Dogs can also suffer from diarrhea and vomiting . These states of malaise can be triggered by overeating or consuming toxic substances. Furthermore, industrial feed is sometimes difficult to digest and unappetizing for these pets. Therefore, a soft diet may be the best option to avoid a picture of poor nutrition and dehydration.
It is right to reaffirm the importance of going to the vet when you observe any change in your four-legged friend’s daily routine . The doctor will analyze the state of health of the animal, diagnosing the certain causes of these anomalies. However, it is very helpful to know how and when to prepare a soft diet to aid the appetite and digestion of sick dogs.
When is the soft dog diet recommended?
The main goal of the soft diet is to provide highly digestible foods , capable of keeping the dog well fed and hydrated. This type of diet is indicated, above all, for those pathologies that trigger diarrhea and vomiting.
But this type of diet can also be recommended in the following cases:
- Loss of appetite .
- Transition phase from an industrialized to a natural diet (BARF).
- Digestive difficulties or problems.
- Recovery from surgery .
- Cases of malnutrition or advanced weakness.
- During cancer treatment .
In case of malnutrition or weakness, the soft diet should be highly caloric, to make up for the nutritional deficiencies of the animal. The ideal is to offer a greater quantity of highly digestible proteins, in addition to the so-called “good fats”, such as omegas 3, 6 and 9.
Carbohydrates can be present in this type of diet, in a moderate way, to avoid gas formation and other digestive problems.
How to prepare a soft and nutritious diet for dogs?
A soft homemade diet that is nutritious and natural for dogs should contain:
- 80% of proteins of animal origin;
- 20% fruit or vegetables.
The source of animal protein should mainly come from low-fat white meats , such as chicken, rabbit, hake, turkey, etc.
Fruits and vegetables should be easily digested and high in fiber. Like apples, squash, potatoes, carrots, strawberries or peaches. The ideal is to boil them and use the cooking broth to prepare soft food .
Green leaves and citrus fruits should be avoided in the soft diet, as they can cause damage to the digestive tract of dogs .
The organism of dogs is biologically prepared to digest raw meat , with its enzymes completely intact. To avoid the risk of salmonella or other pathogens, you can cook the meat on the grill and offer it semi-solid to the dog.
Seasonings should be avoided in general. However, there are some exceptions, such as turmeric , which is very useful for the immune and digestive system of your four-legged friend. However, you should stick to the 60 milligrams per day , 2-3 times per week, dose for adult dogs.
How to offer a soft diet to your dog?
A dog with diarrhea, vomiting, or loss of appetite will be very hungry and possibly particularly dehydrated . For this reason, you must avoid the risk of getting pregnant in female specimens and offer small portions of the diet gradually .
The specific daily doses and quantities will be defined by the veterinarian , after the diagnosis of the cause of the digestive anomaly found. In general, a dog with diarrhea should be given its soft diet, split into four to five servings per day.
The goal of reducing the amount of food per dose is to stimulate the functioning of the digestive tract, without overloading the body. With the soft diet, your dog’s metabolism will recover its optimal shape.
The soft diet should be maintained until the complete disappearance of symptoms such as vomiting or diarrhea. Normally, an adult dog improves in 2-3 days, but this time can vary depending on the health of each animal. Puppies and older dogs will need special attention with regard to the improvement and evolution of their clinical picture.
Probiotics to supplement the dog’s soft diet
In the presence of severe bouts of diarrhea and digestive problems, your dog’s intestinal flora will suffer. This not only hinders the digestive process and the absorption of nutrients, but also weakens the animal’s immune system.
To help him replenish the beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract, you will need to feed him probiotic foods, i.e. foods that have a high number of lactic ferments. We are talking, in particular, of yogurt and kefir, always at the maximum dose of 1 tablespoon per day.
Probiotics also work great as soft diet supplements . They are non-digestible substances of plant origin, which serve as nutrients for the bacteria that participate in the metabolic activity of the intestinal tract.
In any case, and for greater safety, it is important to always consult your veterinarian before changing the diet of your best friends.