Canidae Cat Food Review

The Canidae company follows the tagline, “Pet food made by pet people”, playing up the fact that they are an independent, family-owned company. The Canidae Company began as a feed store in Southern California but has grown to become a major manufacturer of premium pet food products. According to the company’s website, Canidae uses only the highest quality ingredient in their recipes such as fresh meats, poultry and fish as well as wholesome fruits and vegetables. Canidae sources many of their ingredients from other independent, family-owned business across the country such as ranch-raised meats from Wyoming and fresh duck from France. All of Canidae’s products are designed to offer optimal nutrition for cats in all life stages featuring protein-rich ingredients like lamb, rabbit, and ocean fish as well as digestible carbohydrates like sweet potatoes, peas, and potatoes. They also offer simple recipes made with a low number of premium ingredients for cats with food allergies and sensitivities.

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Where is Canidae Cat Food Made?

The Canidae pet food company was founded in 1996 and has since blossomed into one of the most respected brands of quality pet food. Orginally, the name Canidae was given to the brand’s line of dog food products while their cat food products carried the name Felidae. Today, however, both product lines fall under the name Canidae. Although the Canidae brand is owned by the Canidae Pet Food Corporation, their products are manufactured by Diamond Pet Foods. Most of Canidae’s products are manufactured at the company-owned Ethos Pet Nutrition facility in Brownwood, Texas.

Are There Any Recalls for Canidae Cat Food in 2020?

Canidae is somewhat secretive about the fact that they outsource their production to the Diamond Pet Foods Company. The Canidae website provides plenty of information about the Ethos Pet Nutrition facility in Brownwood, Texas, but the website does not mention the fact that operations are controlled by Diamond Pet Foods. Unfortunately, the Diamond Pet Food Company has been affected by a number of serious recalls in the past, though only one of them has affected the Canidae brand and all of the recipes affected were dog food products. Here are the details about this recall:

  • In May of 2012, the FDA issued a recall for Canidae Dry Dog Food All Life Stages, Dry Dog Food Chicken Meal & Rice, Dry Dog Food Lamb Meal & Rice, and Dry Dog Food Platinum having certain production codes and “Best By” date due to potential salmonella contamination.

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What Kind of Products Does Canidae Offer?

When it comes to their cat food products, Canidae offers both dry food and wet food options. These cat foods are divided among two main product lines – All Life Stages and PURE. The All Life Stages product line includes both dry food and wet food options specially formulated for indoor cats as well as two all life stages formulas. The PURE line of products includes grain-free recipes featuring premium proteins like fresh tuna, salmon, and trout. There is also a line of grain-free PURE treats.

Canidae Dry Cat Food Products:

The Canidae Company offers a total of eleven dry cat food products divided between the All Life Stages and PURE product lines. The All Life Stages line of products features nutritionally-dense formulas for cats of all breeds, ages and sizes. These recipes are made with premium ingredients including the Health Plus solution which features probiotics, powerful antioxidants, and healthy omega fatty acids. The PURE line of products features grain-free recipes that are made with fresh, whole foods for gentle digestion. These are simple recipes made with a low number of main ingredients to ensure balanced nutrition with a minimal risk for triggering food allergies or sensitivities. Here is a list of Canidae dry cat food products:

All Life Stages Dry Food Recipes:

  • All Life Stages with Chicken, Turkey, Lamb & Fish Meals
  • All Life Stages with Chicken Meal & Rice
  • All Life Stages Indoor with Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meals

Grain-Free PURE Dry Food Recipes:

  • Elements Cat and Kitten Recipe with Fresh Chicken
  • Sea Cat and Kitten Recipe with Fresh Salmon
  • Ocean Indoor Cat Recipe with Fresh Tuna
  • Stream Cat and Kitten Recipe with Fresh Trout
  • Control Hairball Control Recipe with Fresh Chicken
  • Meadow Senior Cat Recipe with Fresh Chicken
  • Foundations Kitten Recipe with Fresh Chicken
  • Resolve Weight Management Recipe with Fresh Chicken

Canidae Canned Cat Food Products:

Canidae offers a total of seventeen different canned food products which are divided between the two product lines – All Life Stages and PURE. The PURE line of products includes an assortment of recipes made with premium proteins like duck, salmon and lamb – these recipes come in both 13.2-ounce cans and 3-ounce cans. The All Life Stages line of canned foods also comes in two different sizes with recipes to match the All Life Stages dry food formulas. Here is a list of Canidae canned cat food products:

All Life Stages Canned Food Recipes:

  • All Life Stages Recipe Made with Chicken, Lamb & Fish
  • All Life Stages Recipe Made with Chicken & Rice
  • Indoor Recipe Made with Chicken, Lamb & Fish
  • Chicken Entrée Wet Food
  • Lamb Entrée Wet Food
  • Oceanfish Entrée Wet Food
  • Yellowfin Tuna Entrée Wet Food
  • Salmon Entrée Wet Food
  • Turkey Entrée Wet Food

Grain-Free PURE Canned Food Recipes

  • Elements Adult Chicken, Turkey & Lamb Formula
  • Sea Adult Salmon & Mackerel Formula
  • Adult Cat Turkey & Rabbit Recipe
  • Adult Cat Salmon Recipe
  • Adult Cat Chicken Recipe
  • Adult Cat Duck & Duck Liver Recipe
  • Adult Cat Seafood Recipe
  • Adult Cat Trout & Lobster Recipe

Canidae Cat Treats:

In addition to an assortment of dry and wet cat food products, Canidae also offers a limited assortment of cat treats. All of these treats belong to the Grain-Free PURE Taste Treats line of products and there are four flavors available:

  • Fresh Chicken Recipe
  • Fresh Salmon Recipe
  • Game Bird Recipe
  • Fresh Trout Recipe

Dry Cat Food Recipe Review: Canidae All Life Stages Indoor Adult Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meal Recipe

This Canidae All Life Stages Indoor Adult Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meal Recipe is one of three dry food formulas that are all designed to meet the nutritional needs of cats in all life stages. This recipe in particular is formulated for indoor cats which means that it is supplemented to encourage regular digestion, to reduce hairballs, and to improve skin and coat health. Made with optimal protein content to support your cat’s lean muscle mass, this recipe also helps your cat to maintain a healthy weight. It is also full of natural flavor!

The first ingredient in this Canidae All Life Stages Indoor Adult Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meal Recipe is chicken meal. Before you get worried about the word “meal” here, consider the fact that fresh meats contain up to 80% moisture by volume – when the cat food product is cooked, most of that moisture is lost and the ingredient ends up having a much lower volume. Meat meals, on the other hand, have already been cooked to about 10% moisture which means that they are highly concentrated in terms of protein content. In fact, meat meals contain as much as 300% more protein by volume than fresh meats. It also doesn’t hurt that this recipe includes several supplementary sources of protein like turkey meal, lamb meal, egg product, and ocean fish meal.

In terms of carbohydrate, this recipe relies on brown rice, white rice, cracked pearled barley, peas, and millet. Although several of these ingredients contain grains and glutens, they are also considered fairly digestible sources of carbohydrate for cats. You might be worried by the sheer number of carbohydrate-based ingredients used in this recipe but the guaranteed analysis still shows a crude fiber content below 5%. There are also some fresh sources of carbohydrate such as papaya and pineapple. These ingredients provide supplementary fiber and act as natural sources for key nutrients.

The remaining ingredients in this Canidae All Life Stages Indoor Adult Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meal Recipe consist primarily of fats, extracts, probiotics, and synthetic supplements. The main source of fat in this recipe is chicken fat – a high-quality and highly concentrated source of energy for cats. It is balanced out by flaxseed and sunflower oil, two plant-based fats which help to ensure a blend of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. This recipe contains both synthetic vitamins and minerals, though many of the minerals are chelated which makes them easier for your cat’s body to digest and absorb. The dried fermentation products which are also listed act as probiotics to support your cat’s healthy and regular digestion.

This Canidae All Life Stages Indoor Adult Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meals recipe has a guaranteed analysis as follows:

  • Crude Protein (Min) – 30.5%
  • Crude Fat (Min) – 14.5%
  • Crude Fiber (Max) – 4%
  • Moisture (Max) – 9%
  • Taurine (Min) – 0.15%
  • Vitamin E (Min) – 200 IU/kg
  • Omega-6 Fatty Acids (Min) – 3.5%
  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids (Min) – 0.7%
  • Calorie Content – 477 calories/cup

This recipe is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles for maintenance. To feed your cat this recipe, offer cats weighing 5 to 10 pounds between ½ to 2/3 cups daily and cats weighing 10 to 15 pounds 2/3 cup to 1 cup, ideally dividing it into two meals. If your cat appears to be gaining an unhealthy amount of weight, you may need to scale back his daily portion a little bit. For cats that lose weight or become lethargic, consider increasing the daily portion. This product should be fed at room temperature and any uneaten portion should be refrigerated.

Canidae Dry Cat Food Recipe Rating: 4.5/5 stars

Overall, this Canidae All Life Stages Indoor Adult Chicken, Turkey, Lamb, & Fish Meal Recipe receives a 4.5 out of 5 star rating. This recipe is loaded with healthy ingredients but, because some of those ingredients have the potential to trigger food allergies and sensitivities (primarily the grains), this may not be the right choice for some cats. There is no denying that this recipe is loaded with quality proteins and healthy fats – it also contains plenty of beneficial additives like chelated minerals, prebiotic fiber (from the inulin), and probiotics. All in all, this recipe offers your cat a high-quality source of balanced nutrition and natural flavor.

Wet Cat Food Recipe Review: Canidae Grain-Free PURE Sea Adult Cat Salmon & Mackerel Formula Wet Food

This Canidae Grain-Free PURE Sea Adult Cat Salmon & Mackerel Formula is a high-protein formula made with quality ingredients to deliver complete and balanced nutrition for cats in all life stages. This recipe is grain-free and made with a limited number of ingredients, making it a great choice for cats that suffer from food allergies and sensitivities. Because this formula is simmered in fish broth, it is rich in natural flavor that your cat won’t be able to get enough of. Simply put, it offers simple, quality nutrition without compromising great taste.

The first ingredient in this Canidae Grain-Free PURE Sea Adult Cat Salmon & Mackerel Formula is salmon which is followed by sardines. These are both high-quality sources of animal protein which also makes them complete proteins. A complete protein is a protein that contains all of the essential amino acids that your cat’s body is unable to synthesize on its own. Mackerel is included as a supplementary protein and this recipe also includes kelp which contains some plant protein. The total protein content of this recipe is 12% which, translated into a dry matter basis, is the dry food equivalent of about 54% – that is well within the ideal protein range for cats according to the Merck Veterinary Manual.

In addition to being loaded with healthy proteins, this recipe also contains healthy fats and digestible carbohydrates. Canola oil is the main source of fat in this recipe, offering a concentrated source of energy for your cat. Plant-based fats offer lower bioavailability for cats than animal fats, but the fish ingredients in this recipe contribute enough at to help balance out the omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acid content of this recipe. This balance is important for promoting the health of your cat’s skin and coat.

The remaining ingredients in this Canidae Grain-Free PURE Sea Adult Cat Salmon & Mackerel Formula consist primarily of carbohydrates, thickeners, flavors, and supplements. The main source of carbohydrate in this recipe is sweet potatoes – a gluten-free, grain-free carbohydrate that offers excellent digestibility. This recipe is thickened with both carrageenan and guar gum. Unfortunately, some consider carrageenan to be a questionable ingredient. Though there is still more research to be conducted, carrageenan is showing signs of being a potential carcinogen for pets. In terms of supplements, this recipe includes both vitamin supplements and chelated minerals which have been chemically bound to protein molecules, making them easier for your cat’s body to digest and absorb.

This Canidae Grain-Free PURE Sea Adult Salmon & Mackerel recipe has a guaranteed analysis as follows:

  • Crude Protein (Min) – 12%
  • Crude Fat (Min) – 7.5%
  • Crude Fiber (Max) – 1%
  • Moisture (Max) – 78%
  • Taurine (Min) – 0.2%
  • Calorie Content – 469/13-oz can, 179/5.5-oz can

This recipe is formulated to meet the nutritional levels established by AAFCO Cat Food Nutrient Profiles for all life stages. To feed your cat this recipe, offer one 13-ounce can per 16 pounds of bodyweight per day or one 5.5-ounce can per 7 pounds bodyweight, ideally dividing it into two meals. Growing kittens may require up to twice this amount and pregnant or lactating female cats may need two to four times this amount. For adult cats, follow the feeding recommendations for several weeks while keeping an eye on your cat’s bodyweight and condition. If your cat appears to be gaining an unhealthy amount of weight, you may need to scale back his daily portion a little bit. For cats that lose weight or become lethargic, consider increasing the daily portion. This product should be fed at room temperature and any uneaten portion should be refrigerated.

Canidae Canned Cat Food Recipe Rating: 4/5 stars

Overall, this Canidae Grain-Free PURE Sea Adult Cat Salmon & Mackerel Formula receives a rating of 4 out of 5 stars. This recipe starts off strong with several quality sources of animal protein as well as natural flavor. The fact that this recipe’s main source of fat is plant-based is a minor issue – the bigger issue is the use of carrageenan as a thickener in this formula. The rest of the ingredients in this recipe, however, are all of decent quality. Chelated minerals help to ensure maximum nutrient absorption and sweet potatoes provide some natural nutrients to complement the synthetic vitamin supplements. All in all, this recipe could stand some minor improvements but it would still be a good option for your cat.

Final Thoughts

Overall, the Canidae brand of cat food is a high-quality brand that offers a healthy assortment of dry food and canned food products. Canidae uses a variety of high-quality ingredients in their recipes and they are careful to create their formulas in a way that benefits cats of all breeds, ages, and sizes. The brand may not be completely transparent about how their products are made, but there are no major consumer complaints. Plus, although Canidae has been affected by a single recall in recent years, it was for several of their dog food products, not a cat food product. All in all, you can count on any one of Canidae’s cat food products to not just meet, but exceed your cat’s nutritional needs and to do so in a fresh, healthy way. Many of Canidae’s products are also made with a limited number of ingredients which is particularly beneficial for cats with food allergies and sensitivities. All in all, your cat would be lucky to receive any of Canidae’s cat food products.

Kate Barrington

Kate Barrington is a freelance writer specializing in the subject of pet health and wellness. An avid dog lover and adoring owner of three cats, Kate has a great deal of experience writing about all kinds of pets and all aspects of pet care. Her work has been featured on a number of pet websites and she is a regular columnist for Tropical Fish Hobbyist Magazine.

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3 comments

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  • I’ve had a recent occurrence that has led me to believe the grain-free, hairball control flavor of Canidae dry cat food is causing ailments in my cat. A month ago, I bought a bag with odd looking kibble. It was larger and lighter in color than usual. I fed it to her anyways, and she had horrible diarrhea for days.

    After giving her only boiled chicken/baby food/vet prescription food for 20 days, and reintroducing her typical wet food (Weruva) for a week, things were okay. When I gave her the Canidae dry food again this past Friday and Saturday mornings, her diarrhea came back full-fledged within 24 hours. She had 8 bouts of diarrhea between Friday and Sunday. Between Sunday night and Tuesday morning, no BMs at all. Poor thing, I feel awful with how much she’s suffered.

    I am attempting to talk to Canidae about this now. Of course their initial response is it is probably some other ailment causing these issues. Well, it all started when I fed her these past two bags of Canidae dry food. I find it interesting to hear about this Diamond Pet food company and their previous recall, even if it was for dog food in prior history.

  • Why did you stop making cat food called life stages all life stages formula?

    My cat loved this food, and the grain free pure wild frontier trail chicken entree has no grain which pet owners are finding out that GRAIN FREE is causing HEART issues!!!

    I would like for you to go back to making LIFE STAGES ALL LIFE STAGES FORMULA!!!!

    Nancy Holbus

  • In March 2018 I was approached by a Canidae representative with a $5.00 coupon for their products. Never heard of the company . I bought a bag of their indoor kitten & cat Grain Free dry food. I gradually mixed it in the old brand. After awhile my cat started vomiting on occasion. Three weeks went by and he was vomiting every night. I took him to the vets. They tested for worms and took x-rays for blockage and found nothing. She had no answer. Then she asked if I had changed any food, oh ! then I remembered the Canidae food. I went home and did research on the second and third ingredients witch were chickpeas and peas. They are both hard for cats to digest and irritating to their digestive system. I immediately stopped the food and he never vomited again. I called the company, told them the story. The first thing I asked them was why they would put such stuff in their food?, I said that they were responsible for my cat vomiting, also the cost of $170.00 at the vets. They sounded like that wasent going happen but now they want copies of the vet visit, x-rays, tests etc. They got all that sent to them in July, it is now October and not any kind a response. WHAT A COMPANY ! I wrote this so people will know about the CANIDAE PET FOOD CO . And chickpeas and peas in cat food . Look it up for yourself.

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