Best Cat Food for Urinary Health Problems (TOP 5)

An estimated 3% of house cats below the age of 10 have some form of chronic kidney disease (CKD.) This number increases dramatically as a cat enters its senior years, with up to 30% of older cats ages 10 or over being reported to have some form of CKD. These numbers don’t take into account other issues like urinary tract infections and kidney damage, which are both predisposing factors for CKD.

House cats are particularly prone to kidney problems because of the big differences between their supposed wild diet and the diet they receive when they’re domesticated. It’s important to remember that the feline system has a particularly pronounced need for hydration, so any food that saps their bodies of necessary fluids can start a domino effect that leads all the way to chronic kidney disease.

Fortunately, we’re no longer strangers to the dangers of CKD in cats, which is why many cat food manufacturers have come up with specific formulations that take urinary health into account. Wondering which one is the best cat food for urinary health? Take cues from our definitive guide.

Quick Look: Top 5 Urinary Health Cat Foods​

Understanding Urinary Issues in Cats

homemade cat food for urinary care

Before you even go out in search of cat food that can help with your cat’s urinary issues, it’s important to know how kidney disease develops in felines. The main contributing factor is the fact that cats are often born with a predisposition to kidney problems. So if they’re fed the wrong food, it becomes easier for the cells in their kidneys to sustain damage.

Other factors that could contribute to the development of kidney disease include poisons, infection, and dehydration. Unfortunately, what many pet owners don’t know is that the wrong cat food can cause chronic dehydration, which usually goes unnoticed.

As a pet owner, it’s important to keep an eye out for the possible symptoms of kidney disease. In doing this, you can prevent any complications or even restore your cat back to optimal health to eliminate the chance of chronic kidney disease.

Frequent urination 

Cats should urinate around 4 times every day. But if you’re noticing that your cat is peeing more often, it might be a sign that his kidneys can no longer manage the fluid it holds. If your cat pees in areas around the house instead of his litter box, that might also be a sign of incontinence.

Increased thirst

As your cat loses hydration, he will try to replenish what’s been lost. So you will notice that he might drink more often.

Urinary tract infection

Kidneys that are no longer in optimal condition are much more prone to infections – the most common being urinary tract infections.

Weight loss and loss of appetite

You may notice that your cat has lost quite some weight, and will start to refuse eating food. This goes hand in hand with the general feeling of malaise which may make your cat feel weak and uninterested in most activities such as eating.

Bloody urine

This indicates that the kidney problem has reached a point where the tissues of the organ might be bruised or infected, causing blood to flow through the system and out along with the urine.

Poor Overall Appearance 

Hair loss, a dry coat, mouth ulcers, bad breath, and changes in fur and tongue color are all indicative of a kidney problem. Make sure to inspect your cat’s physical appearance frequently to identify these signs before they worsen.

How the Right Cat Food Can Help

urinary tract care cat foods

Keep in mind that much like our bodies, a cat’s system needs very precise nutritional requirements to guarantee optimal health. One main thing to consider is the fact that a cat’s body is mainly acidic, so you need to feed it food that helps maintain this pH balance.

The problem with most cat food choices is that they lack the ingredients that help achieve this balance. The ideal content would be fresh meat like chicken, fish, and beef. However, because many manufacturers seek to cut costs by using synthetic ingredients, most of their foods omit these natural food sources.

Another reason why some cat foods fail at meeting a cat’s specific dietary needs is because many use plant based ingredients. These sap the feline system of important moisture that helps maintain proper functioning. So when the urine becomes too concentrated, it causes the formation of crystals which can result to a blockage and kidney disease.

As a pet owner, you should make sure to take your time when choosing cat food for your pet. As a general rule, foods that are made mostly of organic meats are best. That’s why many choose to make their own homemade cat food from fresh meats. It’s also important to make sure the food you’ve chosen doesn’t contain too much plant-based ingredients that could cause dehydration in the long run.

You may also like to consider a high protein diet as this study has shown that this may assist cats with dissolving urinary crystals more efficiently and with more ease.​

Wet vs Dry Food for Urinary Problems in Cats

In general, experts recommend a diet of wet food for cats in order to resolve or prevent urinary problems. The reason for this is the fact that wet food goes through much less processing. So from the actual animal sources such as chicken or fish, wet food retains much more of the nutritional value of the original meat. This is unlike kibble which tends to go through quite a lot of processes in order to reduce the original ingredients to a dry, biscuit form.

What’s more, wet food doesn’t cause a cat to lose hydration once it’s ingested. This helps guarantee optimal levels of fluid that won’t cause urine to concentrate in the long run.

The Best Cat Food for Urinary Health Issues Reviewed:

1. Hill’s Science Diet Canned Hairball Control & Urinary Cat Food

non prescription cat food for urinary crystals

Of course, when it comes to urinary cat food, this is a hard formulation to beat. This specific brand specializes in providing cats with optimal nutrition to meet their specific dietary needs and to help prevent a host of different conditions and diseases.

What makes it such a great pick if you’re looking out for your cat’s urinary health is the fact that it contains a precise amount of micronutrients to help maintain proper renal function. This non prescription cat food for urinary crystals guarantees the proper pH balance and helps maintain hydration to prevent many of the common issues cats face with renal health.

Another reason why it works well for most cat owners is the fact that the food is specially designed to satisfy picky eaters. So despite being something of a prescription cat food, it doesn’t sacrifice taste or texture, so you can be sure your cat will finish a serving without too much of a fuss.

2. Purina Pro Plan "FOCUS" Urinary Tract Health Formula

urinary wet cat food

A close second to Hill’s Science Diet comes from Purina. Their Urinary Tract Health Formula is a competitive recipe that comes close to the top pick on our list, which makes it a solid choice if you’re looking out for your cat’s urinary health.

This specific formulation uses real chicken and salmon to give your pet as natural a food source as possible. Aside from that, it comes packed with substantial amounts of proteins and micronutrients to help ensure optimal health inside and out.

If that hasn’t convinced you yet, it’s also worth mentioning that the Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Urinary Tract Health Formula is significantly cheaper than the Hill’s Science Diet formulation. So if you want to save on cat food without sacrificing the nutrition and health of your pet, this makes a suitable choice.

3. Hill’s Science Diet Hairball Control & Urinary Dry Cat Food

best dry cat food for urinary health

If you’re one of the millions of cat owners who need to leave their cat at home while they go out to work or run errands, then you probably already know that leaving out a serving of wet cat food is like asking for disaster. Wet cat food can’t stay out for longer than 20 minutes, so it’s likely to turn bad just a few minutes after you rush out the door. For that reason, wet cat food might not be the best choice if you find that you need to leave your cat at home for more than a few hours.

Fortunately, there are some choices that help maximize urinary health despite being in dry kibble form. One of the best options in this category would have to be Hill’s Science Diet Urinary & Hairball Control Dry Cat Food.

Although dry kibble isn’t recommended for urinary health, this specific formulation features the same blend of ingredients found in the wet food variation. It’s also a lot cheaper than its wet formulation counterpart, which makes it a great investment for pet owners who want the benefits of Science Diet without putting too much of a dent on their wallet.

4. Royal Canin Feline Urinary SO 33 Dry Cat Food

royal canin urinary cat food

Royal Canin also competes in the urinary health market with their Urinary SO 33 Dry Cat Food. Specially developed for cats at risk of urinary disease, this specific cat food maintains optimal hydration levels and encourages healthy urination to release toxins in the system.

If there’s anything about the Royal Canin formulation, it’s that it works quickly. Many of those who purchased this specific cat food were able to determine positive changes in their cats just days after they changed its diet. So if you want a fast acting solution to prevent a potential urinary issue, then you may want to shell out for this kibble.

5. Purina Pro Plan "FOCUS" Urinary Tract Health Dry Cat Food

urinary tract health cat foods

The last pick on our list is the dry food version of the Purina Urinary Tract Health Cat Food. Much like the Hill’s Science Diet, this specific formulation is simply the dry form of the original wet food formulation, giving pet owners the option to leave food out without having to risk providing their cat a dry food choice that doesn’t take urinary health into consideration.

Price-wise, it seems this choice is the most economical. So if you want something that will put your cat’s urinary health front and center, but you don’t really have the luxury of an extravagant budget, this one takes the cake.

In Summary

Hands down, the Hill’s Science Diet Hairball Control & Urinary Cat Food is the best wet cat food for urinary health based on our research. But don’t just take our word for it. Check out each of our top picks for the best cat food for urinary health concerns and find the perfect match for your cat’s nutritional needs. Because at the end of the day, it’s your careful consideration that will help guarantee a long health future for your feline friend.

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