Is your cat an indoor cat? Nurturing the health of indoor cats is crucial. As the owner, you need to ensure you feed it on foods that support its indoor lifestyle. There are so many brands claiming to offer indoor cat formulas, but very few deliver on the nutritional needs of cats.
AvoDerm is one of the brands that offer indoor formulas. Their indoor care formula is a dry product meant to cater for the health of an indoor cat. According to the company, this formula contains the required ingredients to reduce the formation of hairballs while at the same time boosting the immune system.
Is this formula as good as it is said to be? Read on to find out.
Ingredients in AvoDerm Indoor Hairball Care Cat Food
Chicken Meal, Ground Whole Corn, Corn Gluten Meal, Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols), Ground Whole Brown Rice, Tomato Pomace (Source of Lycopene), Avocado, Herring Meal, Oat Bran, Natural Flavor, Pea Fiber, Egg Product, Whey, Salt, Chicory Root, Potassium Chloride, Vitamins (a-Tocopherol Acetate (Source of Vitamin E), Choline Chloride, Niacin, Thiamine Mononitrate (Source of Vitamin B1), Vitamin A Acetate, Calcium Pantothenate, Menadione Sodium Bisulfate Complex, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride (Source of Vitamin B6), Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Ascorbic Acid (Source of Vitamin C), Vitamin B12 Supplement, Biotin, Folic Acid), Minerals (Zinc Amino Acid Chelate, Zinc Sulfate, Iron Amino Acid Chelate, Copper Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Manganese Amino Acid Chelate, Manganous Oxide, Copper Amino Acid Chelate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), Avocado Oil, Taurine, Lecithin, Calcium Carbonate, Kelp Meal, Parsley Flakes, DL-Methionine, Yucca Schidigera Extract, Inositol.
Top 5 Ingredients Breakdown
Chicken meal is ground up chicken meat that has been carefully dried to a moisture level of 10%. The protein content is 65% and the fat level is 12%. Many pet owners feel that chicken is a superior ingredient to chicken meal. It would seem logical that feeding a pet a whole, non-rendered chicken would be good. However, whole chicken still contains its moisture content prior to cooking and since whole chicken consists of about 80% moisture, after the cooking process is over there isn’t much left. With chicken meal, the moisture was removed prior to cooking. That means, chicken meal actually has a much higher protein percentage and provides far more beneficial nutrients to your cats than whole chicken. Meals consist of meat and skin, with or without the bones, but exclusive of feathers/hair, heads, feet, horns, entrails etc. and have the proper calcium/phosphorus ratio required for a balanced diet. It’s also important to note the quality difference between “chicken by-product meal” and “chicken meal.” While we do take exception to chicken by-products, chicken meal is actually a very high quality and nutritious ingredient. We are happy to see this listed.
Ground Whole Corn
Unfortunately, corn is one of the most widely known food allergens for cats. If your cat does not have a pre-existing allergy to this ingredient, he or she should not experience any allergic reactions. However, this ingredient is also difficult for many cats to digest, so you should keep an eye on your cat for any digestion problems or stomach upset. And finally, this ingredient is normally used in cheaper cat food products as a filler ingredient. It will help make your cat feel more full and will also boost the protein percentage of the food. Since cats are obligate carnivores, however, they do not digest plant based proteins like they do animal based proteins. Overall, this ingredient is pretty lousy unless it is only included in smaller quantities. If your cat suffers from digestion issues or food allergies, do not feed this food to your cat.
Corn Gluten Meal
This is the dried residue from corn after the removal of the larger part of the starch and germ, and the separation of the bran by the process employed in the wet milling manufacture of corn starch or syrup, or by enzymatic treatment of the endosperm. The expression “corn gluten” is colloquial jargon that describes corn proteins that are neither gliadin nor glutenin. Only wheat, barley, rye and oat contain true gluten. For the most part, this ingredient is normally only found in cheaper “grocery store brand” cat foods. Corn is frequently used as a filler ingredient to help make your cat feel more full, but it does not add much of anything to the nutritional value in the food. In addition, this is a common allergen for many cats and corn based ingredients can often be difficult for cats to digest. That’s why we can’t recommend this food for cats with food allergies or sensitive digestive systems.
Chicken Fat (Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols)
Chicken fat is a quality source of essential fatty acids and an excellent source of energy. Fat has a positive effect on the immune system and plays a beneficial role in stress response. Essential fatty acids are required for proper growth, reproduction, normal skin structure and a healthy coat. Because chicken fat contains virtually no protein, it’s use does not cause allergic reactions associated with the use of fresh chicken or chicken meal which contain high amounts of protein. Many times, mixed tocopherols, which are a natural source of Vitamin E activity, are used as a natural preservative to maintain freshness. This is considered a higher quality fat source in pet food.
Ground Whole Brown Rice
This is a grain that many cat owners are trying to avoid because it is a known allergen for many cats. The ingredient doesn’t supply much of any nutritional value, either. However, of all the grain products used in cat food, this grain has the lowest risk of causing allergies. There is also a growing risk of arsenic in rice. So far, the FDA believes the arsenic levels are low enough to be safe for humans and pets. However, you might want to read more about this, just so you are aware. Many cat food companies like to use this ingredient because it helps to make your cat feel more full and it is one of the easier grains for cats to digest.
Additional Ingredients In Avoderm Indoor Hairball Care Cat Food
This ingredient will provide some fiber for your cat, but for the most part, it is simply used as a filler to help make your cat feel more full. Many cats seem to enjoy the taste of oatmeal and since there are no major health concerns associated with it, this ingredient makes for a great alternative filler ingredient instead of using corn and grains.
Peas are becoming more and more common in pet foods today, especially those listed as grain-free, holistic, or natural pet foods. While peas are certainly not grains, they serve much the same purpose. It mostly acts as a filler and a cheap way to increase the protein percentage of the food. However, cats receive almost no nutritional value from peas. Since cats are obligate carnivores, they require proteins from meat based ingredients. There is very little research that has been performed on the long term effects of cats consuming peas. We do know that peas can cause runny poop or digestion issues in dogs, but the full effect on cats remains a bit of an unknown. At best, this ingredient will act as a filler and will not provide much nutritional value, if any, to your cat.
Bran, also known as miller’s bran, is the hard outer layers of cereal grain. As a grain, it will not provide any nutritional value. In addition, many cats have difficulty digesting grains and grains are also a known allergen for many cats. While probably not unhealthy for your cat in smaller quantities, it isn’t considered to be very nutritious, either.
Herring is a silvery fish that is most abundant in coastal waters. Fish provides an excellent source of proteins as well as high amounts of healthy omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Some people worry about mercury levels in fish. It’s true that all fish contains some degree of mercury, the level in salmon is much lower than other types of fish and the FDA doesn’t believe it causes any problems. Most herring in cat food is likely farmed herring, but higher end cat food (especially those labeled “natural”) can often times be fished from natural environments. The biggest problem with fish ingredients, including herring, is if the fish includes an antioxidant called ethoxyquin (EMQ). It is believe that ethoxyquin could be very harmful to cats and other animals. Always make sure you are using “Ethoxyquin free” cat food blends when they include fish ingredients. When in doubt, call the customer service number and ask.
Allergy Risks In Avoderm Cat Food
Unfortunately, this formula contains several allergens amongst the first five ingredients. While most cats are not allergic to any ingredients in this food, it is not recommended for any cats with a sensitive stomach or pre-existing food allergies.
Poor Quality Ingredients Commonly Found In Cat Food
Corn and corn extracts – Unfortunately, corn is a known allergen for many cats and cats do not receive much of any nutritional value at all from corn, even though corn helps to boost the overall protein percentage of the food. Syrup extracts usually aren’t harmful to cats, but they aren’t all that nutritious, either. In fact, many syrup extracts will contain quite a bit of sugar which can lead to weight gain. Since many adult cats have diabetes, it’s probably a safer bet to stay away from syrups.
Soy and wheat – Both soy and wheat are known as “filler ingredients” in both cat and dog food products. Filler ingredients are used to help make your cat feel more full, but don’t offer much in the way of nutrition. These are very cheap ingredients for pet food companies to use but also boosts the protein percentage in the food. Unfortunately, cats are obligate carnivores and so they can’t actually process these plant based proteins the same way they can process meat based proteins. Some cats also have allergic reactions to these ingredients or may have a tough time digesting them. In smaller quantities, these ingredients are generally ok, but they are considered lower quality ingredients without much nutritional value and pose some health risks to cats.
Gluten – This ingredient is associated with causing allergies in cats. It is also known to raise sugar levels in cats. Over time, this can lead to diabetes. Gluten refers to the proteins found in wheat endosperm which is a type of tissue produced in seeds that’s ground to make flour. Many pet food manufactures will use this ingredient to help boost the protein percentage of the food.
Unfortunately, the Avoderm Indoor Hairball Care dry cat food formula contains most of these potentially harmful ingredients.
This is a low quality cat food formula. It contains numerous ingredients known to cause allergic reactions in many cats and those ingredients are amongst its first five ingredients. We therefor do not advise feeding this cat food to your cat. While most cats will live a healthy life on this cat food, we think there are some far superior cat food blends that are a much better alternative. Judging by the ingredients alone, we believe this cat food is well below average quality.