Making The Switch To Better Nutrition
There are several ways to switch to a natural raw diet .The following general guidelines and specific ideas should get you thinking in the right direction and help you make a decision as to how you will go about the switch with your pet(s).
switch can be rapid, straightforward and trouble free. An
important factor to consider is the diet you are switching
your pet from. Where a pet has some experience of eating a
variety of home produced foods, both cooked and raw, there
is usually more acceptance and less likelihood of gastrointestinal
upset on the part of the pet. With kibble fed pets, the change
is much more dramatic for their system.
There are two general methods of making the switch to better nutrition, "Rapid " and "Slow."
This is the simplest way to make the switch.
You simply go ahead and do it! Yesterday you fed your pet
kibble or canned pet food, today you begin to feed the
BARF DIET. Before using the rapid switch, you need to
consider whether your pet is suited to a quick transfer of
diet. The general experience and consensus is, that the rapid
switch is the preferred, simplest, most trouble free and most
successful method for dogs particularly young and healthy
dogs with a relatively normal gastrointestinal system.
The rapid switch with pets that are older,
pets with digestive problems or impaired immune systems may
not be appropriate. Many older pets that have been kibble
fed all their lives (and some younger ones for that matter)
cannot tolerate both raw food and kibble together in their
digestive tract. That combination can result in diarrhea or
vomiting or both. In this case we have no choice, it has to
be the rapid switch.
It can be helpful to allow your pet a one
or even a two-day fast prior to making the transfer. This
allows for a small amount of detoxification and also brings
to your assistance a mighty ally, hunger! When you begin
the BARF DIET, you may divide the daily
amount into two or three small meals.
This method of switching your pet can take
from one to four weeks, or up to six months, depending on
the circumstances. Some pets never make the switch completely,
as many pet owners leave their pet suspended between kibble
and raw, "just to be sure they dont leave any important
nutrients out." Not a great idea!
are three basic ways to go about the slow switch.
1) You can offer one meal of the
BARF DIET followed by one meal of the old food, and
gradually feed fewer meals of the old type. If your pet accepts
this method with no problems it is a fair indication that
he has a very robust digestive system and would have handled
the rapid switch extremely well.
2) The second way to go about it is to offer
both types of food at the same time, and gradually offer less
and less of the old food and more of the new food. E.g. some
kibble and a chicken wing in the same bowl. Twenty five percent
of the new food for a few days, fifty percent for a few days,
seventy five percent for a few days then one hundred percent.
On the other hand, some pets may develop gastrointestinal
upset as they cannot tolerate these two vastly different types
of food in their digestive system at the same time.
3) Those pet owners who have always fed a
home made but cooked diet may decide to introduce the new
food in a cooked state, and gradually feed it in a more raw
state. Dog owners whose dog is suffering from some an immune
deficient state can cook the BARF DIET.
Cooking is not recommended for normal, healthy dogs.