If you’ve come here looking to buy Temptations cat treats for the cheapest price, then I’ll help you with that, but do you know what they’re made from and do you know if they’re good for your cat?
I believe Temptations are the most popular and most bought cat treat in Australia, which comes as no surprise as they’re stocked at Woolworths, Coles, and lots of other places too. They also benefit from cutesy cartoons and great marketing which makes you think they’re great!
But I think you’ll be surprised when you find out what Temptations are made from, and I think you’ll wonder why you didn’t read the ingredients sooner.
Where to buy?
At the time of writing this review, Pet Circle looks to be even cheaper than Woolworths and Coles, which tends to be the case for most cat food products.
Tempations cat treats review
What the marketing says
As with most Mars products (yes, Temptations are made by chocolate bar bigwig Mars), the marketing is really good at convincing you to buy the product without actually saying much about it.
I took a look at the Temptations website and it’s full of cutesy cartoons and downloadable wallpaper like this one:
If you go on the website looking for the ingredients then (1) you may get lured into playing cutesy games instead, and (2) I found the page on products quietly transfers you to the New Zealand website with ingredients of their MEATY BITES range which is better than what we have in Australia.
We’re told Temptations are pocket purrfection, scrumptious treats your cat will do anything for. Also, apparently they’re irrestible, whatever that means. I think they mean irresistible – that’s quality control for you! I found that typo on the Temptations product page.
The individual packets say Chicken Flavour, Beef Flavour, Dairy Flavour etc, but I bet you didn’t know the Australian Standards for Manufacturing and Marketing of Pet Food (AS 5812:2017) tell us there doesn’t need to be much of any flavour ingredient whatsoever?
When you see the word “flavour” on the packet of a cat food or treat, then don’t pay much attention to it. The same applies to recipe names like With chicken – this doesn’t mean there’s much chicken!
So what’s the truth about Temptations cat treats? Let’s take a look at the ingredients and find out what’s really going on!
What the ingredients really say
Here are the ingredients for Temptations “Chicken Flavour” and also “Dairy Flavour”:
- Chicken by-product, Beef and/or Sheep by-products, Corn, Rice, Wheat Flour, Flavours (including Beef Flavour), Dried Yeast, Vitamins, Minerals, Colour, Salt, Taurine, Antioxidants, Cheese Powder.
- Chicken by-product, Beef and/or Sheep by-products, Corn, Rice, Wheat Flour, Flavours (including milk powder), Dried Yeast, Vitamins, Minerals, Salt, Taurine, Antioxidants, Cheese Powder.
You’ll see from the above the ingredients of all Temptations recipes are almost identical! So don’t be fooled into thinking you’re giving your cat a variety! Same stuff, different packets!
Now consider this – it looks like chicken by-products (i.e. chicken offcuts) and beef and/or sheep by-products are the main ingredients?
I think most people would read that and assume they’re giving their carnivorous cats a meaty treat…
What if the 3rd, 4th, and 5th ingredients – corn, rice, and wheat flour – are in the same amount as the top two ingredients? Wouldn’t that mean the meat is outweighed by three grains?
This is how pet food companies make a product sound more meaty than it is. Grains are cheap, which is why they’re used so heavily, but they won’t plaster corn, rice, and wheat all over the packaging! They’ll do their best to conceal these ingredients, because we all know they’re not what you feed a carnivore.
So, the truth is more likely this:
Temptations cat treats are grain-based (wheat, rice, and corn) with ambiguous meat by-products (off cuts), ambiguous food colourings, flavourings, and antioxidants.
Puts a different spin on it, doesn’t it?
Makes you wonder why you don’t feed your pet carnivore some fresh chicken, beef, or lamb instead? It’s probably cheaper!
Fresh human grade meats don’t use food colourings, flavourings, and artificial preservatives either, and I think we all know those things aren’t great? Besides, cats don’t care for food colourings, that’s to make the treats look more appealing to us.
Or, if raw meats aren’t your thing, get a small bag of ZIWI Peak which is packed with nutrition – as good a treat as any!
There are definitely far better cat treats out there, and if you currently feed Temptations to your cat then it’s possible the cat food you’re feeding isn’t great either (sorry to be blunt). Make sure you check out the review of your cat food too!
Should you feed Temptations to your cat?
I’d like to summarise with some very important points which may help the health and wellbeing of your cat.
Firstly, with any treat keep it in moderation. Cat treats don’t come under the same standards as complete and balanced cat foods, and even cat foods aren’t overly regulated.
I find the biggest issue with cats fed treats such as Temptations (and the same applies to small dogs fed similar treats), is treat overload. It’s very easy for us to give our pets way too many treats, which can lead to poor overall health.
You can’t blame us for wanting to keep our pets happy, but we must put their health first.
Our cats and dogs should be considered as carnivores, so treats made of wheat, rice, and corn aren’t really ideal. Especially those with food colourings, artificial flavours, and preservatives.
I note on the Internet a lot of claims worldwide of Temptations cat treats causing renal failure. You may wonder if that’s the case, but you’ll find none of these claims are ever substantiated. Renal failure is common with cats, I find more so with poor quality dry cat foods, but proving it on a case by case basis is almost impossible. It takes years for a cat to develop renal failure, and over those years you can argue all manner of contributory factors, like diet, environment, age, or bad luck.
If you think Temptations cause renal failure, or if your cat’s suffering renal failure after years of being fed these treats or similar, then my opinion is there’s quite possibly a link. Especially if you’re feeding a poor quality cereal-based cat food as well.
Related: Are pet treats healthy?
My advice would be to keep treats such as Temptations cat treats to a minimum. Giving your cat fresh meat, organs, chicken necks to chew on, and so forth, is just as much a treat for them if not more, and likely healthier, and cheaper.
It seems all varieties of Temptations cat treats use the same base formula, with the only real difference being a minor “flavour” ingredient.
These are the ingredients of Temptations Tasty Chicken Flavour at the time of writing the review:
Chicken by-product, Beef and/or Sheep by-products, Corn, Rice, Wheat Flour, Flavours (including Beef Flavour), Dried Yeast, Vitamins, Minerals, Colour, Salt, Taurine, Antioxidants, Cheese Powder.
Guaranteed analysis of Temptations Tasty Chicken Flavour:
|Crude Fibre||(max) 4.5%|
|Carbohydrates *||(max) 35% (estimated)|
Calling Aussie pet lovers – join the mailing list!
Forget about all the cute marketing, and consider why none of it tells you what these cat treats are made from. Temptations I believe are the best selling cat treats in Australia, but are they healthy for our cats? I doubt a few will harm your cat, but there are better, healthier alternatives.