Scotland may be famous for their scotch, haggis, and bagpipes but, by far, the country’s cutest export is the Scottish Fold cat.
Scottish Folds are a medium-sized cat breed known for their unique ear shape – folded forward and downward on the head. Though all Scottish Fold kittens are born with a straight or normal ear, some develop folded ears around 3 to 4 weeks of age. This unique ear shape is caused by incomplete dominance, a genetic term that means that one copy of a particular gene does not dominate over the other copy of the gene.
Even more interesting is that the lineage for all Scottish Folds can be traced back to a female white barn cat named Susie.
In America, Scottish Folds have become extremely popular, with owners like Taylor Swift joining lengthy waiting lists and paying several hundred dollars for a Scottish Fold kitten.
If you’re going to go through the trouble to get a Scottish Fold cat, you should be willing to put in the time to choose a high-quality diet to keep your new cat healthy. Read on to see our top picks for the best cat food for Scottish Fold cats.
At a Glance: Best 8 Cat Foods for a Balanced Scottish Fold Diet To Buy
- Rich in real animal protein from chicken and turkey
- High in moisture, easy to digest
- Very low in carbohydrates, under 2%
- Made with real human-grade ingredients
- High in protein, minimally processed
- Rich in moisture once rehydrated with water
- Packed with biologically valuable animal proteins
- Extremely low in carbohydrate, low-glycemic
- Highly digestible, free from additives
- Made with real animal protein from chicken
- Rich in moisture and omega fatty acids
- Flavorful gravy increases palatability
- Packed with highly digestible animal protein
- Limited number of ingredients
- Glucosamine and chondroitin for joint health/mobility
- Biologically appropriate, rich in animal protein
- Supplemented with probiotics for healthy digestion
- Limited list of main ingredients
Understanding Your Scottish Fold’s Nutritional Needs
Though your Scottish Fold may look different from other cats, his nutritional needs are the same. All cats are obligate carnivores, which means their bodies are adapted to require a meat-based diet.
While dogs are often considered omnivores, your cat has a biological requirement for meat in his diet. Cats have a short digestive tract and they lack the digestive enzymes necessary to process plant food.
In the wild, your cat would consume a whole prey diet, eating the flesh, organs, and raw bones of whatever he can catch. A cat’s ideal diet consists of about 52% protein, 46% fat, and just 2% carbohydrate or less (typically limited to the stomach contents of prey).
Unfortunately, many commercial cat food diets don’t come anywhere close to meeting these requirements. But that’s what we’re here for!
We’re here to help you gain a thorough understanding of your Scottish Fold’s dietary requirements so you can make a smart and healthy decision regarding your cat’s daily diet. All cat foods are not created equal and we’re here to help you choose the best one.
Your cat requires a high-protein, moderate-fat, and low-carbohydrate diet that is made with whole foods and is free from artificial additives.
Simply put, the closer your cat’s diet is to that whole-prey model, the better.
When shopping for cat food, a named source of high-quality animal protein should always be the first ingredient. Ideally, at least two of the top three ingredients should be meat, poultry, or fish.
In addition to protein, your Scottish Fold needs fat in his diet to provide essential fatty acids (especially omega 3s) and calories to fuel essential bodily processes. These too should come from animal sources as much as possible. Look for ingredients like chicken fat or salmon oil rather than canola oil or safflower oil.
Finally, the lower the carb content of your cat’s food, the better.
To estimate the carbohydrate content of a commercial cat food, simply use the values represented in the Guaranteed Analysis. Add up the values for crude protein, fat, moisture, and fiber along with ash, if it’s listed. Ash is simply the inorganic mineral content that is left over after the product is cooked.
If the ash content isn’t listed, estimate about 7% for dry food and 2% for wet food.
Once you have those numbers added up, subtract the total from 100% to get your estimated carbohydrate content. We like to see a maximum of 10% carbs, though less is always better.
Things To Avoid in Your Scottish Fold’s Diet
Just as important as knowing what to include in your cat’s diet is knowing what things to exclude. We always like to see a short list of ingredients because that means the food will be easier for your cat’s body to process. Highly digestible food means less waste and more nutrients for your cat.
When shopping for cat food, check the list of ingredients and look for red flags such as:
- A carbohydrate listed as the first ingredient
- High concentrations of plant-based proteins (like pea protein)
- High concentrations of legumes and pulses (like beans, peas, and lentils)
- Non-specific ingredients
- Artificial additives like colors, flavors, and preservatives
If your Scottish Fold has cat food allergies, you may need to be even more careful when shopping for a new cat food. We’ll talk more about cat food allergies later.
So, what brands made it to our top recommendations for the healthiest canned, soft & wet cat Food for Scottish Folds? Keep reading to find out!
In addition to performing our own qualitative analysis of the brands reviewed here, we submitted samples for analysis at an ISO 17025 certified food testing and analysis lab.
We bought the products at full retail price, and the entire testing process was funded by Cats.com without direct input or influence from the companies involved.
Analytical testing in a food chemistry lab gives us the exact macronutrient and micronutrient content of each recipe. The tests also look at microbial content, yeast, mold, and heavy metals, helping you ensure that you’re putting only the best in your cat’s bowl.
Our Top 8 Picks for the Best Cat Food for Scottish Fold Cats
Now that you have a better understanding of your Scottish Fold’s nutritional requirements and how to identify a high-quality cat food, you’re ready to start shopping!
If you’re still not quite sure where to start, don’t worry – we’ve assembled a list of recommended options to get you started.
Do Scottish Folds Get Cat Food Allergies?
You may be surprised to learn that cats can suffer from allergies just like humans. Allergy symptoms may look different in cats than in people, but allergies can still cause a major problem for your cat.
When it comes to allergies in cats, some of the most common culprits are environmental allergies and flea allergies. Food allergies account for only 1% to 5% of skin diseases in cats, so they are less common than cat food manufacturers would have you believe.
What’s more, grains are not the most common cause of food allergies in cats – common proteins like beef, chicken, and fish are.
Food allergies in cats are most likely to develop when the cat is repeatedly exposed to specific allergens (substances that cause allergies). For example, if a cat has a food allergy to chicken and your cat’s diet has chicken as its protein source, your cat may experience allergic symptoms like persistent itchiness and hair loss.
Feeding your Scottish Fold a rotational diet may help prevent food allergies from developing and could make it easier to change your cat’s diet later if a food allergy does develop.
Food allergies can be challenging to diagnose. If you suspect that your Scottish Fold has a food allergy, your veterinarian will likely recommend a food elimination trial, which involves feeding a diet containing a novel protein, like duck or kangaroo, for at least 8 to 12 weeks; no other food can be fed. Identifying the ‘culprit’ ingredient is key to avoiding that ingredient in your cat’s diet.
Your veterinarian will be able to help you manage your Scottish Fold’s food allergy without sacrificing quality, taste, or nutrition.
Homemade Food and Raw Diets for Scottish Fold Cats
While high-quality commercial diets do exist, they can be pretty expensive. If you want to give your Scottish Fold the best of the best, you may want to consider a homemade diet.
Making your own cat food gives you complete control over what ends up in your cat’s bowl. That can be a huge benefit if your cat has food allergies or sensitivities, and it means that your cat won’t be eating any artificial additives.
The challenge with homemade cat food is that you need to follow a vet-approved recipe to make sure you include the right ratios of key nutrients.
Before you settle on a homemade cat food diet for your Scottish Fold, think about whether you are going to go with a cooked diet or a raw diet. Raw food diets have become popular in the pet world but carry a risk for foodborne diseases, for pets and people. For this reason, veterinary organizations and the FDA advise against feeding pets raw food diets. Speak with your veterinarian if you decide to feed your Scottish Fold raw food.
No matter what kind of diet you choose for your Scottish Fold, go with the highest quality you can consistently afford. Follow the feeding recommendations on the package if you’re feeding a commercial diet or measure your cat’s daily portion by weight for homemade diets.
Learn more about homemade and raw cat food in our handy guide.
No matter a cat’s breed, a healthy diet is essential for supporting your cat’s long-term health and wellness. From kitten to adult to senior, quality nutrition promotes healthy body functioning and gives your cat the energy he needs to live his best life.
All cats require a species-appropriate diet made up of animal ingredients. The higher the protein, the better, and don’t forget about healthy fats. Limit your Scottish Fold’s carbohydrate intake as much as possible and consider a fresh or homemade diet, if you can afford it.
If you’re looking to upgrade the quality of your Scottish Fold’s diet or simply want to introduce some variety, consider one of our recommendations above!