Grandma Lucy’s Cat Food Review

This California-based pet food company was founded in 1999 by Eric and Breann Shook, guardians of the company’s namesake, Lucy.

At age 11, the English Cocker Spaniel developed severe food allergies and became finicky about her food. Struggling to find high-quality food that sensitive Lucy could consume, Eric and Breann started making their own dog food. Lucy loved the homemade food, inspiring Eric and Breann to share their recipes with the rest of the world.

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In 1999, the Shooks rented a small kitchen in Aliso Viejo, California and launched Grandma Lucy’s Freeze-Dried Pet Food and Treats. The company is now headquartered in Rancho Santa Margarita, California, where they manufacture all of their own products for pets.

The company currently offers a large line of freeze-dried food and treats for dogs and a smaller selection for cats.

What types of cat food does Grandma Lucy’s offer?

Grandma Lucy’s has a small line of grain-free, freeze-dried cat food.

All of their ingredients are human-grade, meaning that they come from the same suppliers who make and process ingredients for restaurants and groceries. Once they arrive at the Grandma Lucy’s facility, they’re processed in a USDA-inspected kitchen, undergo testing according to USDA guidelines, and are transported under USDA-approved conditions.

Prior to Grandma Lucy’s purchase of their manufacturing facility in 2013, the building housed an operation producing drink mixes for companies including Coffee Bean and Costco.

Grandma Lucy’s cat food recipes use only lean muscle meat from chicken or fish, so there are no organs or ground bones in any of their products.

Sourcing is an important part of the Grandma Lucy’s brand.

All of their meat ingredients are taken from animals who were pasture or farm-raised. Remember that the term “farm-raised” doesn’t mean much, considering that even the largest factory farm falls into this category. That said, the company assures us that they primarily source meats from smaller independent farms.

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Over 87% of the ingredients are sourced in the United States. The remaining percentage is sourced from suppliers in various parts of the world.

  • Canada – flaxseed, oats, and hemp hearts
  • New Zealand – lamb and venison
  • Peru – quinoa
  • Australia – goat
  • Costa Rica – bananas
  • India – turmeric
  • Philippines – coconut
  • Brazil – papaya

Note that China isn’t included on this list.

All vendors are required to sign an agreement stating product’s country of origin and promising that all ingredients are of human grade quality, free from chemicals and preservatives, and tested for e-coli, salmonella, coliform, lead, arsenic, mercury, and melamine. All ingredients are non-GMO.

Grandma Lucy’s Cat Food Recipes

Meals

  • Artisan Chicken & Fish—a freeze-dried, grain-free food made from chicken, pollock, and a variety of fruits, vegetables, and flaxseed
  • Simple Replacement—a freeze-dried chicken-and-rice meal for cats needing a bland food due to nausea, vomiting, stomach upset, or diarrhea

Singles Pet Treats

These are single-ingredient freeze-dried treats.

  • Chicken
  • Pork
  • Ocean White Fish
  • Liver

Has Grandma Lucy’s ever been recalled?

Since its creation in 1999, Grandma Lucy’s has not issued a recall of cat or dog food.

What do customers think of Grandma Lucy’s cat food?

On Chewy, Grandma Lucy’s Artisan formula has 40 reviews, earning it a mediocre 3 out of 5 star rating. Some reviewers loved it, most were unimpressed, and a handful hated it. Just 62% of reviewers say they’d recommend the product.

Among the 32% of customers who loved the food enough to give it a 5-star rating, value was mentioned repeatedly. Happy customers appreciated the balance of quality and price.

Negative reviewers—and a few positive reviewers—returned to the food’s palatability problem. Apparently, more than a handful of cats think this food tastes or smells bad and they refuse to eat it.

Let’s hear it from a few real Grandma Lucy’s cat food customers:

Positive Reviews

“This is a great food to feed your beloved felines. Freeze Dried is as close as you can get to “Raw”. We like to add some probiotics and enzymes to help with the digestion process and Fish Oil to boost Omega 3s and coat quality. I’ve done tons and tons of research on pet food. I always find myself coming back to Grandma Lucy’s. The fact that I can read every ingredient on the bag is huge! They are family owned and operated. At the end of the day, they are a wholesome small business that I love to support and when I feed their products, I know my pets are getting the best food money can buy.” – Megan

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“I’ve used several other brands of dehydrated cat food and this has by far been the best. My cats love it and freak out more than usual around feeding time. The protein content is more than sufficient and not sure why reviewers have complained about it. The “chicken” pieces they talk about are actually chunks of pollack fish that look to be sliced up whole fillets of healthy fish and the chicken I assume is the finer flakes in the mix. Not sure how you’d confuse the two. Anyway, its hard to get this high of quality in a dehydrated form but Grandma Lucy’s does it. You can’t really beat a high quality grain free canned cat food but I can’t afford 2 cans every meal at a $1 a piece ($4 a day). Dry food is not an option since my male cat has urinary tract issues. He is supposed to be on prescription food that ups his water intake but with this Grandma Lucy’s I can just add a little more water than you’re supposed to and it does the job. Saves me a bunch of money, is easy to store and my cats get great meals. Also, thank you Chewy.com for the amazing price and fast shipping!” – CHkittylove

Negative Reviews

“I was so disappointed. I have a number of cats, NONE would eat this. I put it out for the raccoons.” – jaxi

“I always give my babies can food as a treat (they don’t know it is healthy 🙂 ) I decided to try this instead as a change. I have 5 spoiled kitties and I am sad to say NONE of them like it. Not saying you should not try it but 5 out of 5…not good odds 🙁 Into the dumpster it goes.” – CosSav

Read more customer reviews on Chewy.

Grandma Lucy’s Artisan Grain-Free Chicken & Fish Freeze-Dried Cat Food Review

First 5 Ingredients: USDA Chicken, USDA Pollock, Potatoes, Flax, Carrots

We’ve learned about the Grandma Lucy’s story and we know what customers are saying about it. But at the end of the day, it’s all about the food. Let’s take a tour of this ingredient list.

First stop is chicken. Grandma Lucy’s likes to emphasize the human-grade quality of their ingredients, but it’s important to remember that human-grade chicken isn’t necessarily any better than feed-grade chicken. The difference between a human-grade chicken isn’t in the meat. It’s in the processing facility and the transportation methods. Ultimately, the quality isn’t determined by the USDA’s stamp of approval but by the standards of the manufacturer.

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Grandma Lucy’s also sticks to lean muscle meat, which is another human-focused emotional ploy; you might prefer succulent white chicken breast, but cats love eating and thrive on sloppy, bloody, smelly organs.

The second ingredient is pollock. You’ll notice large, chewable chunks of this white fish in the food. After pollock, we’re ready to dive into a list of vegetables and fruits.

The first is potatoes, which are a high-carbohydrate, minimally nutritious vegetable that cats don’t need.

Potatoes are followed by flax, which is a good source of Omega-3 fatty acids if you’re an omnivore or herbivore. Cats, however, are incapable of converting the alpha-linolenic acid in flax to valuable DHA and EPA. Your cat is better off getting Omega-3 fatty acids from animal sources like fish oil.

That said, fiber-rich flax may be a good choice for constipated cats.

Grandma Lucy’s includes carrots, celery, apples, blueberries, and cranberries as a source of naturally-derived vitamins, minerals, fiber, and antioxidants.

These fruits and vegetables are followed by a supplement blend to ensure that the food is nutritionally complete. This blend includes amino acids, vitamins, and minerals.

The guaranteed analysis states that this food is 40% protein minimum, 14% fat minimum, and about 36.5% carbohydrates.

To prepare this food, the company recommends that you mix in 1-2 cups of warm water, let the mixture sit for about 3 minutes, and then serve it. Once prepared, Grandma Lucy’s food has the consistency of a hearty stew with chunks of pollock.

It’s recommended that the average 8-10 lb cat consume about ⅝ cup each day. According to the company’s feeding recommendations, the food costs about $1.76 daily.

This cost estimate is based on Chewy prices and excludes shipping costs.

Grandma Lucy’s has a frequent diner program. When you buy 12 bags of food, you’re eligible for a free bag of Grandma Lucy’s cat food at any participating brick-and-mortar retailer.

Where can you buy Grandma Lucy’s cat food?

Grandma Lucy’s cat food is available in over 5,000 small and independent pet stores in the United States and Canada. It’s also exported to several other countries worldwide. Click here to find a retailer near you.

If you’d prefer to shop on the web, you can also purchase Grandma Lucy’s cat food online through Chewy or on the Grandma Lucy’s website.

Click here to shop for Grandma Lucy’s cat food on Chewy.

Mallory Crusta

Mallory Crusta offers simple, honest knowledge about natural cat care and products that work so that you can spend less time researching natural cat care and more time having fun with your cat. She blogs about it at WildernessCat.com.

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