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Young Again is one of the only low-carbohydrate, meat-based dry food brands on the market. Find out if it’s the right choice for your cat in our Young Again cat food review.
The Cats.com Standard—Rating Young Again on What Matters
We’ve analyzed Young Again 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 these six key areas.
- Species-Appropriateness – 8/10
- Ingredient Quality – 8/10
- Product Variety – 6/10
- Price – 8/10
- Customer Experience – 10/10
- Recall History – 10/10
Overall Score: 8.3/10
We give Young Again cat food a 50 out of 60 rating or an A- grade.
About Young Again
Young Again was founded by Michael Massie in 1987 and the first pet food products were released in 1990. The brand was the first to offer grain-free cat food made with 50% meat-based protein, no plant proteins, and less than 6% starch/carbohydrates.
All Young Again products are free from fillers, plant proteins, grains, gluten, and peas, beans, and legumes. The food’s low carbohydrate content makes Young Again a favorite among cat owners seeking a diet appropriate for cats with diabetes mellitus.
While Young Again has earned a named for themselves through word-of-mouth, the company keeps a low profile selling directly to consumers through their own website.
Young Again promises to provide species-appropriate diets for cats, but do they practice what they preach? Let’s take a closer look at this brand to see if it’s a good choice for your cat.
Sourcing And Manufacturing
Young Again sources ingredients from the United States, Canada, France, Switzerland, India, New Zealand, Japan, Germany, Finland, and Scotland. All of their meat ingredients are bought from USDA and/or FDA approved human-grade food manufacturing facilities.
Young Again cat food is manufactured in the company’s facility in Stacy, Minnesota.
Has Young Again Cat Food Been Recalled?
No. According to Petful research and Young Again’s website, it doesn’t appear that Young Again pet food has ever been recalled.
What Kinds Of Cat Food Does Young Again Offer?
Young Again’s dry cat food promises whole prey-inspired nutrition that captures the nutritional essence of, in the brand’s own words, a juvenile mouse. The brand offers an assortment of dry cat food, treats, raw premixes, and supplements for cats, dogs, and ferrets.
All Young Again formulas are built on a foundation of animal protein with minimal carbohydrate inclusions. Their foods contain relatively high levels of nucleotides. These are organic compounds best described as the building blocks of RNA and DNA.
Though research is limited, nucleotides have been shown to support immune health and liver function. They may also play a role in mitigating your cat’s stress in response to exercise. The food also contains probiotics and digestive enzymes which may help soothe symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome.
Young Again cat foods are divided by life stage and by nutritional composition.
The Original 50/22 line includes a kitten-specific recipe and a recipe for kittens and juvenile cats. These products contain 50% protein and 22% fat with less than 6% starch. Young again also offers a Junior Kitten formula with 47% protein, 20% fat, and less than 15% starch.
Young Again’s Zero cat food contains less than 1% carbohydrate matter, effectively zero. The original Zero formula is designed for kittens and young cats – it contains 54% protein and 26% fat. Young Again also offers a Zero Mature formula for older cats.
A second Mature recipe is available with a 54/22 protein-to-fat ratio, but the primary focus is reduced calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium content. It’s intended for cats diagnosed with or at risk for renal disease. Young Again’s LID Zero Mature formula is a limited ingredient diet (LID) made with 54% protein from chicken and pork and contains 25% fat.
Young Again’s newest cat food products are their raw premixes. Formulated for both dogs and cats, these premixes are intended for pet owners making homemade pet food. The primary difference between the two is that one contains added calcium, and the other does not. Which you choose simply depends on whether you’re including ground bone in your homemade cat food.
Young Again Cat Food – Top 3 Recipes Reviewed
|Product Name||Food Type||Price||Our Grade|
|Young Again ZERO Cat and Kitten Formula||Dry||$0.34 per oz||A-|
|Young Again Original 50/22 Cat & Kitten Formula||Dry||$0.30 per oz||B+|
|Young Again ZERO Mature Health Formula||Dry||$0.37 per oz||A-|
What Do Customers Think Of Young Again Cat Food?
Young Again’s biggest following? People with diabetic cats. Its low carbohydrate content and satisfying crunch make it an appealing compromise for the kibble-addicted diabetic.
Though most agree that a high-moisture diet is preferable, users on feline diabetes message boards have positive things to say about this brand. More than a few people attribute their cats’ diabetic remission to Young Again cat food.
Because Young Again only sells through their own site, it’s the only place to get formal customer reviews. The customer experiences published on Young Again’s site are more testimonials than reviews, so the following is a mix of those review-testimonials and comments from cat forums.
Let’s hear what these customers have to say.
“I give Young Again Pet Food’s Zero Carb Cat Food a 10 out of 10 as the best food for diabetic cats. Ever since we changed his food from a mainstream cat food to the zero carb food there have been several positive changes. Not only did our cat no longer have diabetes, he also no longer has a wheezing cough. He’s more social, his “pay attention to me” kitten antics are back, and he wants to play often. Other than myself and my husband noticing the symptoms of feline diabetes, I give all the credit to Young Again’s Zero Carb Food for curing my cat.” – Cathi, blogger at Scratch and Stitch
“I put our ex-feral cat Moon on your food when he got up to 17 lbs on a vet prescribed urinary diet for his crystals and cystitis. He fully blocked at the time. He’s down to a respectable 14 lbs now for his size. His friend Rupert, who is an ex-feral we took in a year ago is FIV positive and had terrible dental issues. We dealt with that and he’s gained and maintained at also 14 lbs.
Feral cats tend to have food insecurities, so I love that I can leave multiple bowls of food out without worrying about them overeating. Moon also has food sensitivities, so I’m thrilled that your new mature LID diet helps both his issues.” – Cheryl G., in a testimonial on the Young Again Pet Food website
“Young Again Zero doesn’t use starch as its binder, it uses guar gum as its binder. This is an soluble fiber that’s also sold for humans as a laxative or stool softener. It has the same effect on my cat — he gets projectile stools with it, very loose. If your cat has constipation, YAZ will certainly solve that problem. (Note that while guar gum is being investigated for its effect upon blood sugar in humans — i.e., it reduces blood sugar in humans and is being investigated as a possible treatment for borderline Type 2 diabetes in humans — there is no evidence that it has any effect on blood sugar in cats).” – Badtux, discussing Young Again cat food on Feline Diabetes Forum
“I tried my male cat that had struvite crystals on the zero carb dry food. He had a relapse of crystals/cystitis with this food. I learned from an alternative vet that dry food of any kind is not good for a cat that has had urinary crystals. Canned food only with extra water stirred in is what has helped the most. Ideal is an all meat canned food like Natures Variety Instinct, EVO 95%, Hound and Gatos 98%.” – skimble, discussing Young Again cat food on TheCatSite Forum
How Much Does Young Again Cat Food Cost?
Young Again cat food is very calorie-dense, so on a price-per-ounce basis, it looks more expensive than the average kibble. However, if you look at it in terms of cost per day, it doesn’t look quite so pricey. If you purchase the food in 25-pound bags, none of the recipes reviewed will cost you more than 0.37 per ounce.
In order to feed a 10-pound cat Young Again cat food it would cost between $0.47 and $0.57 per day. That’s significantly cheaper than a premium brand like Ziwi Peak and similarly priced to a high-quality dry food like Dr. Elsey’s.
Overall, Is Young Again A Good Choice?
If you have an overweight, diabetic, unhealthy cat who meows up and down that he’ll starve before tucking into a bowl of anything that doesn’t crunch, Young Again might be a low-carbohydrate way to indulge your cat’s passion for kibble.
That said, dry food—even a thoughtfully-formulated low carbohydrate dry food like Young Again—is deficient in a vital macronutrient.
All dry food is deficient in water. Water deficiencies result in serious health problems, including urinary tract inflammation, crystals, blockage, and other forms of feline lower urinary tract disease.
Where To Buy Young Again Cat Food?
You can only buy Young Again cat food through the manufacturer’s website. You can order a single shipment or, if you like the products, opt for Young Again’s “Bottomless Bag” program and set up a recurring shipment. Shipping is free on all orders over $30.