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The name Nulo is a portmanteau of “nutrition” and “love”, but is this brand really a nutritious, safe choice for the cat you love? Find out in our unbiased Nulo review.
The Cats.com Standard—Rating Nulo on What Matters
We’ve analyzed Nulo and graded it according to the Cats.com standard, evaluating the brand on species-appropriateness, ingredient quality, product variety, price, customer experience, and recall history. Here’s how it rates in each of those six key areas.
- Species-Appropriateness – 7/10
- Ingredient Quality – 7/10
- Product Variety – 8/10
- Price – 7/10
- Customer Experience – 8/10
- Recall History – 10/10
Overall Score: 7.9/10
We give Nulo cat food a 47 out of 60 rating or a B+ grade.
After starting a dog sitting business, Michael Landa was startled by the number of overweight and diabetic pets who required at-home insulin injections. He started investigating the trend and how it related to nutrition.
According to the Nulo website, Michael’s research led to more disappointment as he learned about the use of high-glycemic ingredients in pet food. With the help of animal nutritionists, veterinarians, and food formulators, he developed a new brand of food for pets. Nulo was launched in 2009.
The brand is marketed to fitness-conscious people who want high-quality fuel for their animal companions. Nulo’s brand ambassadors include Olympic medalists, professional Crossfit athletes, a fitness trainer, and other fitness icons. It’s the pet food partner for Ironman events. In 2017, Nulo supported the “Squat Your Dog Challenge” at PetSmart.
Sourcing and Manufacturing
Nulo is made from ingredients sourced around the world. Most of their fish, poultry, and meat ingredients are sourced from North America, France, and New Zealand. Their plant ingredients and vitamin packs are sourced from North America and other regions around the world. Nulo states that all ingredients are traced and tested for quality and safety before being used in their products.
Most Nulo food is manufactured in the United States with the exception of their wet cat food pouches and purées, which are made in a facility in Thailand.
Has Nulo Cat Food Been Recalled?
No. It doesn’t appear that Nulo has ever been recalled.
What Kinds of Cat Food Does Nulo Offer?
Nulo offers a diverse variety of grain-free wet and dry cat food.
- The Nulo Freestyle line includes both dry and wet cat food. All of the Freestyle recipes are grain-free with high meat content. The first 3-4 ingredients in every Freestyle dry cat food are sources of animal protein and their wet foods boast “industry-leading meat levels”.
- Nulo’s Limited Ingredient Diet line includes both wet and dry foods for cats with food sensitivities and allergies. The recipes contain up to 38% crude protein and are the only limited ingredient foods that contain the GanedenBC³⁰ probiotic.
- Nulo Medalseries is the brand’s PetSmart-exclusive line. Behind the high-contrast dark packaging, Medalseries is similar to the Freestyle line. Like Freestyle, Medalseries includes grain-free kibble, canned food, and pouches of shredded and flaked meat.
- Perfect Purées are lickable treats that come in a tube. Nulo Pouches are shredded or flaked recipes that come in a pouch for easy storage and feeding. They’re made without any gums, tapioca, or potato starch. Because they’re not nutritionally supplemented, the contents of these pouches are intended as side dishes, snacks, and food toppers. They’re not complete meals.
All Nulo dry foods are supplemented with the patented BC30 probiotic, a probiotic strain that’s extremely stable due to the cell’s ability to form a protective spore. This spore doesn’t germinate until it’s reached the intestines, allowing it to remain stable during storage.
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 only putting the best in your cat’s bowl.
To access the lab reports for each food reviewed here, click the “view lab report” link in the product review.
Nulo Cat Food – Top 3 Recipes Reviewed
|Product Name||Food Type||Price||Our Grade|
|Nulo Freestyle Chicken & Cod Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat & Kitten Food||Dry||$4.80 per lb||B|
|Nulo Freestyle Duck & Lentils Grain-Free Indoor Dry Cat Food||Dry||$4.81 per lb||B|
|Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Canned Cat & Kitten Food||Wet||$0.36 per oz||A|
What Do Customers Think of Nulo Cat Food?
Nulo receives positive customer reviews. On Chewy, Nulo’s top recipes receive 4 to 5-star ratings. Happy customers praise the food’s quality and palatability, while most unhappy customers say their cats refused to eat it.
Let’s see what a few real customers have to say about Nulo cat food.
“I have four cats and none of them will touch this food. My cats aren’t particularly finicky when I comes to hard food. Perhaps it is the flavor I bought but not spending the money to try another flavor they may or may not like.” – Crittergirl, reviewing Nulo Freestyle Duck & Lentils Grain-Free Indoor Dry Cat Food
“I started feeding this food to my old Persian when he was diagnosed with untreatable polycystic kidney disease. He loved the taste and I think the small kibble was easier for him to eat. It improved the look of his coat and seemed to energize him in the last few years of his life. When he passed and I got new cats, I continued feeding Nulo Chicken & Cod to them. They gobble it up and are extremely healthy. The only bummer is that is makes their poop stink like crazy (way worse than normal kitty poo)! It’s like a toxic waste dump in their litter box! However, I will take it to have healthy cats who don’t vomit or have digestion issues!” – EDHDUCK, reviewing Nulo Freestyle Chicken & Cod Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat & Kitten Food
“A pricey, quality food, but beware that the turkey and chicken formula contains tuna. Why? I missed this upon first inspection. I do not feed my cats tuna, ever, nor do I eat it myself, so I feel bad that they’ve been consuming it all this time due to my oversight.” – Linph, reviewing Nulo Freestyle Turkey & Chicken Recipe Grain-Free Canned Cat & Kitten Food
“I left my cat with my friend for 12 days and had her feed this cat food according to the package directions. This was the first time I tried feeding my 2 year old Siamese dry cat food and thought this brand was the safest to try. My friend told me my cat ate it ok and seemed to like it when she first started giving it to her. I told her to only feed her 2/3 cup a day which she followed. When I got home, my cat had put on at least 3-5 pounds and she did not have much of an appetite for couple of days like she normally eats. I put her back on canned cat food right away and after about 5 days, she started eating normally again. My friend also told me she drank a lot of water while she was being fed this food. Even though this brand says it is grain free, there is something in it that put on weight on my cat so I will not be feeding her this cat food again.” – TripleL, reviewing Nulo Freestyle Chicken & Cod Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat & Kitten Food
How Much Does Nulo Cat Food Cost?
Nulo cat food is a moderately-priced brand.
According to the company’s feeding guidelines for an average 10-lb cat, Nulo’s wet foods cost $2.55 to $3.54 per day. Nulo’s dry foods would cost roughly $0.50 per day for the same cat.
Overall, Is Nulo a Good Choice?
Nulo is one of the better cat food brands on the market. Their foods are rich in meat protein with relatively low carbohydrate content. They’re free of artificial ingredients and most recipes are supplemented with a high-viability probiotic.
It’s best to opt for the brand’s wet varieties, which have higher percentages of animal ingredients and provide the hydration your cat needs.
Where Is Nulo Cat Food Sold?
Nulo cat food is sold in independent pet retailers and PetSmart stores. Online, you can buy it through Chewy, Amazon, and PetSmart.com.