Once you have selected the new food you are going to switch your dog to, you should begin the transition gradually.
When you change your dog's food, you need to do it gradually over the course of five to seven days. During this time period, you will continue to add more and more of the new food by mixing it with your dog's current food. Gradually transitioning their food over a week or more by slowly adding the new food to the old food, will reduce digestion problems, and help their body adapt to the new diet easier. This allows for your dogs digestive tract to adjust without suffering from stomach issues.
If you change your dog's diet too fast, it may upset his stomach and cause him to vomit, have diarrhea, or constipation. He may also refuse to eat an entire bowl of new food, which is why you must gradually introduce it to him. Normal behavior and energy levels would indicate that the transition is going well. Vomiting, loss of appetite, and decreased energy are a signal the system is distressed. Again, slow the transition for a day or two.
You dogs poop is a great indicator of your dogs adjustment to their new food. If the poop is firm and normal, they are adjusting well. If their poop is loose and abnormal it is an indication that they are having difficulty adjusting to the new food.
Dogs are really creatures of habit and routine. This includes their food. They become familiar with a certain type of food or brand and the smell and taste intimately. Even a simple change can often be met with a refusal to eat. The best way to change dog food is by implementing the change gradually.
- Day 1: Feed 75% of your old pet food and mix in 25% of the new food in each serving.
- Day 2: Feed 60% of your old food and mix in 40% of the new food in each serving.
- Day 3: Feed 50% of your old food, mixed with 50% of the new food per serving.
- Day 4: Feed 40% of your old food, mixed with 60% of the new food per serving.
- Day 5: Feed 25% of your old food, mixed with 75% of the new food per serving.
- Day 6: Feed 10% of the old food and 90 % of the new food.
Break the daily serving size into two meals per day: one in the morning and one in the evening.