He settled in really well but later started to have really loose stools. I put it down to the upheaval of moving and assumed it would sort itself out. Sometimes things would improve and I would think it was settling down but then a couple of days later it would be a problem again. In the end I was concerned he wouldn’t be getting enough nutrients so I took him to the vet and they gave him probiotics first and then on a second visit they gave antibiotics in case he had an infection but asked me not to change his diet.
He didn’t improve and then he started to go off his kibble. I thought it might be teething and tried to soften his kibble. That worked for a bit but then he started refusing his kibble altogether. He would eat anything except his food. I went back to the vets and again they said not to change his diet but I expressed that I now felt really strongly that his food wasn’t suiting him. I asked for advice on what to change to and they listed some of the well known kibble brands. I switched him onto a really high quality kibble which he would eat and things did improve a little but still nowhere near to how they should be.
I decided that perhaps he needed some tinned wet food to complement his kibble. Again he improved a little but not enough. I then thought that I needed to get him off kibble altogether. He really liked the tinned wet food but I worked out that as an adult dog it would cost so much to feed him that I wouldn’t be able to give him only this. Given his lack of improvement despite trying so many things it occurred to me that he might be intolerant to certain proteins so I thought I’d try him on a protein he hadn’t eaten before. This improved things quite a lot but still not quite right. I also began to think about how extremely processed a lot of his food looked.
I did a lot of research and came across Bella and Duke. It met my requirements of being less processed, able to cut out certain proteins that he can’t seem to tolerate, and being affordable both as a puppy and at his likely adult weight. However, I was really nervous about it because none of my friends or family feed their dogs raw and I had heard so many risks about feeding raw. To be honest I wasn’t totally happy about the idea of my puppy eating raw meat and then running around the house. I also talked to my vet and they weren’t encouraging either but I had a feeling that it might help him.
I phased him onto his new food as I didn’t dare change him over too quickly. I soon started to see an improvement and once he was fully transitioned he improved significantly. Luther is now 8 months old. He has gained weight really well and has gone from being too thin to being an ideal weight. His stools are now small and firm and he also passes less wind which a benefit to everyone! As he drinks a bit less he also seems much more comfortable as he doesn’t need to rush outside at every opportunity. I’m hoping that eventually he’ll be able to tolerate the proteins he has an issue with but in the meantime he has six varieties so it’s not too restricted.
I’m so thrilled that I’ve finally found the right food for Luther. I consider myself a convert and I’m an advocate for it amongst my friends and family. All of my worries about feeding raw have proved unfounded. It has also made me very aware of how many dogs I know are being treated for health issues and it’s considered perfectly normal for their dogs to be seeing vets for treatment at regular intervals but yet diet is never discussed as a potential contributory factor. I’m seeking to take an approach where good health is considered normal and just treating when it’s absolutely necessary.
The Bella and Duke team are fantastic and any time I have needed help I have had such positive experiences, whether that was from the Bella and Duke team or the Facebook group. The only down side to moving to Bella and Duke is that Luther now eats far more healthily than I do so I’m looking at what I put on my plate and realising I’m going to need to tackle what I eat next!Tags: raw dog food, reviews