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How to Save Money on Cat Food closetsamples
In a world where our feline friends are part of the family, we want to provide them with the best, but cat food costs can add up. The good news is that there are smart ways to save money on cat food without sacrificing the quality of your pet's meals. This guide will provide you with invaluable insights on how to trim your expenses while keeping your cat purring with contentment.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

How to Save Money on Cat Food

Keeping your feline friend fed without breaking the bank is definitely achievable! Here are some ways to save money on cat food:

Shopping Smart:

  • Compare prices: Don't just grab the first bag you see! Check prices at different stores, both online and offline. Big box stores and online retailers often offer the best deals.
  • Buy in bulk: Buying in bulk can save you money per serving, but make sure you have storage space and can use it before it expires.
  • Look for subscriptions: Some pet food companies offer subscriptions with automatic deliveries and discounts.
  • Consider store brands: Generic or store-brand cat food can be just as nutritious as name brands at a fraction of the price.
  • Coupons and rebates: Don't underestimate the power of coupons! Check pet store websites, manufacturers' websites, and coupon apps for deals.
  • Loyalty programs: Sign up for loyalty programs at your favorite pet stores to earn points and exclusive discounts.

Making smart choices:

  • Stick to one brand: Switching brands frequently can upset your cat's digestion and may not save you money in the long run.
  • Feed appropriate portions: Overfeeding is common and wasteful. Consult your vet or follow the feeding guidelines on the food label to ensure your cat is getting the right amount.
  • Consider homemade food: While not for everyone, making your own cat food can be a cost-effective option. Consult a vet for a balanced recipe and be sure to source high-quality ingredients.
  • Food supplements: Adding some human-grade supplements like canned tuna or cooked chicken to your cat's kibble can increase palatability and reduce the amount of kibble needed.


  • Prioritize quality over price: While saving money is important, your cat's health should always come first. Choose nutritious food that meets their needs.
  • Consult your vet: Before making any significant changes to your cat's diet, talk to your vet to ensure it's safe and appropriate for them.
By employing these tips, you can keep your cat happy and well-fed while being mindful of your budget. Happy savings!
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How to Save Money on Cat FoodImage credit: Freepik

Buying Cat Food in Bulk

One of the most effective ways to save on cat food is buying in bulk. Look for large bags or cans, which are often more cost-effective in the long run. Just ensure proper storage to maintain freshness. Buying cat food in bulk can be a great way to save money, especially if you have a multiple-cat household or a particularly hungry feline friend. Here are some tips on how to do it right:
1. Compare prices and do your research.
Not all bulk cat food deals are created equal. Take some time to compare prices at different stores, both online and offline. Consider factors like the type of food (dry, wet, grain-free, etc.), the size of the bag, and the shipping costs. You can also check out online reviews of different brands and retailers to get an idea of the quality and customer service.
2. Choose a reputable retailer.
Once you've narrowed down your options, make sure you're buying from a reputable retailer. Look for stores that have a good track record of selling quality pet food and that offer good customer service. You can also check with your veterinarian for recommendations.
3. Consider storage space.
Buying in bulk can save you money, but it's important to make sure you have the storage space to keep the food fresh. Dry food can typically be stored in a cool, dry place for up to a year, while wet food should be stored in the refrigerator and used within a few days of opening. If you don't have a lot of storage space, you may want to buy smaller bags of food or consider a subscription service that delivers smaller quantities on a regular basis.
4. Check the expiration date.
Before you buy any bulk cat food, be sure to check the expiration date. You don't want to end up with a bunch of food that your cat can't eat.
5. Don't switch foods too quickly.
If you're switching your cat to a new food, it's important to do it gradually. Start by mixing a small amount of the new food with the old food, and then gradually increase the amount of new food over a period of about a week. This will help to prevent your cat from getting an upset stomach.
6. Consider buying a food dispenser.
A food dispenser can help to keep your cat's food fresh and prevent them from overeating. There are many different types of food dispensers available, so you can find one that fits your needs and budget.
7. Monitor your cat's weight.
Just because you're buying food in bulk doesn't mean you should let your cat eat as much as they want. It's important to monitor your cat's weight and make sure they're not getting too fat. If you're concerned about your cat's weight, talk to your veterinarian.
By following these tips, you can save money on cat food without sacrificing your cat's health or happiness.
PRO TIP: Check out these top loyalty apps to save money in stores!
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Subscribe and Save Programs for Cat Food

Many pet food brands offer subscription services that provide discounts on regular deliveries. This not only saves you money but also ensures you never run out of cat food. Here are some popular Subscribe and Save programs for cat food:
Amazon Subscribe & Save: This program offers discounts on a variety of cat food brands, including Purina, Fancy Feast, and Royal Canin. You can save up to 20% off your order when you subscribe to five or more items. 
Chewy Autoship: Chewy's Autoship program offers discounts on a variety of cat food brands, including Hill's Science Diet, Iams, and Purina Pro Plan. You can save up to 35% off your first order and 5% off subsequent orders. 
Petco Repeat Delivery: Petco's Repeat Delivery program offers discounts on a variety of cat food brands, including Blue Buffalo, Wellness, and Nutro. You can save up to 20% off your order when you subscribe to two or more items. 
PetSmart Autoship: PetSmart's Autoship program offers discounts on a variety of cat food brands, including Purina ONE, Meow Mix, and Fancy Feast. You can save up to 20% off your order when you subscribe to two or more items. 
Walmart Subscribe & Save: Walmart's Subscribe & Save program offers discounts on a variety of cat food brands, including Purina, Fancy Feast, and Friskies. You can save up to 10% off your order when you subscribe to two or more items.
When choosing a Subscribe and Save program, it's important to consider the following factors:
  • The selection of cat food brands: Make sure the program offers your favorite brands or brands that your cat likes.
  • The discount: Compare the discounts offered by different programs to see which one will save you the most money.
  • The delivery schedule: Choose a program that delivers food on a schedule that works for you.
  • The cancellation policy: Make sure you understand the program's cancellation policy in case you need to cancel your subscription.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Homemade Cat Food

Consider preparing homemade cat food. This allows you to control the ingredients and costs. While preparing homemade cat food can be a rewarding way to control your feline friend's diet and potentially save money, it's crucial to approach it with caution and proper planning. Remember, cats have specific nutritional needs that commercially prepared food is formulated to meet. I wouldn't recommend making the switch without consulting your veterinarian first.
Here's a general overview of the process if you've consulted your vet and they've given you the green light:
1. Choose a Recipe: There are numerous recipes available online and in cookbooks, but make sure to select one formulated by a veterinary nutritionist. Here are some resources to get you started:
Most cats will eat about 4-6 ounces per day, depending on the fat content in the diet. 

Recipe #1

  1. Recipe should be served raw due to ground bone. If you can FINELY grind chicken leg bones at home, this recipe can be gently cooked. If not, replace bone content with another source of minerals.
  2. Remember to practice safe food handling techniques when dealing with raw meat, including washing hands and surfaces before and after handling. 
  3. All nuts, seeds, grains, tablet-based supplements, and produce used in this recipe should be finely chopped for better digestibility, bioavailability, and distribution. (A food processor works great!)
  4. Open any capsule/perle ingredients for better distribution.
  5. Mix fine-powder supplements and oils thoroughly into recipe.
  6. Add fish oils or other sources of omega 3 fatty acids at the time of feeding.
  7. Pre-portion and freeze any extra food you don't plan to feed within 72 hours. Serve within 3 months after freezing. 

HOME-MADE CAT FOOD (Yields enough for 10-14 days, freeze in ice cube trays) #2

Recipe from Lisa A. Pierson
Note: most cats eat 4-6 oz per day
  1. Preheat your oven to 350F (to partially cook) OR heat a large pot of water (to blanche) the chicken thighs.
    NOTE: you can leave your chicken raw, blanche in boiling water, or partially cook in the oven.
  2. Remove 20 to 25% of the bone, and 50% of the skin, from the chicken thighs. If your cat is thin, retain all of the skin, if your cat is on the heavier side, then remove 80%).
  3. Arrange on a parchment lined baking tray. Bake in the preheated oven for 10 minutes. Alternativley, you could blanche the chicken in boiling water. It is important that the chicken bones are raw when you grind them, since cooked bones will splinter.
  4. Meanwhile combine the supplements with the water, to make a slurry.
  5. Cut some of the chicken meat (use the uncooked portion, near the bone) into chunks. This is good for your cat’s dental health.
  6. Using a 4mm grinding plate, grind the meaty bones, meat and skins of the chicken thighs, together with the cooked liver and eggs.
  7. Stir to combine. Combine with the slurry of water and supplements.
  8. Portion and freeze.
  9. Defrost naturally – do not use your microwave.
2. Gather Ingredients: The ingredients will vary depending on the recipe you choose, but generally, you'll need:
  • Muscle meat: Chicken, turkey, beef, or lamb are good options.
  • Organ meat: Liver, kidneys, and hearts are essential for providing essential nutrients.
  • Eggs: A whole egg with the shell can be included for calcium and other nutrients.
  • Fish: A small amount of oily fish like sardines or mackerel can be beneficial for omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Vegetables and fruits: These should be in small amounts and pureed or finely chopped.
  • Supplements: A feline-specific vitamin and mineral supplement is crucial to ensure your cat gets all the necessary nutrients.
3. Prepare the Food: Follow the recipe instructions carefully. This may involve grinding the meat, cooking it lightly, and blending it with the other ingredients.
4. Store and Serve: Homemade cat food should be stored in the refrigerator for up to 3 days or frozen for longer periods. Thaw in the refrigerator before serving.
Here are some additional tips for making homemade cat food:
  • Start slowly: If you're switching your cat to a homemade diet, do it gradually over a period of about a week to avoid digestive upset.
  • Monitor your cat's health: Keep an eye on your cat's weight, energy levels, and stool consistency. If you notice any changes, consult your veterinarian.
  • Don't cook with bones: Cooked bones can splinter and become a choking hazard for cats.
  • Avoid certain ingredients: Onions, garlic, grapes, and raisins are toxic to cats and should never be included in their food.
Remember, making homemade cat food is a big responsibility. If you're not sure you can do it correctly, it's best to stick with commercially prepared food. However, if you're up for the challenge and have your vet's blessing, it can be a rewarding way to provide your cat with a healthy and delicious diet.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Discount Coupons and Promotions

Keep an eye out for discount coupons and promotions at your local pet store or online retailers. These can significantly reduce your cat food expenses. Finding discount coupons and promotions for cat food can be a treasure hunt, but with the right resources, you can keep your feline friend well-fed without breaking the bank. Here are some places to look: 

Manufacturer Websites and Apps:

  • Purina: Download the myPurina app and earn points on every purchase, which can be redeemed for discounts and rewards. You can also find exclusive coupons and promotions on the Purina website.
  • Blue Buffalo: Sign up for Blue Buffalo's email list and be the first to know about upcoming sales and promotions. They also offer a loyalty program where you can earn points for every purchase, redeemable for discounts and rewards.
  • Hill's Science Diet: Check out the Hill's Science Diet website for special offers and coupons. They also offer a health care professional portal where you can find coupons for your specific cat's needs. 

Coupon Websites and Apps:

  • RetailMeNot: This website and app aggregates coupons and promo codes from a variety of retailers, including pet stores and online pet food providers.
  • Groupon: Check the pet category on Groupon for deals on cat food, treats, and other pet supplies.
  • Another great resource for finding coupons and promo codes, also has a dedicated pet section. 

Loyalty Programs:

  • Petco: Sign up for Petco's Rewards program and earn points on every purchase, which can be redeemed for discounts on cat food and other pet supplies.
  • PetSmart: Similar to Petco, PetSmart's Treats program rewards you with points for every purchase, which can be used for discounts on cat food and other pet supplies. 

Newsletters and Social Media:

  • Follow your favorite cat food brands and pet stores on social media to stay up-to-date on the latest sales and promotions.
  • Sign up for email newsletters from cat food brands and pet stores to receive exclusive coupons and offers.  

Local Advertisements:

  • Check local newspapers, community bulletin boards, or magazines for advertisements from pet stores or supermarkets featuring cat food promotions.
  • Look for circulars or inserts that may contain valuable coupons.
By using these tips and resources, you can find plenty of ways to save money on cat food and keep your furry friend happy and healthy. Remember to regularly check these sources as promotions and coupons are often updated. Additionally, be cautious of expiration dates and any terms and conditions associated with the coupons to ensure you get the best deals on your cat food purchases.
PRO TIP: Check out these pet freebies for the latest offers!
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Compare Prices Online

Use the power of the internet to compare prices across various brands and retailers. You might find better deals or discounts online. 
Comparing prices online for cat food can be a purrfect way to stretch your budget and ensure your feline friend enjoys delicious, nutritious meals. Here's a step-by-step guide to help you navigate the online jungle of cat food deals:

1. Gather intel on your kitty's needs:

Before you start browsing, determine your cat's specific requirements. Consider:
  • Age: Kittens, adults, and seniors have different nutritional needs.
  • Health conditions: Allergies, obesity, or other health concerns may necessitate special diets.
  • Activity level: Indoor couch potatoes and adventurous alley cats need different calorie counts.
  • Preferred type: Dry kibble, wet food, or a combination? Grain-free or regular formula?

2. Choose your shopping battlegrounds:

Several online retailers offer cat food, each with its own strengths and weaknesses. Popular options include:
  • Amazon: Vast selection, competitive prices, Subscribe & Save option for recurring discounts.
  • Chewy: Cat-centric focus, excellent customer service, Autoship program with discounts.
  • Petco: Wide range of brands, in-store pickup option for online orders, Rewards program for points.
  • PetSmart: Large selection, online coupons and promo codes, Treats program for points.
  • Manufacturer websites: Some brands like Purina and Blue Buffalo offer direct sales with exclusive deals. 

3. Unleash the comparison tools:

Price comparison websites and apps can be your best allies. Try:
  • Google Shopping: Compare prices and product details from various retailers.
  • ShopSavvy: Browser extension that automatically finds coupons and price comparisons.
  • PriceGrabber: Compares prices and tracks price history for specific products.
  • Honey: Automatically applies coupon codes that are available at checkout. 

4. Don't forget the nitty-gritty:

Beyond price, consider these factors:
  • Shipping costs: Free shipping thresholds can make a big difference.
  • Delivery times: Speedy delivery might be worth a slight price premium.
  • Return policies: Easy returns are crucial in case your cat isn't a fan.
  • Reviews and ratings: Read what other cat owners have to say about the food and retailer.

5. Factor in the purr-sistent savings:

Look for ways to save beyond the initial purchase:
  • Subscribe & Save/Autoship programs: Recurring deliveries often come with discounts.
  • Coupons and promo codes: Check retailer websites, social media, and coupon aggregators.
  • Loyalty programs: Earn points redeemable for discounts or rewards.
  • Bulk purchases: Can be cost-effective for large households, but factor in storage space.
Remember, the best deal isn't just about the lowest price. Choose high-quality cat food that meets your feline friend's needs and fits your budget comfortably.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Shop Seasonal Sales

During holidays and special events, many pet stores offer promotions and discounts. Take advantage of these sales to stock up on cat food. 
Finding seasonal sales on cat food can be a great way to stock up on your kitty's favorites and save some cash. Here are some places to look:

Major Retailers:

  • Amazon: Prime Day (July), Black Friday & Cyber Monday (November), and holiday sales throughout the year often include discounts on cat food. Subscribe & Save also offers ongoing discounts.
  • Chewy: Big Birthday Sale (October) and holiday sales offer significant savings on various cat food brands.
  • Petco: Anniversary Sale (July), Black Friday & Cyber Monday, and holiday promotions feature discounts on cat food and other pet supplies.
  • PetSmart: Big Sale Event (May & November), Black Friday & Cyber Monday, and holiday sales offer various discounts on cat food.
  • Walmart: Watch for Black Friday & Cyber Monday deals and clearance sales throughout the year.
  • Target: Target Circle Rewards program offers savings on cat food with occasional promotions.
  • Costco: Look for bulk deals on popular cat food brands, especially during holiday seasons.
  • Local pet stores: Many independent pet stores have their own sales and promotions throughout the year. Check their websites, social media, or flyers for details.
  • Grocery stores: Grocery stores sometimes carry cat food and may have occasional sales or clearance items. 

Tips for finding the best deals:

  • Plan ahead: Know what brands and types of food your cat likes and start looking for deals a few weeks before a major sale.
  • Compare prices: Check prices at different retailers before making a purchase.
  • Sign up for email alerts and loyalty programs: Many retailers will send you notifications about upcoming sales and exclusive offers.
  • Consider buying in bulk: If you have the storage space, buying in bulk can sometimes save you money in the long run.
  • Don't forget coupons and promo codes: Check for online coupons and promo codes before you checkout.
With a little planning and effort, you can find great deals on cat food throughout the year and keep your feline friend happy and well-fed. Remember, the most important thing is to choose a high-quality cat food that meets your cat's nutritional needs.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Budget-Friendly Cat Food Brands

Finding delicious and nutritious food for your feline friend without breaking the bank is totally achievable! Here are some budget-friendly cat food brands to consider:

Dry Kibble:

  • Purina Cat Chow: This brand offers several formulas for different life stages and needs, all at an affordable price point. It's widely available and often receives positive reviews for its value and palatability.
  • IAMS ProActive Health: Another reliable option with various formulas for kittens, adults, and seniors. IAMS is known for its focus on complete and balanced nutrition at a budget-friendly price.
  • Meow Mix Original Choice: This classic kibble is well-liked by many cats and offers a basic, complete diet at a very affordable price. Keep in mind it has a higher grain content than some other options.
  • Purina ONE Sensitive Systems: If your cat has a sensitive stomach, this formula is a good budget-friendly choice. It's made with limited ingredients and contains digestible protein sources.

Wet Food:

  • Fancy Feast Classic Pate: This canned food comes in a variety of flavors and is often on sale or available in multi-packs. While not the most protein-rich option, it's a good choice for picky eaters and occasional wet food meals.
  • 9Lives Daily Essentials Pate: This affordable pate packs a protein punch and offers essential nutrients for your cat's health. It's also available in various flavors and textures.
  • Wellness Complete Health Pate: This grain-free pate is a step up in quality while still remaining budget-friendly. It's made with real meat and contains essential vitamins and minerals.
  • Dave's Pet Food Naturally Healthy Grain-Free Chicken Formula: This canned food is packed with protein and moisture, making it a good choice for cats who need a higher-quality wet food option without breaking the bank. 


  • Consult your veterinarian: Even when choosing budget-friendly options, it's important to ensure the food meets your cat's specific needs and dietary requirements.
  • Quality over quantity: While price is important, prioritize nutrient quality over just finding the cheapest option. Look for foods with real meat as the first ingredient and a balanced nutrient profile.
  • Consider store brands: Generic or store-brand cat food can often be just as nutritious as name brands at a fraction of the price. Check the ingredient list and reviews to compare with your preferred brands.
  • Compare prices and shop around: Prices can vary significantly between retailers, so do your research and look for deals and coupons before you buy.
By prioritizing your cat's health while taking advantage of budget-friendly options, you can keep your furry friend happy and well-fed without breaking the bank.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Where to find free cat food?

Finding free cat food can be challenging, but there are some options you can explore to help you provide for your furry friend without breaking the bank. Here are a few ideas:
Pet Food Pantries: Some communities have pet food pantries that provide free cat food to pet owners in need. These organizations are often run by animal welfare groups or local charities. Check with your local animal shelters or online to see if there's one in your area.
Pet Food Banks: Just like food banks for people, some organizations offer pet food banks that distribute free pet food, including cat food, to low-income individuals and families.
Pet Food Coupons and Samples: Keep an eye out for pet food coupons and free samples. Many pet food companies offer promotions and giveaways that can help you save money on cat food. You can find these offers on company websites, in pet stores, or through online pet-related communities.
Online Pet Communities: Join online forums, social media groups, or apps like Nextdoor, where pet owners often share information about free pet food giveaways, discounts, and other pet-related deals.
Ask Friends and Family: Sometimes, friends or family members may have extra cat food or know of ways to get it for free. Don't hesitate to ask if they can help.
Local Rescues and Shelters: Local animal rescues and shelters might offer assistance programs or information on where to find free cat food. Contact them to inquire about any available resources.
Discounted and Clearance Sections: Check the discounted or clearance sections of pet stores. They often have discounted cat food that's nearing its expiration date but is still safe to use.
Community Outreach Programs: Some churches, community centers, or outreach programs offer assistance to pet owners in need, including providing pet food.
Remember that while free cat food can be a valuable resource, it's crucial to ensure the food is of good quality and suitable for your cat's dietary needs. Always prioritize your cat's health and nutrition.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik

Quick Expert Tips for Saving Money on Cat Food

Portion Control

Controlling your cat's portion sizes can make the food last longer. Consult your vet for guidance on appropriate serving sizes.

Proper Storage

Store cat food properly to prevent spoilage and maintain freshness. Seal bags tightly, and keep canned food in a cool, dry place.

Don't Overdo Treats

While treats are a great way to spoil your cat, don't overdo it. Limit treats to ensure they don't replace regular meals.

Buy Generic Brands

Generic cat food brands can be just as nutritious as premium ones, and they are usually more budget-friendly.

Avoid Overfeeding

Overfeeding can lead to obesity and higher cat food expenses. Follow your vet's recommendations for portion sizes.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik


Q: Can I feed my cat homemade food to save money?
A: Yes, you can prepare homemade cat food, but consult your vet for a balanced recipe to meet your cat's nutritional needs.
Q: Are generic cat food brands as good as premium ones?
A: Generic brands can provide adequate nutrition at a lower cost, but always check the ingredients to ensure quality.
Q: How can I store cat food to maintain its freshness?
A: Seal bags tightly, keep canned food in a cool, dry place, and avoid exposure to humidity.
Q: Is it safe to buy cat food online?
A: Yes, buying cat food online can be safe and cost-effective if you purchase from reputable retailers.
Q: Can I use discount coupons for cat food?
A: Many pet stores offer discount coupons, and you can often find online promotions as well. Utilize these to save on cat food.
Q: How can I prevent overfeeding my cat?
A: Consult your vet for appropriate portion sizes and avoid giving excessive treats.
How to Save Money on Cat Food
Image credit: Freepik


Saving money on cat food doesn't mean compromising your cat's well-being. With these practical tips, budget-friendly brands, and expert advice, you can provide your feline friend with quality meals without breaking the bank. Remember, a happy and healthy cat is the ultimate reward.
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