Dog Food- To Change or Not to Change- A Pack Mom Question

February 9, 2013 | By More

Spice Up Your Pet’s Diet- a Pack Mom Question- puppy


Pack Mom Question:  Hi Jenn, my name is Kim and I would love your advice about dog food.  My dog, Riley, has been eating the same thing for years.  Can this be good for him?  I’d like to add variety to his diet but worry about his stomach.  The last thing I need is a dog with diarrhea.  What do you recommend?  He’s a five year old min pin by the way.

Pack Mom Answer:  Hi Kim.  I am a huge fan of variety in a dog’s diet.  Rotating your pet’s food every few months (weeks in my case) exposes them to new proteins, fruits and vegetables which keeps their system alert and active.   I feel that a pet’s digestive track functions optimally and will absorb more nutrients when food is changed periodically.  Always focusing on healthy, natural, high quality foods of course!

If you choose to change his food, here are a few tips to make the transition a smooth one:

  1. Does your pet have a food allergy?  If so, avoid rotating to anything that contains the allergen or a derivative of it.  For example, if chicken causes a reaction, do not feed a food with chicken, chicken meal, chicken fat, etc.
  2. Has your pet been on the same food for years?  In Riley’s case, the answer is yes.  His system might need help with the change.  If so, I recommend using a digestive supplement containing probiotics AND digestive enzymes.  Not just one or the other.  Digestive enzymes will help the stomach break down food and probiotics will give the intestines a hand with absorption.
  3. Gradual change is better– I always recommend changing food over a 7-14 day period.  Start out with minimal amounts of the new food and slowly change your ratio of new food to old until your pet is 100% on the new formula.  *Using canned raw pumpkin may assist with a food transition.  The fiber content in pumpkin helps stool stay firm.

*If your dog has a medical condition requiring him to remain on a specific diet, then by all means follow your veterinarian’s instructions.

Let me know what happens, Kim!  Thanks for your question!


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Category: Pet Nutrition

About the Author ()

Jenn Fadal is a national Pet Wellness & Lifestyle Expert. In addition to being the founder of her own holistic pet boutique, Wag, this Tampa native can be seen frequently on Media General’s Daytime Television across the country, as well as on FOX, NBC and ABC. She is also a writer and subject matter expert for various publications.

Comments (1)

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  1. Channon says:

    Great advice! My basset is our food-allergy queen. No corn products, no land-animal meat except rabbit and kangaroo… she keeps us on our toes.