Changing your pet’s diet can be tricky, but if your vet has recommended that you put your cat or dog on a diet to help them lose weight or control a health problem that has developed, you will need to abide by the vet’s advice. What is the best way to change your pet’s diet?
Starting your cat or dog on a completely new pet food can be problematic, as doing so can trigger diarrhoea, vomiting, or other intestinal upsets, especially if your pet already has a sensitive stomach and cannot easily tolerate a change in their diet.
The key to success is to use a combination of the new diet food and your pet’s old food. Give your pet a few days to let them get used to the texture and smell of the new food. Be consistent and stick to the combination method of feeding your pet. At first, your pet might resist change and refuse to eat the combination, but consistency will help your pet adjust more easily and quickly.
How to Gradually Introduce the New Food
According to How to change your pet’s diet, which is featured on Petsmart.com, you should feed your pet 90 percent old food with 10 percent of the new food. On the second day, offer your pet 80 percent of the old food and 20 percent of the new food. As each day passes, gradually increase the percentage of the new food, and decrease the old food, until you are just feeding your pet the new food. By about day 10 your pet should have made the transition over to the new diet food.
Consulting the Vet
If you are unsure of your pet’s nutritional needs or do not know how long your pet needs to stay on its diet, consult your vet, who will be in a better position to advice you on what’s best for your pet. Some pet diets are short-term, whereas others require more sustained, long-term efforts on the part of pet owners.
Introducing change to pets, particularly changing their diet, is not always easy, as pets are usually resistant to change. An abrupt change in your pet’s diet can trigger unpleasant side effects such as vomiting, diarrhoea, or other intestinal upsets. Start out slowly and gradually introduce the new food until your pet has adjusted.
Petsmart.com, How to change your pet’s diet.