Apple New Diet: Stella & Chewy's Freeze Dried Steaks: beef and lamb Nature's Variety Raw Frozen: venison, lamb, beef, rabbit Whole Life dehydrated treats: venison, lamb, salmon Pingsford Porridge Red Bravo's Freeze Dried lamb liver Freeze Dried Beef Trachea Velvet Antlers Enough Evo Red Meat bites to transition to all freeze dried Various raw meats, various freeze dried options, various dehydrated meats POgOs: mouse and rabbit Salmon Oil Foamy Fries: beef and (maybe) molasses
This is pretty much all Apple will be eating. I'm thinking about also buying Ziwipeak, but haven't really thought about it yet. Good chance I will buy that though, and at the same time stock up on some other stuff. Nothing is for sure yet.
Apple tried the lamb treats and the S&C's beef steaks. He actually took a piece out of my hand this morning! So he is transitioning over to the freeze dried beef steaks well. I think that part will be easy, but switching him to raw meats, might be a bit tougher.
Last night I made some Pingsford Red, but I added 1 beef steak to it and then some meat baby food to give it a creamier texture because I thought that might bring Apple to it quicker. Apple ate some of it, but not too much. He didn't eat any overnight, and this morning I mixed it up with more water so hopefully he eats it today again with his other dry foods.
Post by mustelidmusk on Aug 26, 2008 20:55:30 GMT -5
I'm glad Apple likes the freeze-dried beef. The porridge may be a little more difficult - it's cooked, so it tastes different.
Here are some options for the porridge. start mixing a SMALL amount in the NV rabbit, put a tiny sprinking of some dry porridge in with crumbled freeze-dried meats. As long as you use very small amounts at first, you should be able to get Apple eating it.
Also, the porridge is nnot a complete diet. But it's good for adding a bit of variation into the diet is a convenient way.
Let me know how it goes with all the goodies. Their noses will be twitching with all the new smells!!!
Post by pear2apple on Aug 29, 2008 10:55:58 GMT -5
As soon as I finish this batch of NV and PP Red, I will remake it the way you suggest. I just hate to waste, so I've mixed the 2 together, again, and it works even better.
Since I am "restarting" a new natural diet, I thought I would fill out the prelim questionaire, so here that comes!
They seem to really like the raw rabbit, I've offered it twice, the same pieces because they didn't finish and both times Apple ate some. 2nd time Kiwi just tried to stash hers. Eventually I threw it away because it was all dried up.
I'm hoping to make some rabbit jerky this coming week, hopefully that goes over well! I'm a little worried about how long to "cook" it! I hope I don't ruin it! But they love jerky and I just bought some VitaLife (they didn't have Dogswell) Duck Breast strips, lovin it!
Last Edit: Aug 29, 2008 10:59:45 GMT -5 by pear2apple
Post by pear2apple on Aug 29, 2008 11:28:57 GMT -5
1. How many ferrets do you currently have? What are their names, ages, genders, and do they have any health problems? Apple, male, PVF ferret, 1.5 years old, sable mitt, IBS: allergic to chicken, don't know about other poultry or eggs Kiwi, female, Marshall ferret, 3-4 years old, DEW, deaf, medical history unknown 2. What are your ferrets currently eating? What Kind of diet do you want to switch to? Very little Evo Small Meat bites, Stella & Chewy's freeze dried steaks (beef and lamb), Nature's Variety (lamb and rabbit, soon venison and beef too), POgOs mouse (maybe rabbit soon), Foamy Fries (beef and possibly molasses?), and Whole Life dehydrated treats (venison, lamb, salmon), Salmon Oil, live mice-fuzzies or pinkies I want to add RMBs, Ziwipeak , try the PP Red again, dehydrated meat strips, adult mice. 3. Please list the current weight for your ferret(s). Do they appear overweight? Underweight? How is there muscle tone? Apple is about 2lbs, belly fat but I think its from his first owner feeding him ice cream, good muscle tone in his legs though Kiwi is right about 1lb, maybe a little over, I think she is underweight, I can feel her ribcage, but she is a great climber and very slim, the whippet style ferret 4. What is the condition of your ferret's teeth/gums? (can you get a picture?) Apple's teeth are bright white, clean, pink gums, I can't see any plaque Kiwi's teeth are yellowish, no black stuff though, her gums are pinkish, a little lighter 5. Describe the texture/color of your ferrets coat. Apple is a big fluff, his coat is incredibly soft and thick, a little longer too. His undercoat is creamy buttery color, he has a whitish bib, mostly brown all over though. Kiwi isn't puffy fluffy, but she is much softer now that she is off cat kibble and no longer rolling around in newspaper. Her color is mostly white, small stripe of grey on tail, used to be yellowish, but that is gone. Her fur is pretty short too. 6. How often does your ferret go to the bathroom? I think they both go about 4-5 times a day, on average. Kiwi usually has smaller poops than Apple. 7. Does your ferret's feces and/or urine smell? Apple's poop smells really bad, often seedy as well, he also might be a little gassy during pooping (possibly caused by IBS or kibble?). Poops do not smell fishy, so I don't think its the salmon oil. Often looks greenish with the stomach lining (?) possibly in his poop. Kiwi's don't have a strong smell unless its something new. I can't smell the urine. 8. Smell your ferret. How strong is their odor? I smell nothing when I smell them. They smell slightly like ferrets, but most of the time they have absolutely no odor. 9. On a scale of 1-10, 1 being completely lethargic and 10 being "through the roof!" what is your ferret's energy level? Apple is usually 6-8, 6 when he's tired or its hot, and 8 when playing with Kiwi. He's been slightly off since his IBS problem back in July. Kiwi is almost always an 8-9. She is jumpy, bouncy, climbs everything, attacks Apple, goes nuts during playtime. 10. How excited is your ferret about meal time (when fed kibble)? Kibble not so much. But as a treat it was working well to get them excited. However, Apple is super excited by the S&C freeze dried steaks, and Kiwi is starting to sniff them more now. She loves the Whole Life treats, stashes and eats those. 11. What other information about your ferret(s) would you like to share? Apple ate raw chicken back in March/April and since then we do not offer it AT ALL in this house because of the possibility of Apple stealing it from Kiwi. That is prevalent in this house! Apple knows how to eat raw, started to eat the bones, but we didn't get past that before heading straight to the NV. Kiwi was the first to try the raw rabbit and even start chewing the bones! I have high hopes for her to kill mice and start eating a great new RMB diet.
Post by mustelidmusk on Sept 2, 2008 22:13:55 GMT -5
Has pple had any adult mice lately? If so, how are hispoops on the mice? Mice wl have ore bulk/non-digestiable matter (fur, bone bits, etc. ) ferets that have IBD ometimes do better with a little bulk in their diet. You may want to try feedinga litlle pumkin just to see if this helps digestion. This is something we don't want to do long term since pukin has carbs/sugar. But we can lok into other forms of non-digestibles that offer bulk without the sugars.
Wehn you get a chance, leyt me know what your'e feeding mostly theses days. Is there anything that seem to work better/not as well, etc fr Apple???
Post by pear2apple on Sept 3, 2008 10:35:56 GMT -5
Apple might not be getting any adult mice or other for awhile. My personal life has changed so I no longer will have a supply of mice at my ferret's disposal.
However I have bought raw pork shoulder and have started feeding some of that. I fed them some more rabbit the other day but they weren't too in to it. The pork chunks they ate after about 6 hours of not eating anything. They were reluctant to go after it at first, but they eventually ate it all overnight.
This morning I gave them the freeze dried steaks. Apple loves that stuff. I still need to buy the Ziwipeak and I will be doing that soon.
I haven't bought any more NV yet, I still don't have the freezer space.
Post by mustelidmusk on Sept 3, 2008 23:25:02 GMT -5
How is Apple doing with his digestion??? Seedy and/or greenish poops? Have the enzymes and pro-bios made any difference???
Does Apple do better on any particular meats? Dry meat versus wet? Any clues you can get about what work well for his tummy would be good to know.
With IBD, a little bulk can help wth digestion since the colon tends to lose some elasticity. If Apple i still having a bit of truble, we may want to try a few things that my help him ut.just let me know. -jennifer
How is Apple doing with his digestion??? Seedy and/or greenish poops? Have the enzymes and pro-bios made any difference??? Does Apple do better on any particular meats? Dry meat versus wet? Any clues you can get about what work well for his tummy would be good to know. With IBD, a little bulk can help wth digestion since the colon tends to lose some elasticity. If Apple i still having a bit of truble, we may want to try a few things that my help him ut.just let me know.
I can't tell if the ProZymes is doing anything. I've been putting that on his NV only, because it breaks down the meat, I don't know how long it will take them to eat the raw, so not until they are more efficient with that, then I will start putting that on their raw foods.
Apple's poops are always seedy, and yesterday they were greenish. I haven't started giving the yogurt yet, but I guess I should jump on that. They still smell bad, but his litter box no longer reeks because I stuck the baking soda in the bottom and thats really helped with the smell. My litter is switching soon as well, so that should help too.
I gave pumpkin yesterday because I noticed some blue fibers all over my carpet, then I saw a foot insole that used to have the blue fibers in it. So I think they found that and ripped it up and I was worried they had eaten some of it. Apple pooped out a bunch and it was mostly greenish and seedy, and Kiwi pooped nothing interesting.
Yesterday I didn't feed any raw. Its been a rough 2 days. Soon to be posting something in Odds & Ends maybe about it. But its been a depressing start to September and I'm just slowly working through it.
Today I will feed pork again. Can I do anything with the pork should bones? Maybe give it to them to chew the meat off even if they can't actually eat it? I know its too big for them eat.
Post by Forum Administrator on Sept 4, 2008 14:42:52 GMT -5
What about RodentPro, Chris? They are a great company and they often make trips to reptile shows in Ohio. In fact, I have a feeling that if you put Apple onto mostly whole prey (with supplemental raw) that you could do really well with his tummy issues. Since rodentpro is near you if you picked up your order (instead of having it shipped) you could save a fourtune on shipping!
Oh, and I'd avoid the pork should bones. Too dense. even if they TRY to chew on them they *could* break a tooth, depending on how aggressivly they chewed.
Post by mustelidmusk on Sept 4, 2008 19:19:41 GMT -5
I recommend sticking with bones from chicken and rabbit rather than bones fofrm larger animals. The reason for this is that the more wight a bone carries, the more dense the bone tissue becomes. As a result, larger animals have harder bones than small animals. Since ferret teeth are not designed to eat bone from larger animals, the risk of breaking a tooth on harder bone is is not worth the treat...one of my boys broken a tooth chewing on the carrier carrier door when I was bringing him home for the first time .
One of the thigs that might make help Apple's digestion is some finely ground egg shell or some montmorillonite clay. you may be able to alternate egg shell with clay, and possibly some other bulk foods as well. Slippery elm bark is also supposed to be effective for IBD since it has antiinflammatory properties. It has been used on ferrets before as well.
I'll see if I can find some info on these options.
Yeah I threw away the pork shoulder bones, but now I know why!
I don't think I can do whole prey. This may sound lame, but right now I am less interested in feeding a whole prey/live diet because of my breakup. He was almost as excited as I was at the thought of them eating whole prey and live. So right now, I really don't think I could. That and I don't have the freezer space.
Maybe I could do some ground rabbit from Hare Today, but I'm going to put that off for now, I need to buy the Ziwipeak asap. And then I could always split an order with someone anyway for that.
Apple is eating the raw rabbit well. He eats the bones pretty good too, I think he prefers the freeze dried meats, but I need to keep those around for next weekend when I won't be here! Right now I am feeding pork shoulder raw pieces and raw rabbit chunks. I need to go to the store for another type of meat, perhaps I will do that today.
I do feed egg shells, I crushed them up best I could, but its not finely ground shell. I'm also feeding the crushed Taurine for them too. I think its going really good so far.
I don't think I can do whole prey. This may sound lame, but right now I am less interested in feeding a whole prey/live diet because of my breakup. He was almost as excited as I was at the thought of them eating whole prey and live. So right now, I really don't think I could. That and I don't have the freezer space..
*Takes a deep breath* oh boy......this is the part where I have to say something that might not make you like me very much, but I hope you can see that I do care very much for apple (and you). I can hope that you don't take this the "wrong" way, but I have no way of knowing for sure. All I can do is say what I need to say, and hope you understand:
Chris, going through a breakup when you have been dating the person for years is ALWAYS a difficult thing, whether you are the dumper, or the dumpee. The fact of the matter is that your whole world is turned upside down. Friends you used to share, places you used to go together, and the like suddenly dissappear and all of a sudden nothing is like it was.
During the initial phases of the break up its understandable to try and avoid any and all things that remind you of your ex (again, whether you were the dumper or the dumpee). When avoiding things that remind you of your ex doesnt affect the well being of anyone else, this is fine (and understandable).
However, apple has a hard time digesting his food. He needs YOU as his mommy to be strong for him. You have tried other foods and unfourtunately despite our best recommendations and efforts none have given the desired result. Whole prey really does seem like his best shot at getting towards normal digestive function. He doesnt understand what happened with you and your ex, he just sees you upset. I am SURE that he can pick up on that stress and sadness, and regardless of what others might say I am SURE that it affects him. The little guy has no way of knowing why his mommy, his world, is so blue. This in turn causes stress, which can lead to digestive stress (on top of the digestive difficulties he has now). I say this not to make you feel bad for being upset, but to show you that because you are apple's everything, you need (his sake) to get past the pain of feeding whole prey because it reminds you of your ex). Maybe not right now!, but eventually.
You are NOT a bad person for having an aversion to feeding prey because it makes you sad, you are not a bad ferrant either. You LOVE apple and kiwi so very much, that is very, very clear. The reason I am telling you in as nice a way as possible "please, eventually "suck it up" and get apple the food he needs to feel better" is because it would be a GRAVE diservice to you to stand by and say nothing because I worried about hurting your feelings. One day you might realize "geez I let my sadness affect apple's well being. Why didn't someone kick me in the ass and say something?" I dont want you to look back and wonder why no one said anything.
I have a freezer that is smaller then a regular sized freezer. My fridge/freezer arent a mini-fridge, but they arent full sized either. I just purchased a rather large order of prey through rodentpro and I managed to make it (and the little bits of human frozen food) fit. Because you can go to local reptile shows that rodentpro regularly attends, you can (literally) afford to buy less product as a time, since you will not need to pay shipping. Its always best to PRE-ORDER the prey BEFORE you go to pick it up.
Now, Chris, I am so very sorry about your breakup. Truth be told I broke up with my ex of 3 years, 3 months back in July 2007. This was the b/f thatIdated in high school, the bf that I dated as I went off to college over 1,000 miles away from home (and he came along), the b/f that I got my first ferret with, the b/f that was my first b/f, my first kiss, my first breakup, my first everything. Now I did the breaking-up but believe me, it wasnt easy and I cried for a while afterwards. When we broke up he got the ferrets. After that I couldnt even LOOK at a ferret without bursting into tears. At the time when I met my current b/f of over a year (Tim) he saw my word documents that were the very beginning of the HF site. "What is that?" he asked me. "Oh that is the beginning of a website for how to care for your ferrets naturally. *then I went on to talk all about ferret diet, how kibble can hurt ferrets, etc*" "What the hell are you sitting around here for?" Tim asked "Why the heck arent you working on this article!" I told him that losing my ferrets to my ex made it hard to even think about ferrets. and that was when Tim told me something that changed my life:
"Giuli, there are people (and ferrets) that are counting on you. Counting on you to make their lives better. To make their lives free of disease, to make their lives free of painful rotting teeth and bleeding gums (from the starch and structure of kibble), counting on you to make their lives free of prednisone shots around the clock for insulinoma, to make their lives free of painful IBD because they cant digest the artifical food that they are being fed. YOU have a responsibility, and no amount of sadness or pain excuses you from that responsibility."
When he first told me this I was VERY upset. He made me feel like a bad person! I wasnt a bad person, I was just sad! I didnt talk to him for a few days after that I was SO upset. But then I realized, I am NOT a bad person, I am simply human. A human that is sad, and a human that is trying to protect myself from painful memories, but Tim was right. Being sad was not bad, but not doing what I need to do for others because I was scared or sad just wasnt right. I had a chance to make a difference in peoples lives, to make myself fell happy and better, but I was choosing to feel sad and keep others from living happy lives as well. The next day I sat down and started working on my HF website, and I am still doing it everyday over a year later. Were there times where I had to stop because I was REALLY sad about losing my ferrets to my ex? You bet, but I remembered what tim said to me and I kept going.
I tell you this story because I really want you to see that I am not trying to attack or criticize you. Tim and I had just started dating when he said those powerful words to me. He knew that by saying that I could have very well broken up with him. But he knew it was the RIGHT thing to say. It is the same with you. I know this might hurt your feelings, but its the right thing to say. You have the power to make all the difference in apple's life. To make it so that he can eat his food and go potty without having trouble digesting. You can be apples hero. But it wont be easy and you might have to wait a couple of weeks before you feel ready (to let the pain calm down a bit) and that's okay! But please Chris, please get apple his prey once you've had a little time to reflect on your breakup and begin to heal. By doing so you will be giving a little ferret a new lease on life, and I can tell you from experience from helping dozens of ferrets get onto better diet.......there is no better feeling in the world, then knowing that you are some woozle's hero.
Post by mustelidmusk on Sept 7, 2008 14:49:53 GMT -5
Pear, I'm so sorry you're having to deal with all this stressful stuff right now. Life does get overwhelming at times. And I'm sure Apple and Kiwi know you're very upset right now. Play with your babies and give thm lots of hugs and kisses - they will help you laugh again. Stay active and get exercise...it's the bet way productively manage excessive stress levels.
I can understand not wanting to feed whole prey right now. I know you're strong and will get past all this.
When your're feeding chunks of meat and raw meaty bones, you need to feed some organ meats as well. if our can't find calve's liver or beef heart in the grocery store, you may be able to get some from either a butcher or from an ethnic food store.
Hang tough and hug those fuzzy babies...they're there for you, and they want you to be happy! -jennifer
Post by Forum Administrator on Sept 14, 2008 1:34:27 GMT -5
I wanted to check in with you (and apple). I hope my post above did not upset you, and I hope you can understand what I was trying to say. I'd love to hear how the ferts are doing, and I'm sure Jennifer would too.
Post by mustelidmusk on Sept 14, 2008 12:17:54 GMT -5
Pear is fine with your post....we exchanged a few PM's since I was on my way to the vet's and I emailed her directly to see if she had any IBD-related questions I could ask my vet for her. I think she's visiting family right now and has her kids with her - hence, a break in the posts.
All ferrets are different with IBD and how they react, but there are some common things that seem to "ring true" most of the time, so we're hoping to be able to come up with a "sticky-able" recommendation of some things to try for IBD.
Just so you don't worry.... I took Shaman in for his distemper booster, which went well. he had only been given the baby series, and his titer wasn't very strong. My other kids had been given the baby series plus the 1 year booster, and they all had very strong titers: > 1:2000. Seems like the first year booster is worth the risk. I'll be curious to have the titers checked next year.