Post by trippyferret on Feb 18, 2011 18:20:07 GMT -5
The chicken chunks went over great with Salem. Just topped with a bit of salmon oil and she was game! Gwen gave me more trouble, I had to finger-feed her. Once they are eating the chunks by themselves no problem, should I take them off the soups and start only giving chunks, but gradually increase the size over time?
Generally, as you increase chunks you thicken the soup/lessen it until they're on solids. That's one way. OR, you *can* take them off soup and just give them the chunks and see how they do. They might go along with the change with minimal fuss.
Post by trippyferret on Feb 19, 2011 22:24:44 GMT -5
Ok, I thought about it, and I realized, I REALLY don't want to cut up entire meals of those tiny chunks. It would take me hours. So what I did was I increased the chunks in the soup. Put a whole gizzard's worth in. They ate it all and did great. Also I asked this in a previous post but I guess you might not have seen it, what can I do to get Bomber and Evie to eat whole pieces of meat? Meaning whole chicken wings, pork tails, etc. I have to cut everything into chunks, except the cornish game hen- they will eat that whole. I don't mind it but it is kinda time consuming and some days I wish I could just throw em a wing or a thigh and they'd just eat it!
I did miss that, I'm sorry! For Evie and Bomber - with chicken wings you can make slits in the wings themselves. Long enough that it separates the long bone within the wing portion, and you can make slits in the edges of the wing, as well, to give them a place to grip. With the drum part, I often "flower" the meat away from the bone, but leave it attached at the base. After that, I'd just leave it with them until they got hungry enough to eat it.
With the tails, I don't know how big they are, but you might do the same thing - just cut slits or places for their teeth to grab, and leave it with them. But that's the key, leave EVERYTHING whole (no chunking). They're advanced enough to be able to handle it with a bit of help from you, but not completely reliant on you dicing and chopping
Post by trippyferret on Feb 22, 2011 10:51:02 GMT -5
Ok, thank you, I will try it and see how they do! I wager if I don't chop it up they're going to have to get the message eventually and start eating it whole. The big kiddos are having meeces for dinner tonight! I think they'll appreciate something a bit different from the norm.
Post by trippyferret on Feb 23, 2011 15:49:42 GMT -5
They enjoyed their meeces last night, especially Bomber. Bomber LOVES mice, probably because he used to eat them every day when he was at Julie's. I wish I could give them more often but they're so expensive! I got 6 little mice for $15 yesterday... and they were so small! From now on I'll just buy the live ones, they're bigger and the ferrets love the hunt anyway. I found a great little grocery store today that has all kinds of weird meats! I picked up some pork kidneys and chicken backs. Was pretty happy about that, as organs other than livers are real hard to find around here. They also said they may be able to get me some beef heart on Monday. I'm tired of buying a ton of gizzards and then only getting a few hearts. I've had to throw out a bunch of them because I just don't have the freezer space. I made Gwen and Salem's soup thicker. They aren't eating it as well, but we're getting there. They will not eat chunks again in the thicker soup, so I guess I have to start over with that again. lol.
Post by trippyferret on Feb 25, 2011 10:23:57 GMT -5
Ok so today is the second day I offered food without all the chopping. They ate some of their chicken wing yesterday morning, but it didn't seem like much. Then I gave them pork tail for dinner and it kinda looked like they ate some, but didn't even make it to the bone. Now they're having chicken thigh this morning, Evie ate a little but Bomber has not gone for it yet. It's aggravating, but I'm hoping my persistence to eat whole meats is paying off. I've got Salem and Gwen back on the chunks in their soupies now and the soup is just about as thick as it can get so I'm going to try working them up again to bigger chunks. They are eating the thicker soup now no problem. The chunks I gave this morning were about twice the size of my fingernail, so that wasn't bad! But every time Gwen gets a chunk in her mouth, she runs off to a corner of the room and will either eat it or spit it out.
Post by trippyferret on Feb 25, 2011 14:59:44 GMT -5
I'm about at my wits end here with the heart situation. I bought two packs of gizzards today. One had two hearts in it, the other pack had none. WTF. I'm seriously considering buying pork heart from Hare Today instead. The shipping is awful but I have all these freaking gizzards and not much to do with them! I just feel like I'm spending all this money on meat they don't eat that much. Is there something besides heart that has a lot of taurine in it that I could feed them?
Hare-Today can get pricey - especially if you're order is small. I'll order over 40 lbs/food at a time, and the shipping is pretty reasonable, then Also, if you go that route, you could get a bit of variety of heart (always good). I currently give my guys the pork, beef, turkey and duck hearts (they love it all ).
I'm so sorry about the bone-stubbornness! Ferts can get lazy (it's my good luck that my guys LOVE bone, ha), but they also don't like hunger pains, and I think if you persevere, you'll get them to eat bone. You can even bash it up a bit and cut large slits into it, and see if that combo sparks more interest (and maybe be less intensive than chopping?)
As for the soupies - good work! For a few meals, you can try giving less of the soup, maybe, and more of the chunks in it, that way she *might* try eating a few more chunks than the paste.
Post by trippyferret on Feb 25, 2011 19:24:18 GMT -5
I figure if I go that route I'll probably order some mice or rabbit along with it. $15 for 6 little mice at the pet store was just insane to me(4 of them were one meal!). I was going to get the pork heart, it's cheaper than the other hearts. Maybe I will get lucky and the butcher will have some beef hearts on Monday. They weren't entirely sure if they could get them, but I'm hoping. I can ship 23 pounds for $20, and that's plenty of meals of hearts and mice for these guys to last a while, so it's not too bad. I tried bashing up a chicken wing once, didn't go well. Just couldn't get a good grip on the meat! Got a tip for that? lol!
Post by trippyferret on Feb 27, 2011 10:45:21 GMT -5
They are still not eating it whole and it's really stressing me out. Eve will take a few nibbles, but I haven't seen Bomber touch anything in three days(except for the pork chunks). They haven't lost any weight that I can tell, but it's really bothering me they aren't eating it. This morning I found their whole chicken back from dinner last night buried under the bedding, with only a few tiny bites taken from it. Then this morning I offer them pork kidney cut into chunks, and this is a completely new food to them. Evie ate a little but Bomber has been just running around stashing them. I'm hoping they will eat them later. I moved up the chunk size in Salem and Gwen's soupies and now their soup consists of about half chunks. They did really well on it. So at least that is working!
How about giving them CGH pieces? They really seemed to do well on those.
Also, have they (Evie and Bomber) been eating the soup along with the other two? They're eating, no way they're not, so it's not fun for you OR them, and we need to get them back on track (and we will), but your babies are okay.
I've never given my guys whole chicken back, but if it's a WHOLE thing, that seems rather large for only two "raw" eaters (since the other girlies still mainly eat soup). Not that it's a bad thing, just more *will* go to waste since they won't be able to finish it.
But first, let's rewind: over the past three days what have Evie and Bomber gotten to eat (all meals and relative size) *and* have they had opportunity to eat anything else (treats, soups, etc)?