Pets 101: Switching Types of Pet Food

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August 29, 2013
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If your pet needs to change diets, it’s important to do it slowly. Whether it’s moving from kitten or puppy food to adult, or to a special diet. It’s best to introduce the food gradually because they need to get used to the new food, their bodies need to get used to ingesting it, and new food given too fast or without an introduction could mean an upset belly.

The best trick is to integrate it with the old food in the course of a week or so. Gradually mix
an increasing amount of the new product with the old over a period of time until your pet is receiving only the new product. This is very important as to not disrupt your pet’s digestive balance. This allows the pet’s digestive system to smoothly adapt to the new food.

Here’s A Sample of How to Introduce New Food

Day 1 – 75% of the old food, 25% of the new food at meals
Day 2 – 75% of the old food, 25% of the new food
Day 3 – 60% of the old, 40% of the new
Day 4 – 50% of the old and 50% of the new
Day 5 – 40% of the old and 60% of the new
Day 6 – 25% of the old and 75% of the new
Day 7 – 0% of the old, 75% of the new

If at any time during the transition your pet develops any digestive upsets, slow the rate at which you are switching to the new diet.

Note: If your pet refuses to eat, do not go for more than 24 hours without consulting your vet.

If your pet isn’t enjoying the new food, talk to your vet about changing from a dry to wet or adding something like a little chicken broth or other flavors to entice your pet to eat. Sometimes adding some warm water helps release the smell and flavors of the new food.

With any diet change, consult your vet and figure out what works best for your pet.

Image from PetMD.com

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