New to the forum, and loving all of the great info here. We rescued a precious little doggie about 2 weeks ago, and want to transition him to a great diet. Best guess, he’s a cockapoo, but others have guessed Maltese, along with other assorted possibilities. He’s 2 years old and about 17 pounds. Would love info about frozen, freeze-dried, air-dried foods. Not sure I’m knowledgeable enough yet to go totally homemade raw. Have a dehydrator and have made some tasty treats… beef and chicken livers, sweet potatoes, carrots, bananas, apples, etc. plus some pumpkin/peanut butter/rolled oats no-bake balls. Am interested in a rotational diet, but don’t know how to go about it… rotate daily, weekly, monthly, AM/PM. What’s the best way to go about designing a rotational diet for my sweet boy… and anything else I need to know to pamper a formerly tossed-to-the-curb angel?
Consider homemade, combined with a high quality kibble as a base, and canned as backup.
Rhonda, he sounds adorable, and lucky to have you! A rotation diet can be as simple or complicated as you want it to be! Some people feed a bag of food then change with the next bag. Some people give a different food am and pm. You can switch flavors within the same brand or buy a different brand. The main thing is to switch up the ingredients so he’s not getting too much or too little of any one thing. If he has no food issues or intolerance to any ingredients, a rotation diet is a great way to give him variety and save a few $$ when you find a sale.
When you are just starting a rotational diet you need to take it slowly. Choose a food you like and slowly transition to it and then go choose the next food you want to try. When you get near the end of the first bag, start mixing in the new one. Start out with changing monthly, then as your dog gets used to rotating, you can decide to rotate more frequently or keep it at monthly. You can also add canned, fresh, freeze dried, or whatever as toppers and change those more often.
I rotate kibbles weekly and feed half raw, which I change daily, but everyone does it differently.
How often you rotate is up to your pup. Some do well rotating brands frequently, some need a longer transition period. My dog can eat different foods for each meal with no issues whatsoever.
I feed about half a meal of kibble topped with either canned, fresh foods, or commercial raw freeze dried or frozen. His kibble is the most constant out of the rotation. He will eat one brand/recipe of a smaller bag until it’s finished, about a month. Then I switch to another brand with a different protein and carb source. All other foods change with every meal or every few days for canned food.
Sounds like you’re set for your pup’s treat menu! For commercial raw my dog does well on Stella & Chewy freeze dried Chicken, Pheasant, Venison, or Duck, Duck, Goose, Primal freeze dried Turkey & Sardine, Primal frozen Venison, Nature’s Variety Instinct freeze dried Lamb, Nature’s Variety Instinct frozen beef, lamb, or venison.
Here’s a few DFA articles on rotation and info to help you choose a commercial raw food:
Thanks so much everyone! Sounds like there isn’t one single way to go about it, but lots of good options if applied with a heavy dose of common sense. I’m especially glad to see the suggestions about topping a quality kibble with raw/canned/freeze dried. I had read a few comments in other threads about potential bloat problems with toppers, but it sounds like that’s not a big concern. I appreciate the expertise and time in replying! It’s reassuring!
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