Transitioning to Raw
Perfectly Rawsome's Raw Feeding Transitioning Guide provides great, educational detail for new raw feeders. If needed, there is also this article to help Introduce Raw to an Older Dog or Sick Dog.
Dr. Karen Becker also provides a great video on how to introduce new foods, and what to expect:
During the first two weeks they will be eating the same thing. This helps their tummies adjust to a new diet. Once you notice a well formed, solid stool, you can say that they have adjusted, and we can introduce something new.
Always supervise your dog while they eat, especially while they consume their raw meaty bones. You want to ensure that they are chewing thoroughly. If your dog tends to gulp, try feeding partially frozen to slow them down. You can also stuff their meals into a Kong or other feeder toy.
If your dog has diarrhea, you can add more bone in meat, pumpkin and/or slippery elm to help bind the stool and soothe their tummy. You can give this up to twice a day, with or after a meal.
offer a little extra bone with each meal. I suggest finding treat-sized bones like chicken feet or chicken necks and keeping them frozen so you have them handy if you need to adjust their meals.
pure canned pumpkin (check to make sure no other added ingredients) – 1 tbsp per 25 lbs of body weight
slippery elm capsules - ¼ capsule twice daily to small dogs, a ½ capsule twice daily to medium dogs, and one capsule once or twice daily for large dogs. Mix contents of capsule into food, pure pumpkin puree, plain yogurt, etc.
If your dog's stomach is not adjusting well (such as 2 days straight of explosive diarrhea), it is ok to feed half kibble, half raw. Some dogs need more time and a slower adjustment. Please use your best judgement and visit the vet if you feel your dog needs medical attention.
During transition, assess:
1. Did any dogs require more bone? You will want to increase their bone percentage by adding small portions of bone-in meats like chicken feet and necks.
2. Any reactions? Watery eyes, redness around the nose/mouth, flaking skin, yeasty paws. These can be allergies or 'detox'. Take notes and keep them handy. Detox can take a month or two. If it persists, it is likely allergies to the protein.
3. Weight? Did they gain or lose weight? Do you want to adjust the percentage fed?
4. Have they adjusted? Is stool consistently well-formed? If so, it is time to introduce something new!