Yes, you can feed the gruel 4 days a week. On the off days, don't give them any organ meat though because you don't want them to be getting too much. They aren't meant to eat lots of organ and it can give them the runs and over time, too much of certain nutriants and vitamins.
You can remove the kibble now, but watch their dish closely to see how much they are eating. There should be a really noticable dent in what you give them at the end of the day if they are eating it.. If its questionable whether or not its been touched, then they aren't eating enough of it.
When you get other bone in meats, I would suggest getting them to eat the bone in meats whole, not ground or made into gruel. It would be more natural for them to have whole bones, and the bone in the gruel can't clean their teeth or work out their jaw muscles like they need.
This is often the way when we first start switching the little ones. They will eat off the spoon but not on their own. What you can do is sit on the floor and feed them. I start out just sitting there and holding them and feeding them just like I would at the table, during this time I put the bowl closer and closer until the spoon is in the bowl and they're basically eating it on their own. Then, I change it so that they're on the floor but I'm not holding them, I either start once again feeding them (again moving the spoon closer to the bowl until they're eating out of the bowl) or just sit with them allowing them to eat but still being close enough to hand feed if they want it that way. You just keep working the distance until they will eat on their own. I've just dropped in to let you know that your mentor has taken a sabbatical and that I will be assisting you with the switch, either until your mentor returns or you and your furbabies graduate. I will check in with you tomorrow and see how things are going ciao
Post by krazyferrets on Dec 8, 2009 2:22:40 GMT -5
Jago is not doing so well. We have been to the vet 4 times and tested his glucose, each time in the normal range. His xrays were sent to an exotic animal veterinarian for review and today we got him a blood test the ferret GI panel. Not sure whats wrong with my boy, but we hope for the best!
I have not fed him raw because I have been force feeding him and giving him SQ fliuds.
I am not sure about all this raw meat and I think I may be the reason he's ill. I feel SO bad!
I was talking with my mom and asking her about meat and stuff (I've been a vegetarian forever..mom cooked veg. for me!) anyways, I dethawed the meat then refroze it...geez Im an not a very nice person! My mom said I was to NEVER refreeze dethawed meat unless it was cooked.
I have all this GOOD (never been thawed) frozen meat in the freezer and how to I serve it to my ferrets? Its all frozen in chunks..
Since the start of Jago feeling yucky, today has been good..he was in his high hamock (top of the cage), which he had not been in for 2weeks!
Post by krazyferrets on Dec 8, 2009 2:33:43 GMT -5
Sorry I haven't stopped in. Sometime I get "Anti-Internet" and just can't be bothered with logging on. And my Jago has been sick. On top of that my pet skunk who is a senior needs aqua therapy (in the tub for veggies) to keep his ol' legs in working order..which is what I will be doing next it's 2:30am! geez, not enough hours in the day...
Post by krazyferrets on Dec 8, 2009 2:45:58 GMT -5
All the meat I buy is already frozen. For ethical reasons I will not buy grocery store meat as that was the sole reason for me becoming a vegetarian (factory farms). The meat is from local farmers with humane practices and REAL farm fresh goodness for the creatures that go to slaughter. The farmers freeze the meat then bring it to the farmers market and is not available unfrozen.
First....you can refreeze the meat for your guys. So you can thaw it, or partially thaw it, slice it up and then refreeze. I do it all the time. It will not harm them, for that matter it won't harm you either (not meaning you in particular ) it just won't taste as good. I'm sorry that Jago hasn't been doing well. It won't be the meat, unless you got a really bad batch (then they won't eat it either). They're carnivores, what we deal with and how we deal with it has no bearing to them. They require meat. I understand your dilema (I have a couple of vegan friends) but your little fuzzbutts are carnivores and require meat to be healthy. By the way, my vegan friends feed their carnivores a meat diet too and yes they do battle with their beliefs. Take out a pkg of meat, thaw it out, get a really sharp knife or meat scissors and cut it into thin slivers in the manner that you want to feed your guys. If it's still partially frozen it's easier to handle (not so squishy) and you can slice it thinner. Slice it how you want it...then repackage it in the amount that you want to feed. Freeze what you don't need immediately and keep out a small amount that you're going to feed your little ones. Thaw the meat in the fridge as you need it. Let me know if there is anything that I've written that you didn't understand or need clarifying. I will light a healing candle for Jago. I hope that you get some answers soon, but I know how difficult it can be trying to get to the bottom of ferret illnesses. Sometimes, just giving a round of antibiotics helps but it's really just a bandaid. Good luck and keep me posted. ciao
Post by krazyferrets on Dec 12, 2009 0:19:50 GMT -5
Thats a relief that the meat wasn't the problem which I couldn't figure out..but I seem to want to blame something for Jago's illnesses.
I was thawing out the meat then seperating it into baggies for portions which was working great until I was lead to believe that I was doing it wrong (sorry mom <3). Plus Otter has been just fine with all the meat and stuff.
Yes it is a battle with my beliefs but my concern is for my ferrets and their health, which has got me to find an alternative to grocery store meats.
We are thinking Jago may have kidney faliure. Thanks for lighting a healing candle for him <3
Hey, no problems I'm sorry about Jago. You have my sympathies...my Loki is going into kidney failure too, but we're doing the best we can. I know, we really do want to blame something for their illnesses or look and say, if I hadn't done this or if I'd done that. I think it helps us to accept if we can lay blame on something. Unfortunately, we usually lay the blame on ourselves. You can't repair the damage that others have done but you can help them deal with the health issues that result and you can often with assistance make their life much more bearable. With his meds (Loki's become prone to mouth ulcers) we've managed to keep his weight on and he's doing a lot better. He actually ate a little on his own today (other than mice, this was the first time I've seen him go to the dinner bowl since Sept) I was so happy. With our little sickies we look to our little wins Keep me posted ciao
Post by krazyferrets on Dec 14, 2009 0:30:32 GMT -5
What kind of meds are Loki on?
I have another vet appointment on Mon. Jago is doing very poorly, his back legs have become so swollen. His feces is 50% of the time are very tarry I don't think there is much we can do for him and I may be having to make a very sad decision.
Loki is on sulcrate to prevent the antibiotics from making his ulcer worse and to buffer the antibiotics. He's on Zantac to prevent any further bacterial damage to his already weak kidneys and clavamox for his ulcers. Your little Jago needs something that will help remove the toxins from his body. Milk thistle will help support a weakened kidney function but see what your vet wants to do for your little fellow. It sounds to me as though there may be complications. The tarry stools (if he's not eating organ meats or mice at the moment) gives one the implication that there might be some intestinal bleeding of some sort. It may be something simple like an ulcer (Loki was having tarry stools before we got him on antibiotics). According to my vet it's not uncommon for ferrets to develop ulcers when their kidney and liver functions are low, usually caused by the stressors that their bodies are going through. Yes, high protein diets are supposedly hard on the kidneys but this theory came about from kibble eaters, not natural diet eaters. The kibble is very difficult for our furkids to digest and kibble protein requires their bodies to work harder to not only get the proper nutrients but also makes their bodies work harder to flush the toxins. Different meats also have different protein levels. I used to have a chart that showed the different protein levels but I seem to have misplaced it. I will see if I can find it again. Loki seems to be particularly fond of his mice and rats now, and is not so fond of his chicken and quail....it may be just a preferance but I wonder if they're easier to digest. I've noticed a couple of times now, when my guys have been on hospice care that mice seem to be eaten more readily than some of the other proteins, even though they require some real work to eat (I don't grind those little sods ) I will keep Jago's healing candle lit, I hope that you find some sort of solution that both you and Jago can work with. Give him a hug for me. Keep me posted ciao