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Tips on how to feed pets on a restricted diet

Posted by SusanStokes on September 12, 2015

When you have more than one pet, and one has an issue with food restriction, whether it be allergies, irritable bowel symptoms, etc., finding the proper food can be a challenging experience.  First and foremost, talk to your veterinarian to determine the cause of any health issues, then go from there. Following are tips to help with the process.

In our household, I’ve settled on one particular brand and flavor with minimum ingredients but still packed with nutrition and palatable to each of my cats offered by PetGuard which, by the way, is made in the USA. I did recently try Dave’s brand, and found a press release where Dave Ratner, owner of Dave’s Pet Foods, was interviewed and offered some of his own tips to share for feeding pets on a restricted diet, as follows:

Talk to Your Vet.  As I mentioned above, Dave Ratner has also suggested that the first step before making any major change in your pet’s diet should always be talking with your veterinarian. List the symptoms that your dog or cat is experiencing, such as itching or diarrhea. Your veterinarian can determine whether your pet is suffering from a kidney problem or food allergy and steer you to the right direction as far as the proper diet for your pet.

Determine restriction. This is very important and may be something you learn from your veterinarian, or it could come from your own conclusions from knowing and observing your pet. Some pets may experience digestive problems, allergies or weight issues.

Locate the ideal food. Once you know what the dietary restriction is for your pet, you want to select a high quality pet food. Look for pet foods that are organic or labelled with natural ingredients and are free of fillers and dyes. By keeping the diet more natural and wholesome, you will be eliminating some of the more common ingredients that may cause your pet discomfort.

Try it out. Ideally, you want to feed your pet the food selection for approxiately eight weeks and document your pet's reaction. This will give you enough time to determine if your pet is benefiting from the pet food.

Observe your pet. During the eight week food trial, make note of your pet's reaction and notice any changes. If you see beneficial signs, that's good news. However, if there are any negative indications, it’s time to call your veterinarian again. At the end of the eight weeks, determine if your pet did better on that new food or if you should try another option. Sometimes it may take trying a few different foods before you find one that works best for your pet.

“Feeding a pet that needs a restricted diet can be tricky, and most people are not sure where to begin with it,” explains Dave Ratner in his recent press release. “While it may seem like a scary task to try and feed such pets, it’s not nearly as complicated as it may seem, especially if you follow a few guidelines with doing so.”

“Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the food when you go select what to purchase,” added Ratner. “With some patience and understanding of labels you will be able to do it. You just have to hang in there and find the one that works for your pet. It’s important to buy food that matches where your pet is at during each stage of life.”

Dave’s Pet Food is also made in the USA. 

Hope this goes some way in helping those who are challenged to find a good solution to feeding their pets.

Susan, Taurus and Gemini



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