Using the best bait when fishing for shrimps or prawns is going to make a huge difference to how many shrimp you catch. It’s no secret within shrimp fishing circles that cat food is one of the best foods for bait.
Well, the good news is that you don’t need anything special. In fact, you can use some of the most inexpensive cat food brands. It’s the flavor and contents that are important.
What Makes Good Shrimp Bait?
In my experience, and from talking to fishermen with more prawn fishing experience than me, the best bait includes:
A combination of commercial pellets, oils, canned oily fishes, fish carcasses, fishy cat foods, salt, and flour.
The good thing about shrimp is that they aren’t that fussy. They eat almost anything in their natural habitat. But hitting that sweet spot of making a bait that they can’t resist is what brings in a huge net full of the little creatures.
You’re looking for fishy, oily, cat foods. So, my top recommendations are as follows:
Best Cat Food for Shrimp Bait – 4 Fishy Wet Foods Shrimp Can’t Resist
Friskies Fish-A-Licious Variety Pack
This is a bumper pack of fish-flavored cat foods that will not only attract shrimp into your net, but you might have a trail of hungry cats on your case too.
Two of the flavors, Ocean Fish & Tuna, and Whitefish & Sardines can’t fail to attract pawns. I know for a fact they love tuna and sardines, those are two favorites. Personally, I haven’t tried salmon, but we know shrimp, they will eat it.
It’s really inexpensive too. That’s the best thing about using cat food as bait, you don’t need the premium stuff. The shrimp aren’t going to appreciate it.
Meow Mix Tuna and Salmon in Sauce
This is a very fishy wet food that will work perfectly as shrimp bait. I’d go for something like this because it’s prepared in a sauce, so when you’re mixing it with other ingredients you’ll end up with a nice fishy broth.
It ticks the boxes for being convenient and quick too, which is always a plus for me. Just rip the lid, pour the contents out, and away you go.
Delectables Stew Variety Pack of Fishy Flavors
Another huge bumper pack of fishy flavor wet cat foods that will make pretty awesome shrimp bait. You don’t have to buy in bulk though, you can pick this up in packs of 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, or 12.
Don’t feel bad about using the Tuna & Shrimp flavor. Shrimp eat anything, including other shrimp, and it’s only to lure them into the net anyway.
Any cat food labeled ‘lickable’ means there is loads of juice in there. Which, as I’ve already mentioned, makes for great prawn bait.
Friskies Meaty Bits Ocean Fish in Sauce
Here’s another option that you can buy in bulk for a very reasonable price and set yourself up with as much shrimp bait as you’ll need for many trips.
Ocean fish as a flavor basically means it has ocean whitefish as its main flavor. It also has a whole host of other ingredients as most cat foods do, but all the kinds of stuff that shrimp will be in a hurry to eat.
On the smaller, less interesting points. It has a ring-pull, so no need for a can opener. Oh, and cat’s absolutely love it, so that’s not a bad thing either if you have a kitty.
Related: Here are the best wet cat foods for hedgehogs (very different to what you need for shrimp bait).
How to Make Shrimp Bait with Cat Food – Cast Netting
Making shrimp bait is fun and easy. There is some room for movement in regards to the ingredients and how much you’re using, too. You don’t need to get hung up on measuring out exact ingredients.
For a simple homemade shrimp bait for cast netting that isn’t too messy and doesn’t smell too bad, I recommend the following:
In a bucket, mix together:
- 1 part shrimp bait
- 1 part salt crystals
- 2 parts flour
- 1 small can of cat food (about 5 oz)
- Add water to the consistency of a pancake mix or dough
This is the bit where you need to get your hands a little dirty now. Make a few cakes from the mixture by rolling and patting handfuls.
Then all you have to do is throw the ‘cakes’ in the water, wait 10-15 minutes or so and throw your net in. Simple.
I’m not going to go over any tips or tricks when it comes to actually pull in shrimp in this post. I’m just helping you understand which cat foods are best, and why cat food is an important ingredient for successful hauls.
Here’s a video explaining and demonstrating what I’ve just laid out for you above:
To just right to the important bits for those of you who like skimming (don’t feel bad, I do too). Any of the cat food I’ve listed above make for an awesome ingredient in shrimp bait that is sure to help you bring in larger hauls, faster.
Shrimp love the taste of fishy cat foods. I know what you’re thinking, they love the taste of almost anything. But trust me, by adding a fish flavored cat food you’re going to see an improvement in your success as the scent trail will be so much stronger.
If you have any experience using cat food as shrimp or prawn bait I’d love to hear your feedback and thoughts. It’s been a little while since I fished myself, but writing this article up I’ve got the itch, that’s for sure.
While we’re on topic, you should read – can cats eat shrimps or prawns?