My cat is about 2-3 years old (she’s a rescue) and until now she’s only had dry (complete) food because the shelter mom said she doesn’t like wet food. But since i have some wet food left from my previous cat and don’t want to throw it away, i tried feeding it to her but she only licks up the sauce.

Now, i don’t quite understand why she rejects the wet chunks since dry food is fine to her and i even tried to mash the wet food to a pâté but she still doesn’t eat it. She’s also quite sensitive to smell so heating up the food probably won’t work.

At the end, i know the dry food is fine but i thought i could switch it up sometimes, since she always eyes my own food with interest 👀 (and i also can just donate the wet food to a shelter before it expires)

Does anyone have a similar experience and made it work or has some ideas?

Btw.: the wet food is made out of 13% meat and other animal parts (and 83% liquid), not veggies. The rest are minerals and vitamins, no sugar or anything of the fake stuff, it’s really just normal wet food!

  • Give her wet tuna or salmon, etc, ,no problem. Jul 16, 2022 at 21:06
  • It's not uncommon for cats to live the "gravy" in wet foods which have it but, after finishing that, prefer the dry food. If you really want them eating more of the wet food (which some vets do recommend) you could reduce their access to dry. Otherwise, keep trying alternative flavors and see if you can find a favorite. I don't know of an "all gravy" product. Cats can also be picky about texture; mine dislikes pate' foods, preferring chunkier stuff. "If they made sense all the time, they wouldn't be cats."
    – keshlam
    Apr 19, 2023 at 15:37

2 Answers 2


Some cats are really picky about food, and counter to what you might expect, don't really like wet food. Or it could be that your cat just doesn't care for that particular wet food.

Cats often like their food to be really stinky (at least to human noses.) So you might be able to convince her to eat it by microwaving the food a little to increase the smell, or by topping it with just a little bit of smelly cat treats. We used dried fish flakes for this purpose.

I also think some cats dislike wet food because it's difficult for them to pick up. It sticks to the plate, and doesn't lap up easily like a liquid. Adding water might help, to make it more like a soup. Or, perhaps if you are careful to pile the food up as much as you can, so the cat can actually take bites of food from the pile.

But, unfortunately, no matter what you do, there's a decent chance the cat will just refuse to eat it, if she's really picky.


Cats, like humans, have different preferences in their food. Based on your description of "licking up the gravy," I'm assuming your wet food is the "chunks in gravy" style. I've had previous cats who loved this kind of food, and refused to eat any other. I've also had cats who would only eat "shreds in gravy," one who preferred "actual pieces of meat in gravy," and my current ones mainly like pate-style foods (though they have tried some "meat in gravy" style and will eat it on occasion).

Additionally, I've had cats who will only eat poultry-flavored foods, cats who prefer fish- and seafood-flavored foods, and cats who have no preferences at all. Many, as well, really just don't care for the textured vegetable protein used in lower-priced "chunk" and "shred" foods and will eat the same flavor in a higher-end food made without TVP; those "chunks" and "shreds" are not meat, and cats can tell the difference.

Your cat might simply not care for this particular flavor or style of food; you may need to experiment a bit with different foods to find the kind she likes. Start with a protein source similar to that of the kibble she's currently eating, and a different format, so she's working with a familiar flavor while testing the unfamiliar textures.

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