Complete diet without supplements?

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Complete diet without supplements?

Post by oowie » Fri Feb 21, 2020 1:02 pm

I am reading the scuttling gourmet atm,and it makes me wonder if it is possible to feed a drymix (scuttling gourmet,made from scratch) with inly fresh veggies and protein insteadvof supplementatuon with DE1/calcivet or DR3.

It makes me think that feeding a certain amount of sesameseeds/dried fish and other things like mentioned in the book would make it possible to provide enough vitd,calcium and copper,when also chickenbones and fresh salmon are fed thus seems doable.
A variety of fresh veggies will also be fed daily.

Is there anybody here who feeds their rats like this,without supplements? How do you do it?
Especially the chicken bones.... Can they be fed cooked?
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Re: Complete diet without supplements?

Post by [cub] » Sat Feb 22, 2020 10:32 am

It's definitely doable, but non-trivial. I remember seeing a post by Neotoma on this forum (or possibly in the previous iteration of this forum) where they described how they feed without supplements, and as I recall, it involved a lot of fresh food. Unfortunately I can't find the post now, so perhaps it's been lost.

My own calculations suggest that it's quite doable for younger healthier rats, but may get tricky for older rats if they have kidney disease, which is unfortunately not uncommon. The best dietary source of calcium is bones, and the best dietary source of vitamin D is oily fish (particularly salmon). Bones however also contain a significant amount of phosphorus, and oily fish contains a significant amount of protein, both of which need to be restricted in rats with kidney disease. So I'd say if you feel like you know what you're doing, and your rats are fit and well, it's certainly something worth trying.

My calculations suggest that a rat needs about 2g of bone and 20g of salmon per week to meet their (alleged!) calcium and vitamin D requirements. This amount of salmon however would also meet the weekly protein requirements of your average adult doe, assuming the rest of the diet is grain-based with few nuts/seeds and no other significant protein sources, so you do have to be a bit careful about the protein content if you feed this way, and it would end up quite a fish-heavy diet.
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Re: Complete diet without supplements?

Post by cyber ratty » Sat Feb 22, 2020 12:48 pm

oowie wrote:
Fri Feb 21, 2020 1:02 pm
Especially the chicken bones.... Can they be fed cooked?
Oh yes, cooked chicken bones are fine for rats, I wouldn't feed raw though - chuck in a drumstick (with or without meat on), or if you've had a roast chicken then the whole carcass can go in if you've a big enough group. :luck:

The other way to avoid supplements as such, is to use a rabbit food as the base for a mix because the little biscuits already have the supplements added to them.

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