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How To Change Your Dog's Diet

By Charles Hopkins Published 01/2/2008 | Pets and Animals
As more and more new findings about your diet come to the surface, many a dog owner will begin to consider changing the diet to the best available so the dog will have good health and live to a ripe old age.

However, its very important for any dog owner to take precautions when trying to change a diet. The following 5 steps are suggested in a manner that can be done effectively without throwing the dog off balance:

Step 1: During such times as changing owner or moving to a new location, it's best not to change the diet so as to avoid too much unnecessary emotional strain on the dog. Once the dog becomes accustomed to the new owner or living environment, then it would be the right time to change the dog's diet as planned.

Step 2: When it comes to changing the dogs diet, it should be done by replacing only 25% of the old food with the new. Most dogs will not be able to notice any difference if the old and the new are mixed well enough. They should eat the new mixture as well as the old diet.

Although some might not get used to the new diet initially, patience should be taken to allow for the break-in period to complete. It has taken the dog many months to get used to its old diet; therefore, for the dog to accept a new one it might sometimes take as long. As soon as the dog is eating 25% of the new mixture of diet, then it'd be safe to proceed to Step 3 as shown below.

Step 3: Mix and replace 50% of the old diet with the new this time and make a little less effort to hide the new diet from the dog as it should be more receptive to the new food presented in the new mixture now. When this is evident, proceed to Step 4.

Step 4: This time, it should be easily understood that 75% of the new food be substituted with the old one. And make an even lesser effort to hide the new food from the dog. At this stage, the dog should accept this newly mixed diet in an "as-a-matter-of-fact" manner. It should eat the dog food without any sign of hesitation when first fed.

Step 5: At this point, the dog should be accepting the newly mixed and replaced diet without any problem at all. If the dog accepted the first feeding at Step 4 easily, this final step should just be "a piece of cake." Just like humans, dogs are uniquely different and some are bound to require more patience and attention.

Therefore, don't become discouraged too easily when the dog is not fitting into the new diet in the beginning.

After all, changing a dog's diet is often a time consuming process that should be done with care and understanding.