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Freely Cat Food Review (6 Products)

BestForPets (bestforpets.org) evaluated Freely cat food based on ingredient quality, species appropriateness, recalls, and other factors.

Read our Freely cat food review to find out how this brand compares.

Concerning Freely Cat Food

Reed Howlett, the former CEO of Nature’s Variety, created Freely in 2019.

More than just a pet food company, Freely is a startup that offers a small selection of limited-ingredient diets for pets as well as the Freely Nutrition Center.

The Freely brand describes itself as a small team of pet food professionals.

Their recipes are developed with a limited list of ingredients to offer pets with balanced nutrition free of the fillers, by-products, and artificial additives that are commonly found in low-quality pet food products.

Sourcing and Production

The Freely brand is based in Brentwood, Missouri, and all of its products are manufactured in the United States.

Other than stating that their products are “the finest ingredients from around the world,” Freely does not disclose any precise details regarding their source.

Freely also claims to have “decades of pet feeding and nutrition experience,” but provides no facts.

Given Howlett’s former role as CEO of Nature’s Variety, however, some of that experience is likely to be attributed to him.

History of Recalls

Freely has never had a product recall to our knowledge.

However, keep in mind that the company is only three years old, which factors into our ranking methodology.

Our highest ranking is intended for businesses who have a lengthy and consistent track record of quality.

What Cat Food Does Freely Provide?

Freely’s mission is to make it easy for pet parents to select and comprehend the food they feed their pets.

As a result, all of Freely’s cat food formulations contain a single protein source and a small list of main components, as well as the required vitamins to ensure balanced nutrition.

The Freely brand includes three dry food recipes, two canned food recipes, and a bone broth food topper for cats. All three of Freely’s dry foods, as well as both of the wet foods, are grain-free.

The following Freely goods are available:

  • Limited Ingredient Turkey Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
  • Limited Ingredient Salmon Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat Food
  • Rabbit Recipe Grain-Free Dry Cat Food with Limited Ingredients
  • Limited Ingredient Turkey Recipe Grain-Free Wet Cat Food
  • Rabbit Recipe Grain-Free Wet Cat Food with Limited Ingredients

According to AAFCO nutrient profiles, Freely’s recipes are designed for adult cats.

What Are Customers Saying About Freely Cat Food?

Because Freely is new and product distribution is limited, there aren’t as many internet evaluations as there are for popular companies like Canidae, which also provide single-protein formulae.

There is a mixed bag of very positive and very bad consumer feedback among the available reviews.

Customers who enjoy Freely goods praise the high quality of the components as well as the limited ingredient formulae. Even the pickiest cats appreciated the food, according to some cat owners.

On the other end of the spectrum, numerous customers claim quality control difficulties in addition to the standard complaints that some cats don’t like the food.

There are also economic issues, which is to be expected with limited-ingredient diets, particularly ones constructed with new proteins.

Let’s take a look at some of the most popular Freely recipes’ reviews.

Positive Feedback

“I have a 13-year-old cat who has GI Lymphoma, which is thought to be the result of years of untreated IBD.”

It’s been a major challenge for her to locate food that doesn’t bother her extremely sensitive digestive system. I tried so many various foods in the hopes of finding the appropriate one for her.

This cuisine has been wonderful for her! She not only enjoys it, but she thrives on it. There was no vomiting or diarrhea, just a happy kitty.

She’s doing fantastic with this and her chemotherapy treatment! ” – Lexi, Freely Salmon Recipe Limited Ingredient Dry Cat Food Review

“Cats enjoy this food.” After we got them off another brand that had gone poorly and was causing health problems, this meal gave them instant vigor.

That gives me confidence that it’s a well-balanced diet.” – Alysli22 Rating Freely Turkey Recipe Limited Ingredient Wet Cat Food

Negative Feedback

“My review is probably not the most accurate. I live with several cats, all of them are picky eaters. I was hoping that giving them something fresh would be the best option.

Because rabbit is a novel protein, it was an excellent choice for my cat who had GI troubles. However, none of the crew members loved it.

I have no idea why. Two of them licked it a few times before raising their noses to it. I did give the rest of the cans to a nearby shelter.

They did tell me that the cats they fed it to really liked it. So I’m guessing it’s a terrific meal, and my cats are just picky.” – Finickyfurkids Reviewing Freely Rabbit Recipe Limited Ingredient Wet Cat Food

“I’m quite upset about this cat food. My cats enjoyed it, but I saw something poking out of one of the meal pellets and used tweezers to remove it. It was incredibly sharp when I pinched it between my fingers.

I was immediately concerned that something like that would puncture my cat’s esophagus or gut. I then began scrutinizing the remaining food pellets in my cat’s bowl.

Almost all of them contained the same alien object. Shards or splinters of very sharp plastic I tried calling the complimentary customer service number, but it is not in service.

I sent them an email on Friday but have yet to hear back. Please be cautious and examine these food pellets carefully. “I’m hoping it was just a bad batch, but I’m not going to buy this food again.” – Nicholas Reviewing Freely Rabbit Recipe Limited Ingredient Dry Cat Food

What Did Our Test Cats Have to Say?

I got the salmon recipe dry food, rabbit recipe wet food, and a bottle of the Beneficial Broth Tranquility Blend food topper to test Freely cat food.

I loved that Freely offers a single-protein rabbit formula before even testing the food. Because one of my cats appears to be allergic to everything else, I feed rabbit to all three of my cats.

It’s difficult to find rabbit-based recipes that don’t include other proteins, and my cats appeared to like the texture of the Freely wet food.

It’s similar to other minced cat food recipes we’ve tried, and it’s not as dry as some pate-style wet feeds.

The dry food mixture appeared to be acceptable to the two cats who were able to taste it. This recipe’s protein and fat sources are both salmon-based, which I loved.

Reviews

Dry Cat Food with Freely Salmon Recipe and Limited Ingredients
 

Fresh salmon is the major ingredient in our dry cat food mix, with salmon meal providing extra protein.

Salmon is the only source of animal protein in this meal, and while it isn’t the main source of fat, salmon oil is included.

While the first two ingredients in this recipe are derived from animals, the latter four are not.

Sweet potatoes aren’t particularly difficult, although we’d rather not include items like lentils and peas.

Not only are these starchy and have little nutritional value for cats, but they’re also tough to digest and contain phytic acid, which can interfere with nutrient absorption.

In terms of nutritional composition, this is a formula with a moderate protein level and a moderate fat content.

Unfortunately, the carbohydrate content is extremely high, accounting for more than 40% of the dry matter.

Pros

  • Made using a single animal protein and fat source
  • The major ingredients are listed in a limited number.
  • No animal byproducts or artificial additives

Cons

  • It includes starchy peas and lentils.
  • No dry food delivers the moisture that your cat requires.

 

Wet Cat Food with Freely Rabbit Recipe and Limited Ingredients
 

This recipe, one of only three wet food recipes available on Freely, uses rabbit as a single source of new animal protein.

It has more moisture than Freely kibble as a canned food and less carbohydrates – less than 20% on a dry matter basis. This is a high-protein mix with a reasonable amount of fat.

Again, some of the fat is derived from plant-based sunflower oil, but salmon oil also contains biologically beneficial animal fat.

Peas are also included in this product, but not as prominently as they are in Freely dry meals.

This is Freely’s most expensive recipe because rabbit is a novel (and relatively uncommon) protein.

The species appropriateness is arguably higher than in dry foods, but the carbohydrate content is a little too high. It’s also worth noting that guar gum is used to thicken this dish.

It may not be as dangerous as carrageenan, a frequent thickening in cheap cat food, but it has been linked to stomach discomfort in certain cats.

Pros

  • Made with a single new animal protein source
  • Moisture-rich to help your cat stay hydrated
  • Ingredients are kept to a minimum to optimize digestibility.

Cons

  • Starchy peas and gum thickener are included.
  • Extremely costly

 

Dry Cat Food with Freely Turkey Recipe and Limited Ingredients
 

With turkey as the main ingredient, this dry food recipe is slightly less expensive than the previous kibble but suffers from some of the same issues.

Fresh turkey and turkey meal top the ingredient list, and salmon oil appears again as an animal-based source of omega-3 fatty acids.

The recipe does appear to rely on sunflower oil as the primary source of additional fat, and we see starchy peas and lentils on the list once more.

In terms of nutritional composition, when measured as dry matter, this recipe contains slightly less protein and almost the same amount of fat as the preceding dry food.

The carbohydrate level remains extremely high.

Pros

  • The list is topped by two high-quality animal protein sources.
  • Salmon oil is included for animal-based omega-3s.
  • A short ingredient list and a single protein source

Cons

  • It includes starchy peas and lentils.
  • No dry food delivers the moisture that your cat requires.

FAQs

What is the price of Freely Cat Food?

Freely dry meals range in price from $0.35 to $0.41 per ounce, making them comparable to other companies that provide restricted ingredient diets, such as Dr. Elsey’s.

Freely’s wet foods are more expensive than their dry foods, as is the case with another limited-ingredient company, Canidae.

Feeding a 10-pound cat Freely cat food costs approximately $0.72 per day for a dry food diet and up to $4.78 per day for a wet food diet.

Is Freely Cat Food a Good Choice in General?

When it comes to single-protein formulations, Freely is a good choice. Their recipes are limited to turkey, salmon, and rabbit, but rabbit is a rather uncommon ingredient in pet food.

Unfortunately, if this is the protein you choose to give your cat, it will come at a high cost, and Freely is no exception.

The ingredients in Freely appear to be of great quality, yet we have no idea where they come from. The fundamental issue is that most Freely foods have a high carbohydrate content.

In this regard, a dry diet like Dr.would Elsey’s be preferable, while freely wet foods aren’t bad. They’re higher in carbs than we’d like to see, especially for such a high-priced cat food.

Where Can I Buy Freely Cat Food?

Freely cat food is available through local and independent pet stores, as well as online at Chewy, Amazon, HeartyPet, and PetFlow.

Conclusion

After careful review and analysis of all of the products you provided, we have narrowed our recommendations down to two: Dry Cat Food with Freely Salmon Recipe and Limited Ingredients and Wet Cat Food with Freely Rabbit Recipe and Limited Ingredients.

BestForPets (bestforpets.org) hopes that our freely cat food review was helpful in your search!

Author Image

Dr. Deborah Fletcher

Deborah R. Fletcher, DVM, is a skilled veterinarian with more than 15 years of experience dealing with companion and exotic animals. She has experience caring for a variety of animals, including household cats and dogs, reptiles, birds of prey, and even primates. Dr. Fletcher is a valuable part of the BestForPets team, where she contributes to their aim of providing pets and their owners with the finest possible treatment and services.

Veterinarian (DVM) Dr. Deborah Fletcher

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