View Full Version : Allergies and transitioning foods

10th August 2007, 10:12 PM
I just posted here that I had taken Sammy to the vet due to scabs and itchiness, and was told he probably has a food allergy (hopefully that rather than sm!). He has been eating Purina One Puppy Chicken and Rice. I just found a rather hopeful food that is now available here in Finland: its grain and meat base is totally different to what he's had before and its supposedly human grade. It's Eagle Pack Holistic Duck and Oatmeal for adults.

My questions:

Sammy is 10 1/2 months and has so far only eaten puppy food. Is it ok to transition him to adult food now?

Should I still transition the food slowly over a week despite the allergy to the old food, or should I stop the old food at once?

10th August 2007, 11:25 PM
Always a slow transition at any age for a dog. Better to always be safe than sorry!

My Aoife is 5 months old & on adult food - she has been for a month or two. Your little one will be fine on the adult food. After all, it's not entirely natural for there to be a different stage in the diet of an older puppy to an adult.

Plus, if the adult food is of a superior quality anyway - why do you need to ask? ;)

11th August 2007, 03:56 PM
I'm more concerned to be honest about the allergy thing than the age thing (although I was concerned that he might be too young still for adult dog food). If I slowly transition the food, it'll mean I have to keep feeding him something that's making him itchy and scabby...

Has anyone done a allergy diet trial before? Have you still transitioned to the new food? I'll be calling the vet when it opens again on Monday, but I just thought I'd check for some opinions here first.

11th August 2007, 04:13 PM
Well, if he has an allergy to the food, I would still do the slow process of changing over a week. You don't want a funny tummy to contend with as well?

You need to be making sure that this new food is what he needs, if you rush it you risk upsetting his tummy & not knowing how the real Sammy reacts to it!

Denise G.
11th August 2007, 04:22 PM
Congratulations on finding a good food like Eagle Pack--I've heard good things about it, though I've never tried it.

Since Sammy has been on Purina up until now, I would still transition him rather slowly. I've been told it's not as difficult to switch from one premium food to another, but when switching from a grocery brand such as Purina to a premium food, it's a little more "shocking" for the digestive system. Not dangerous, it just may cause a little more stomach upset. I have an allergic dog and I've switched foods many times until I found what worked, but I still did it somewhat gradually even though we were switching from premium food to another premium food. All that said, if I were you I would switch rather gradually--maybe 3/4 Purina to 1/4 Eagle Pack for a couple of days and then see how he does. If he's not having stomach upset, I would switch over more quickly. Good luck!

11th August 2007, 05:27 PM
Ok, thanks! I'll transition slowly then! I'm very glad to hear that the new food is recommended - I'll look forward to seeing if it will mean a happier, less itchy dog. He's on antibiotics and cortisone at the moment, so it might be a bit difficult to discern what's doing the trick - but hopefully something will stop him chewing himself, poor little man.

11th August 2007, 05:53 PM
When i got coco a month ago out of the pound he was in a sorry state vet said he had an allergy as we didnt know what food he had been on before, we couldnt change it slowly so just had to go on my choice of food which is Red Mill Leader.
Today Coco is a different dog most of his coat has growing back and the itching has stopped. Changing his food never upset his tummy either.

12th August 2007, 03:20 AM
Poor little Sammy. I am so sorry to hear about his itchies. Whether to move him across to his new food or go cold turkey (excuse the pun) is moot, but if Sammy were mine, I'd probably move him onto his new food right away & keep my fingers crossed. If I suspected the problem was his diet, I'd want him off the offending food right away.

To be honest, back in the days when I fed my dogs kibble, I was not faithful to any one product and would often have 3 or 4 different types of dog food in the pantry. None of my guys ever suffered tummy upsets by being offered variety.

However you do it, I sure hope this rids Sammy of the itchies & the scabbies as that sounds really unpleasant for him. Let us know how he goes eh?

12th August 2007, 01:31 PM
I will! The antibiotics have already helped the infection where he's been chewing his thigh - it isn't red anymore. He's still chewing his other paws though, but not as much as before I think :xfngr:

12th August 2007, 10:44 PM
Like Caroline, and Sallymum's experience with Coco, I've always just moved my dogs around to a new food and have never had any (or fosters) have problems or stomach upsets.

But you can transition slowly if you'd like, or even fairly quickly over a week by replacing a bit more of the old food each successive day with more of the new food.

In general I think if dogs have any issues, more are from adapting to the flavour of a new food if they've been fed on one thing exclusively, than any stomach upset. But some definitely do get tummy upset at a change.

Most vets would suggest a cold turkey change I think when an allergy elimination diet is involved -- or a fairly quick transition over a few days.

12th August 2007, 10:50 PM

Poor little man! Glad to hear that things seem to be settling down for him a little now though!

Agree with the others on this, I would quite simply change him straight over to the new food, I have done this many times over the years and never had a problem with it other than a few fussy eaters who weren't too sure about the flavour!!

Good luck on this and :xfngr: that the new feed does the trick for Sam!

13th August 2007, 04:19 AM
Oh another thing Laura... sometimes antibiotics can give dogs (& humans) the tummy wobbles because it kills off the good flora in the tummy. When mine are on antibiotics I offer them a little dollop of yoghurt daily to restore the flora, but if you are unsure about how Sammy would go with dairly products you can get these good-guys in capsule form. They are sold at health food stores under the name of "probiotics". They are rather expensive but a small bottle does come in handy to have around the place.