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Back when I first started this site, I did one really smart thing. I went to a local pet store. This wasn’t a chain, a corporation, or a franchise, but one small, local, independently owned pet store.
I’d just adopted Henry, and I had no idea what to do. It was hard enough to decide what to feed myself – let alone this furry ball of hunger. Do I choose grain-free? Holistic? Organic? Raw?
Do I feed wet food, make my own mix, or is that cheap stuff on the grocery store shelf okay?
Ugggh. You know the feeling. Buying (and wasting money on) cat food your cat may or may not like is not a fun task.
Think about it – the only way you’ll really know if it’s a good fit for you and your cat is by trying it out. That’s why I advocate buying sample cat food online before delving into a larger package.
But here’s something even better…
Free cat food samples. Yes, free. 100% no cost, high-quality, cat-approved products.
These are the gold mine of spoiled cat products, really, and they are not easy to find. Your best bet? Find a local pet store.
My brother has been on a hunt to find the best dog food for our aging, ailing pup. He’s got tumors, lumps, and a weird cough. All vet checkups say he’s fine, but we know he’s not doing so hot. Plus, years of grocery store sludge wreaked havoc on his health – or so I feel.
After talking to my brother about the benefits of higher quality food, we started brand shopping. And shopping, and shopping, and shopping, and shopping. We’d go into big box stores, stand in their specially decorated aisles that look more like upper class feed stores, and talk products. We’d look over ingredients, quality, and percentages.
But we never really found the right product. I talked over and over about Solid Gold, that cat food that impressed me years ago, and we realized that we have a local pet store literally just down the street. We’ve shopped next to it every week since we moved here, yet we only just recently started shopping there.
And seriously? We’re so freaking dumb. This place was AMAZING. Not only did they have almost *every* brand I reviewed in my top grain-free cat food review, but they had extremely competitive prices. Like…it was often cheaper to buy in person, at the store, than ordering online.
Best of all, we walked to the front of the store and found a golden, glittering mecca of free pet food samples. Almost every brand, every quality, even those fancy dehydrated and human-grade foods, were available to try. There were some larger sample sizes available for sale, and the store has an amazing return policy.
(Henry doesn’t digest one brand of food well and next thing I know, I have a 100% refund on my card. No questions, no complaints.)
This one visit led to ample dog and cat food sampling, which has resulted in even more thorough opinions regarding some of the best quality brands on the market.
Personally? Henry and I went back to basics. We loved Solid Gold’s Indigo Moon in the past, and we’re currently working on a 30 lb bag right now. We even got the dog going on their dog food line (Hundchen Flocken), and he’s shown really great progress. This old, rickety dog now bounds around the yard!
Thanks to our local pet store, we really had the chance to try a great diversity of products we wouldn’t have had access to otherwise. I’m totally sold on shopping local for pet food, and feel confident that I can branch out to try other things with free samples and easy returns. Google it yourself!