There are two schools of thought when it comes to switching to raw food. Many raw feeders advocate a straight switch from processed food to raw food. Others advise a gradual change over 7 days. A gradual change involves feeding the original food in the morning and the raw food in the evening for 5-6 days then raw only the day after. You could try a straight switch to begin with and if it disagrees with your dog then you can try the gradual change instead.
A good idea is to start your dog on one protein source for the first week, this allows the digestive system to adapt to the new diet. You can then introduce a new protein every 5-7 days, this will highlight any intolerance to a particular protein. Once your dog has tried all the meat proteins you can mix them up on a daily basis. A good protein to start with is chicken or turkey as these are least likely to cause any digestive upsets. We generally introduce raw meaty bones a month after commencing raw feeding.
If your dog does have soft stools or constipation in the first month, digestive enzymes and probiotics can be added to aid with digestion or you can increase or decrease the bone content accordingly. Some soft stools may be normal during the first week, if your dog is still bright and eating then this is okay. If your dog has very watery diarrhoea or has any blood in the stools then contact us, this is unlikely but may indicate an intolerance to a protein or to quick a change from processed food to raw food.
Sometimes when dogs initially switch to raw they may vomit a small amount of white foam or yellow bile usually in the morning, this is the digestive tract adapting to the higher protein, lower carbohydrate diet and is usually nothing to worry about. If vomiting or diarrhoea is persistent then please contact us for advice.