Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Should you switch your dog's food?
Between the cost of pet foods, and the cost of pet medications, you may think you should change your dog's food to save some money.
Here's the thing about changing a dog's food: You may not be getting the same quality of food you are giving your dog now. You really do seem to get what you pay for when it comes to dog foods. Read the label of any product you are thinking using as a replacement for current pet foods. Many list corn as the first ingredient. Why should we pay the same price for corn as some charge for a quality dog food?
Compare the dog food by the pound. You may notice the big savings you thought you would get is not there. And, if your dog is not having any allergy problems, and seems to like the food it is getting now, you may want to leave well enough alone. If you think buying dog food can be expensive, try treating a dog for food allergies!
If something happens and you must change the dog's food, do it slowly. Trainers differ on how they explain what should be done. Here is what I have heard, and what has worked for us. Each day for one week, we replaced about 10% of a dog's food with a new product. Once we saw the dog tolerated the new food, we added another 10%, and continued to try for a second week.
After the second week, you should be safe to use the new food. This may not work for every dog. Some people may tell you they just changed foods in one day, and never had a problem. Well, that is great for them, but I would not want to be the pet owner who did have a problem. And what about the dog? They can't ask us to slow down on the changes we are making-they just have to put up with us.