The idea of diet rotation for your dogs has long been perceived in a negative light by dieticians and veterinarians. A huge reason for such reservations is the effect a drastic change of diet can have on your dog. However, when properly managed, changing a dog’s diet can be very beneficial to your pet. A large number of professionals are recognizing the need for diet rotation and are ready to help you to conduct it in a safe manner. You can consider periodic diet rotation or opt for a full change of the diet depending on other factors.
Here are three major reasons why now is the right time to change your dog’s diet:
1.The age of the dog
The first obvious reason that will necessitate a need for a diet change is the age of your dog. Puppies, adolescents, adults and aging dogs have different nutritional needs. Growing dogs need a lot of proteins while the adult ones need it in lesser quantities. When the dog starts aging, it needs even much less since lots of protein can harm the dog’s liver and kidneys. This is because as the dog ages its ability to break down complex proteins and the body’s use of proteins reduces. Young adolescents also need a good amount of carbohydrates. The elderly dogs will also have a need for supplements like glucosamine and also chondroitin which are used to help the dog combat stiffness in the joints.
Your dog’s dietary needs begin to change as soon as the dog turns five. They can handle more than they used to handle as puppies though they are not as adaptable. A middle aged dog needs more of fiber than calories. Older dogs need diets that strengthen their bones and joints and ones which offer lots of antioxidants.
The other major reason you will need to change your dog’s diet is if it develops intolerance or sensitivity to the diet. The first issue with sensitivity is the development of allergic reactions. This usually happens in dogs which have been fed the same kind of food for long periods and that their bodies’ immune systems develop a resistance towards the food ingredients and release an antibody to fight it. At times the reaction could be to an additive in the dog food and you may have to consider homemade dog food recipes.
A dog may have a challenge digesting certain ingredients whether due to a health condition or an immune system reaction. Symptoms of such reactions and challenges include incessant itching, vomiting and diarrhea and frequent stomach upsets. When your dog develops this symptoms and other allergic reactions, consult a vet and after ruling out any other medical condition or environmental issues, you will need to consider making changes to your dog’s diet. Alternatively, you may avoid getting to this point by periodically rotating your dog’s diet according to its different dietary needs.
3.Poor health of the dog
The health of the dog is an important indicator of the suitability of the diet you are giving your dog. Dogs have different ways they partake nutrients from different food sources. Some dogs will need to obtain nutrients from several food sources to meet their daily requirements. At other times it could be the lack of one major nutrition in the diet they are on while at other times it is the having of one nutrition in excess.
All the above factors contribute to an unhealthy diet which can be manifested in the condition of a dog’s coat, as well as in its weight and activeness. At dull coat is an indication that the dog is having a deficiency especially of vitally fatty acids like omega 3 and 6. It may be accompanied by itching or just plain dull. A tired and lethargic dog that does not have any other medical condition is likely to be missing out on enough energy sources from the diet. A healthy weight is important for a dog’s long life. If your dog is overweight or underweight and you has a challenge to combat the issue, you may have to consider an overhaul of the dog’s diet.
Any change in a dog’s diet ought to be introduced gradually and not in a drastic manner. This helps the dog adapt to it over time to fully take a completely different diet.
Author Bio: June is the founder of TobysBone, where she shares her passion for writing and love for dogs. She wants to help you deal with your dog’s behavior issues, grooming and health needs, and proper training. Through her blog, you can find informative and reliable posts, tips and tricks, and a lot of interesting reads that will help you maintain a close bond with your furry companion.