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Dave’s Cat Food Review 2023: Recalls, Pros & Cons

Review Summary

Our Final Verdict

We give Dave’s Pet Food cat food a rating of 4.6 out of 5 stars. 


There’s been a big push lately away from commercialized cat foods made with cheap ingredients and far too many fillers. Many people are searching for healthier alternatives for their beloved pets. Some people even feed their cats diets consisting entirely of whole foods they prepare themselves. Naturally, this would take more time, effort, and money than most of us could afford to spend on our felines. This leaves a glaring space in the market for affordable and convenient cat food that offers our cats healthy ingredients and complete nutrition that’s formulated with felines in mind, rather than just profits.

Dave’s Pet Food is a brand that aims to fill that space with food formulas created with specifically the nutrition that cats need, available at affordable prices much cheaper than many premium brands. Dave’s aims to make nutritional products that are crafted with top-notch premium ingredients, minus the outrageous price tag. As such, the company keeps advertising costs low, allowing them to pass the savings on to the consumer.

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At a Glance: The Best Dave’s Cat Food Recipes:

Image Product Details
Our Favorite
Dave’s Pet Food Tuna & Chicken Dinner in Gravy Dave’s Pet Food Tuna & Chicken Dinner in Gravy
  • Feature iconHigh in protein
  • Feature iconUses tuna broth for moisture
  • Feature iconMade with top-quality ingredients
  • Second place
    Dave’s Pet Food Saucey Tuna Dinner in Gravy Dave’s Pet Food Saucey Tuna Dinner in Gravy
  • Feature iconGrain-free recipe
  • Feature iconMade with dolphin-safe tuna
  • Feature iconPackaged in a safe BPA-free pouch
  • Third place
    Dave’s Pet Food Restricted Diet Magnesium & Phosphorus Grain-Free Pork Dave’s Pet Food Restricted Diet Magnesium & Phosphorus Grain-Free Pork
  • Feature iconGreat for cats with sensitivities
  • Feature iconGreat for cats on a restricted diet
  • Feature iconLow in magnesium and phosphorous
  • Dave’s Pet Food Gobbleicious Gourmet Dinner Dave’s Pet Food Gobbleicious Gourmet Dinner
  • Feature iconContains omega-3 and 6 fatty acids
  • Feature iconSupports digestive and urinary health
  • Feature iconProvides a complete and balanced diet
  • Dave’s Pet Food Cat’s Meow 95% Turkey & Turkey Liver Dave’s Pet Food Cat’s Meow 95% Turkey & Turkey Liver
  • Feature iconA carrageenan-free meal
  • Feature iconIncludes vitamins, such as vitamin D3 and B12
  • Feature iconHelps support heart health and healthy digestion
  • Dave’s Cat Food Reviewed

    Dave’s Pet Food is a unique brand in the marketplace. Many companies aim to fill the same market niche that Dave’s occupies with their affordable yet healthy pet foods made with top-tier ingredients and formulated with peak pet health in mind. But other companies don’t do it like Dave’s, keeping the small-business attitude and ethics alive while being sold at more than 2,000 stores across the US with an online presence to top it off.

    Who Makes Dave’s Cat Food And Where Is It Produced?

    Dave’s cat food is made by Dave’s Soda and Pet City, owned by Dave Ratner. Dave started a small soda store when he was young, but noticed a need for high-quality yet affordable pet foods. So, he started selling pet foods and sodas from his shop, Dave’s Soda and Pet City, which continued to grow. Eventually, Dave was able to afford to produce food under his own brand, and Dave’s Pet Food was born.

    Most pet foods from Dave’s are produced in the US or Canada. However, cat food flavors that include tuna are produced in Thailand in dolphin-free manufacturing facilities.

    Which Types of Cats is Dave’s Best Suited for?

    Dave’s is a health-conscious pet food brand that produces quality pet foods that are ideal for just about any pet. Their cat foods are made with feline health as the main focus. They offer grain-free options that are great for cats with sensitive stomachs or digestive issues. There’s even a line of Dave’s for those on a restricted diet, so you can find an applicable blend for just about any cat in the Dave’s lineup.

    Which Types of Cats Might Do Better With a Different Brand?

    The only cats that might benefit more from another brand would be cats that need very specific prescribed foods that are recommended by a vet. In such cases, the vet will provide information regarding exactly which food and brand should be used. For all other healthy cats, Dave’s cat food offers excellent nutrition at a reasonable price.

    Discussion of The Primary Ingredients (Good and Bad)

    The ingredients make up the recipe, so you can learn a lot about the quality of any given pet food formula by taking a close look at the ingredients used to craft it. In this case, we’ll be looking at the ingredients in Dave’s Pet Food Naturally Healthy Grain-Free Tuna & Chicken Dinner in Gravy Canned Cat Food. It’s one of the best-selling cat foods offered by Dave’s, so it should provide a good idea of the quality you can expect from Dave’s cat food on the whole.

    Ingredients lists are in order from the most prevalent ingredient down to the least. So, ingredients at the top of the list are the main ingredients found in the highest dosages within the recipe, and ingredients at the end of the list are minor players found in low amounts. Rather than look at every ingredient used in this cat food, we’re going to look at the top five ingredients, the primary ingredients that make up the bulk of this particular blend.

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    Tuna is a high-protein food that cats love. Often, it’s recommended that you don’t feed tuna to your cat since they can easily become addicted. However, in this case, it’s mixed with enough other ingredients to avoid tuna addiction. Tuna does contain plenty of health-boosting nutrients for your cat. It’s high in protein and low in fat. Furthermore, tuna provides your cat with EPA, DHA, and omega fatty acids, which are all essential for your feline. We always like to see a whole-food animal-based protein source listed as the first ingredient, and Dave’s meets that expectation with this blend.

    Tuna Broth

    This cat food blend is 82% moisture. That’s a bit higher than some canned cat foods we’ve seen, but most wet cat foods are 70% moisture or more. Often, you’ll see that the moisture comes straight from water. Here, we can see the moisture is coming from tuna broth instead. This is desirable since tuna broth carries nutrients similar to tuna that are great for your cat. Plus, the tuna broth offers a lot of flavor to entice your cat.


    In any cat food, whole-food animal ingredients are what we’re looking for. Cats are obligate carnivores and they need to eat animals to be healthy. Chicken is another high-quality protein source for cats. Along with tuna, it’s providing a mix of different amino acids and necessary nutrients. Notice that it’s listed as chicken, rather than a cheaper, lower quality substitute like a chicken by-product.

    Natural Flavor

    Cats are notoriously picky eaters. To combat this, you want to provide tasty foods that your cat will like. Helping in that department is the inclusion of natural flavor, meant to enhance the taste of the other ingredients in this blend so that it’s more desirable for your feline.

    Ground Tapioca

    Tapioca is a common ingredient in grain-free cat foods, but it’s not the same as the dessert tapioca that might come to mind for you. Tapioca in your cat’s food doesn’t contain added sugar to make it sweet. It also contains little to no protein, and it’s not a potential food allergen, making it completely safe for cats, even those that commonly experience adverse reactions to foods. Granted, tapioca is still a carbohydrate, which cats don’t need to consume in high amounts. Luckily, as the fifth ingredient on a rather short ingredients list, there’s probably not much ground tapioca to be found within this food.

    Animal-Based Ingredients

    As obligate carnivores, cats need to eat a lot of ingredients that are made up of animals. These animal-based ingredients provide the nutrients that are essential to a cat’s health, such as taurine, vitamin A, and vitamin E. In this cat food blend, we can see that three of the five main ingredients are animal-based, offering a diverse blend of protein in ample dosage to keep your cat healthy and happy.

    Cats Need Flavor Too

    It’s easy to feel concerned about any types of added flavorings, even natural flavors. But remember, your cat needs to enjoy its food too! Otherwise, it will probably ignore whatever you try to feed it. Those natural flavors are added to make the food more appealing to your pet. Plus, natural flavors aren’t unhealthy. Usually, these natural flavors are a nutritional yeast additive that simply enhances the flavors of the meat ingredients in the recipe.

    Low Carbohydrate Formula

    Despite the inclusion of ground tapioca in the top five ingredients, this cat food blend is still very low in carbohydrates overall. In fact, it contains only 2.48% carbohydrates. This is ideal for cats since they’re not great at digesting carbohydrates. Many competing foods utilize far more carbohydrate fillers because they’re cheap and add a lot of weight to the food. But as we can see from this low carbohydrate content, Dave’s doesn’t cheap out by including a bunch of filler ingredients.

    Tuna Blends Are Produced in Thailand

    Most of Dave’s pet foods are produced in America. However, the tuna blend cat foods are not. They’re made in dolphin-free factories in Thailand. While this doesn’t necessarily indicate anything about the food, it is something that many people aren’t thrilled about, preferring to purchase products produced in the USA.

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    A Quick Look at Dave’s Cat Food

    • Priced more affordably than other healthy brands
    • Made with quality animal-based ingredients
    • Options available for restricted diets
    • Many blends smell pretty poorly
    • Picky eaters tend not to like Dave’s

    Recall History

    Though Dave’s Pet Food has been in business for more than 20 years, we only found evidence of one recall. Luckily for cat owners, this recall was in one of Dave’s dog food blends. The recall was voluntary and involved just a single lot of canned dog food for possibly containing elevated levels of beef thyroid hormone. Dave’s Pet Foods has never had a recall on their cat food that we could find.

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    Reviews of the 3 Best Dave’s Cat Food Recipes

    1. Dave’s Pet Food Naturally Healthy Grain-Free Tuna & Chicken Dinner in Gravy

    Dave’s Pet Food Naturally Healthy Grain-Free Tuna & Chicken Dinner in Gravy

    If you’re looking for a healthy alternative to cheap commercial pet foods produced with loads of fillers but you don’t want to spend a fortune, then the Naturally Healthy Grain-Free Tuna & Chicken Dinner in Gravy cat food from Dave’s is a great choice. It’s not as expensive as other pet foods made with similarly premium ingredients. Loaded with protein, this food utilizes quality animal-based ingredients like tuna and chicken to provide your cat with the nutrients it needs.

    Since most wet pet food is made up mostly of moisture, you’re paying for a lot of water. But with this blend, the moisture comes from tuna broth instead, so it’s still packed with vital nutrients. The entire recipe is grain-free, so it’s great for cats with sensitive stomachs or food allergies. However, it is worth noting that this cat food is produced in Thailand in a dolphin-safe facility.

    • Not as pricey as other premium cat foods
    • Made with top-quality ingredients
    • High in protein
    • Uses tuna broth for moisture
    • Grain-free for sensitive stomachs and those with food allergies
    • Produced in Thailand
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    2. Dave’s Pet Food Saucey Tuna Dinner in Gravy Grain-Free Wet Cat Food

    Dave’s Pet Food Saucey Tuna Dinner in Gravy Grain-Free Wet Cat Food

    Cats are known for being picky about what they’ll eat. That’s why this Saucey Tuna Dinner in Gravy Grain-Free Wet Cat Food is made with such tasty sauce. It entices your cat to eat food that’s good for it. Unfortunately, this pouched food is far pricier than other Dave’s cat foods that come in a can, though the serving size is tiny.

    Like other Dave’s cat foods that contain tuna, this one is produced and packed in Thailand. Luckily, it’s made entirely with dolphin-safe tuna. We like that it comes in a BPA-free pouch that’s completely cat safe. This is where a lot of that extra cost goes. Similar to other Dave’s cat foods, this recipe is grain-free and perfect for pets with stomach sensitivities. It’s a good food altogether, but we’d opt for a more affordable Dave’s product in lieu of this one.

    • Made with dolphin-safe tuna
    • Packaged in a safe BPA-free pouch
    • Grain-free recipe
    • Small serving size
    • Far pricier than canned formulas
    • Produced in Thailand
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    3. Dave’s Pet Food Restricted Diet Magnesium & Phosphorus Grain-Free Pork Recipe

    Dave’s Pet Food Restricted Diet Magnesium & Phosphorus Grain-Free Pork Recipe

    When your cat needs a restricted diet to manage its health conditions, then this blend from Dave’s is a great choice. It’s got controlled levels of magnesium and phosphorus, though it still contains all the flavor of other Dave’s cat foods, so your cat will still be interested in eating it.

    For healthy cats, we don’t recommend this product. Cats in need of help with their urinary health will find this to be a perfect fit. Because it’s grain-free and contains no carrageenan, cats with sensitivities are unlikely to be bothered by this food. It’s incredibly expensive though, so you should only choose this food if your cat really needs the nutrition it offers.

    • Great for cats on a restricted diet
    • Low in magnesium and phosphorous
    • Great for cats with sensitivities
    • Made with no grain or carrageenan
    • Prohibitively pricey
    • Not the best choice for healthy cats

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    What Other Users Are Saying

    There used to be a time when healthy options like Dave’s Pet Food were difficult to get a hold of. Purchasing such food required a long trip to a distant specialty pet store. But today, pet foods like this are easily available online, through major retailers such as Amazon and Chewy. Thankfully, this allows us the opportunity to bring you opinions other than our own. In this section, we’re going to quote real-world reviews so you can hear what other people thought of Dave’s cat food after feeding it to their felines.

    The following quotes come directly from reviews on Chewy.com.

    Positive Chewy Reviews

    “The cats love it, including the very fussy one. It appears to be a very good quality cat food, with good ingredients.”

    “I ordered this food as it was a food price and I liked the ingredients. All three of my cats liked it. Which is not often that I find a food all three enjoy! One is extremely picky, one is picky, and one will eat anything. And all three loved this food.”

    “My four year old tabby developed food sensitivity and had trouble keeping meals down (the vet ruled out other issues). Dave’s is one of the few foods that don’t contain any of the items that set her off. I love that the protein is animal-based and low fat.”

    Negative Chewy Reviews

    “I thought this food would be healthier for my 3 boys. Too bad they won’t eat it. Cats are jerks!!!”

    “We are pretty disappointed in this offering. It has got to be the worst smelling cat food I’ve smelled to date…and I have been working in veterinary medicine for 10 years. The one cat won’t go near it.”

    If you’d like to read more Dave’s Pet Food reviews on Chewy, follow this link.

    If you’d like to see what Amazon customers think about Dave’s Pet Food, click here.

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    Dave’s Pet Food is a company with small-business ideals and ethics that’s operating on a larger scale than most similar companies. Produced mainly in the US and Canada, Dave’s is committed to creating quality dog and cat foods with pet health as the number one priority. Dave’s cat foods are made with top-notch ingredients; the kind that you can feel good about feeding to your feline.

    But you won’t find the same astronomical price tags attached to Dave’s cat food that you’ll see on certain other premium brands. Rather, Dave’s is driven to provide these health-focused pet foods at a reasonable price, making it possible for everyone to offer their pets the kind of nutrition they need to stay healthy and happy throughout a long life.