Chicken: The Complete Protein Source for Your Cat
Chicken is a key ingredient in IAMS® cat food. Its protein can help maintain healthy muscle structure, and it naturally provides each of the amino acids essential to carnivorous animals. And chicken adds great taste.
What Chicken Ingredients are Used in Cat Foods?
- Common chicken ingredients include chicken, chicken meal, chicken by-product meal, and chicken fat.
- Chicken is flesh and skin without internal organs or feathers.
- Chicken meal includes flesh, skin, and bone that have been cleaned, dried, cooked, and ground.
- Chicken by-product meal is flesh, skin, and internal organs, including intestines and bone, that has been cleaned, dried, cooked, and ground.
- Chicken fat, a high-quality energy source, provides essential fatty acids that help support skin and coat health.
What Is Natural Chicken Flavor?
Another common chicken-based ingredient is natural chicken flavor, also called chicken digest. Natural chicken flavor adds palatability and nutrients. It is high-quality protein and fat material that has been reduced to amino and fatty acids to improve taste through an enzymatic process.
Why Are Internal Organs and Bone Included in Chicken By-product Meal?
Internal organs are a rich source of protein, fats, and minerals, such as iron, that are essential to cat health and they add a taste that cats enjoy. Including some ground bone provides a good source of minerals, such as calcium. Some pet food manufacturers formulate their products without such ingredients to appeal to cat owners, rather than for the health of the cats themselves. However, the nutritional needs of cats are not the same as those of humans.
The IAMS Difference
Dried (meal) chicken protein sources contained in our chicken-based cat foods undergo an extra refining process and contain each of the amino acids that are essential to cats.