Veterinarians often recommend a diet change for their patients for a variety of reasons. Many diseases can be managed with a special diet, or occasionally there is a concern with the safety or nutritional balance of an old diet. Easing your pet into a new food can be challenging; our pets tend to like routine and can be skeptical of new tastes or textures.
When transitioning dogs to a new food, one concern is the effect it can have on their gut. Many dogs will end up with an upset stomach, vomiting or diarrhea if their diet is switched too quickly. Diet changes work best if they are taken slowly, mixing in their old diet with their new one over a course of 1-2 weeks. Mix a very small amount of the new diet into the old, slowly increasing this amount while decreasing the amount of the old until the transition is complete.
Cats may be a little pickier in their diet tastes and textures compared to dogs. Place the new diet next to the old in a similar bowl. Continue this for a few days before offering the new diet first at mealtime when your cat is the hungriest, then offer the old food after some of the new food has been eaten. Continue this process until your cat is reliably eating the new food at every meal.
For questions on the correct diet for your pet, call Valley Verde Veterinarians for an appointment at (520) 393-7387.