- Red Blur
- Chocolate Giver
I think Chary is talking about pigs who are so ill that they are still losing weight even though they are being handfed Critical Care.
the Critical Care wasn't doing the trick.
some people I think might be willing to try the unorthodox when they have a dying pig on their hands.
They told me that their regular hand feeding regimen included adding Ensure to the Critical Care for extra calories if an anorexic pig is unable to put on weight because of recovery from illness.
I checked this idea out with my vet and he liked the idea as well. Wither is actually getting 1/2 pellet mash and 1/2 Critical Care to stave off bloat, flavored with a bit of fruit baby food and some Ensure.
- Me, too!
I would be worried about iron levels, too. And fat. All those formulas are fairly high in fat and simple carb content. I would be worried about GI problems.
- Little Jo Wheek
If you really want to feed that junk food (the Ensure), you would be better off concocting your own from sugar, corn syrup, and various oils. Probably less chance of overdosing on something and you avoid unnecessary additives. I still am not convinced feeding high sugars is good for any animal. Sure, it might put weight on them, but not the healthy way. Oils are a better way, certainly. I don't think there is a consensus on a high calorie herbivore supplement. There isn't one commercially available. Feed more Critical Care. That's what all the exotics people around here feed. The typical herbivore diet is lower in calorie-dense materials.
I wish I had a good answer, but I think adding the Ensure is akin to feeding baby food. It's too full of extra stuff and not made for them to process properly.
"Feed more Critical Care" isn't appropriate advice, however, for someone who has been hand feeding a sick pig every 4 hours for the past 6 weeks. Perhaps sometimes Critical Care isn't enough.
I wonder if someone would care to theorize a homemade recipe for adding calories to a hand-fed diet?
- Little Jo Wheek
I understand your frustration. Have you tried grains, such as oats also? Oatmeal is a decent additive as well as barley and other higher quality grains. I have on occasion ground up a prepared 5-grain cereal to add to the critical care. I think the one I use has flax seed, oats, wheat (which I would rather omit, though), rye, barley, and triticale. I grind it in the blender to almost powder for adding to critical care. If the pig is eating, it is best to let them eat it whole (the way it comes, rolled is fine, precooked/instant is not). I prefer to feed more of a variety rather than one thing in particular. The likelihood of overdosing would be less that way, but dosing is empiracal in any case. Care must be taken with any high calorie supplement since diarrhea, gastritis, or GI problems can all result. Perhaps someone should bug Oxbow to get something on the market for a high calorie supplement for herbivores?
Also, there are some baby foods which have oatmeal and no preservatives -- peaches and oatmeal, I think, and bananas and oatmeal. What about those as additives?
- Little Jo Wheek
As long as they don't have extra sweeteners and other junk in them, I suppose those baby foods would be fine. There are different kinds of fiber, but in essence most fiber is good fiber. I don't see why grains would be contraindicated if the pig was having trouble defecating. Perhaps adding the extra fruit or canned pumpkin would help move things through? Usually the fiber from grains also helps motility. I'm not sure of the degrees of stool softening, though. Fiber is not only good for cases of diarrhea, but for GI tract slowing. It is dual purpose which sometimes seems contradictory since it does have opposing functions.
Flax oil is being sung as the heal-all right now. It's ratio of Omega 3s and 6s is supposedly the best for overall wellness, skin and coat health, and animals with pain (inhibits prostaglandin release).
- ...what, what, what?
Baby food companies got lambasted a number of years ago for selling things that weren't straight.
Here are the ingredients:
FLAX SEED, BLACKSTRAP MOLASSES, RICE BRAN, PRIMARY DRIED YEAST, SUNFLOWER SEED, DEHYDRATED ALFALFA, DRIED CARROT, SPROUTED GREEN BARLEY, DRIED KELP, LECITHIN, GARLIC AND YUCCA SCHIDIGERA EXTRACT.
The vegetarian formula is at the bottom here: http://www.designinghealth.com/products/canine_products_main.html
But I can't find a complete nutritional analysis.
Would this be a good additive for critical care? Or not?