Breed-specific diets – including those that boast “ergonomic” kibbles (I kid you not) specifically engineered for different breeds of cats – are a marketing gimmick.
Just for kicks a few years ago, I spent a little quality time dissecting the claims made on some of the pet food company websites that began aggressively marketing “breed-specific” diets. Just a handful of the implicit and explicit conclusions one is led to draw from the ‘technical articles’ and explanations they offer:
- All breeds are quite fine eating nothing but dry food.
- The shape of the kibble is paramount to ensuring that each cat gets what it needs. Maine Coons, for example, ostensibly benefit from especially large-sized kibble, according to one company, whereas Persian cats do best with kibble that’s shaped like an almond.
- Corn gluten meal is a perfectly reasonable primary ingredient in the diet of an obligate carnivore.
- Chicken meal is appropriate as the primary ingredient for all cats.
- Outdoor cats, perhaps owing to the “greater stress they face,” have a greater need for corn gluten meal.
Our cats don’t need a specially-shaped kibble and they never have. All they’ve needed is a diet that respects the fact that they’re carnivores.