Smalls Cat Food Review: Our Experience

Cats Reviews Jun 20, 2021
Written by | Updated Sep 29, 2021
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Smalls Cat Food Review: Our Experience

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Cat food is longer limited to cans of paté, pouches of stew, and bags of kibble. If you’re in the mood for something different, you can try raw food, freeze-dried food, and freshly cooked meals. You can buy cat food online, shop for it in a store, or make it yourself.

Some companies, like Smalls, are taking advantage of this moment and helping to change what it means to shop for and feed your cat.

Quick Summary

Smalls was a hit in our home. The ordering process was a pleasure, the customer service was prompt and accommodating, and the food was good, too. All of the recipes smelled delicious and the cats were happy to eat them.

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Smalls Cat Food YouTube Video Review


Co-founder and CEO Matt Michaelson says that Smalls is “as close as you can get to homemade food, without, you know, making it at home.” Combined with its subscription model and wide variety of texture and flavor options, it looks like Smalls is food for today’s cat guardian.

After researching Smalls cat food, interviewing the company’s founders, reading customer reviews, and trying it for myself, I’m here to share the details about this cat food brand.

What Kind Of Cat Food Does Smalls Offer?

The Smalls cat food selection includes fresh wet food in minced and paté textures, freeze-dried raw food, and kibble. Their wet food isn’t your standard slop in a can. Whether minced or whipped up into a paté, Smalls is a homemade-style food that looks and smells like the kind of meat you might eat for dinner.

Similarly, Smalls freeze-dried food is made from simple, straightforward ingredients. Their kibble is similar to other grain-free dry foods, with a meat-first ingredient list and a variety of legumes holding it all together.

Here’s How It’s Made.

Smalls cat food is formulated by certified animal nutritionists and made in a USDA-inspected human food processing facility in Chicago, Illinois. The food’s ingredients are human-quality, too, making Smalls one of the few human-grade cat foods you can buy.

According to allaboutcats.com Smalls has had a few issues with product quality and customer experience and, in June 2021, they experienced their first recall.

In June 2021, the founder of Smalls posted a statement on the company’s website explaining the voluntary recall. The recall affects select Fresh Chicken and Fresh Turkey products labeled as:

Ground Bird, Chicken Recipe Smooth Bird, Chicken Recipe Ground Other Bird, Turkey Recipe Smooth Other Bird, Turkey Recipe

But That’s Not All Smalls Cat Food Has To Offer.

Its nutritional and ingredient quality alone would make Smalls interesting, but the company adds another layer of novelty by using a subscription model.

By sending you a box of Smalls according to a monthly delivery schedule, the company makes the way you buy an experience of its own. It puts itself in an interesting new pet food category along with Nom Nom, Ollie, and Farmer’s Dog.

There’s A Lot To Analyze Here.

I decided to get some first-hand experience with Smalls cat food. With the help of my two cats, Wessie and Forest, I’d find out what Smalls is all about, evaluate the ordering process, customer service, and what would happen when you put Smalls in your cat’s bowl.

Smalls Cat Food Review— Purchased and Tested

Smalls Cat Food
Brand
Overall Score
Pros
  • Offers a wide variety of recipe options
  • Fully human-grade food
  • Your first order comes with an assortment of additional goodies
  • Offers 25% off your first order
Cons
  • Doesn't offer any customization
  • Customer service is inconsistent
Pros
  • Offers a wide variety of recipe options
  • Fully human-grade food
  • Your first order comes with an assortment of additional goodies
  • Offers 25% off your first order
Cons
  • Doesn't offer any customization
  • Customer service is inconsistent
Monthly Price
Ingredient Quality
Nutritional Quality
Recipe Variety
Options for Customization

I’d tried Smalls cat food two years ago when the company was brand-new—I remember waiting a couple of weeks to try it so that they could get their customer portal set up. Though the idea was strong and their food was a hit, Smalls hadn’t ironed out all of the kinks in their customer experience. Having given them a couple of years to grow, I was excited to see how they’d changed.

Here’s How You Order Smalls Cat Food.

Smalls is a customized cat food experience. The company uses information about your cat’s size and figure, health goals, and even your budget preferences to make sure that your Smalls subscription is just right.

The Smalls Journey Starts With A Questionnaire

I entered Forest’s age, food preferences, and let Smalls know that her figure was just right—no weight loss or gain necessary. Interestingly, I didn’t enter her weight. Smalls is not custom-portioned, so your cat’s size doesn’t come into play.

At the end of the questionnaire, Smalls—very politely—asked about my budget preferences. I let Smalls know that I like to save where I can but that good nutrition took precedence.

Given Forest’s preferences and my budget, Smalls suggested three variety packs, each containing different combinations of food—fresh food only, a mix of fresh and kibble, or a mix of fresh and freeze-dried.

In Total, Smalls Offers Nine Recipe Plans

With names like Total Moisture, Fresh Food Starter, and Balanced Convenience, each of these sampler boxes was developed with a different type of customer in mind.

So that I could try all three types of Smalls cat food, I chose the Healthiest Balance plan. It didn’t include every recipe, but it would give my cats a taste of Smalls kibble, freeze-dried food, and fresh food.

After I placed my order, Smalls sent an email letting me know that they were working on the food and preparing to ship it. Smalls ships on Mondays and uses second-day air shipping to make sure your food arrives ice-cold.

The box arrived at my house on Wednesday morning.

Here’s What Came In The Box

I was out all day and wasn’t able to bring in the box until late that evening. When I opened the box, everything was still frosty-cold, packed in biodegradable insulation and chilled with dry ice.

Moral of the story: you don’t have to take the day off work to wait for your package of Smalls cat food. Unless something goes wrong, the contents of the box will stay fresh and cold for a day on your porch.

The fresh food was promptly shipped and delivered in an insulated box.

And the box didn’t just contain the food I’d ordered—it also contained a bright yellow box tied shut with a ribbon. Inside was a bundle of free extras.

This box of free items comes with your first box of Smalls cat food. From the introductory guide to the food toppers, everything in this box helps you get started with Smalls.

In addition to the Smalls cat food, the box included a variety of toppers and extras like bonito flakes, chicken liver powder, chicken broth, and containers.

The broth, bonito flakes, and chicken liver powder help to make the food more palatable. The plastic tub—something the company calls Smallsware—is the perfect shape for a brick of Smalls fresh cat food and makes it easier to portion out and store.

Here’s What Came In My Introductory Box Of Smalls Cat Food

We received chicken kibble, freeze-dried raw turkey, freeze-dried raw duck, freeze-dried raw chicken, and an introductory pamphlet explaining how to get started.

On the second row in the photo above, we have a cute little Smallsware tub, fresh chicken food, Gold Leaf (bonito flakes), Gold Dust (chicken liver powder), fresh turkey food, and Liquid Gold—also known as chicken broth.

In other words, there was a LOT in that box!

Was it the most exciting box of cat food I’ve ever opened?

Yes. It was.

What Did The Cats Think Of Smalls Cat Food?

Both of my cats liked Smalls cat food. Every variety went over well, but the freeze-dried recipes were a particularly big smash with Forest.

While I was photographing them for the review, Forest walked into the room, sat down, and started chowing down. She enjoyed every recipe from day one.

Forest Eating the Smalls Freeze Dried Chicken

My other cat, Wessie, also liked the Smalls food, but he preferred the wet recipes. They have the smell and texture of Thanksgiving table scraps, which are his favorite treats.

Wessie eating a bowl of Smalls chicken cat food

Let’s Bite Into The Juicy Details

I’ll be reviewing three recipes—Smalls chicken kibble, freeze-dried turkey, and fresh chicken. We’ll discuss the foods’ ingredients, species-appropriateness, and how each recipe went over.

Compare Smalls Cat Food

Smalls Chicken Kibble Cat Food

1. Smalls Chicken Kibble Cat Food

Smalls Freeze-Dried Raw Turkey Cat Food

2. Smalls Freeze-Dried Raw Turkey Cat Food

Smalls Fresh Ground Bird

3. Smalls Fresh Ground Bird

Crude Protein
40% Min
Crude Protein
49% Min
Crude Protein
21.2% Min
Crude Fat
17% Min
Crude Fat
17% Min
Crude Fat
8.05% Min
Crude Fiber
4% Max
Crude Fiber
3% Max
Crude Fiber
0.4% Max
Moisture
10% Max
Moisture
8% Max
Moisture
66.1% Max
Ash
Ash
Ash
2.25%
1.

Smalls Chicken Kibble Cat Food

Product Info

  • Crude Protein: 40% Min
  • Crude Fat: 17% Min
  • Crude Fiber: 4% Max
  • Moisture: 10% Max

Guaranteed Analysis

loader
Crude Protein: 40%
Crude Fat: 17%
Crude Fiber: 4%
Moisture: 10%

Dry Matter Basis

loader
Protein: 44.44%
Fat: 18.89%
Fiber: 4.44%
Carbs: 32.22%
Pros
  • Relatively low in carbohydrates compared to other dry cat foods
  • Made from human-grade ingredients
  • Features animal-sourced fat
  • Doesn’t contain artificial colors, flavors, or preservatives
Cons
  • No dry food provides the moisture your cat needs
  • Expensive compared to similar dry foods
  • Carbohydrate content is too high for cats
Ingredients

Chicken, Chicken Meal, Sweet Potatoes, Peas, Egg Product, Pea Protein, Chicken Liver, Natural Flavor, Chicken Fat, Fish Oil, Lecithin, Sun-dried Miscanthus Grass, Yeast Culture, Calcium Carbonate, Choline Chloride, Sea Salt, Potassium Chloride, Yeast Extract, Fructooligosaccharides, Taurine, Dl-methionine, L-tryptophan, Tricalcium Phosphate, Cranberry Extract, Chamomile Flower, Fumaric Acid, Lactic Acid, Citric Acid, Malic Acid, Thyme Extract, Zinc Sulphate, Ferrous Sulphate, Zinc Proteinate, Iron Proteinate, Nicotinic Acid, etc..

Smalls Offers Three Kibble Recipes—Chicken, Fish, And Turkey. Though our cats eat a high-moisture diet, they enjoy dry food as an occasional treat. I decided to try the chicken recipe. The first thing I noticed about this food was its smell.

It was meaty and savory and the cats also reacted to it immediately. I offered both Wessie and Forest a bowlful and they dove right in. Forest even purred as she ate.

The kibble is extruded into small disc-shaped pieces. It’s made with at least 35% dried meat, along with sweet potatoes, peas, and supplements. The food has two added fat sources—chicken fat and fish oil. They’re both species-appropriate ingredients that nourish your cat as a carnivore.

The food is relatively low in carbohydrates compared to other dry foods, with 20.5% calories from carbohydrates.
2.

Smalls Freeze-Dried Raw Turkey Cat Food

Product Info

  • Crude Protein: 49% Min
  • Crude Fat: 17% Min
  • Crude Fiber: 3% Max
  • Moisture: 8% Max

Guaranteed Analysis

loader
Crude Protein: 40%
Crude Fat: 17%
Crude Fiber: 3%
Moisture: 10%

Dry Matter Basis

loader
Protein: 44.44%
Fat: 18.89%
Fiber: 3.33%
Carbs: 33.33%
Ingredients

Finely Ground Turkey With Bone, Turkey Heart, Turkey Liver, Turkey Gizzard, Goat's Milk, Turkey Egg, Water, Egg Shell Membrane, Herring Oil, Mixed Tocopherols, D-Alpha Tocopherol

Smalls offers three freeze-dried raw cat food recipes—turkey, duck, and chicken. My sample pack included all three of them. While Wessie and Forest both ate the freeze-dried food, they were Forest’s favorite.

Unlike some freeze-dried food that comes in patties and is intended to be rehydrated, this food is formed into small pellets and is served dry. I tried rehydrating the pieces and they floated like cereal in milk.

Let’s take a closer look at the freeze-dried turkey recipe. The food is formulated by Dr. Richard Patton, a professor of animal science. Though the food—like all Smalls freeze-dried foods—doesn’t contain any synthetic supplements, it meets AAFCO nutritional guidelines for all life stages.

The food is made primarily from finely ground turkey with bone, turkey heart, liver, and gizzard, turkey egg, and goat’s milk. The food also contains herring oil as a source of omega-3 fatty acids.

With plenty of nutrition from fresh meat, organs, and bones, the food is a species-appropriate product. It has the high protein content, moderate fat, and low carbohydrate content that are ideal for cats.
3.

Smalls Fresh Ground Bird

Product Info

  • Crude Protein: 21.2% Min
  • Crude Fat: 8.05% Min
  • Crude Fiber: 0.4% Max
  • Moisture: 66.1% Max
  • Ash: 2.25%

Guaranteed Analysis

loader
Crude Protein: 21.2%
Crude Fat: 8.05%
Crude Fiber: 0.4%
Moisture: 66.1%
Ash: 2.25%

Dry Matter Basis

loader
Protein: 62.54%
Fat: 23.75%
Fiber: 1.18%
Carbs: 5.9%
Pros
  • Features nourishing muscle meat and organs as primary ingredients
  • Minimal carbohydrate content
  • Made from human-grade ingredients
  • Doesn’t contain artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives
  • Moisture-rich to keep your cat hydrated
Cons
  • Contains several plant ingredients
  • Uses vegetable oil instead of animal fat
Ingredients

Chicken Thigh, Chicken Breast, Chicken Liver, Green Beans, Peas, Water sufficient for processing, Chicken Heart, Kale, Vegetable Oil, Calcium Carbonate, Dicalcium Phosphate, Choline Bitartrate, Salt, Taurine, Magnesium Gluconate, Potassium Chloride, Zinc Gluconate, Ascorbic Acid, Copper Gluconate, Vitamin E Supplement, Manganese Gluconate, Ferrous Gluconate, Niacin, Thiamine Hydrochloride, Vitamin A, Calcium Pantothenate, Riboflavin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Vitamin D3 Supplement, Folic Acid, Selenium,Dried Kelp, Biotin, Vitamin B12

Smalls offers three wet or fresh recipes featuring turkey, beef, and chicken as primary protein sources. Each is available in either a minced or paté texture. We tried two varieties—turkey and chicken. The chicken flavor had a slightly softer, flakier consistency and the cats seemed to prefer it.

Instead of pouches or dishes, the food is formed into a slim brick in a plastic wrapper. The top peels off for easy access and is marked in 50-calorie increments, theoretically making it easy to portion out the right amount for your cat. This feature only has one flaw. When you lift off the top to access the food, you'll also obscure the measurement lines.

All Smalls fresh food recipes follow the same recipe blueprint. They feature muscle meat and organs along with a sprinkling of vegetables. A mix of added synthetic vitamins, minerals, and amino acids make the food nutritionally complete.

The chicken recipe features chicken thigh, breast, and liver as primary ingredients, along with a mix of green beans, peas, and kale. Unlike other Smalls recipes, it uses vegetable oil instead of animal-sourced fat.

Despite its use of vegetables, the food remains a low-carbohydrate product with 3.5% calories from carbohydrates.

How Much Does Smalls Cat Food Cost?

The cost of Smalls cat food depends on which plan you choose. Fortunately, Smalls gives you the price of each box before you decide which one you want.

That’s a welcome change—similar companies wait to drop the money details on you after you have something in your cart.

My Healthiest Balance subscription would break down to $2.90 per day or $90 each month, plus $10 shipping.

If I’d chosen their most cost-effective option—the Essential Kibble box—that cost would go down to a dollar a day or about $30 per month, again with shipping on the side.

And had I chosen the Balanced Convenience box for a mix of fresh and freeze-dried food, the monthly bill would be somewhere around $133.

Smalls cat food is more expensive than your average grocery store fare, but it’s cheaper than comparable options.

The wet and freeze-dried foods are the best value, with slightly lower prices than many competing brands. The dry food, however, is about twice as expensive as similar kibble products.

Product Name Food Type
Typical Cost per Day
Smalls Freeze-Dried Turkey Freeze-Dried $3.66
Stella & Chewy’s Tummy Ticklin’ Turkey Dinner Morsels Freeze-Dried $2.53
Darwin’s Natural Pet Natural Selections™ Chicken Raw Cat Food Frozen Raw $2.40
Smalls Chicken Wet/Fresh Fresh Cooked $2.89
Nom Nom Chicken Chow Meow Fresh Cooked $3.18
Weruva Paw Lickin’ Chicken Premium Canned $3.10
Fancy Feast Chicken Economy Canned $1.33
Smalls Chicken Dry Premium Dry $1.00
Wellness CORE Grain-Free Indoor Formula Premium Dry $0.46
9Lives Daily Essentials Economy Dry $0.10

Overall, Is Smalls Cat Food A Good Choice?

Smalls was a hit in our home. The ordering process was a pleasure, the customer service was prompt and accommodating, and the food was good, too. All of the recipes smelled delicious and the cats were happy to eat them.

Smalls cat food is an intriguing option for people who want homemade-style food but don’t want to make their cat’s food themselves.

You’re getting ingredient and production quality that’s almost unheard of in traditional cat food and, thanks to the subscription model, an added level of convenience.

Compared to other subscription-based cat food, you get a much wider variety, allowing you to satisfy cats of all tastes.

That said, Smalls cat food isn’t a customized product. Though Smalls gathers information about your cat, your meals aren’t custom-portioned. In fact, there’s no indication that the details in your cat’s account have any effect on the food you get. It just helps the system recommend a plan that might work for you.

So make no mistake—this is not customized cat food. Unlike some subscription-based foods, it’s not specially formulated for your cat or measured out for his dietary needs. If you’re looking for a customized cat food service, consider something like Nom Nom.

Here’s How To Get Started With Smalls Cat Food

If you’re interested in trying Smalls for yourself, head to the Smalls for Smalls website. Click on the “Get Started” button to set up your subscription. You’ll receive 25% off and free shipping when you place your first order. In case your cat doesn’t like it, Smalls cat food is covered by a money-back guarantee and you can cancel at any time.

Click here to get 25% off your first order of Smalls cat food.

* Use Code=LITTER2MONTHS and Win 2 Months of Free Litter

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Let us know what you think.

Mallory Crusta is a blogger and adventurecat enthusiast who brings you the facts about cat products, wellness, and care. She's the co-founder of Wildernesscat, a resource for savvy cat guardians who want to give their felines richer, healthier lives. Visit Wildernesscat for product reviews, radically natural nutrition tips, and lifestyle inspiration
28 Comments
  1. K

    Mallory, after your cats were on the Smalls diet, did you experience reductions in stool size?

    • Mallory Crusta

      Hey K, that's a good question. My cats only ate Smalls food for a very short period of time and I didn't notice any changes. That being said, they already have pretty small stool given that they eat a combination of low-residue canned and fresh food. I've only ever noticed a big difference when switching to raw food—resulting in very, very small stool—and when they've eaten dry food for a few days in a pinch. The latter resulted in massive, almost dog-like bowel movements. If your cat's on a dry diet, I would absolutely expect their stool to be smaller and less smelly on a Smalls diet. Hope this helps! - Mallory

  2. Jennifer L. Klass

    Just curious...why did you only feed Smalls for a short time? Did you find another product better/healthier?

    • Mallory Crusta

      Hi Jennifer, thanks for asking. There were a couple of factors at play here. For one, my cats are on a very varied diet with all of the product sampling they do. They haven't had a consistent diet for a while and seem comfortable and healthy on this regimen. Once we were done trying the Smalls food, we moved on to another food for review. Additionally, the Smalls food—while certainly among the cheaper pet food delivery services—is a tad bit pricier than I'd prefer. Hope this explains! Thank you again for stopping by.

      • Jennifer L. Klass

        Thanks for replying, Mallory!! I had NO idea you did b/c I never get notifications from stuff like this. I just came across this video once again and started to read through the comments...only to see one from me and never knew I left one! lol Can you (or have you) ever done a review on Young Again pet food?? I would love to hear your thoughts!!! ;-)

  3. Cat Guy

    Here's my experience: Smalls will not let you cancle without talking to three sales people and suggest they suggest that starving your cat is a great way to force them to eat this "food". Worst customer service I've experienced in years. If you try to change your order so you don't get charged for food your cat won't eat -24 hours later the cart automatically "resets" and it will charge you anyway unless you talk to them. Like to a person. No option for self service. Horrible experience. I hope everyone has a better experience and that they change these policies.

    • Jennifer L. Klass

      Gosh, I found them to be awesome in their replies and SUPER helpful. I've contacted them a lot and never had an issue. Their website isn't very interactive and useful, but aside from that, their peeps are always keeping in touch. Sorry you had a bad experience...

    • KG

      Cat Guy - I had the same experience. They also increased my ordered from approx 2800 calories (2 weeks) to 63k calories, but still set to reship every two weeks - so roughly 4500 calories per day! I can only hope Karma will catch up to them and they won't stay in business very long. It's a shame, the food was decent and reasonably priced, but Smalls clearly decided that operating deceptive, subscription based company was more profitable than running an honest company selling quality products.

      • Mallory Crusta

        Thanks for sharing this experience, KG. I'm in touch with the Smalls team and will pass your experience along to them to make sure that they're aware of what's going on.

  4. Kim Neshan

    Highly dissatisfied with Smalls. Food came thawed twice within 3 months. Second time it smelled like fish because they changed their processing plant were they fish came out of.

    • Mallory Crusta

      Hi Kim, thank you for sharing this. We are currently having a dialogue with the Smalls team and working to resolve the types of issues that you and other commenters have mentioned. I will pass your comment along and, hopefully, they will be able to address these problems soon.

    • Jibran from Smalls

      Hey Kim, so sorry to hear about your experience with us. We pack our boxes with enough dry ice to keep orders frozen for up to three days; sometimes an extended journey on a warm delivery truck can expedite the evaporation, especially during the warmer weeks. However, I can totally empathize with how frustrating it can be to receive food that's already thawed and it's concerning to me that this happened to you twice. I'll definitely be sure to flag this with our Operations team. I'm more than happy to get a replacement shipped to you, just let me know!

  5. Mary

    So far ive had a good experience with customer service. I was able to modify my order as well. Im waiting on my subscription order. I will update you guys when ive received it and tried it.

  6. Lorie

    I purchased the introductory package and received 5 half-defrosted tubes of cat food with no extras or instructions. I contacted customer service and they sent me through e-mail some additional information on feeding. Pretty sure this cat food isn’t going to be around very long.

  7. Jill S.

    I would never recommend this product to anyone. First, I received a trial order that was completely unthawed and my cats wouldn't touch it. They are not picky and I am assuming they knew it had spoiled. After having no intention of ever trying it again, I was informed that I had been "subscribed". After emailing them to tell them I did NOT want this order ($250.00 worth), they said I was too late, even though my order had not been put through or shipped. Then, I just opened it and it was unthawed again with no ice left. Now I am stuck dealing with this company that completely do not care about customers, just getting their money. I completely regret the decision to ever buy from them.

  8. Stina

    Listen to all the bad reviews about this company. It’s true they are deceptive. First of all, while their customer service is responsive, it has to be because their website is so terrible. Most of the time, it doesn’t work properly and you have to ask customer service to do it. It took me a while to figure out the right amount for my kitten so I spent more than I expected month to month. When I finally did, I made sure to have an extra 2 bags as they recommended. But they decided, without giving notice to me, to switch out my cats food from chicken to turkey. This was such a risky move because I had no supply left to transition and I was leaving on vacation by the time I noticed the ingredients were turkey. When I emailed them, they said it was my fault for not reading the email, but it was buried in an email that I always get each time my email ships. They expect me to open the same email with the same subject title I get every month my order ships — when they should’ve changed the subject title to tell customers that the change is happening. This is deceptive and extremely inconsiderate to a cat’s health. They refused to provide me a refund upon request or ship me replacement. My cat has a very sensitive stomach and can’t just switch off like that. I’m still figuring out her food allergies and some cats are allergic to turkeys. I thought they were honest about their ingredients but I can’t trust a company with dishonest practices like this. Prior to this, I had Nom Nom Now and they were soo much better at measuring how much food your cat needed and obviously way better quality. Taste-wise, one of my other cats refused to eat Smalls food after about 2 months out of no where so I had to switch out it, and I was willing to stay with their company for my one other cat but not anymore with deceptive practices like this. I can’t trust their ingredients or the disrespectful way they go about switching out products without consent.

  9. Maureen

    Hi Malory, This review isn’t correct in that you said Smalls gives all of the many extras you highlighted like Bonita Flakes etc. in your first order. I didn’t get that and when I contacted them about it (showing them the same picture you have in this article) they said they no longer give any of those extras to new customers.

    • Mallory Crusta

      Hi Maureen, thanks for mentioning this. This article was written a couple of years ago and is in need of an update to reflect the updated offering and customer portal. Sorry about the confusion.

  10. Nathan Pinard

    They arent honest about what you will pay in the end and they provide no kcal info. pass.

  11. Josh

    I'm testing Smalls out right now. Initial ordering of a discounted trial package was fine, and my cat seems to like the food so far (turkey and chicken recipes). The first box I received, in August with 90 degree temps, was in shipping for 2 days and on a truck for 1 day and had mostly thawed out, none of the food packets were completely below 40F (most were 55+). I emailed them and they sent out a replacement the next day. That box arrived frozen and totally usable. I'm surprised that they haven't figured out how to ship this stuff yet, but maybe making and shipping replacement orders is cheaper than adding an extra cup of dry ice. So far, customer service has been fine, though I have only used email. Honestly, the subscription model isn't any more convenient for me than any other cat food. I feed my cat a mixture of wet and dry food and it looks like I will need to delay every shipment to keep the schedule in sync. Even without that caveat, this convenience definitely isn't worth the price premium, so I don't consider it when I compare pricing. These days, it's trivial to one-click re-order from any online retailer or set up automatic, scheduled shipments. I like that there isn't the same bad stuff almost all other wet cat foods have in them, the gums and whatnot, however this seems to be very high calorie food for the volume. The "fresh ground cow" (beef) recipe I received is in different packaging, not the easy-open packet but a simple sausage-shaped tube. I don't remember ordering beef, and I generally don't get beef food for my cat, but I can give it a try... I doubt domesticated size cats take down and eat cows in the wild very often. My cat had to lose some weight so I switched her to Royal Canin weight management food for a while, which worked great. That food is about ~16 cal/oz. Now I am working on switching back. A 50 calorie chunk/serving of Smalls is about the size of an AA battery. A food packet is 11 oz and has roughly 10 servings, so ~50 cal/oz. The current price works out to about $0.90/oz, roughly double other foods I've been testing, such as Tiki Cat and Instinct (roughly 25 cal/oz and $0.50/oz). I like the quality and the idea of supporting the company, but I am going to have to split meals of Smalls with another wet food to keep the price reasonable and volume up so my cat isn't constantly begging for food and/or getting fat. I also feed her the Purina anti-allergy dry food (which works) because I am allergic. But she showed up skinny and astray in the driveway one winter and never left. Overall I am mildly disappointed (shipping, scheduling & calories vs. ingredients), but not enough to give up on Smalls yet.

  12. Anna

    Recieved our first order yesterday, ground bird, and served this morning. Our cat loved it! and cleaned her bowl. Plus she's not begging for more food. Happy, happy!

    • Mallory Crusta

      Pawesome! I agree that their food tends to be extremely palatable. I'm glad your cat loved it.

  13. ZuzuLilly

    I experienced the same warm food when I picked up the UPS package right after delivery. It is not acceptable. This was the second shipment I received. Not happy that you cannot talk to a person either! That is ridiculous. I am done with this company. The raccoons and 'possums are enjoying it but my cats are not!

    • Mallory Crusta

      Thanks for sharing your experience. So sorry you went through this. We'll keep it in mind when writing about Smalls in the future.

  14. Jennifer L. Klass

    Very helpful article! Thank you! However, under the kibble "cons", you stated that the carb content was too high for cats (32%), but then under that in your description, you mention this: The food is relatively low in carbohydrates compared to other dry foods, with 20.5% calories from carbohydrates. Where I undeerstand (comparatively speaking) it's lower than other foods, but it would otherwise lead me to believe that this food would be just fine for a cat as it gives them all of the requirements they need, but if someone wants to feed their cats a low cab diet, this would not be the food to choose. Just was a bit confused on what to believe here. My cats eat Smalls, but now seeing the carb content, I dont' want them to eat the kibble anymore! ?? Thoughts?

    • Mallory Crusta

      Hi Jennifer, thanks for your comment. The discrepancy between the listed carbohydrate values is due to the fact that the pie chart and number in the written review were calculated differently; while both are pulled from the guaranteed analysis and may not be 100% accurate, I would generally assume that the 20.5% value is more accurate because it takes fiber and ash into consideration. The "too high for cats" note in the cons does refer to the 20.5% value, because while, comparatively low for a dry food, this amount of carbohydrate matter is more than any cat needs. I hope this clears things up, and I apologize for the confusion. Thanks for stopping by! - Mallory

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