Updated: September 10, 2023 by CanCat Eat
Your cat is losing weight in an unhealthy way, or not getting enough nutrition from the cat food. We have found a few healthy, high-quality cat food that will help your cat to weight gain.
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It is a painful situation to see your cat losing weight unhealthy way. Trust me, you are not the only one, we have also faced this situation before. It is very stressful to see our feline friend not eating properly and getting skinny.
Underweight cats face many issues and health problems. They face a low quality of life than a cat with a normal healthy weight. There are maybe tons of reasons behind an underweight cat. One of the top reasons could be your cat is not getting enough nutrition from food.
Through researching and understanding our cat, we have found out our cat was not getting enough nutrition from her food. So, in this kind of situation, we have tried many cat food to put some weight on our cat. But, nothing worked well. Then, after reading many reviews and doing through research, we have found our Iams ProActive Health Kitten is the best cat food for weight gain.
- Instinct by Nature’s Variety Ultimate Protein
- Adult Cat
- Iams ProActive Health Kitten Dry Cat Food
- Crave High Protein Grain Free Adult Dry Food
- Adult Cat
This food helped our cat put a healthy weight, and we are happy with the result. This guide is going to help you if your cat is in the same situation as mine.
You can add one of the best weight gain cat food to your cat’s existing diet.
IAms Proactive is good for the underweight cat. We are going to look at it in detail below. High-protein food is the key to gaining weight. Sometimes changing food habits also does wonders.
If your cat not eating much food in one sit and is underweight. Then, you can leave a bowl of food 24/7 is not a bad idea. It will give her more options to peek at the food.
We are going to look at recommended high-quality foods for helping your cats put on weight. Immediately below you can find our cat food recommendations, we have supportive content further down the page. You can jump to the section most interesting to you.
Best Cat Food for Weight Gain
If you want your cat to gain weight at a healthy rate and maintain that weight. Then, you should purchase cat food that contains a good balance of protein and fat. High-quality cat food can help your cat to gain weight at a healthy rate.
There are many cat food out there that include carbohydrates to boost the calorie content in food. Carbohydrates are not naturally part of cats’ diet. You should avoid excessive amounts of carbohydrates at all costs.
Transitioning to a food that is healthy and nutritious is going to help your cat to gain weight. You can maintain your weight by intake.
Healthy suitable foods are the key to gaining weight. Everyone wants to give their cat healthy cat food. It provides good value and a healthy lifestyle for your cat. And, this kind of food does not cost as much as you think. We have put a list of food that balanced cost with quality to bring various sets of options for you.
Below, we have listed the high-calorie cat food for weight gain. You will find the recommended portion size and calorie content.
Iams ProActive Health Kitten Dry Cat Food
This cat food is branded as the kitten food. But, don’t get confused about the branding of this food. This cat food is perfectly suitable for adult cats.
Kittens require a higher level of protein and fat for healthy growth and develop fully. Therefore, it is the best suitable weight gain food for cats in spite of their age.
Kitten food is generally good for a sensitive stomach and sensitivity. So, you can be completely doubt free while giving this food to your cat. Same time this food is high in calories.
This food contains 33% of protein and 21% fat. The fat content in this food might look pretty high. Normally peoples believe fat is bad, we should avoid it. But, they are an important part of our diet as well as for our cats. In wild, cats hunt for live prey as they survive on a diet of protein and fat. Their prey generally contains both protein and fat.
If your cat is underweight and needs to put on some weight. Then, high protein and fat is an acceptable solution for it.
In wild, cat survives on a diet of protein and fat from their prey. Cats require high-calorie food that contains balanced protein and fat to gain and maintain weight.
Iams ProActive calorie content is 416kcal/cup. They are all important nutrients added that a cat needs to gain and maintain weight. Look at the chart below for important nutrients. This food has 3990 kcal/kg, making it an effective high calories food for weight gain.
Overall, it is a good cat food to help cats gain weight. This is also a high-calorie kitten food from a well know brand. So, you can be sure that there is fillers or additive in it.
You will get a more clear idea by reading the success stories and review from others, follow the link above or read the full review from here.
Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient
Natural Balance is a well-known brand, and it is been loved cat food for many cats and cat owners. This company gained the trust and a lot of reputation throughout the year. Their brand name is synonymous with Natural healthy cat food.
This is a completely grain-free diet for cats with the salmon mix, making it a high protein and high calorie dry cat food. We have searched on the internet, and found out this food has 410kal/cup and 3217kcal/kg. Their lean formula promotes a healthy weight. Natural Balance cat food is also made with prebiotic fiber to support healthy digestion.
This cat food has no artificial colors or flavors. So, you are sure that this is perfect for cats with sensitive digestive systems. If your cat has a sensitive stomach avoid food with artificial colors or flavors.
Many cat owners have confirmed their cats loved and enjoy this. They have noticed an improvement in softer, shiner skin and coat after a few weeks of transition to this food.
This is a good cat food to make your cat put some healthy weight. It is best to follow the recommended amount mentioned on the label. If your cat is eating well, then you can increase the amount gradually. This limited-ingredient cat food also helps your cat if she has any sensitivity problem.
Below, Natural Balance feeding portion size ( by 8 oz measure cup)
|3 – 7 LBS||1/4-1/2 Cup|
|7 – 19 LBS||1/2 – 3/4 Cup|
|19 – 30 LBS||3/4 – 1 Cup|
Purina ONE Tender Selects Blend
Now, we have Purina One Tender. This cat food brand does not need an introduction also about its quality.
Purina One made this food with real chicken. It is containing no filler, and each ingredient is there (that has a purpose to it) to benefit your cat. The chicken comes in the first ingredient for lean protein to improve healthy muscle and energy.
This is a vet-recommended formula made with essential vitamins, minerals, and taurine for overall well-being. If your cat is underweight, then, this food is going to help her to get the best result in weight gain.
We have noticed many cat owners are happy with the result. This is an inexpensive cat food that promises to benefit your cat’s health. This food does work very well.
Purina recommends a smooth transaction from 7 to 10 to ease the transition from your cat’s existing food. This cat food is going to give you the best result as its promises.
We recommend this food for underweight cats for healthy weight gain. This has a crunchy texture that makes every bite appalling to the cat.
|5 – 9 LBS||1/3 – 2/3 Cup|
|10 – 14 LBS||2/3 – 1 Cup|
Blue Buffalo Weight Control Chicken Recipe
Next, we have healthy cat food from Blue Buffalo. This is another high protein (34%) cat food that contains a good amount of fat (18%). It has a good amount of nutrient balance that we need in cat food for weight gain.
This cat food has a very positive review and is loved by cat owners. Blue buffalo offers a range of formulas for different health benefits. It is good to look at the option which is the best suited for your cat.
We can tell you love this cat food. There are no blue products that did not impress us. Each of them is made with high-quality meat and important nutrition for different health benefits.
This is made with real chicken and turkey as the first ingredient for healthy weight. Also, have balanced calories from protein and fat which will help to maintain an ideal weight.
|5 – 9 LBS||1/4 – 1/2 Cup|
|10 – 14 LBS||1/2 – 1 Cup|
Iams ProActive Health High Protein Dry Cat Food
This is a high protein and high calories cat food we found. It is one of the favorite weight gain cat food among cat owners.
We have chosen this cat food because of the calorie count. It is containing 371kcal/cup. This is great for cats who need to put some weight on.
Iams High protein cat food made with real chicken and salmon. It is formulated with lean protein to grain healthy weight. This food has a proper blend of probiotics to maximize your cat’s nutrient absorption.
This food is packed with vitamins and minerals. It also contains antioxidants in the form of dried blueberries. It has overall all the important ingredients your cat need.
Most cat owners confirmed that their cats love and enjoy the food. It most positive rating on the internet. They have recommended a portion size guide for a healthy weight. You can check the chart below.
Here is, IAMS ProAtive High Protein recommended feeding guide:
|4 LBS||1/3 – 1/2 Cup|
|8 LBS||1/2 – 2/3 Cup|
|12 LBS||2/3 – 3/4 Cup|
|16 LBS||3/4 – 1 Cup|
|22 LBS||1 – 1 1/4 Cup|
Blue Buffalo Wilderness Chicken Recipe Grain Free
Blue Buffalo is a well know cat food that needs no introduction. They earn a good brand name throughout the year.
This blue buffalo high-protein food is made with real chicken as the first ingredient. This food has high protein content (40%) and a balance fat content (18%), exactly what we are looking for.
It is also loaded with antioxidants, omegas, vitamins, and minerals to support healthy immunity and overall health.
And, this food contains no grains, by-products, corn, wheat, or grains, which is good for cats with sensitive digestive problems. You will likely face less amount of issues while transitioning to this food.
Blue Buffalo recommends feeding guide best weight. You could add slightly more to help her gain weight faster.
|5 – 9 LBS||1/4 – 1/2 Cup|
|10 – 14 LBS||1/2 – 3/4 Cup|
Solid Gold Indigo Moon with Chicken & Eggs Grain Free
Next, we have solid gold indigo. This food made with chicken and egg, contains no grain, soy, or wheat.
Their formula is a high protein, nutrient-dense, and made with healthy fat. These make it good cat food for weight gain.
This cat food is packed with flavor that your cat love. It is made with 20 nutrient-rich superfoods like carrots, pumpkins, cranberries, blueberries, etc.
Solid gold contains 40% protein and 20% fat which is good for gaining weight. It has a high-calorie content of 455 kcal/cup.
This cat food got a 95% positive rating and cats love the taste of this. Because of its calorie content and high protein, this food got a spot on our list.
Here, the recommended feeding instructions are listed below:
|4 – 6 LBS||1/4 – 1/2 Cup|
|7 – 9 LBS||1/2 Cup|
|10 – 12 LBS||1/2 – 3/4 Cup|
|13 – 15 LBS||3/4 Cup|
|16 – 20 LBS||3/4 – 1 Cup|
Instinct by Nature’s Variety Ultimate Protein
This is the best food to make cats gain weight on our list but a little expensive one. Nature Variety made this food with grain free cage free chicken. They tried to mirror the benefit of a raw diet with this formula.
Their formula is made with a high amount of protein (47%) and a proper balance amount of fat (17%). It is having a balanced amount of nutrients, making it the best high protein cat food to gain weight.
This cat food contains the highest level of protein from real meat and contains no animal meal. It contains natural probiotics, natural omega, and antioxidant for a healthy life. Their rich protein food is easy to digest and great for the skin, coat, and immune system.
The real benefit of this food is 95% of the protein source is from real chicken and every kibble is made with pure, real nutrition of raw.
Overall, this is a totally natural cat food best for gaining and maintaining a healthy weight. Also, there is no by-product, meal or artificial ingredient, or coloring.
Below, you will find the recommended feeding instruction according to your cat’s body weight.
|5 LBS||3/8 Cup|
|10 LBS||1/2 Cup|
|15 LBS||3/4 Cup|
Crave with Protein Adult Grain Free
Crave high protein food has the important nutrient that your cat needs. This food contains real chicken, and quality ingredients and contains no by-products, meal, soy, corn, or wheat.
It contains 40% protein and 18% fat in this food, which is best suited for the underweight cat to gain weight.
Along with high protein content, it has protein rich vegetables and another meat source. This food provides your cat with the proper nutrients to maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle.
We recommend this food if your cat is underweight, it is good to go after. It has a good calorie content of 402 kcal/ cup.
The suggested feeding quantity is based on your cat’s body weight. You can get this food in different packages also. Adjust the amount of food accordingly if your cat is underweight, you can add slightly more. Overall, it is a good food to help cats gain weight.
|4 LBS||1/4 Cup|
|8 LBS||1/2 Cup|
|12 LBS||2/3 Cup|
|16 LBS||3/4 Cup|
|20 LBS||1 Cup|
Nulo Freestyle High Protein Cat & Kitten Food
This is last but not least, we have Nulo high protein cat food.
Nulo high protein food contains 40% protein and 20% fat. They have a good balanced protein and fat content, which is good.
This formula is made with important vitamins like vitamins C, E, and A and antioxidants for overall health.
They have plenty of protein in their food which helps to gain weight and maintain a healthy weight for adult cats.
We love this food as many cat owners found this food healthy and yummy. This is food is suitable for adult cats and kittens. Below, we have mentioned the recommended feeding guide for an adult cat.
How Can I Help My Cat Gain Weight?
It is depressing to see your precious fur baby lose weight and not eat food properly.
We are going to look at some of the factors for unhealthy weight loss and why your cat is not eating the food. We are also going to talk about a few common problems cat owners face with underweight cats. After that, we will discuss some tips on how to fatty up your cat to a healthy weight.
Let’s start with some important factors that cause unhealthy weight loss.
You may read: Best High Protein Cat Food
Cause of Unhealthy Weight Loss
We all worry about cat being overweight. Sometimes we forget the major issue also. Unexpected weight loss in cat is also a valid concern also. If your cat is malnourished or lost weight,
Here is some common reason behind it.
- Low Protein and Low Fat diet
- Low Calorie intake
- Anxiety, stress, or depression
- Dental Problem
Your cat suddenly loses weight more than 10% of a cat’s body weight. You should take her to the vet immediately.
Watching your cat become is frustrating. It is scary to see a cat lose too much body weight. Underweight cat struggle with many problems and their health is also at potential risk.
They need a good amount of nutrition on a regular basis in their body for healthy weight gain.
How to Tell My Cat is Underweight?
This is normally noticeable. You will see marks between their ribs and hips. If you look at your pet, is she looking skinny? By looking at your pet’s ribs and spine, you can tell if your cat is underweight.
Another factor sign of malnourishment, you notice a lack of energy, lowering the activity level.
There is a big problem when your cat is leaving the food unfinished. Of course, this can be a sign of some serious health problem as they are not eating well.
Possible Reason of Underweight?
Sudden weight loss in your healthy cat is a sign of serious health problems. We have already mentioned it before.
It can be many reasons resulting in weight loss like kidney disease, liver problems, and heart disease.
You should talk with your vet if your cat continues to lose weight and not regaining it. There can be many other signs like illness, diarrhea, vomiting, or some other strange behavior.
We also found it could be the reason the food your cat is may be not healthy. Your cat’s current food may not give her the calorie and nutrients she needs to maintain a healthy weight.
What I Should Look for in a Good Weight Gain Cat Food?
In general, for an 11-pound cat, we need 220 to 335 calories a day depending upon their activity level. By looking at their eating, you can tell if they are not getting enough. Then, you can use one of these tricks listed below to find a good weight gain cat food.
Kittens require extra nutrients to grow up faster. So, you can provide your cat with high-calorie like kitten food, we have listed high-calorie kitten food above. Higher protein and fat cat food is the best option. You also don’t need to worry about stomach upset, since kitten foods are very gentle on the digestive system of both adult cats and kittens.
If your cat is underweight, she should be eating cat food that is around 30% protein and 20% fat content (for dry cat food). The high protein content is better for dry kibble. But, if your cat is on wet cat food you can go for around 7% protein and 5% fat or higher.
You can choose a cat food that is made with almost 100% real meat sources. They are high in protein and fat content. We have mentioned that food in the above list.
Moist food is easy to digest. But, in this case, you need more nutrients and important nutrition. You can use dry kibble and water sources for your cat.
Tips to Help Your Cat Gain Weight
If you want to help your cat to gain weight, then, it is good to visit the vet if there is some real health concern that causing your cat to lose weight. The tips below going to help your cat gain weight and improve health.
Add High Protein Food to Her Diet
Protein is the most important part of cats’ diet. It is important to have a good amount of protein and a balanced amount of fat in your cat food. Opting for one of the cat food we have listed above as they are the best cat food for weight gain.
Tasty Treat Option
Cat loves eating treats. Treats are tasty and super-rich, cats always prefer eating them over their normal cat food diet. You can use treat 10-15% of your cat’s daily intake to improve good eating habits. There are many treats available out there.
Make Sure Your Cat is Physically Active
Regular playing with your cat will help. This will exercise your cat’s muscles. Your cat will be happy after playing with you. And, a happy cat eats better. You can make use of toys for cats. There are many different toys you can get. If not, you can use a rope to play with your cat which is enough.
Addition of Wet Cat Food
Wet cat food is normally low in calories compared to dry cat food. But, you can use wet cat food with dry food, it will help your cat to digest their food well. Also will make the food interesting and special for them. It is not a bad idea to add wet food to her diet, it will help to add moisture to the food as well as bring some variation to her diet.
Medical Advice Is Important
It is important to check with the vet regularly if you notice weight loss or have a concern that might be causing weight loss in your cat. The Underweight might need medical attention if she is putting on weight.
If you noticed your cat lost weight suddenly. Or noticed any changes in your eating habit. Then, you should take them to the vet for a checkup. Even some problems like urinary health can cause this problem like the cat not eating properly.
We have already mentioned before, it can be many reasons. It is not necessary they have kidney disease or liver problems. Your cat might have parasites, worms, or strange behavior.
You need to stay in a cool mind and decide what it could be. You will get the answer by following your cat’s behavior and action. If not it is best to visit the vet.
How many calories should a cat typically eat per day?
As per professional recommendation, your cat needs to consume between 24 to 35 calories a day for every 1 pound body weight to keep your cat at a healthy weight.
And, as a general rule, a cat with 11-pound body weight needs to consume between 220 to 335 Kcal per day. These numbers also depend upon your activity level and lifestyle. In case, you have noticed that your cat is not getting enough. You can use the above-mentioned food that will improve your cat’s calorie and protein intake.
It is already mentioned above, what to take care of while choosing a good weight gain cat food.
What to feed an old cat to gain weight?
As for the senior or older cat, you can get food that contains high protein and a balanced amount of fat. We recommend a minimum of 30% protein and 20% fat. Dry food is a good option to gain weight as it contains a higher amount of protein and fat. You can provide a good source of water with food.
But, if your old cat is not comfortable with dry kibbles, you can choose wet cat food. For wet food, you can choose from 7% minimum protein and 5% fat content or higher.
What Can I Feed My Underweight Kitten?
A kitten requires plenty of calories a day depending on activity and lifestyle. This is the growing stage for cats.
You need to keep your kitten on a high protein high calorie kitten food for healthy rapid growth, and overall development.
But, if your kitten is underweight, she should be eating kibble containing 30% protein and 20% fat. or 7% protein and 5% fat of wet canned food.
How to Make a Skinny Cat Gain Weight?
You might have this question often if you notice your cat losing weight and becoming skinny. Here, is a checklist on “What might help my cat gain weight”.
- Understand the health issue.
- Provide High Protein and Nutritious Food.
- Increase or Adjust the feeding amount.
- Mix wet food with dry food.
- Use Tasty Treat.
- Play with your cat,
- Visit a vet if there are any doubtful concerns.
- Provide fresh water daily.
High calorie cat food
Feeding a high-calorie diet to a cat should only be done under the guidance of a veterinarian. It is important to determine the underlying reason for the cat’s need for a high-calorie diet and to ensure that the diet is nutritionally balanced.
If your cat needs a high-calorie diet, a veterinarian can recommend a suitable diet and provide guidance on the appropriate feeding amounts. Commercial high-calorie cat foods are available, and some may be recommended by a veterinarian.
In addition to a high-calorie diet, it is important to provide your cat with plenty of fresh water and to monitor their weight and overall health regularly. If your cat has any underlying medical conditions, it is important to work with your veterinarian to manage those conditions as well.
Remember that overfeeding your cat with high-calorie food can lead to obesity and other health problems. So it’s important to follow the feeding instructions and recommendations provided by your veterinarian.
Kristen is a cat parent. Love to keep my cats happy always and playful. Also, It became my passion to help another cat owner with caring tips for their cats and kittens. Stay tuned with my personal blog to know more caring tips, review of cat food and feeding guides. I’d love to know about your cat. If you something to share with about your cat. I will be happy to read.