Cat food comes in a variety of styles. Interestingly enough, cats have the unusual inability to taste sugars. It seems they lost the gene in a mutation thousands of years ago. They also have little dietary tolerance for vegetable matter and prefer a high protein diet that is wet and rich in amino acids.
The wet/dry cat food debate continues to rage as to which is better. Most animal professionals agree that wet food is likely more appetizing to the animal but that the dry food is nutritionally just as good. In fact, cats enjoy eating the bones of their prey too. And some people have even suggested that the dry food simulates bone in the digestive system. The best answer seems to allowing the cat to have a little bit of both from time to time. Recently, vegetarian cat foods have become available that synthesize protein and amino acids, but it seems that the cat actually needs to eat real meat to be healthy and happy.
In the wild, cat food typically consists of small rodents and birds, although they will eat most meat types such a rabbit if they can kill it or scavenge a fresh kill. The jury is still out on why cats sometimes leave their human’s offerings of small dead animals. Some have suggested that they view their humans as infirm and need help getting food for themselves. Others have suggested that the cat may be trying to teach its people how to hunt. No final conclusions have been drawn.