Table of Contents
Purina is one of the biggest pet food brands in the world, so it’s not surprising that they’ve come up with a grain-free product line. If you haven’t heard why grain-free is so popular in cat food just now, it’s because filler ingredients like wheat and corn give your pet a carbohydrate boost rather than the protein that they really need. Just like in humans, too many carbs can lead to weight gain, and from there to diabetes and joint problems.
Reading the ingredient list for Purina Muse, at first it looks like most of the smaller brands grain-free offerings. The first ingredient is salmon, and the second is chicken meal. Although chicken meal sometimes gets a bad reputation, it’s not really a bad ingredient in cat food. When they hunt, cats eat animals whole, bones and all, so meal made from parts that we as humans would turn our nose up at is actually matching a cat’s natural diet more closely.
The first thing I noticed about the make-up of Purina Muse is that it was missing some of the ingredients that other brands have. There are no pre or probiotics, or herbal additions that help digestion. Muse does include vitamins, minerals, omega oils and taurine though.
The third ingredient on the list is a little troubling – cassava root flour. Cassava root is also known as tapioca and guess what? It’s a carbohydrate. So while the filler ingredient in Purina Muse might not be wheat (which can cause digestive problems) it still means this food is higher in calories than other brands. There are some cat owners who avoid Purina products because of the quality of the ingredients, the brand is owned by Nestle, a company many boycott because of their aggressive marketing of baby-milk substitutes in the developing world.
So, while Purina Muse might be a step in the right direction from this big brand, there are better options, nutritionally speaking; for example, Instinct by Nature’s Raw Boost which contains over 10% more protein. What Purina has to its advantage is that it is an easily available brand, stocked pretty much universally wherever you can buy cat food.
Salmon, Chicken Meal, Cassava Root Flour, Pea Starch, Dried Egg Product, Pea Protein, Dried Yeast, Canola Meal, Beef Fat Preserved with Mixed Tocopherols, Non-Fat Yogurt, Natural Flavor, L-Lysine Monohydrochloride, Potassium Chloride, Salt, Phosphoric Acid, Sodium Bisulfate, Whole Blueberries, Spinach, Calcium Carbonate, Choline Chloride, Taurine, Minerals (Zinc, Sulfate, Ferrous Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Iodate, Sodium Selenite), Vitamin E Supplement, Vitamins (Niacin, Vitamin A Supplement, Calcium Pantothenate, Thiamine, Mononitrate, Riboflavin Supplement, Vitamin B-12 Supplement, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Folic Acid, Vitamin D-2 Supplement, Biotin, Menadione Sodium Bisulfite Complex [Source of Vitamin K Activity]).
Pet food ingredients, nutritional values, and the way they are labeled for consumers are monitored by several organizations in the United States including the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the NGO, Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO).
CRUDE PROTEIN 32.0% min
CRUDE FAT 14.0% min
CRUDE FIBER 3.0% max
MOISTURE 12.0% max
LINOLEIC ACID 1.3% min
CALCIUM 1.0% min
PHOSPHORUS 0.9% min
VITAMIN A 12,000 IU/kg min
VITAMIN E 250 IU/kg min
OMEGA-6 FATTY ACIDS 1.4% min
Moving your cat to Purina Muse from another food should be done slowly. Begin by mixing a small percentage of Muse into your cat’s regular food, and increase this amount over around two weeks. Watch your cat for any signs of stomach upset caused by the change.
Weight Recommended Daily Feeding (cups)
5-9 LBS 1/4 – 1/2
10-14 LBS 2/3 – 1
The Bottom Line
Although Purina Muse is a step in the right direction, moving away from using ingredients like wheat which can cause digestive problems in cats, it’s still far from perfect. Its primary ingredient is salmon, the second is chicken meal, but the two follow ingredients are both carbohydrates; cassava root flour and pea starch. Whilst these may be more digestible for your pet, they could still lead to weight control issues.
There are also better options in terms of added ingredients. Purina Muse has a range of vitamins and minerals, and the vital taurine, however, it doesn’t have the pre and probiotic additives that are popular in other brands. These help your pet digest their food and promote overall health.
If you are looking for a grain-free option, we would recommend you choose a different brand.
Sarah Dixon is a freelance writer specializing in pet care and recruitment, and the author of the Alfie Slider series of children’s Sci-Fi novels. She lives in York, UK with her two children and her fur babies Tilly (Calico) and Casper (DSH).