Many older cats develop a frustrating habit of vomiting up their food shortly after eating it. While many pet owners focus on the fact that they have to clean up this vomit, there are other adverse consequences.
If this occurs regularly enough, then it could lead to this older cat struggling to get sufficient nutrition and moisture, which can have a range of knock-on effects.
Finding a cat food recipe that an older cat can consistently keep down can be a significant challenge; however, we’ve come up with a shortlist of reliable recipes to consider and trial.
We won’t go into detail about the basics of cat food, but if you are interested in learning more about the feline diet and nutrition, we’d highly recommend reading our Cat Food Guide for an in-depth discussion and analysis.
Best Cat Food For Older Cats That Vomit
Purina Pro Plan LiveClear Probiotic Turkey & Oatmeal Formula Review
While Purina Pro Plan is controversial to some, its well-known worldwide as a provider of specialized pet food recipes for health issues.
They invest thousands of hours into the research and development of their product lines and stand out in comparison to smaller brands that can’t justify such research.
To learn more about the behemoth that is Purina Pro Plan, head on over to our Purina Pro Plan Review.
Their LiveClear cat food range is relatively new and focuses on cats with sensitive stomachs and digestive systems, which could make it an ideal choice for older cats that vomit.
Chicken and Turkey are the recipe’s primary two ingredients and act as a stable base of animal-based protein and fat. While many cat food recipes for health issues tend to provide poor nutrition, it is the opposite for this recipe from Purina Pro Plan, and it includes a minimum of 40% protein and 18% fat.
While some cats react poorly, Chicken and Turkey do not tend to be the cause of stomach or digestive issues in comparison to some other meat ingredients.
Outside of this poultry content, the recipe utilizes a mix of Pea Protein, Rice, Oat Meal, and other plant-based ingredients to provide a portion of carbohydrates, plant-based protein, and fiber.
Royal Canin Sensitive Digestion Recipe Review
Royal Canin is another reliable brand in the space of specialized cat food recipes. The above Sensitive Digestion recipe from Royal Canin is tailor-made for cats with sensitive digestion or stomachs and does not require a veterinary prescription like some other specialized recipes.
You can read an in-depth analysis of Royal Canin here.
The largest component of the recipe is Chicken Meal which provides the bulk of the recipe’s protein and fat content.
Cat owners are often fearful of Meat Meal ingredients like Chicken Meal, but they shouldn’t be as they can be an excellent addition. Meat meals have already had the bulk of their moisture removed before production, which means they are a far denser source of protein and fat than traditional meat cuts.
While not as impressive as the previous Purina Pro Plan recipe, this recipe includes a minimum of 33% protein and 20% fat.
Like most Royal Canin recipes, this Sensitive Digestion formula utilizes a mix of grain ingredients like Brewers Rice, Corn Gluten Meal, Wheat, and Corn.
While these ingredients may be controversial, Royal Canin’s research has shown that a careful balance can be advantageous to some cats. These ingredients provide a mix of nutrition in the form of carbohydrates, plant-based protein, and fiber.
NomNom Chicken Cuisine Review
For those who aren’t interested in using recipes from the big pet food brands may want to consider Nom Nom. Nom Nom is a provider of fresh pet food and utilizes the growing trend of subscription services.
Pet owners receive pre-portioned food by delivery at regular intervals, which helps eliminate waste and adds serious convenience over traditional pet food. You can read the outline of this delivery method on their FAQ Page.
Many cats respond far better to fresh cat food recipes like those from Nom Nom in comparison to highly processed recipes. This better response could help to minimize vomiting among senior cats and help them retain their food.
We would highly recommend checking out our dedicated page to Nom Nom (which you can find here) to learn more about how fresh home-delivered cat food works and its advantages.
While Nom Nom tends to focus on dog food, they have a single cat food recipe which is featured above. This bulk of the recipe is made up of a mix of Chicken and Chicken Liver.
While Chicken is self-explanatory, the Chicken Liver is an important addition to point out. Organ meat ingredients like Chicken Liver can greatly enhance the flavor of cat food and provide additional beneficial vitamins and minerals that may be lacking in traditional meat cuts.
In contrast to the above, this recipe is completely grain-free and instead includes a small portion of Carrots and Spinach as its only notable plant-based content.
This small portion of vegetables provides a modest proportion of carbohydrates and fiber and brings the recipe’s nutritional profile in line with a cat’s natural diet.
Go! Limited Ingredient Grain Free Pollock Recipe Review
While Go! may not have the depth of research and development that Purina and Royal Canin do, they still have experts working with them. According to Petcurean’s website, Go! employs a Nutritional Manager with a PH.D. in companion animal nutrition along with three nutritionists with a Master of Science in animal nutrition.
This expertise will help ensure that Go!’s sensitivities recipes are crafted for cats with sensitive stomachs and digestive systems.
If you’d like to learn more about Go! and its parent company Petcurean, head on over to our Go! Brand Review.
The above Pollock Recipe is our favorite from this sensitivities range, and it includes a mix of Pollock, Pollock Meal, and Eggs as its primary ingredients. While Pollock is not a common addition to pet food recipes, it is a positive one.
Whitefish ingredients such as Pollock are often given to pets with digestive issues as they can often help stabilize digestion in comparison to other meat or fish ingredients.
Eggs are another excellent addition and are one of the most bioavailable ingredients. They can supplement the Pollock and provide additional protein, fat, and beneficial vitamins and minerals.
This recipe from Go! is one of their traditional grain-free recipes, and as a consequence, it uses a mix of legumes and starch ingredients such as Peas, Tapioca, Lentils, and Chickpeas.
These ingredients are extremely common thanks to their low-cost and favorable nutrition. They can provide a nutritional profile that includes carbohydrates, plant-based protein, and fiber.
FirstMate Wild Salmon & Tuna Formula Review
FirstMate is another Canadian pet food brand that has a proven track record. They have a large product range including dog food, cat food, grain-free food, and food for pets with health problems like sensitive digestion.
You can read more about the FirstMate brand and its origin in our FirstMate Brand Review.
The above wet-cat food recipe is one of these specialized recipes for cats with sensitive digestion. The recipe uses an extremely simple ingredient list to minimize the risk of an adverse reaction which could be ideal for an older cat who regularly vomits.
The recipe’s primary two ingredients are Salmon and Tuna, which are both high-quality fish ingredients and can provide an ample proportion of fish-based protein and fat.
Salmon, in particular, is a favorite of ours thanks to its high levels of the Omega 3 Fatty acids, which many believe can provide cats with several health benefits. Examples include an improvement in the condition of skin and fur as well as a reduction in the risk of certain diseases.
These health benefits could be particularly important for an older cat who is aiming to stay healthy and minimize health problems.
Outside of these two fish ingredients, the only other notable inclusion is a small portion of Potatoes. However, these Potatoes are not present to provide significant nutrition and are instead used as a binding agent to hold the food together in a constant texture.
Nulo Freestyle Senior Alaska Pollock, Duck & Sweet Potato Recipe Review
Nulo is another well-known pet food brand but one that is quite young in comparison to others. It was founded in 2009 Michael Landa and since then has seen explosive growth.
While some of the other recipes may be hard to acquire, Nulo is sold nationwide in thousands of pet food stores as well as from most of the online pet food websites, which should make it easy to get ahold of.
We’ve decided to highlight their Senior Recipe as an option for older cats that vomit as it is specialized for mature cats. While it may not be quite as specialized for digestive issues as others mentioned here, it will likely still perform better than standard adult cat food recipes.
This recipe from Nulo also uses Pollock, like the previously mentioned Go! formula does, but also includes smaller portions of Chicken Meal and Turkey Meal.
This combination of Pollock and Poultry ingredients provides a stable base of meat and fish. In addition, this large combination provides a very satisfactory proportion of protein and fat coming in at a minimum of 38% and 14%, respectively.
Outside of this fish and poultry content, Nulo utilizes a mix of Peas, Lentils, and Sweet Potatoes as its plant-based content. This mix provides the recipe with a modest proportion of carbohydrates, plant-based protein, and fiber.
While not all cats react well to these ingredients, this recipe could be advantageous for those cats who react poorly to alternatives like grains.
Tiki Cat Aloha Friends Tuna With Pumpkin Review
Tiki Cat is common sight on the shelves of retail pet food stores across the United States and they offer a large range of wet/canned cat food recipes.
Many believe that cats should exclusively eat wet/canned cat food as it is the only effective means for cats to take on sufficient moisture.
While you wouldn’t guess it, Tiki’s Aloha Friends range is designed for cats with sensitive digestion and provides a modest range of simple yet nutritious recipes.
The above Tuna With Pumpkin is a prime example of this and only includes two core ingredients which are, as you might have guessed, Tuna and Pumpkin.
The large portion of Tuna provides a strong base of fish-based protein and fat, which comes out to be a minimum of 11% and 1.8%, respectively.
The Pumpkin is an interesting addition and is well-known as a digestive aid. Pumpkin is often given to cats or dogs with slower digestion thanks to its high fiber content.
However, Pumpkin could also be advantageous to some older cats who do not react poorly to it and help them to stabilize their digestion to avoid vomiting.