Does your dog eat the same protein week after week? We highly recommend switching your dog’s main protein at least monthly, if not more often. There are a few reasons:
- Prolonged exposure to only one protein increases the likelihood of them becoming sensitized, and developing a food sensitivity.
- A varied diet is a more holistic diet, every meat has different nutritional makeup, so even if your dog is eating a balanced diet, they would still benefit from a protein rotation to minimize any potential deficiencies from one diet.
- Keeps life interesting for them and prevents them from becoming bored or picky with their food.
How to Make the Switch
If you’re concerned about a possible allergic reaction (rashes or upset stomach etc), try feeding just one meal or a bag of treats of this new ingredient. Keep everything else the same to be sure any changes are caused by the food.
Most dogs should be able to add in a new protein without stomach upset, but young puppies, seniors, or dogs with a history of gastric issues may benefit from a slower transition. Introduce the new food when you have 2-3 days of your old food left, and slowly adjust the ratio from old to new.
We have noticed that dogs on raw can easily switch between proteins, brands, and recipes with no gastrointestinal upset, and that dogs on kibble have a harder time with the switch. This may be due to a healthier gut in general. Adding a probiotic to your dog’s supplement rotation is a good way to build up their gut strength and allow you to add new foods without issue.