Hill’s Science Diet Cat Food Review

Hill’s emphasizes that “science is at the heart of everything Science Diet does”.

Hill’s Pet Nutrition began in Kansas as Hill Rendering Works. The facility later expanded to including a milling division and was renamed Hill Packing Company.

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It was under the name Hill Packing Company that the business first partnered with Dr. Mark L. Morris, the creator of the original Science Diet formula.

In the 1930’s, Dr. Morris was contacted by a young blind man traveling the country with his service dog, Buddy. Buddy had developed kidney disease and his owner hoped to find a way to improve the dog’s quality of life. Believing that nutrition could help, Dr. Morris and his wife formulated a special diet in their kitchen and began mailing the cans to their client. The food went over well, and soon Dr. Morris had a small canning operation running in his basement.

In 1948, he licensed Hill Packing Company to produce his pet diets. Twenty years later, Dr. Morris’s formulas were first sold under the Hill’s Science Diet label.

Today, Hill’s is one of the most well-respected names in the pet food industry. It’s currently owned by Colgate-Palmolive and produces pet food under the Ideal Balance, Prescription Diet, and Science Diet brands. Hill’s products are sold in 86 countries worldwide.

What types of cat food does Hill’s Science Diet offer?

Hill’s Science Diet recipes are sold as science-backed formulas that nourish happier, healthier pets through precisely balanced nutrition.

The foods are made in company-owned US facilities from ingredients sourced in North America, Europe, and New Zealand. Hill’s notes that their manufacturing process involves an exceptional attention to quality control through frequent supplier inspections, over 250 monthly salmonella tests, and about 60 quality checks per batch of food.

The company employs over 220 veterinarians, nutritionists, and food scientists.

Every Science Diet formula is free from artificial ingredients, including dyes, artificial flavors, and preservatives. Chicken, lamb, or salmon is the first ingredient in every recipe.

Hill’s Science Diet Cat Food Formulas

The Science Diet lineup includes over 50 different cat food formulations in both dry and moist textures.

They’re broken down by health conditions and age-specific needs. Note that sometimes, these special formulas overlap. For instance, an indoor formula labeled for senior cats may also be appropriate for weight management.

Hill’s Science Diet Canned/Tray Cat Food Formulas

Adult 1+

  • Adult Savory Turkey Entree
  • Adult Savory Chicken Entree
  • Adult Savory Beef Entree
  • Adult Savory Salmon Entree
  • Adult Tender Chicken Dinner
  • Adult Tender Ocean Fish Dinner
  • Adult Tender Tuna Dinner
  • Adult Turkey & Liver Entree
  • Adult Ocean Fish Entree
  • Adult Liver & Chicken Entree
  • Adult Healthy Cuisine Seared Tuna & Carrot Medley
  • Adult Healthy Cuisine Poached Salmon & Spinach Medley
  • Adult Healthy Cuisine Roasted Chicken & Rice Medley
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Aging Care

  • Youthful Vitality Adult 7+ Salmon & Vegetables Stew
  • Youthful Vitality Adult 7+ Tuna & Vegetable Stew
  • Youthful Vitality Adult 7+ Chicken & Vegetable Stew
  • Youthful Vitality Adult 7+ Chicken & Vegetable Entree
  • Adult 11+ Healthy Cuisine Seared Tuna & Carrot Medley

Kitten/Pregnant Cat

  • Kitten Healthy Cuisine Roasted Chicken & Rice Medley
  • Kitten Savory Turkey Entree
  • Kitten Savory Salmon Entree
  • Kitten Tender Chicken Dinner
  • Kitten Liver & Chicken Entree

Digestive Sensitivities, Food Sensitivities, and Skin Sensitivities

  • Sensitive Stomach & Skin Chicken & Vegetable Entree
  • Sensitive Stomach & Skin Tuna & Vegetable Entree
  • Adult Hairball Control Ocean Fish Entree
  • Adult Hairball Control Savory Chicken Entree

Urinary Care

  • Adult Urinary Hairball Control

Weight Management

  • Adult Perfect Weight Liver & Chicken Entree
  • Adult Perfect Weight Roasted Vegetable & Chicken Medley
  • Adult Light Liver & Chicken Entree
  • Adult Indoor Ocean Fish Entree

Hill’s Science Diet Dry Cat Food Formulas

Adult 1+

  • Adult Multiple Benefit
  • Adult Optimal Care® Original

Aging Care

  • Youthful Vitality Adult 7+ Chicken & Rice Recipe
  • Adult 11+ Indoor Age Defying Cat Food
  • Adult 7+ Active Longevity Original
  • Adult 7+ Hairball Control
  • Adult 11+ Age Defying Cat Food

Kitten/Pregnant Cat

  • Kitten Indoor
  • Kitten Healthy Development

Dental Care

  • Adult Oral Care

Digestive Sensitivities, Food Sensitivities, and Skin Sensitivities

  • Adult Sensitive Stomach & Skin
  • Adult Hairball Control Light Cat Food
  • Adult Hairball Control

Urinary Care

  • Adult Urinary Hairball Control

Weight Management

  • Adult Light
  • Adult Indoor
  • Adult Perfect Weight

Hill’s Science Diet Cat Food Coupons 2020

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Has Hill’s Science Diet ever been recalled?

Yes. Hill’s Science Diet has been recalled on multiple occasions in the recent past.

2015

In November 2015, certain Science Diet canned foods were withdrawn due to labeling issues. It’s important to note the distinction between a recall and a withdrawal. A withdrawal occurs due to a legally insignificant concern not subject to FDA regulation. In this case, the products were withdrawn when certain Science Diet dog foods were mislabeled. No cat food was involved. Hill’s Pet Nutrition assured consumers that there was no health, safety, or nutrition issue at hand.

2014

In June of 2014, Hill’s Science Diet recalled 62 bags of dog food in California, Hawaii, and Nevada due to concerns about potential salmonella contamination. The recall didn’t involve any cat food formulas.

2007

In 2007, Science Diet was one of the over 40 brands identified by the FDA as potential sources of melamine-contaminated food.  All lots of Science Diet Savory Cuts canned cat food were recalled.

Where can you buy Hill’s Science Diet cat food?

Hill’s Science Diet is sold in what the company describes as “above-average pet retailers”, along with veterinary offices and some animal shelters.

In addition to these physical locations, you can find Hill’s Science Diet online through retailers including Amazon and Chewy.

Click here to find Hill’s Science Diet through a retailer, veterinarian, or shelter near you.

What do customers think of Hill’s Science Diet cat food?

Hill’s Science Diet is an extraordinarily well-regarded brand in the cat food industry. According to the company, Hill’s Science Diet is the number one choice of veterinarians when feeding their own pets. If you adopted your cat from an animal shelter, they likely came with a bag of Science Diet.

To understand what real customers think about the brand, let’s see how they react to one of the most popular Science Diet cat food formulas on the market.

On Chewy, Hill’s Science Diet Adult Indoor Cat Dry Cat Food has 149 reviews, earning it a 4.7 out of 5 star rating. 95% of reviewers say they’d recommend this product.

Here’s what they have to say about it:

Positive Reviews

“My older kitty has gotten a little hefty on the sensitive stomach food that I purchased to help one of my other cats. It is a little bit too calorie rich for an older neutered cat. I tried another lower calorie Science Diet and he didn’t seem to like it much but they all like this one. The Persians seem to have an easier time eating it as well with the different shape. A winner.” – ds33

“We have two rescue cats and our first boy was fed the dry kitten kibble formula at the ASPCA. Now that our boys are over a year old we give them 75% adult Indoor cat kibble and 25% kitten kibble because they will not eat the adult kibble on its own. I must say the Science diet puts out a great formula which keeps us and our boys happy! Our older boy we got from another local rescue and he was on a poor diet, extremely underweight, lethargic & had matted fur. Since starting our older boy on Science diet he has grown to be a healthy cat. Both their fur is super soft and shiny and they’re both active cats and loving brothers. I highly recommend this brand as I’ve seen firsthand the wonderful outcome of being raised on it as a kitten as well as being switched onto the Science diet formula to an adult cat with poor health.” – PetitaMarie

Negative Reviews

“I ordered the Science Diet Indoor dry cat food to transition my cats off of the Science Diet kitten food. My kitten is now a young cat and is getting chubby eating the kitten food. In fact, all my adult cats love it. Unfortunately, the cats and their human servant were disappointed in this kibble. The pieces are huge, almost dog food size, and the kitties prefer a small kibble. They are eating it without enthusiasm. I am gradually switching to another brand with a smaller kibble size, Purina Pro Plan.” – Pittiemom

“I can only speak for my silly & picky furbabies. They don’t like the hardness of this brand of food. They will do without before they eat this. It is hard for sure. Hurts like crazy if you step on it bare footed and doesn’t break if you have shoes on. I even tried putting it in their treat bowl and they still wouldn’t touch it. Fuess we will have to donate it to the pound.” – KittyGal

Read more customer reviews on Chewy.

Hill’s Science Diet Adult Indoor Cat Dry Cat Food Review

First 5 Ingredients: Chicken, Whole Grain Wheat, Corn Gluten Meal, Pork Fat, Powdered Cellulose

When ingredients are listed in descending order of pre-cooking weight, anything water-packed is likely to rise to the top of the list. In the case of chicken, this can give us a false impression of the food’s meat content. Once most of the water content is cooked out, where does chicken stand on this ingredient list?

The next two ingredients – whole grain wheat and corn gluten meal – would likely take chicken’s place as the first ingredient. It’s also interesting to note that corn gluten meal is high in plant protein, which is less biologically available than protein from animal sources.

Pork fat is a nourishing fat source for cats, so it’s a good inclusion on this ingredient list. Powdered cellulose is probably included here for its fiber content. Indoor cat food formulas often contain added fiber to encourage healthy gut motility and reduce hairballs.

Like the powdered cellulose, pea bran meal is added as a fiber source. Dried egg product is just a dehydrated egg product that adds some nourishing animal-based protein.

After the dried egg product is wheat gluten, which is another source of protein. In this case, the protein comes from a plant source.

Dried beet pulp is another fiber source. It’s a by-product left over after processing beets for human consumption. Chicken liver flavor is a concentrated source of appetizing liver flavor.

Lactic acid is a natural antimicrobial agent that can help to control salmonella growth.

Soybean oil isn’t the greatest fat source from cats, who, again, get the most benefit from animal fats.

After soybean oil, we enter a long series of vitamins and minerals added to ensure that this food is nutritionally complete. In addition to these minerals, the bottom of the list includes small amounts of a few other ingredients. The recipe includes fish oil, which can help to promote a healthy skin and coat. It also features a small amount of oat fiber, along with “natural flavors”, an additive typically made from hydrolyzed animal tissue.

At the very bottom of the ingredient list are traces of dried fruits and vegetables. These are dried apples, dried broccoli, dried carrots, dried cranberries, and dried peas.

All things considered, this is an average dry cat food with both positive and negative qualities.

On the positive side, it’s free from artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, along with animal by-products.

That said, it’s unfortunately high in plant protein, primarily thanks to the inclusion of wheat gluten and corn gluten meal. Plant protein is less biologically available than animal protein, so it’s harder for your cat’s body to utilize.

According to the guaranteed analysis, this formula provides a minimum of 29.5% crude protein, 16% minimum crude fat, and approximately 31.7% carbohydrate.

You can choose from a 3.5-lb bag, a 7-lb bag, or a 15.5-lb bag.

Assuming that you feed your cat about ⅔ cup of this food each day, it costs approximately $.33 – $.55 each day.

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

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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