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Retail Intelligence

Majority Of Cat Owners Feed Their Cats Solely On Cat Food

By Donna Ahern
Majority Of Cat Owners Feed Their Cats Solely On Cat Food

Just over 6 in 10 (62%) of cat owners will feed their cat solely on cat food, in line with 2018 (64%), with the proportion who will feed them a mixture of both cat food and leftovers, unchanged from 2018 levels (32%).

This research, conducted on behalf of Retail Intelligence by Empathy Research, amongst a nationally representative sample of 1,058 adults aged 18+, sought to understand purchase behaviour in this category.

Dry food/mixers continue to be the most popular type of cat food purchased amongst those who buy cat food, with two thirds (66%) claiming to purchase, down from 70% in 2018. The purchase of cat food which comes in pouches has dropped back somewhat this year (now 54%) after rising from 46% in 2017 to 62% in 2018, with an increase in the purchase of canned cat food, now 33%.

Popular Brands 

When it comes to the key brands in the cat food category, supermarket own brand plays a significant role with an increase in purchase evident this year (45%) up from 40% in 2018. Of the branded options available, Whiskas, while easily the most popular brand, has recorded a decrease in purchase incidence. (now 40% from 46% in 2018).


Go Cat (21%) takes a sizeable share, but also drops back from 2018 levels, while Felix (21%) performs well and remains unchanged year-on-year. Purina One has recorded an increase in share from 11% to 12% this year.

Ensuring that the cat will actually eat the cat food continues to be the most important aspect cited when it comes to selecting a type of cat food to purchase, with almost 6 in 10 (58%) claiming this to be their key consideration (unchanged year-on-year). The quality of the product continues to be of lesser importance for buyers, with 18% of cat food buyers claiming this aspect to be most important, almost in line with the proportion who claim that the price of the product is most important.

For further information and more in-depth analysis on consumer behaviour when it comes to purchasing cat food and other pet food products, please contact Robbie Clarke at Empathy Research.

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