7 Best Cat Foods for British Shorthair Cats

By Nadine Oraby | 2021 Update

Affectionate, independent, and easy-going, the British shorthair holds a special rank in the list of the most low-maintenance and adaptable cat breeds around. 

Their low-maintenance requirement does make them an excellent pet, but one thing that owners must look after is their diet. Though if you are feeding your British shorthair all the right things, you can expect them to accompany you for many more years to come.

So how do you choose the best cat food for British shorthair?

Keep reading ahead to find out!

The Best Cat Foods For British Shorthair

Top ProductsRatingForm
1. Instinct Original Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Coated Dry Cat Food4.6Dry
2. Wellness Complete Health Chicken Entree Canned Cat Food4.2Wet
3. Fancy Feast Gravy Lovers Poultry & Beef Cat Food4.5Wet
4. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Chicken Cat Food4.7Dry
5. Purina Pro Plan Focus Indoor Care Salmon & Rice Cat Food4.7Dry
6. Iams ProActive Health Healthy Adult Chicken Cat Food4.7Dry
7. Blue Buffalo Indoor Health Chicken & Brown Rice Cat Food4.6Dry 

1. Instinct Original Grain-Free Recipe with Real Chicken Freeze-Dried Raw Coated Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Turkey Meal, 4. Peas, 5. Chicken Fat

Instinct’s Original Real Chicken Cat Food is probably the most well-suited choice of cat food for a British shorthair. Over 81% of it is made up of animal ingredients and oils, including real chicken meat in both raw and processed form. The remaining 19% comprises wholesome fruits and vegetables, which are a source of vitamins and minerals.

This leaves no room for grains, soy, wheat, corn, artificial preservatives, and any other non-beneficial and potential allergens in the cat food. The recipe also includes live probiotics, omega fatty acids, and antioxidants in abundance. These micronutrients help improve your British shorthair’s digestive, immune, and coat health.


2. Wellness Complete Health Pate Chicken Entree Grain-Free Canned Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Chicken Liver, 3. Turkey, 4. Chicken Broth, 5. Carrots

British shorthairs are quite lazy when it comes to drinking water. But with Wellness Complete Health Pate Canned Food, you can provide them with both a protein-rich diet and lots of hydration. It’s made up of multiple wholesome ingredients like real chicken, cranberries, and flaxseed, which provide tons of wholesome nutrients. 

However, the best thing about this canned food is its tasty broth, making it a lot more appealing and hydrating. It also contains antioxidants and fatty acids that improve coat health, boost immunity, and support urinary health. And like any high-quality cat food, it’s free from grains, wheat, soy, and artificial additives. 


3. Fancy Feast Gravy Lovers Poultry & Beef Feast Variety Pack Canned Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Poultry Broth, 2. Turkey, 3. Liver, 4. Wheat Gluten, 5. Meat By-Products

Does your cat get bored of constantly eating the same food? Purina’s Fancy Feast Poultry & Beef Canned Foods can get even the most stubborn cats to drool with its assortment of proteins and meaty texture. The pack contains three different meat flavors; beef, chicken, and turkey, each containing tender pieces of meat dipped in gravy.

Each can provides complete nutritional support from real meat and added vitamins and minerals. The tasty broth also helps in hydrating British shorthair cats and improving their urinary health. All ingredients used in the cat food are of premium-quality and are processed and crafted exclusively in US facilities.


4. Hill’s Science Diet Adult Perfect Weight Chicken Recipe Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Brewers Rice, 3. Dried Beet Pulp, 4. Flaxseed, 5. Chicken Fat

Obesity is a common problem among British shorthairs. With Hill’s Science Diet Perfect Weight cat food, you can provide your cat will complete holistic nutrition while helping them lose extra pounds or maintain a healthy weight. The recipe is carefully crafted with premium ingredients and a specific calorie count that allows your cat to shed fat while retaining muscle mass.

It also supports their digestive system and strengthens their immunity through antioxidants and vitamins. The cat food is particularly helpful for senior British shorthairs that need fewer calories and ample protein to maintain a lean body without putting on extra fat. 


5. Purina Pro Plan Focus Adult Indoor Care Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Salmon, 2. Brewer’s Rice, 3. Chicken Meal, 4. Dried Egg Product, 4. Animal Fat Preserved 

Most indoor cats live a sedentary lifestyle and are prone to becoming overweight. Purina Pro Plan Focus Adult Indoor formula is designed after these cats and provides full nutritional support while helping them regulate their weight. What makes it perfect for British shorthairs is the 40% protein content sourced from real salmon that supports the lean muscular build of this breed.

Apart from that, the cat food also improves digestive health through prebiotics and helps prevent hairball buildup. It’s also rich in omega fats and helps in strengthening your cat’s immunity through antioxidants. The Pro Plan Focus Indoor cat food is an all-around diet that’s perfect for the specific nutritional needs of indoor British shorthairs.


6. Iams ProActive Health Healthy Adult Original with Chicken Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Chicken By-Product Meal, 3. Dried Plain Beet Pulp, 4. Chicken Fat, 5. Ground Whole Grain Corn

A perfect choice for lazy and inactive British shorthairs, Iams ProActive Healthy Adult cat food provides premium nutrition along with a massive boost to your cat’s energy levels. It contains high-protein chicken and easily-digestible fibers that encourage muscle growth while powering your British shorthair through the day.

Apart from that, the diet also helps strengthen your cat’s digestive health with prebiotics support and nourishes their beautiful greyish-coat with omega 3 and 6 fatty acids. Its crunchy kibble texture also helps gently scrapes off plaque as your cat eats. If your British shorthair always seems tired, feed them Iams ProActive Healthy cat food and see their energy levels skyrocket. 


7. Blue Buffalo Indoor Health Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Adult Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Chicken, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Menhaden Fish Meal, 4. Brown Rice, 5. Oatmeal

Blue Buffalo’s Indoor Health cat food is crafted specifically for the indoor-loving British shorthair and delivers complete holistic nutrition while helping your cat maintain a healthy weight. All ingredients used in the cat food are of exceptional quality, including premium chicken meat, wholesome grains, and a variety of vitamin-rich fruits and vegetables.

Moreover, the cat food plays a crucial role in strengthening immunity and delivers an exact ratio of nutrients that help maintain optimal body weight. For cats with sensitive stomachs, the Indoor Health cat food is an excellent pick as its free from corn, wheat, soy, and artificial additives. 


8. Purina Beyond Simply White Meat Chicken & Whole Oat Meal Recipe Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Whole Barley, 4. Rice, 5. Whole Oat Meal

Simple and limited is the way to go for sensitive British shorthairs. Purina Beyond Simply LID cat food delivers on that promise with a recipe comprising entirely of a select few superfoods. That includes real chicken, oatmeal, dried carrots, apples, and brown rice. The cat food is also free from corn, wheat, soy, and artificial additives.

Apart from supporting your cat’s nutritional needs, the dry food also delivers natural probiotics that strengthen digestive health. It’s also easy on the stomach and digests quickly, making it an optimal choice for British shorthairs that are allergic or sensitive to most ingredients in traditional cat foods.


9. Natural Balance L.I.D. Limited Ingredient Diets High Protein Chicken Formula Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Chicken, 2. Chicken Meal, 3. Peas, 4. Chicken Fat, 5. Flaxseed

Most sensitive cats would survive on a regular LID cat food. But for a muscular breed like the British shorthair, you need a high-protein formula like the Natural Balance LID High-Protein cat food. It consists of 60% protein and fat content sourced entirely from real chicken. Carbs and other micronutrients are sourced from plant-based ingredients for optimal absorption.

With the limited ingredients diet, all dense ingredients and allergens like grains, wheat, soy, and artificial additives are also completely removed. The tasty kibble food is guaranteed to become a favorite of your British shorthair and will significantly improve nutrient absorption and digestion for them.


10. Wellness CORE Grain-Free Indoor Formula Dry Cat Food

Top 5 Ingredients: 1. Deboned Chicken, 2. Turkey Meal, 3. Chicken Meal, 4. Potatoes, 5. Ground Flaxseed

When it comes to premium-nutrition, it doesn’t get any better than Wellness Core’s Grain-Free Cat Food. The protein-dense dense cat food composes of real chicken and turkey meat to support the lean body of British shorthairs. Its formulation is very beneficial for weight maintenance and fat management, particularly for older cats.

Apart from that, the cat food also contains probiotics for more efficient digestion and omega fatty acids for a shinier and softer coat. The recipe is fortified with minerals and vitamins, and supports immunity and joint health as well. And the best part is that all of it comes without grains, corn, wheat, and soy.


Buyer’s Guide

Choosing the right cat food goes a long way in ensuring that your British shorthair lives a long and healthy life. These cats don’t have any distinct nutritional needs, and their impulsive appetite makes it easier to pick the best cat food for them.

The best diet for a British shorthair comprises majorly of protein, a moderate quantity of essential fats, very few carbs, and a range of vital micronutrients. To find out why these nutrients are necessary and how they impact your British shorthair, keep reading ahead!

Basic Nutrient Requirements Of British Shorthairs

To select the best cat food for British shorthairs, you have to start at the core of their diet. The three core macronutrients for cats are proteins, fats, and carbs. These nutrients are responsible for multiple body functions and should come from premium-quality and preferably natural sources. Here’s what you should consider in a cat food regarding these three macronutrients:

1. High protein content

British shorthairs are known for their chunky body shape, almost all of which is made up of lean muscle mass. To maintain this muscle, these cats need a diet that mostly consists of premium-grade protein. A high-protein diet is also crucial for optimum heart functioning and to stay energetic throughout the day. 

We suggest picking a formula with a minimum of 35% protein content, although most cat foods on our list are well-above that mark. As for the protein options, both grass-fed lamb and beef are excellent picks for this cat. But if yours has trouble digesting red meat, you can always opt for poultry, fish, or rabbit meat. 

2. Essential fats and fatty acids

Most cat owners confuse fat with obesity. However, essential fatty acids are a critical part of a British Shorthair’s diet and support coat health, joint health, nutrient absorption, and various other functions. A British Shorthair needs a minimum of 15-20% fat content comprising of various omega fatty acids for optimum health. 

3. Variety of micronutrients

The majority of owners tend to overlook micronutrients on the ingredient list. But just like every cat, a British shorthair also needs these supplementary nutrients for overall well-being.

One of these micronutrients is taurine. A cat’s body requires taurine for optimum heart health, cognition, vision, digestion, and many other small but vital functions. Due to processing, the natural taurine in the ingredients used to make cat food gets destroyed. So, many brands use supplemental taurine in their formula, which can be clearly seen on the ingredient list.

Probiotics and prebiotics are other categories of micronutrients crucial for British shorthairs with sensitive stomachs and digestive disorders. Both of these strengthen the digestive system and make it easier for cats to process and absorb nutrients from their diet. The role of these micronutrients is to promote the growth or quantity of gut flora, which is the good bacteria present in the digestive tract of your cat.

Antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals are also a crucial part of a British shorthair’s diet. They rid your cat’s body off of toxins, solidify their immunity, and are essential for overall body functioning. Many brands use artificial vitamin and mineral supplements in their formulas and source a few from whole foods. 

How to choose the best cat food for your British shorthair

All British shorthairs have unique nutritional needs, so the right cat food for someone else’s shorthair probably wouldn’t be the best choice for yours. That’s why you need to check your cat against a few factors that will help you pick the best cat food for your unique British shorthair. Here are those factors:

1. Age

From kittenhood to adulthood and then to seniority, a British shorthair’s need for calories increases and then decreases later. As a kitten, a shorthair needs a diet packed with calories in multiple meals throughout the day. Once they become an adult, their overall caloric requirement increases, but the total number of times they eat in a day decreases. And when the shorthair becomes a senior cat, their caloric requirement decreases while the number of meals remains the same. However, a senior cat needs more protein, fewer carbs, and preferably zero grains as their digestive system and activity slow. 

2. Sensitivity

British shorthairs with sensitive digestion and more allergies require a special diet too. Depending on how sensitive they are, a shorthair should be fed a limited ingredient diet or one with no grains, wheat, soy, and corn. Moreover, their diet should be free from artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives. If your British shorthair is sensitive to a particular protein, opt for more gentle meat sources such as rabbit, turkey, and salmon.

3. Activity Levels

While most British shorthairs live a sedentary lifestyle, some are quite active and burn through calories quicker. Depending on your cat’s activity levels, you should either choose an indoor formula designed for inactive cats or a caloric-dense cat food designed for the more energetic and playful cats. 

Foods British Shorthairs DON’T Need

If you let a British Shorthair loose, they’ll probably eat everything in sight and reach. However, there are certain food items and ingredients that you should avoid when feeding these cats. Here is a list of those ingredients and food items:

1. Grains and wheat

All cats are obligate carnivores, meaning that their digestive systems are designed solely to process meat and flesh. So if you feed them grains, they won’t be able to fully digest or derive any nutrients from it. The excess calories will simply collect as fat and make your cat more obese. 

British Shorthairs are particularly prone to becoming obese, which makes grains even more incompatible with these cats. Another issue with grains is that they can irritate the digestive system of sensitive cats. This can cause them to develop diarrhea, bloating, and lose their appetite. 

2. Dog food

A British shorthair’s drive to eat everything possible can often land them into your dog’s food bowl. However, you must try to keep dog food away from these cats at all costs. Because most dog foods are significantly more caloric-dense than cat foods, they will make your British shorthair gain weight rapidly. Moreover, it will discourage your cat from eating their own food, and the resulting loss of nutrients will start ruining their health.

3. Dairy and toxic foods

It’s a well-known fact that most cats are lactose intolerant. A cat’s digestive system cannot process lactose past their weaning stage, so eating dairy products is likely to trigger bouts of diarrhea. British shorthairs are especially more susceptible to lactose intolerance, but their constant hunger can often land them into dairy products. Apart from moderate amounts of cheese and lactose-free yogurt, you shouldn’t feed any sort of dairy product to your British shorthair. 

Moreover, you should keep these common food items out of the reach of your British shorthairs. Most of these contain chemicals that are toxic to cats and could kill them even in small quantities:

  • Onions
  • Chocolate
  • Alcohol
  • Coffee
  • Grapes
  • Garlic
  • Xylitol
  • Raisins

Why Most British Shorthairs Are Dehydrated

Most cat owners are quite concerned about what their cat eats but don’t pay enough focus on how much water they drink. What makes this matter worse is the relaxed approach of British shorthairs when it comes to hydration. These cats will often skimp on drinking water out of a water bowl until their thirst becomes uncontrollable. This behavior can quickly aggravate into dehydration, urinary issues, and kidney stones.

So how do you make your British shorthairs drink water? Use a water fountain or leave taps dripping around your house. Cats are naturally used to drinking water from running sources rather than a bowl placed right beside their food. You could also use a water bowl, just make sure that you place several of them around the house and refill them with fresh water routinely.

Another great way to indirectly hydrate your British shorthair is to feed them wet food, fruits, and vegetables. If you can’t afford wet food, just make some meat-flavored broth and add it to their dry food. You can also use various cat-safe fruits and vegetables to keep your British shorthair hydrated, particularly during the summer season.


FAQ’s

At what age do British Shorthairs become adults?

British Shorthairs mature much slower compared to other breeds and become adults at 3 years of age. However, these cats do become sexually mature around 6 to 12 months after birth.

Which health problems are British shorthairs more prone to?

Although British shorthairs are a generally healthy breed, they are prone to common feline diseases such as obesity, hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, hemophilia B, and some joint diseases such as arthritis. 

What is the best weight for a British shorthair?

The average weight for a three-year-old male British shorthair is 7 – 12lbs (3.2 – 5.4kg), while for a female British shorthair of the same age, the average weight is 9 – 17lbs (4.1 – 7.7 kg). Anything more than that will be considered as being obese.

How much should a British shorthair eat?

A British shorthair kitten should be fed around 3 to 5 small meals a day, while an adult or senior British shorthair should be fed 2 to 3 meals a day. As for how much to feed, discuss your cat’s caloric requirements with your vet for the most accurate estimate.

Is wet food better for British shorthairs than dry food?

Wet cat food is better for British shorthairs as these cats are prone to getting dehydrated. However, dry food is also a good option and can be used with a broth to help your shorthair stay hydrated.