Should You Rotate Dog Food To Give Your Dog More Variety
Most dogs are happy eating the same food regularly. If you wish to add some canned food or a little homemade stew to their food to make it tastier, thats fine, but dogs usually dont like a lot of change. Changes in your dogs food often lead to an upset gastrointestinal tract with diarrhea or vomiting. If you change foods often you can keep your dogs GI tract upset on an ongoing basis which will lead to other health problems. Of course, it is possible that if you change your dogs food continually he may get used to the changes and adapt to them, but only after a lot of upset stomachs. Some dogs will continue to have gastrointestinal problems when you change foods.
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When To Transition Your Dog’s Food
Remember these tips when switching your dogs food:
- Puppies become adults at 12 months of age and should transition to an adult dog food to ensure they are receiving proper nutrient levels for adult dogs. If you have a large breed dog, talk to your vet first, as they may recommend keeping them on their puppy food a few months longer to ensure they get the proper calories to grow to their full adult form.
- Remember large and small breed puppies should be transitioned to the appropriate breed-size adult dog food to ensure that their special needs are met.
- For small and medium size dogs who are older about the age of 7 they should transition to a mature adult or senior dog food to ensure they are receiving the appropriate level of nutrients for that older lifestage.
- Larger breed dogs should transition to a senior dog food around the age of 6 as their bones and muscles age a little quicker than their smaller counterparts.
- Follow the feeding guidelines: when mixing the old and new food together, it is important to continue to feed the proper amounts, so be sure to use measuring cups and do your best to get the instructed calorie count correct.
Switching Dog Food Summary
So, switching dog food isnt as complicated as it might seem! The most important tips when learning how to change dog food is to take things slowly. You should take at least 7 days to change to your new food brand. So, dont wait until your old dog food runs out to make the change. If you change too quickly, your dog can experience digestive upset, which can be unpleasant for both of you.
If youve ever had to change dog food brands before, we would love to hear about your experiences. Why did you have to make the switch?
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When Should I Consider Changing My Dog’s Diet
- Your dog is moving out of one three key life stages and into another: puppy, adult, and senior. Each one of these life stages has a unique set of needs that can benefit from tailored nutrition.
- Your dog is pregnant. A lactating dog will need extra energy, and may require a new diet that is better suited to their nutritional needs.
- An illness or condition which needs added nutritional support, such as skin sensitivity or gastrointestinal upset.
- You’ve been researching various dog foods or have spoken to your veterinarian and have decided to change your pet’s food.
How Often Should I Feed My Puppy
Like human babies, puppies start out needing many small meals a day, of a food formulated for their special nutritional requirements. Most, but not all, dogs finish meals quickly. To discourage picky habits, feed at regular times in regular amounts and dont leave food down for more than 10 to 20 minutes.
Your breeder will be an excellent source of guidance for both of these questions, as will your vet.
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How To Pick An Adult Dog Food
Here are a few guidelines to help you choose an adult dog food when the time is right:
- To make the transition as smooth as possible, consider keeping the brand of adult food consistent with the brand of puppy food you were feeding.
- It is important that the food is complete and balanced so that your dog will receive all the vitamins, minerals, and nutrients they need in the correct proportions to support a functioning body.
- Make sure you are happy with the ingredients list. If you have any concerns, speak to your veterinarian.
- Be sure you are happy with the price tag. Since your dog will be on this long-term, make the food fits within your budget .
Once you have found the right food for your young adult dog, be sure to follow the diet transition schedule above to minimize stomach upset.
How To Choose A Dog Food
Choosing an appropriate diet for your dog is a complicated process. The sheer number of dog food options available is overwhelming. Unfortunately, there is no one diet that is best for every dog. Just like humans, dogs are individuals and their dietary needs vary depending on factors such as age, health, and personal preferences.
To make the process even more complicated, there are also a lot of myths about dog food on the internet. Many people fall victim to advertising campaigns or scare tactics warning them away from commercial dog foods. Fortunately, the World Small Animal Veterinary Association has published a guide entitled The Savvy Dog Owners Guide: Nutrition on the Internet to help pet owners decipher fact from fiction when doing their own research about dog food.
Learning how to read a pet food label can also help demystify the process of choosing a dog food. The information on a pet food label is guided by the Association of American Feed Control Officials . AAFCO is responsible for establishing definitions for many of the terms you will find on a bag of dog food. Understanding these labeling requirements can make it easier to identify which products are best for your dog. Look for the words complete and balanced diet on the label.
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Timeline For Medium/large Breeds
The first portion of the timeline for small breeds applies to larger breeds, but the difference is that large breed pups have to stay on puppy food for a longer amount of time. You can begin to switch your large or giant breed puppy adult food at around one year of age, or a little longer if yours does not seem ready to make the switch to adult formula yet. Each dogs diet is a bit subjective, so pay attention to when the puppy formula doesnt seem to quite be having the same effects on your dog as it once had. If youre unsure, simply ask the dogtor as they know best!
Transition Your Dog Slowly
No matter your reasoning for switching dog food, you must start slow. If you change their diet too abruptly, it can cause gastrointestinal distress leading to vomiting and diarrhea. Not only are those messes that you dont want to clean up, but your dog will be in pain because of it as well.
A good rule of thumb is to transition slowly over a weeks time. Follow these guidelines for optimal results:
|Day 7||100% new diet|
You need to make sure that you follow the recommendations and guidelines on the back of the dog food bag. They will have specifics. However, if youre switching to a raw food diet or homemade diet of your own choosing, you can slowly start to do this by adding it into the existing commercial cable.
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Puppy Growth Guide: Mental Changes
Mental changes signal the beginning of adulthood as well, and these new developments are just as vital to a dogs happiness and wellbeing. Here are some of the mental changes your pup will go through as he goes through his journey to adulthood:
- The destructive behaviors that come with puppyhood and adolescence should wear off. Now, your dog knows that he cant go barking mad on your new couch cushions because he is mature enough to realize what the consequences will be.
- Your pup will bounce off of the walls less. As dogs age, they become a little less energetic. This is especially true if yours has been neutered. These dogs tend to settle down faster than others.
- Your dog is now able to learn commands more quickly and do more complicated stunts and tricks than a puppy would.
Choosing An Adult Dog Food
Once you are able to recognize the signs of adulthood in your pup and you are ready to make the switch to adult dog food, you should look for only the best that stores have to offer. It is important that their food leaves their bellies feeling happy, and also meets their nutritional needs. While researching doggo nutrition on the internet, you may find yourself in confusion with the myths and misinformation. Make sure to check your sources when making this decision and always consult with a veterinarian if you are unsure.
Learning how to properly read the label on the food packaging is also crucial when choosing the best fit food for your doggo. The Food and Drug Administration has made it mandatory to to include 8 key pieces of information, including product name and list of ingredients, which can be helpful when making this decision. Its also good to remember that some ingredients may be pawesome for some furry friends, they may not be best suited for others.
Your pups whole future is in your hands. It is up to you to shape him into a happy, healthy adult by making the right decisions when it comes to nutrition! Give your pet the life he deserves by knowing when and what to feed him.
And remember, puppyhood is fast and is gone before you know it. Make sure to savor the time when your pup is young, and take lots of pictures along the way!
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Transitioning Your Pets Food
Nutrition needs are highly individual and evolving. Many pet parents find that they need to make diet changes. Whether its a long-term switch to a new food, or rotating in different types of proteins or diets, making changes too quickly can cause digestive upset. Here are some steps for a successful transition.
Gradually Mix in New Food.
Unlike us, our pets often eat the same diet for months or years and are not used to sudden changes.
Switching foods abruptly can cause vomiting, diarrhea or excess gas. So its important to change diets gradually.
The Ratio Method.
Keep the ratio of old to new food the same for several days. If at any time during transition your pet experiences gastro-intestinal upset, increase transition time at the previous ratio to allow them time to adjust.
High-quality, high-meat content foods are nutrient dense and usually higher calorie-per-cup than cheap alternatives. Feeding the same amount of a nutrient dense food can cause diarrhea or weight gain from over-feeding. Use the guidelines on the packaging for feeding recommendations. But remember, its just a guideline. Your pet may need less to maintain their ideal body weight. So, its a good idea to cut down on the amount you feed when you switch to a better food.
The Cold Turkey Switch.
Fast Your Pet. Skip one meal so their stomach is empty of old food contents. Dont skip more than one meal though, especially with cats.
Use Digestive Aids.
How Many Times Per Day Should I Feed My Dog
Many people still think that all dogs should be fed only once per day, but professionals know better than this now. To keep your adult dog healthy, you should feed him twice per day, and to keep a puppy of 6 months or younger healthy, you should feed him 3-4 meals per day.
Puppies dont need as much to eat at each meal, but they use up their food more quickly, and thats why they need to be fed more often. They require more nutrients and calories than their adult counterparts, but their stomachs cannot take in a lot at once. Puppies over 6 months old need to be fed 2-3 times per day.
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When Switching Dog Food Is Not Recommended
There are situations where changing a dogs diet is not recommended. One such situation is switching a dogs food to prevent food allergies. Currently, there is no evidence to support this concept.
Since food allergies develop because of a dogs genes, and not because of the number of foods they have been exposed to, it is best to keep your dog on the one food they do well on and manage any allergies if/when they become prevalent in your dogs life.
How And When To Transition Your Puppy To Adult Food
Puppies grow quickly, therefore requiring special food that contains more protein and calories than adult food. As they mature their nutritional requirements change and puppy food is no longer required so, transitioning to adult food at the right time can be crucial, and switching too early can result in bone and joint abnormalities. So, when is the right time to switch and what is the best way to go about it? Carry on reading for our top tips on how and when to transition your pup to adult food.
Timing is Key
Transitioning to adult food should coincide with maturity however this is not always universal among all dog breeds. Larger breeds mature slower than smaller breeds. In general, small and medium dogs reach maturity around 9-12 months, with large dogs at 12-15 months and giant breeds 18-24 months.
Watch for Signs
Growing puppies have higher energy needs than adult dogs but once they have reached maturity their metabolic rate slows. Your dog will give you signs when theyre ready to transition to adult food they may skip meals or leave food they would have normally eaten. The calorie-dense puppy food will have filled them up much quicker and fulfilled their energy demands when they have reached maturity.
Do it Gradually
How Much Do They Need?
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Tips On Changing Dog Food
- How to switch Dog food brands
How to change dog food brands really starts with finding a dog food company youre happy with. Here at Guru we want the best for all dogs and welcome new Geeksters with open arms and paws!
If youve made your decision about what new brand of dog food youd like to change to, you now need to see if and how the type of food may differ from your previous food. This means, even though youre changing dog food brands, are you sticking with the same type of food, for example are you changing from a regular dried kibble to a regular dried kibble? Or maybe you want to change to a different type of dog food, like Cold Pressed, as well as changing the brand. Or a wet dog food to a raw diet?
There are so many options out there, youll need to make sure youre choosing the right brand and type of dog food for you.
If the type of food is the same its easy peasy! Your dog will already be used to the Cold pressed diet and is just simply trying a different recipe.
On the other hand, if your dog is changing between different types of food we would recommend a gradual transition. Just start with 25% of their new food and 75% of their current food. As long as their stools are formed you can gradually increase the amount of new food and decrease the old food until youre on 100% of their new diet, yay! Just remember that wet food can contain about 70% moisture so the calculation between wet and dry is a little different.
- Changing dog food within the same brand
Importance Of Gradual Changing
If you switch dog food too quickly, you can risk causing your dog digestive upset. In fact, 7 days could be too fast for dogs who suffer from sensitive stomachs. A gradual change will give your dog plenty of time to adjust to his new diet. If you think your dog isnt adjusting well to the change, you may be going too quickly. But, if you have transitioned very slowly and your dog is still displaying worrying symptoms, speak to your vet. The new food brand may just not agree with him.
Why Switch From Puppy Food To Adult Dog Food
Because of that faster metabolism of youthand the nutritional demands of growthpuppy food is formulated with more calories, fat, protein, and certain other nutrients than adult dog food.
All of this is very important during puppyhood. Its the right nutrient profile to help your puppy grow up strong and healthy.
However, for most adult dogs , puppy foods provide a far higher calorie density than they need.
So, unless you really cut back on their quantity of food , theres a good chance your dog will gain weight if they continue to eat their puppy food as an adult.
Considering the health risks that come with obesitysuch as arthritis and increased risk of orthopedic injuries, diabetes, cancers, and other health problemsits best to keep your young adult pup at a healthy weight, right from the start.
When To Make The Switch
Depending on your puppys breed and size, youll likely switch to adult dog food between seven and 14 months.3 Puppies need the most food when they are around six- to 12-weeks-old. At this stage, you will need to feed them three times a day. As your puppy gets older, youll gradually reduce the feeding to twice a day.
Small breed puppies may be ready to switch to adult food around seven to nine months of age, while larger breeds may not make the switch until theyre between 12 and 14 months old.4 In general, its better to make the switch a little too late rather than too early.
Talk to your veterinarian about when you should switch your pup to adult food since the exact timing will depend on your puppys breed, size, and health. Sometimes it can take longer than 14 months if your puppy is still growing.Some dogs even take up to 24 months to reach their full size.5
When making the switch to adult dog food, consider a nutritious and flavorful variety like AvoDerm Natural Lamb & Sweet Potato recipe for dry kibble. If your pup prefers wet food, try the AvoDerm Natural Original Wet Canned Food Beef & Potato Stew Recipe.
If youre worried about transitioning your puppy to adult dog food, consider moving to an all-life-stages variety of dog food first. All-life-stage varieties, like AvoDerm Natural Salmon & Vegetables Recipe, are suitable for puppies and can be a great way to help your puppy make the transition to adult dog food.
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