For pet parents, there may come a time when you either want or need to switch your pet from one type of food to another! But did you know there’s a right and a wrong way to do this? Get it right and there shouldn’t be any metaphorical or literal hiccups. Get it wrong, and your pet may let you know their feelings with the side effects…
Check out our guide below, including advice from resident Itch vet Zoe Costigan, on how to make the switch as smooth as possible for your furry pal.
Reasons why you might need to consider changing your pet’s food
There are a few reasons why you might need to consider changing your pet’s food, including:
- Better quality food – it may be the case that after doing some research, you realise the food you’ve been feeding your pet so far isn’t all it’s cracked up to be, so you want to try a nutritionally complete, tasty alternative.
- Age – your vet will be able to advise if the food you’re feeding your pet is appropriate for the stage of life they’re at.
- Weight – if your pet is expanding a little too much around the middle, you may need to cut down on their portions or consider switching them to a diet formulation.
- Level of Activity – the amount of physical activity your pet is able to tolerate may fluctuate and so should their calorie consumption, particularly if your pet is prone to weight gain, as they age or sometimes due to injury. If your pet is less active but their diet remains the same, you might notice the pounds creeping on.
- Pregnancy – to keep the furry mum-to-be healthy, as well as her growing litter, it’s important they’re well-nourished, and that the correct amount of food is given and adjusted appropriately during pregnancy. The same goes for when the new mum is nursing her litter. If you’re caring for a pregnant pet for the first time, discuss this with your vet.
- Health Conditions/Allergies – Just like with humans, our pets can develop food sensitivities and allergies. If your pet is suffering with some unpleasant side effects (like itchy skin, vomiting, diarrhoea or excess wind), it may be time to look at what they’re eating and see if any ingredient culprits can be identified. However, a sensible first step is to consult with your pet’s vet if you have concerns around any of these symptoms.
4 easy steps to switching your pet’s food:
By switching food in the right way, this will help to minimise the risk of upset bellies and give your pet a chance to slowly get used to their new food. Fortunately, this is super simple to do.
As a guide, follow these easy steps:
- For the first couple of days, aim for a ratio of 25% new food mixed in with 75% of their previous food.
- If all looks good, you can increase this to a 50/50 split after 4 days.
- By day 6, if your pet is still tolerating it well, you can aim for 75% new food with 25% of their previous food.
- After a week or so, you can complete the transition and feed them entirely on their new food.
As always, make sure your pet has a supply of fresh, cool water throughout the day and during mealtimes. And remember, the guidance above applies to cats as well as dogs! Itch vet Zoe has the following advice:
“Cats are fastidious and won’t always appreciate mixing of different foods. The principle can be the same by presenting two bowls and gradually increasing the amount in one whilst decreasing the amount in the other. This switching guide applies to dry food as well as wet – any dietary change should be gradual to prevent problems.”
Clean Bowls Pet Food
At Itch, we pride ourselves on being pet wellness experts. We know a nutritious, balanced diet for our furry friends means happy and healthy pets – what’s not to love about that?
Here are a few reasons why we reckon your pet is going to love Clean Bowls…
- Nutritionally complete – containing all the high quality protein, vitamins & minerals your furry friend needs to stay bright eyed & bushy tailed.
- Tastes great – pawsitively delicious food that will leave your pet dreaming about their next meal.
- Hand-picked ingredients – selected by expert pet nutritionists to keep your furry friends happy and healthy.
- Planet-friendly packaging, delivered free of charge – because we love our planet like we do our pets!
After giving your furry friend a taste test of Itch Clean Bowls, we’re pawsitive it’ll be clean bowls all-round. So confident in fact, we’ll refund you if your pet turns their nose up at it.* No quibbles for uneaten nibbles!
You can now save 50% off your first bag of Itch Clean Bowls! Simply add to your basket and your discount will be applied at checkout.
*After 28 days, you’ll have a week to get your money back. T&Cs apply.