Allergies and Other Health Issues
Common symptoms of allergies are:-
- Digestive problems - gas, diarrhoea or vomiting
- Itchy and even sometimes oozing skin
- Red and irritated eyes
- Nasal discharge
- Coughing or sneezing
- Inflamed ears
- Swollen paws
However please do not assume these conditions can only be down to allergy problems! You may have symptoms that need veterinary advice and care and please remember that if your pet has pre-existing conditions it is always advisable to check with your Vet regarding any medications and specific needs within the diet that you will need to cater for within their Raw food meals.
If your dog has always been given the same food for months and months or even years there is a good chance that he may have developed an allergy. However as the protein structure in Raw meat is different from that of a cooked or processed pet food, it is not at all uncommon for pets to be able to tolerate the Raw version of these same foods once their body has been allowed to detoxify.
So how do you change a dog over to Raw under these circumstances? There really is only 2 options:-
- Go straight over to Raw food only, but remember not to introduce too many different types of Raw meat all at once!
- The second option is to introduce Raw by feeding a mixture of the 2 diets but of course this does make it much more difficult to know whether you are feeding the right balance and amount overall and of course you wouldn’t see the full effect of changing to the raw option.
Most owners see a great improvement within 2 months and report their dog smells less, doesn’t suffer so many upset tummies, poohs less, enjoys better teeth and sweeter smelling breath and has developed a nice glossy coat. Other owners report that their dog seems to be enjoying their food a lot more and has less health issues. Some dogs seem to stop being so hyper and yet seem happier and more contented. However the absolute No: 1 of all comments refer to the dramatic drop in being gassed out of their own home!
Some dogs take some time to adjust to their new diet. Our advice is to give it time as your patience will reward you as you begin to see the results gained by the change. Of course each dog is different but one of the main reasons people feel their dog is not coping with Raw is simply because they are rushing things. Aim to feed a balanced diet including a mix of seasonal veg and fruit as time goes on but not all at once!
There is no problem for those more anxious to start with the limited variety way until you see how it goes. However do not feed just one food for long periods of time. A week or two at the most is more than enough. Most will start with just chicken parts for example but this can easily lead to constipation quite quickly if the bone content is too high. To overcome this you could add some chunks to the normal minced chicken.
Although it is always easier to blame the diet just remember that if you think your dog is having problems or you see the development of diarrhoea and digestive upsets, it is probably because you have tried to make the change too quickly!
If however you do think that your pet is reacting to one of his new foods then back up and start again - this time more slowly - only introducing one different food at a time. This makes identifying culprit foods so much easier!
Finally just don’t worry if your pet seems to reject the Raw food at first. Pets can be addicted to the additives and artificial flavours of commercial food - just like us humans with junk food! Your dog will not go hungry for long but in fairness they usually gobble everything up without thinking too much about it!