At Ziggys, we are huge fans of a raw food diet for your pets. In fact, it's one of the main reasons that Ziggys exists! Our founding Holistic Vet noticed a correlation between poor diet and illness and wanted to open a shop where pet owners were able to access quality nutrition and improve their pet's well being.
Transitioning your dog to a raw diet can be a great way to provide them with a natural and balanced diet that meets their specific nutritional needs. A raw food diet closely mimics the ancestral diet of your dog, and provides food in a biologically available form.
The good news is, most dogs will easily and successfully transition to a raw diet.
Here are our top tips for successfully transitioning your dog to a raw food diet:
We advise starting with a pre-made raw. Raw food needs a specific balance of nutrients to be effective, and the easiest way to make sure this is going to happen is by using a quality pre-made raw. At Ziggys, our range of raw food is carefully chosen based on quality and ingredients.
Consider your routine. Raw feeding is a little more complicated than simply opening a bag or can and you need to get in to the routine of placing the food in the fridge the night before so that it's defrosted and ready to use the next day. I find setting a repeating alarm on my phone really helps me remember! For adult dogs, we advise starting with two meals a day. Some smaller dogs or fussy dogs prefer smaller more frequent meals and some breeds of dogs naturally fast every so often.
If you have more than one dog you may choose to feed them separately. Raw food is hugely appealing to dogs and this can cause tension in households with multiple dogs.
Most dogs will be able to handle a straight swap to raw food. We advise starting with breakfast, this means you're more likely to be around if the raw food does cause a stomach upset for your dog.
- If you prefer to transition gradually we advise doing this over the course of 7-10 days. We don't advise feeding tinned or kibble in the same meal as raw food.
- Stick with one protein for 7 - 10 days so that you can monitor the effects on your dog. Turkey or tripe make excellent first proteins.
- You may want to use a probiotic alongside the transition. Your dog's gut is dealing with a very different type of food, and you may notice a temporary upset in the first few days. Using a probiotic is a great way to safe guard against this. We really like Nutrabio from Nutravet or Alexanders Naturals Bone Broth and Kefir Paws for this.
- Supplements are a fantastic addition to a raw food diet. Our favourites are Pet Plus and Keepers Mix.
- You should aim to feed between 2 - 3% of your dog's weight daily (for adult dogs). This may vary slightly for very active dogs, or dogs who need to lose a little weight. We have weighing scales at Ziggys and we are happy to help you work out how much you should be feeding per day.