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What To Expect When Transitioning From Kibble to Raw

     Today I want to discuss what happens in your pets body when you transition them from kibble to raw. But first let’s quickly go over why you should consider raw over kibble.

Think about processed food for humans: we know they are not the healthiest choice for us, yet we tend to buy it because it's quick, easy and lasts longer on our shelves.

Same goes for processed pet foods.

Kibble tends to be full of preservatives and grain additives, which compromise about 50% of processed pet foods, which leads to an excess in carbohydrates. Carbohydrates create sugar and dogs and cats are more than capable of producing all the glucose that their body needs without any dietary carbs. That’s why carbohydrates aren’t considered essential nutrients for dogs, while proteins and fats are.

When a dog or cat eats a high carbohydrate, low protein meat diet, the acidity in the stomach changes. It creates a more alkaline environment. A dogs stomach acidity should be acidic, like 2. The low acid pH breaks down food quicker which is healthier and more natural for your pet. It also prevents them from getting sick from eating things they shouldn’t, from garbage diving or eating dead animals in the yard etc.

There are two ways to transition your dog to raw.

Fasting or gradual. If your dog is young or a healthy adult with no medical conditions you can feed them their last kibble meal at night and after 12-18 hours offer a full raw meal. Gradual is what we would recommend for a senior dog or one who has health concerns.

You should start with a protein such as Turkey, chicken or rabbit as these are low fat, white meats and the easiest proteins to digest.
The enzymes required to break down a high quality protein, raw meat and bone diet vs a high carbohydrate and processed diet are very different. The pancreas has to adapt to both the type and enzymes it produces.

During the transition period, adding a probiotic with the addition of digestive enzymes is highly recommended. Adored Beast Healthy Gut has ingredients such as Papain and bromelain which help break down protein.

Raw goats milk is also a natural probiotic that can help with digestion.

Once you introduce a raw diet, your dog or cat may vomit bile as their stomach has not yet made adjustments to the amount of bile required for proper digestion. This is often temporary. Offering a dry cookie or treat can help settle the stomach if you notice your pet feels nauseous. Dry food expands to 2x – 5x its size during digestion. This process stretches the gut and gives your pet a full sensation. Switching to a raw diet will mean a higher calorically dense diet, but with less volume. You may notice that your pet seems hungrier sooner as the food digests quicker and your pet may be asking for food more frequently. The stomach needs time to adjust and these sensations will be less noticeable in 7 – 10 days time. The gut flora are different for dogs and cats fed a high carbohydrate-based diet vs. a high protein, raw meat and bone diet. It may take several weeks for your pet’s digestive flora to adjust.

When your dog or cat starts a raw food diet, you’ll notice changes to their stool. During the transition period, softer stool can occur. This is normal! After about a week you will start to notice smaller firmer poops. Black poops are also common, it occurs due to your dog’s digestive enzymes getting used to more meat and organ matter in their diet. As long as it’s dark and firm, that’s good.

You may also notice some mucus covering their poop which is a sign that the digestive tract is detoxing the junk from their system.

A kibble fed dog will have larger loose formed poops because their body is discarding more of the filler ingredients that don’t have a purpose in their body, whereas with raw their bodies are more able to extract the nutrients in their food, leading to less waste!

Some other changes you will notice are improved dental health, including better smelling breath!

Raw food is the only diet for dogs which contains naturally occurring enzymes that help protect the teeth and gums. Enzymes reduce harmful bacteria which allows the beneficial bacteria to flourish! Raw bones also consist of calcium, phosphorus and magnesium. Those three go together with providing healthy teeth and bones!

You may even notice increased energy! When dogs are fed a raw food diet it naturally leads to them having more energy because their body does not have to work to filter out as much junk.

Your dogs overall health will improve on the inside and it will show on the outside with a shiny soft coat! In a kibble diet that lacks active enzymes, it’s harder for dogs to absorb starches, fats, and protein. This can result in dandruff, dry skin, and thin or coarse fur growth. After switching your pet to raw, you’ll notice a difference in their skin, coat, and how much less they shed!

At Poochie Moochie Edmonton we strictly only carry raw and offer consultation diets! If you’re local come in to learn more! Or contact us with any questions.

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