Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 13, 2012 0:20:30 GMT -5
well they really like the rabbit babies, those are pretty big the size of a rat maybe without the tail? about adult size a little under. Also most all tore all the meat off, ate some bone too. On our way ! Gonna keep trying mice too. I have furry and non adult mice. I Am giving whole pieces now and their jaws are getting stronger I am sure. Some will stash, but at least its mostly all cleaned and eaten off and left some of bone before they stash. Jaws are getting stronger and no issues pitting in a whole chicken breast. I did hammer it a bit. Added some pumpkin and some organs to it as well. Think Ill chop up the whole pheasant tomorrow.
Last Edit: Apr 13, 2012 0:22:28 GMT -5 by ferretlove67
Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 14, 2012 12:43:17 GMT -5
ok so pheasant tonight. lol. I had a long day.... i chopped up a 3-5 lb rabbit with some chicken liver and turkey hearts and the rabbits. They are eating the smaller bones now, I am not making any soupy. I chop up and serve. raw is working well and think we hit that good. whole-prey a little to go for some, but its a favorite for others. I am so happy. All in all I think I nailed it faster than I thought I would. I use a probiotic if not the goats milk, the pumpkin always and they LOVE it!
Ok, draw up a weeks menu (this is to show you know how to put together a diet), we'll have a look at it, tweak it if it needs to be and then graduate you and your wee ones. Sound good? I"m always available to answer questions as is the whole forum. I think that you've got it all together though, you menu will prove it ciao
Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 15, 2012 5:31:17 GMT -5
sounds like a plan! yay!!! I can't believe I accomplished this! I know its not so easy for others, but it was sooooo worth it and I have learned so very much! Thank you heather. You got an easy one lol, but its amazing. My ferrets won't even take kibble lol. Forget it. I had tried to see if they would out of curiosity and nope, forget that they said, I'm going for the good stuff, so they are completely switched. eating bones, whole-prey and raw! You have been so helpful. I'll get the menu ready tomorrow likely as I will be pulling out several protein sources to make up in advance. My freezer shall dwindle a bit soon. It better! it is already and I made darn sure I used every single portion of that gutted rabbit lol! The only thing I couldn't stomach was the head. is that ok? or is it a no-no or just preference? Ciao right back at ya!
Last Edit: Apr 15, 2012 5:34:20 GMT -5 by ferretlove67
If you can convince yourself to deal with the head that's full of major nutrients (zombies have it right...brains are good ;D ;D) Sounds like a plan. Yes, this was in easy switch but I like them ;D It had more to do with your planning and determination. Things move a lot faster when you are willing to go the extra mile, do your research and use us as support rather than try and get us to come with all the answers. We don't know your little ones and we can make suggestions but the real answers is finding the best fit for your wee ones. No, you came in with the right attitude...it's been really great ciao
Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 15, 2012 17:28:10 GMT -5
LOL not sure why i didnt. I thought to self, am i supposed to scrap this or not and then thought, well maybe since I never asked and its a lil gross lol. I'm working on menu almost done! will have by tonight! awesome Heather, that means a lot. Truly I have adults that are a couple yrs old, and never fed raw. NOT once that I know of, so I thought they'd be the hardest! NOPE it was jacob whom BTW will eat anything he can now. No preference, whereas I have a couple that like the heads and top part of body and scarp the other half lol. Hoarder-style ! I know to check every crevice under every liner in my cages. I do not want to be surprised again You know, once you get in routine, its not bad, even if you have to scruff the soup etc, they do learn that it is good for them. Off to make menu! Thanks so much, I can't even say how helpful this forum is for others that want to switch or even a combo switch, but you have to be in it for the long-haul
Last Edit: Apr 15, 2012 17:28:48 GMT -5 by ferretlove67
Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 15, 2012 18:37:52 GMT -5
OK so not 100% sure what a menu should look like but here is what I am going to submit. If anything is lacking, let me know and I'll note it and change it.
Monday: 1 large adult mouse and 1/2 a chicken breast and half a chicken wing with a good sliver of turkey heart Tue: 1 6 week quail half and ground pheasant whole ( about 2-3 oz) wed: med GP half and half a pheasant breast Thurs: chick treat with rabbit breast and rib bone, sliver of heart and liver Friday: 8 week quail ( about half) and a chicken neck and chicken heart sliver Sat:Chicken thigh smashed bone, pheasant kidney and pheasant liver slivers Sun: Quail whole with no feathers and turkey breast halves and some save rabbit brain
I always feed with a tiny bit of goats milk about 1 tsp poured or mixed in with some pumpkin each time. I put this in the dish on top of what I am feeding. I also feed a probiiotic all natural if no goats milk, but have stuck with goats milk, they like it. . I supplement with taurine as needed and calcium when no bones are there or little calcium would be available through bones. I will add in once a week a natural multivitamin I found on a link here and the tiniest sprinkle so as not to overdose any vitamins they are getting from food. . They also get a lax product 2x per week as preventative. If not olive oil, they get some of the lax that is suggested. Poo is normal most days, there are times it has been formed but soft, never black, seedy or concerning nor any runs. Could have been very fresh. I use a paper pellet litter and use the unscented icelandic salmon oil ( three tiny squirts) 1 x daily. They do clean dishes, seem to love eating a lot, rarely do I have a little left over. I wash all dishes daily and they always have a clean fresh one available before each feeding. I switch up the whole prey and raw from morning to evening. so They may get a mouse and a small amount of some raw and then the rest in evening., Never all at once. Treats are one times a week or rarely two and consist of chicks and baby quail. Sometimes the big treat of rabbit baby.
Last Edit: Apr 15, 2012 18:40:06 GMT -5 by ferretlove67
Your heart amount....would it add up to about 2 or 3 chicken heart sizes a week (I know your supplementing with taurine so I'm not real concerned) just want to know. I'm guessing that you're breaking these meals into 2 meals per day...say morning and evening? What lax product are you using. My concern is that most lax (like vaseline, ferretlax) coat the bowel and create an absorption issue. The pumpkin will help and not create an absorption issue. If you like during a shed, use the lax once a week or every other week, unless you see an issue (huge amounts of fur in stools). You've probably seen some posts of the last couple of weeks where ferrets have run into issues regarding suspected hairballs. Are your guys eating fur from their prey animals? This also works like a lax. When my guys were eating a lot of prey, I didn't need to use lax....now they're not eating a lot of fur so they have to have lax. ciao
Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 16, 2012 2:11:14 GMT -5
i think it was the cat one in the link that has a malt flavor? I can surely cut it out if needed. Yep about right on the heart there. and yes two meals a day ( 8 am and 6-7 ish then I remove dishes about 4 hrs later ( except whole prey that can stay longer).. No vaseline or ferretlax. Sounds like a plan tho! Been using pumpkin for the most part at every meal. They like it. It keeps things consistent. I am plucking feathers (except ground coarse pheasant) and the only fur they have gotten so far are GP and my mice and some younger quail soft feather and chicks. Haven't noticed any fur in stools. Its a shed season now, surprised that there are no issues with as much fur as some can shed.I'll use it only once a week then or every other . Not a biggy at all. Yeah when you add up the hearts, that is what it comes to. I'll supplement here and there with taurine a bit and a light sprinkle at that just to be safe, but when I calculate everything out, it looks good. Good to know on whole prey. My freezer is stocked of both whole prey and raw so they get both most days. I like it that way, sometimes bigger whole prey lets them keep it there longer and the raw I pull after 4or so hours and by then they have licked it clean. It just keeps everything clean for me and them and safe.
Congratulations you've graduated and you're ready to walk this path alone, now. You have the foundation to help you feed your fuzzes in a more natural and healthy manner. Please remember that your learning never stops, and dietary needs change from ferret to ferret (as I'm sure you are more than aware of) and throughout each their lives. I would also like you to be aware that though you now have the capability and the knowledge to create and adjust your little ones diets, you are never alone and that your mentor (you need only pm) is always available to you. The list is also a very good resource and you should always be aware that it's available to answer any questions you may have either about diet or care. It's been great working with you and your enthusiasm for the task at hand was fantastic. Good luck, in a few days either Sherry or I will lock down this thread. If you wish to update your menu do so now as it will be viewed and can be used by yourself and many others at any time as a reference tool. Once it gets locked down you will not be able to post or change it. Congratulations again ciao
Post by ferretlove67 on Apr 22, 2012 1:46:49 GMT -5
Thanks Heather! You have been so amazing! The forum members too! All I did differently was make sure I definitely had those heart and liver amounts correct, which I did. I can "eyeball" it pretty good now ( do not attempt this at all until you have had experience, but once i put it on the scale, yep right on) and found that once I balance it out, I am right on where I should be. I cut out any unnatural lax ( except when clearly needed i.e. a one time thing during shed etc.) and use only pumpkin for that! The goat's milk really was a hit. I think it's excellent in moderation and they love it. As with anything, Variety is key and to make sure it is balanced and appropriate amounts of protein sources. Their favorites are rabbit ( the best raw favorite from reputable sources of course!) , whole GP ( watch the fingers! ;D LOL joking!) and of course chicken ,but will readily eat turkey, mice, pheasant etc. I, at times, won't even find bones whatsoever.
For anyone that sees this, I had a heck of a time, not as bad as some, with Jacob, but in the end, he made a turn around overnight. It was amazing and the rewards of having great health, a great diet, etc. are so profound! Completely worth it, even if it took a person months, I 100% feel it is the #1 way!
p.s. do i get a degree? ;D ;D
P.s.s. Heather was amazing, she says I did really good, I think the ferrets did. Some are a couple years old, it can and will be done with persistence! Having a mentor is completely worth it and almost necessary! You never want to be off on your amounts or too high for that matter. So although I graduated, or my fuzzies did, I think Heather deserves huge kudos!
Last Edit: Apr 22, 2012 1:50:20 GMT -5 by ferretlove67