🐱 HOW To SOFTEN DRY Cat FOOD? [Step By Step Guide]

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Life is much better when you have a furry baby around that loves you.

Taking care of your cat is a crucial task and requires deep vigilance to ensure that they get the best. Feeding your cat proper food is among the most important aspects of having a cat. Negligence in food can lead to diseases that might not express themselves immediately but cause trouble later.

Thinking that cats do not have food choices is only possible until you don’t have one! With the numerous kinds of pet food brands available on the market, cats also develop their specific tastes—some fur babies like dry food, whereas others like the wet counterpart.

Dry food is convenient for both the pet and the pet parent. But sometimes, few kittens do not like dry kibble and ask for food with higher moisture content. Canned wet food is usually made from fresh meat with around 80% content, whereas dry kibble has only 10% moisture which is why it needs to be mixed with water to make it more of a wet meal rather than it staying a dry one.

Cats sometimes do not take their food because they find it too dry or hard to chew on. This can occur due to several reasons, and the inability to chew or swallow food is one of them. As a pet parent, it is essential to find out why your cat does not like the food. If your cat is staying hungry because the food is too dry, it needs to be softened.

You can soften a cat’s food in several ways: by adding some water to its regular diet, adding a meat-based broth (to make the food more appealing), or mixing dry with wet food. Try to give your cat different food textures until it chooses the variant it likes the most. Additionally, don’t forget to give your feline enough water during the day.

Try any of those methods mentioned later in detail, and ensure your pet always gets all the necessary nutrients.

How to select quality dry food for your cat?

Quality food is essential for a cat’s good health, whether he takes dry food or wet. As a cat parent, you must ensure that the food being given to your cat is of the best quality. Keeping a few things in mind can help you select the perfect dry cat food for your pet.

Balanced nutrients

When cats are only feeding off canned or dry food, they need to have all the nutrients through it. Cat food is mainly composed of meat components. But, the nutritional needs of cats are not confined to proteins only. They also require adequate amounts of carbohydrates and fats, along with minerals and vitamins. The nutrients and food elements should be given in the correct proportion for the cat to be healthy.

Can I Feed My Cat Dates?

Look at the ingredients

While we want to feed our cats the best, getting rid of harmful ingredients is also essential. Like we look at the ingredient label when buying something for ourselves, the same needs to be done for cat food. Ensure that the first ingredient listed on the cat food is meat or fish, with the highest proportion compared to others. Concentrated meat meal and chicken fat can also be present on the list, making it even more nutritional.

However, avoid buying cat food that contains meat and bone meal or by-products. Moreover, canned foods with sugar, added preservatives, and extra chemicals should also be avoided.

Understand your cat’s needs

Though most cats feed on either dry or wet canned food, each one of them has different requirements. One crucial cat food necessity is their need for meat products in their diet. If you want to feed vegan food to your cat, it might not be the best choice for him. Buy the food that your cat likes in terms of taste, appearance, and also fulfills his dietary demands.

Is only dry food healthy for your cat?

While we talk about how cats have distinct choices regarding their food choice, it is important to know if they are healthy. Cats that eat dry food usually do not drink much water, leading to many health issues.

Feeding dry cat food to your fur baby is absolutely safe, yet it should be ensured that the cat does not suffer dehydration.  Cats feeding entirely on dry food sometimes encounter urinary tract infections and chronic kidney diseases resulting from dehydration. Keeping the fur baby safe from these kinds of complications is possible when you take necessary care of their water intake. Keep an eye on their drinking pattern or increase their food’s moisture content to avoid any issues.

How much dry food to feed a kitten and adult cats?

All cat parents would know that the needs of a kitten and an adult cat are quite different. The age and size of a pet make a huge difference while deciding their food portions. If you have been feeding a particular amount of dry or canned food to your kitten, the demands would also change with health and weight changes. A number of factors affect the daily food requirements of a cat.

The size and age influence the daily food and nutrient requirements for a cat as they grow. The average age when the needs of a cat change is 10 months. Some breeds might even grow bigger at a younger age. Moreover, the metabolic rate and activity also affect the overall dietary needs of your cat. Keeping in mind the weight, age, and reproductive state of the cat, you can find the optimal number of daily calories.

If your cat is 5 lb. and in good health (does not need to lose or gain weight), the right number of calories would be 183 kcal/day. For a cat weighing 10lb up to 20 lb., the daily calorie requirements go up to 500 kcal per day.

Why do cats put dry food in water?

You can never be predictable about your cat’s behavior as they are always up to something new. However, if you see your cat doing something frequently, it should be taken care of. There could be numerous reasons for a cat putting his dry food in water, like being playful or wanting the water levels to rise. However, if you think the matter is different, it might be because the food is dry. If the food is as dry that it cannot be swallowed by the cat, he might put it in water to make it eatable.

How to make dry cat food more appealing?

Cats can sometimes be fussy eaters and refuse their favorite food. It might be because the cat is bored with eating the same food for long or does not appreciate the taste anymore. Yet, like kids, you can also trick your fur baby into eating by offering some incentives. If the food looks better to the cat, the chances are that he would eat it without being cranky.

You can make the dry cat food appealing for your cat in several ways, like

  • Add some other form of meat you have at home to give a different taste to cat food.
  • Sprinkle a little bit of tuna on top.
  • Spread a small amount of meat-based baby food on the cat’s dry food. Be cautious that the food should not contain onion powder or extract.
  • Add a tablespoon of your cat’s favorite treat to the food.
  • If your cat still refuses to eat his food despite offering his favorite add-ons, the reason may be a lack of moisture, and you need to moisten the dry cat food.

How to soften dry cat food?

One way to help your cat eat dry food readily is to add moisture to it and make it a bit wet. Food with some water content is easier for cats to eat if they do not drink much water. There are several methods adopted by cat owners to feed their cats. Depending on the choice and requirement of your cat, you can introduce moisture to wet food.

The simple method

Making the dry cat food wet is no rocket science, yet you would not want to soften it a lot. To moisten your cat’s food with water, soak three parts of kibble in one part of water and let it sit for around 15 minutes. The food will be soft enough for your cat to devour.

For a creamier texture

Not all cats and kittens like their kibble mixed with water, and yours might be one of them. If your fur baby doesn’t appreciate soaked kibble, there’s another way to serve it.

Just do the basic soaking method that includes one part of the water in three parts kibble. Leave it for 15 minutes till it gets soft. Now mash the cat food using a hand blender. This will give a creamy texture to the cat food with enough water. You can add more water if it doesn’t blend smoothly.

For a chewy texture

If you think that your cat doesn’t like blended or soaked food or how to improve his food’s moisture content, don’t worry! You can add water to your cat’s kibble without any apparent effect on the texture.

Keep the same proportion of water and dry food as the previous methods (three parts of kibble to one part of water). Let the kibble sit for around 5 minutes in the water and throw away the excess water. Leave the food for another 5 minutes for it to absorb the moisture. This way, the kibble absorbs the moisture without altering the texture much.

For better aroma and taste

Smell and taste are two important factors while serving food to the cat. Many cats do not even want to taste the food when it doesn’t smell good. To ensure that your cat likes the aroma of the food presented to him, add some flavor to it. If you are looking to add water to a fussy eater’s food bowl, you can replace it with broth. The appealing smell of the meat broth will attract the cat to the food alongside providing it the essential moisture.

For weaning

If you wish to shift your cat to solid food, use kitten formula in place of water, in the same proportion as mentioned earlier. You might reduce the amount of moisture in the food gradually without making it dry initially.

How to mix wet and dry food?

There can be many reasons that your cat does not like food moistened with water. If you want to avoid giving only wet food to your cat, how about just mixing them both?

Mixing dry and wet cat food offers a number of benefits like

  • Promotes healthy metabolism
  • Improves taste
  • Helps to manage weight and oral hygiene

Though there is no particular ratio of wet to dry cat food, you might have to take care of the proportions of dry to wet food in a few cases.

If your cat has gained weight and you aim to manage his weight, you keep 75% portion of dry food and 25% wet food.

But, if your cat suffers from a urinary tract infection, you might want to increase her water intake by adding 75% wet food with 25% dry food.

The overall goal of mixing both should be providing a more palatable nourishing food combination that also fulfills his dietary needs.

The Do’s of making dry food softer for cats

  • Soak the kibble for around 15 minutes.
  • Leave in the water for 30 minutes if you think the food is not soft enough.
  • Drain the water later.
  • You can add slightly warm water if you are not leaving the dry food soaked for long.

The Don’ts of softening dry cat food

  • Do Not leave the kibble soaked for long. When you try to make it the softest for your cat, he might not find it quite palatable. Also, keeping it soaked for long increases the chances of microbial growth in the food and might harm your fur baby. Try to serve food as soon as you pour it into the bowl, or soaking for 15 minutes is enough.
  • Do Not add any liquid to the food other than water or broth. While you might want to offer a different taste to your cat by adding milk, most cats are lactose intolerant. Avoid putting anything else that you are not sure if would suit your cat or not.
  • Do Not add a lot of water or broth to the kibble. As already mentioned, a surplus amount of liquid in the food would dilute and alter its taste. The best proportion is 3 parts of kibble to 1 part water. A little bit of variation wouldn’t hurt, though!

Consult a Vet

We think of the best for your pet babies. Yet sometimes, a decision made by us might affect our cat badly. It is always important to consult your vet when making any changes in your cat’s routine, including the food you are offering. The vet would be able to guide better in terms of portions and the cat’s nutritional requirements.

Vet’s tips for a healthy lifestyle

  1. Learn to read and interpret cat food labels to understand the nutritional value.
  2. Do not shift your cat to another kind of food immediately. Cats take time to adapt to a particular taste or food kind.
  3. Keep an eye on your cat’s weight and physical condition. Try to manage the weight if you observe that your cat has put on some. Additionally, if the cat is suffering from any health issues, do not ignore them.


· Is it right to soften dry cat food?

Yes, dry cat food can be softened if your cat does not eat it dry.

· What kind of broth can be used?

Cats love meat and meaty taste. Adding a meat-based broth will make the food more appealing for the cat.

· Can we opt for wet cat food?

The food softening methods are usually used when you are trying to feed dry kibble to your cat. Wet food can also be served.


To add extra moisture to your cat’s regular food, simply add some water or broth. In other cases, wet cat food can be perfectly mixed with dry kibble too. You can always find the best method to cover the needs of your pet.

However, if you will have any additional questions, you can always get professional help from a vet.

Happy Cat-Parenting!

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