26% protein in your senior cat’s diet.

    Digestibility

    Older cats can’t always handle additives such as artificial colors and flavors. Stick to all-natural ingredients that are easier for your kitty’s stomach to handle. Also, consider chewability when selecting a type of cat food. Smaller pieces of kibble are more likely to be easily chewed, swallowed, and digested than larger pieces, especially for cats with dental problems.

    Nutrients

    Finally, make sure to choose foods with added nutrients to support your senior cat’s overall wellbeing.

    divider-cat

    Conclusion

    We know how important it is to find a type of cat food that is suitable for your senior cat, especially if your cat also has bad teeth. We hope that our reviews have helped you familiarize yourself with the options so that you can choose the best food for your kitty.


    Featured Image Credit: Sergey Fatin, Shutterstock

    Nicole Cosgrove

    Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.