When choosing cat food, your cat’s age is most important. Should you buy cat food for adult cats version or a kitten version? In that case, this is a frequently asked question. Can adult cats eat kittens’ food?

Optimal nutrition at every stage of life is essential if you want your pet to live a long and healthy life

What is the difference between kitten and cat food?

Proteins and fats

The ratio of protein to fat is the main difference between foods designed for kittens and those for adult cats. So, is it okay for adult cats to eat kitten food? Cat food must contain at least 22% protein and 8% fat (according to the US Food and Drug Administration). In adult cats, their diet includes at least 18% protein and 5% fat. Healthy food for your kitten will be supplemented with essential amino acids and fatty acids, which will encourage your cat to promote steady growth. Kittens with enough protein will grow properly, which is why the food they eat contains more protein, according to Catster. On the other hand, adult cats do not need these additional nutrients in their diet, although they do not necessarily harm them, according to “Getting started with your new cat: a complete guide.”

Vitamins and minerals

According to Purina, compared to kitten food, adult cat food contains higher amounts of vitamins and minerals to support the development of healthy bones and teeth. According to the FDA, minerals such as calcium and phosphorus are included in more significant amounts for kittens’ food. These minerals are essential for healthy growth. Cat food for adult cats contains less because it is no longer necessary for growth. Due to nutritional differences, kittens are only given food designed for them.


Kittens need three times more calories than adult cats, according to WebMD. The increased protein and fat in kittens’ food provides children with the calories they need for healthy growth. They also get 30% of their energy from more protein, fat, and calories. Kittens have small bellies, so their food should be dense with more calories than adult food. While this is good for their growth, if kittens are fed regularly to adults, obesity can occur.

Read the label

For kittens, their food is labeled “for growth and reproduction.” In contrast, adult cat food says they are intended for “adult maintenance.” Manufacturers of brands that meet the nutrition records of the American Association of Food Control Officials. Your kitten is guaranteed that they will provide adequate nutrition based on their stage of life. Evidence from clinical and experimental trials, these foods can give a growing cat with necessary nutrition. It provides the ingredients they need without overloading them with things they don’t need for adult cats.

Can adult cats eat kittens’ food?

The thing about kitten food is its higher calorie content. The same applies to the level of fat and protein in food. Kittens are not just a small version of an adult cat. An adult cat doesn’t need as many nutrients and calories as a kitten. Unlike cat food, kittens provide them with the ingredients they need to become healthy adults. If your cat is less than one year old, give it kitten food. So the answer to the question is it bad if adult cats eat kitten food? NO. There is no danger in feeding your cat food.

Pomeranian Spitz is eating. Pet dry food in a green ceramic bowl on pastel blue light background with dog paws, fluffy legs. Dog, puppy or cat food. Top view, flat lay. Healthy pet nutrition.

It may also be helpful to know that adult female cats, during pregnancy and even breastfeeding, are often fed high-fat and calorie foods. The only drawback is the possibility of obesity due to the higher quantity of fats and calories.

The majority of domesticated kittens require between 50 and 70 calories per kilogram of body weight per day. But it is not set in stone. Which means it can be more or less depending on your cat’s activity level.

More often than not, your daily calorie needs will be more significant if your small creature has a large body type or a high level of activity. Even cats without a natural need increase their daily calorie intake.

Here’s how you can determine how many calories your adult cat should consume per day:

Let’s say your cat weighs 10 pounds.

So 10 pounds divided by 2.2 equals 4.5

Now 4.5 x 50 gives you 225 calories


4.5 x 70 gives you 315 calories.

The average weight of an adult cat should be 11 pounds. It is an ideal weight, even if the cat weighs 10 pounds. So keep your daily calorie intake between 250 and 350 calories. But reduce the number of calories if your small animal is not too large.

Essential nutrients needed for adult cats

Your cat may not be getting enough protein every day. Adult cats need 2 to 3 times more protein than the adult version of an omnivore. A strange fact about cats is that they have evolved from consuming protein as their primary source of energy. Like everyone who eats animals!

Two black british shorthair kittens eating on white background. Top view

On the other hand, omnivores like humans use proteins with fats and carbohydrates. The protein content of cat food varies. It starts at 30% and reaches 50%. So if you choose protein-rich cat food, make sure it meets daily needs. It is a crucial nutrient, after all.

No wonder canned food is such a popular option. It contains more protein and fewer carbohydrates. Unfortunately, cats cannot handle carbs like grains.

But not all cat food brands are the same when it comes to calories, fat, and protein. Therefore, you should make sure to read the label and the nutritional information printed on the packaging. Most manufacturers mention their contact details or their website to dispel any doubts. This way, you can compare one brand to another.

To calculate the DMB, here is an example that can help you:

Assuming dry food fat is 5%, protein 10%, and moisture 78%.

Now you subtract the humidity from 100, which gives you 22% or 0.22.

Then divide ten by this number, 10 / .22 equals 45.

Therefore, dried foods contain 22% fat and 45% protein. You can use the same calculation to compare brands and other foods.

Reasonable feeding of an adult cat

A raw or completely rough diet is a healthy choice for a cat. It is the closest thing to what the cat would eat naturally. At the same time, a diet like this provides the recommended calories, fats, and proteins.

Cat food contains 40 to 60% protein. As for the fat content, it varies from 20 to 30%. For comparison, wild mice contain 20% fat and 59% protein. Is it almost the same?

Keep a check on the weight. If your pet’s weight does not increase with a high protein and calorie diet like this, consider consulting a veterinarian. Maybe he/she can recommend simple diagnostic tests to rule out problems like IBS. A change in your cat’s diet goes a long way in improving health and nutrition.


Is it okay for adult cats to eat kitten food? You can talk to your veterinarian about what might be best for your cat. There are some cat foods for all ages. For a year, kittens only need a special diet. Besides, the Maine cat giant takes about 18 months to reach maturity.

You may need to start looking at the age of your adult cat to choose prepared foods. As cats age, their teeth and gums often have problems. Therefore, they may require a softer diet.


Cats between the ages of 7 and 14 are the same as humans between the ages of 40 and 70. But cats don’t have to face a mid-life crisis as we do. Instead, they become demanding food. Therefore, at such times, you need to make sure that you feed them properly. The essential nutrients that arrive daily with enough water are not to be missed.

So, can adult cats eat kitten food? The nutritional needs of an adult cat are not the same as a kitten. And sometimes what happens is that too many or too few ingredients start to have an impact on their health. Therefore, you should try to check the cat’s weight when you know the level of activity it will change. This eliminates the possibility of obesity.

Keep your adult cat away from high-energy kitten food if it is not a very large or active pet. Instead of choosing foods explicitly created to meet your cat’s lifestyle and daily needs.

When you check the number of calories your cat consumes, you reduce your chances of developing potential health problems, such as osteoarthritis, kidney disease, and even cancer.




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