Written by John Seeberg

Julia Ogden

Reviewed by Julia Ogden

Updated: February 26, 2024

Purina Pro Plan (Dry) Review

Updated: February 26, 2024

Our Verdict

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Recommended with Reservations

Purina Pro Plan dry cat food receives the Cat Food Advisor rating, 3-stars.

Purina Pro Plan dry food is high in protein and includes essential vitamins and minerals. However, it does also include anonymous meat by-products and plant-based ingredients which has caused us to mark it down.

Pros
  • Added vitamins and minerals
  • High moisture content
  • Good protein levels
Cons
  • Contains a small amount of plant-based proteins
  • Controversial ingredients

Each recipe includes its AAFCO nutrient profile: Growth (kitten), Maintenance (adult), All Life Stages, Supplemental or Unspecified.

The Purina Pro Plan dry cat food product line includes 27 recipes.

Product line Rating AAFCO
Pro Plan Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach Turkey & Oat Meal Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan PRIME PLUS Adult 7+ Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan PRIME PLUS Adult 7+ Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Shredded Blend Indoor Turkey & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Weight Management Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan LiveClear Allergen Reducing Sensitive Skin & Stomach Turkey Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan LiveClear Adult Weight Management Chicken & Rice Allergen Reducing Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan LiveClear Allergen Reducing Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan LiveClear Allergen Reducing Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan LiveClear Adult Indoor Turkey & Rice Allergen Reducing Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Shredded Blend Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Shredded Blend Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Hairball Management Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Indoor Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Indoor Turkey & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Chicken & Egg Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Salmon & Egg Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Sensitive Skin & Stomach Lamb & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan Adult Urinary Tract Health Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food 3 M
Purina Pro Plan Vital Systems Salmon and Rice Formula Senior Cat Food Dry 4-in-1 Formula 3 M
Purina Pro Plan Vital Systems 4-in-1 Chicken and Egg Adult Dry Cat Food 3 M
Purina Pro Plan Vital Systems Salmon & Egg Formula 4-in-1 Adult Dry Cat Food 3 M
Pro Plan LiveClear Adult 7+ Senior Prime Plus Chicken & Rice Allergen Reducing Dry Cat Food 3 M
Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric Feline Formula 3 G/M
Pro Plan Veterinary Diets EN Gastroenteric Naturals Feline Formula 3 G/M

Recipe and Label Analysis

Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food was selected to represent the other products in the line for a detailed recipe and nutrient analysis.

Label and nutrient data below are calculated using dry matter basis.

Pro Plan Adult Complete Essentials Salmon & Rice Formula Dry Cat Food

Estimated Dry Matter Nutrient Content

40.9%

Protein

18.2%

Fat

32.9%

CarbsCarbohydrates

Salmon, rice, corn gluten meal, poultry by-product meal, wheat flour, dried egg product, beef fat preserved with mixed-tocopherols, soy protein concentrate, fish meal, natural flavor, chicory root inulin, calcium carbonate, phosphoric acid, potassium chloride, salt, caramel color, vitamins [vitamin E supplement, niacin (vitamin B-3), vitamin A supplement, calcium pantothenate (vitamin B-5), thiamine mononitrate (vitamin B-1), riboflavin supplement (vitamin B-2), vitamin B-12 supplement, pyridoxine hydrochloride (vitamin B-6), folic acid (vitamin B-9), vitamin D-3 supplement, biotin (vitamin B-7), menadione sodium bisulfite complex (vitamin K)], choline chloride, taurine, minerals [zinc sulfate, ferrous sulfate, manganese sulfate, copper sulfate, calcium iodate, sodium selenite], l-lysine monohydrochloride, dried bacillus coagulans fermentation product.


Fiber (estimated dry matter content) = 2%

Red denotes any controversial items

Ingredients Analysis

The first ingredient is salmon. Salmon is an oily marine and freshwater fish not only high in protein but also omega 3 fatty acids, essential oils needed by every cat to sustain life.

The second ingredient is rice. Is this whole grain rice, brown rice or white rice? Since the word “rice” doesn’t tell us much, it’s impossible to judge the quality of this item.

The third ingredient is corn gluten meal. Gluten is the rubbery residue remaining once corn has had most of its starchy carbohydrate washed out of it.

Although corn gluten meal contains 60% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label — a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this cat food.

The fourth ingredient is poultry by-product meal, a dry rendered product of slaughterhouse waste. It’s made from what’s left of slaughtered poultry after all the prime cuts have been removed.

In addition to organs, this item can also include feet, beaks, undeveloped eggs and almost anything other than prime skeletal muscle.

On the brighter side, by-product meals are meat concentrates and contain nearly 300% more protein than fresh poultry.

The quality of this ingredient can vary, depending on the caliber of the raw materials obtained by the manufacturer.

We consider poultry by-products slightly lower in quality than a single-species ingredient (like chicken by-products).

The fifth ingredient is wheat flour, a highly-refined product of wheat milling. Like corn, wheat is an inexpensive and controversial cereal grain of only modest nutritional value to a cat.

For this reason, we do not consider wheat a preferred component in any cat food.

The sixth ingredient is dried egg product, a dehydrated form of shell-free eggs. Quality can vary significantly. Lower grade egg products can even come from commercial hatcheries – from eggs that have failed to hatch.

In any case, eggs are easy to digest and have an exceptionally high biological value.

The seventh ingredient is beef fat. Beef fat (or tallow) is most likely obtained from rendering, a process similar to making soup in which the fat itself is skimmed from the surface of the liquid.

Although it may not sound very appetizing, beef fat is actually a quality ingredient.

The eighth ingredient is soy protein concentrate, what remains of soybeans after removing the water soluble carbohydrates from the beans.

Even though it contains over 80% protein, this ingredient would be expected to have a lower biological value than meat.

And less costly plant-based products like this can notably boost the total protein reported on the label – a factor that must be considered when judging the actual meat content of this cat food.

The ninth ingredient is fish meal. Because it is considered a meat concentrate, fish meal contains almost 300% more protein than fresh fish itself.

Fish meal is typically obtained from the “clean, dried, ground tissue of undecomposed whole fish and fish cuttings” of commercial fish operations. 1

Unfortunately, this particular item is anonymous. Because various fish contain different types of fats, we would have preferred to have known the source species.

From here the list goes on to include a number of other items. But to be realistic, ingredients located this far down the list (other than nutritional supplements) are not likely to affect the overall rating of the product.

This recipe includes two notable exceptions.

Taurine, an essential amino acid for cats associated with the healthy function of heart muscle and eye sight, and is crucial for maintaining good health in cats.

We view the presence of taurine in this recipe as a positive addition.

This recipe also contains menadione, a controversial form of vitamin K linked to liver toxicity, allergies and the abnormal break-down of red blood cells.

Since vitamin K isn’t required by AAFCO in its nutrient profiles, we question the use of this item in any feline recipe.

 

Nutrient Analysis

Based on its ingredients alone, Purina Pro Plan dry cat food looks like an average product.

The dashboard displays a dry matter protein reading of 40.9%, a fat level of 18.2% and an estimated carbohydrate level of 32.9%.

As a group, the brand features an above average protein content of 43.9% and an above average fat level of 19.7 %. Together these figures suggest a carbohydrate content of 28.4% for the overall product line, alongside a fat to protein ratio of 45%.

This means the Purina Pro Plan dry product line contains above-average protein, below-average carbs and above-average fat when compared to typical dry cat food.

Final Word

Purina Pro Plan dry food product range has a wide variety of recipes and includes some tailored recipes for specific health requirements.

Has Purina Pro Plan cat food been recalled in the past?

Yes, Purina has had a number of cat food recalls over the years.

The last one was in July 2021 when cans of Purina Pro Plan Complete Essentials Tuna Entree in Sauce Wet Cat Food were recalled as they may have contained plastic.

In March 2019, Purina issued a recall of one of its Muse cat foods.

In 2012, a single lot of Purina Veterinary Diets OM Overweight Management Feline Formula was recalled due to low levels of thiamine. Production Code #11721159.

In June 2011, Friskies issued a small recall due to the potential risk of salmonella contamination. This recall only affected a small range of Friskies products, – the Friskies Grillers Blend dry cat food recipe in 3.15lb and 16lb bags with best-by dates of August 2012.

In the same year, some other Purina dry cat foods were recalled due to suspected salmonella contamination. The products affected were: Purina ONE Vibrant Maturity 7+ dry cat food, 3.5 lb. and 7 lb. bags, with a “Best by” date of May 2012 and Production Code #03341084 or #03351084 and Purina Cat Chow Naturals, 6.3 lb., Production Code #10331083 13, with “Best by” date of August 2012.

You can view a complete list of all cat food recalls since 2021 here.

To stay on top of any cat food product recalls, sign up for our free email alerts, here.

About

Nestlé Purina PetCare is an American subsidiary of the Swiss corporation Nestlé, based in St. Louis, Missouri. It produces and markets pet food, treats, cat and dog litter. 

The cat food brands owned by Purina are: Beyond, Breeze, DenaLife, Fancy Feast, Friskies, Kit & Kaboodle, Petivity, Purina Cat Chow, Purina ONE, Purina Pro Plan, Purina Pro Plan Veterinary Diets, Tidy Cats and Whisker Lickin’s.

Sources

1: [1. Association of American Feed Control Officials].

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