We’ve rated Purpose cat food on ingredient quality, species-appropriateness, recalls, and more. Read our Purpose cat food review to learn how this brand stacks up.
The Cats.com Standard—Rating Purpose Cat Food On What Matters
We’ve rated the brand on six key criteria for quality. Here’s how it rates in each of these six crucial areas.
- Species-Appropriateness – 9/10
- Ingredient Quality – 10/10
- Product Variety – 5/10
- Price – 4/10
- Customer Experience – 7/10
- Recall History – 9/10
Overall Score: 7.3/10
In total, we give Purpose Cat food a 44 out of 60 rating or a B grade.
About Purpose Cat Food
The name of this brand is appropriate because the company operates under a single purpose: to extend the humane treatment of animals to those that make up your pet’s diet.
Purpose was founded in 2014 with a mission to create a better freeze-dried pet food. The brand aimed to set a new standard for freeze-dried raw diets by focusing not only on quality nutrition but on ethical values as well.
Also Read: Best Freeze Dried Cat Food
Purpose strives to provide high-quality pet food while supporting independent American family farms and raising awareness of animal welfare.
Sourcing And Manufacturing
Purpose Pet Food is headquartered in New York City and all of their freeze-dried foods are made in the USA. In fact, their ingredients are sourced exclusively from the USA as well, with the exception of rabbit which is imported from France.
Not only does Purpose use only human-grade, USDA-inspected ingredients but they source from local suppliers. On their packages, Purpose notes that they “only use farm-raised, pasture-fed, free-run protein sources with no added hormones or antibiotics.” Their foods are made in USDA-inspected manufacturing facilities.
Also Read: 7 Best Human Grade Cat Foods
Purpose has not had a product recall since launching in 2014.
What Kinds of Cat Food Does Purpose Offer?
Purpose only produces freeze-dried pet food and treats for dogs and cats, though they also offer wild-caught salmon oil as a nutritional supplement.
Purpose freeze-dried cat food comes in the following flavors:
All four recipes are single-protein formulas, and they are complete and balanced for all life stages. Their freeze-dried cat foods are all made with 99% animal protein and 1% organic produce, vitamins, and minerals. These foods can be fed as-is or crumbled and rehydrated with water.
Purpose describes their pet foods as, “Passionately prepared using humanely raised and human-grade, antibiotic-free and steroid-free meats, poultry, certified organic produce, certified organic minerals and natural vitamins, in a USDA inspected food production facility.”
What Do Customers Think Of Purpose Cat Food?
Though Purpose has been on the market for going on a decade, there still aren’t a lot of customer reviews available online. The most I could find were on Chewy where the highest number of ratings any product has was 10.
Cat owners seem to love the quality of the food and the limited number of main ingredients. There are some comments that the food is a little tough to crumble, however, and some cats just showed no interest in the food whether because of the flavor or the lack of a strong appealing aroma.
The price has also been a concern for customers, but many people choose to use it as a snack, treat, or food topper which makes the product last longer.
Let’s take a look at a few reviews from some of the most popular recipes from Purpose.
“My cat loves this new item I bought for him. My cat is 15 yrs. old and finicky. The pieces are hard but soak up easy with water and you can break up for cat like mine who is old and missing lots of teeth. I am so happy with this new item and can add to cat’s menu with others brands I buy so he does not get bored. Again, my cat loved this product and I am so happy.” – by Elvia Reviewing Purpose Carnivore Duck Freeze-Dried Cat Food on 27 Jan 2022
“One of my cats like this, the other, no such luck. I love the ingredients however the pieces are really big. I have to use my mincer to break it up and then I re-hydrate it for Ruth. I’m going to keep trying with Simon to see if I can get him off the processed foods.” – by Nancy Reviewing Purpose Carnivore Chicken Freeze-Dried Cat Food on 25 Aug 2021
“I have a cat who loves rabbit. There are not a lot of options in wet food w rabbit and I like to provide variety. I decided to try this food out as the ingredients seem pretty good. My cat was extremely excited while I was opening the bag, he seemed to really like the smell. I offered a few pieces and he excitedly attempted to try it out. Several attempts later he just gave up. He couldn’t seem to bite threw it at all. I tried it out on my other cat with the same outcome. I tried soaking it, still no luck. So I tried crushing it in a plastic bag with a hammer to make a food topper and all I made was a mess (the plastic bag ripped). The food pieces are rather large (long) for cat food and sooo tough. Very disappointed. My cats can’t eat this at all, just kept spitting it out. I for sure would not recommend this food sadly.” – by Kkitty Reviewing Purpose Carnivore Rabbit Freeze-Dried Cat Food on 18 Feb 2022
“Oh did I like the size of the bites (no smashing). And the smell (subtle). But apparently the things I liked meant the cats would not eat it. When hydrated it was completely ignored. When left dry there would be a few nibbles – which made me think we could just use it as a snack. Sadly, that was a nope. Brand is probably good. Maybe if they had a different protein that would have been a bigger hit for my cats.” – by Draconismoi Reviewing Purpose Carnivore Chicken Freeze-Dried Cat Food on 21 Mar 2020
What Did Our Test Cats Think?
To test Purpose cat food, I ordered the freeze-dried duck and rabbit recipes. Both came in resealable 9-ounce bags, and I didn’t feel like there was a lot of wasted packaging.
The food itself is formed into elongated pellets ranging from about ½ to 1 inch long. It was pretty firm, though certainly not as hard as kibble, and was fairly difficult to crumble by hand.
I tried rehydrating Purpose freeze-dried food according to the instructions on the package with mixed results. Purpose suggests adding 2 or more tablespoons of warm water for every 1 cup of crumbled pieces. This was surprising to me because I’ve always seen recommendations for using equal parts water and freeze-dried food.
As I expected, the crumbled food took way more than two tablespoons per cup to rehydrate. I also tried rehydrating the whole pieces and, though it took longer than other formulas I’ve tried, they did eventually soften when soaked in water.
When feeding time came around, my cats were very interested. I already feed my cats a rabbit-based diet, so that’s the recipe I started with. Bagel had no qualms about digging right in – she didn’t need to wait for the food to rehydrate before she started eating.
Purpose Cat Food – Top 3 Recipes Reviewed
|Product Name||Food Type||Main Protein Source||Calories||Price||Our Grade|
|Purpose Carnivore Chicken Freeze-Dried Cat Food||Freeze-Dried||Chicken||117 kcal/oz||$2.22 per oz||A-|
|Purpose Carnivore Rabbit Freeze-Dried Cat Food||Freeze-Dried||Rabbit||100 kcal/oz||$3.89 per oz||B+|
|Purpose Carnivore Duck Freeze-Dried Cat Food||Freeze-Dried||Duck||122 kcal/oz||$3.00 per oz||B+|
How Much Does Purpose Cat Food Cost?
Freeze-dried cat food tends to be pretty pricey, especially for recipes that consist primarily of muscle meat, organs, and raw bone. Purpose freeze-dried cat food is only sold in 9-ounce bags and the price varies by the type of protein.
The cheapest option is Purpose’s Carnivore Chicken recipe for $19.99 and the most expensive is the rabbit recipe for $32.99. Customers who shop on PurposePetFood.com can save 10% with a subscription automatically delivered every 1, 2, 4, or 12 weeks.
The per-ounce price for Purpose freeze-dried cat food ranges from $2.22 to $3.67. The cost to feed a 10-pound cat would be somewhere between $3.76 and $7.23 per day.
Overall, Is Purpose Cat Food A Good Choice?
Purpose is a great option for cat owners seeking a freeze-dried cat food. Their recipes deliver simple, animal-based nutrition without grains, fillers, or artificial additives. All of their recipes are made with a single source of protein as well, which makes them a good option for cats with food sensitivities.
These formulas are higher in carbohydrate than I’d like to see, but still lower than the average dry food. When properly rehydrated, Purpose freeze-dried cat food can provide a balanced source of feline nutrition as well as the moisture your cat needs.
The primary concern with Purpose is the price. The brand also doesn’t offer a lot of variety, though three of their four recipes feature proteins that are novel to many cats. If you have the budget for it – or if you’re looking specifically for novel protein diet – Purpose might be worth considering.
Where Is Purpose Cat Food Sold?
You can find Purpose cat food in specialty pet food stores across the United States or online from Chewy. You can also purchase Purpose pet food directly through the website with shipping available to all U.S. addresses and to Canada.
In their FAQ section, Purpose notes that they are “able to accept orders from other countries case by case.” International customers are encouraged to contact the company directly to get a shipping quote.