A diet without Pellets - your input for my project.

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mattm1

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 5:35 am


Erin, you can use our pigs as your Guinea Pigs, we feed them KM hay, red bell pepper for Vit C, some hay blocks, and one treat a week whic is usaully a nibble ring or two each. Monty the youngest boar has grown like a weed since we got him but is not fat. All six piggies are very healthy, active, and happy. We resued two girls earlier this year who had a pellet only diet, no room to move, either teeth broken off or grown to the back of their their mouth (no vit C), high hair loss, who would not eat hay. Now KM is all they eat and you can't tell that they were ever that bad off.

glade
Even Republicans Give!

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 7:43 am


The only veggie you give them is red pepper?

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gracielee
Me, too!

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 9:36 am


If it's for a 3-page project, my guess is they just want you to be familiar with research design, in which case you could use only 2 pigs, one for the experimental group, one for control.

Primary outcome measure: daily weight gains comparable with the control group

Secondary outcomes: glossy shine of coat (?) length of front teeth at the end of the project (making things up here)

You could write a paragraph on how you're going to supplement for vit c and calcium and such with proper veggie choice.

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mattm1

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 11:29 am


Red Bell Pepper which is the highest in Vit C. They get limited veggies and time on the lawn when it's nice out. 95% of their diet is hay.

ChunkyPiggies

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 12:43 pm


Matt- They need more variety of veggies. Yes red bell peppers are high in veggies but there are also other veggies that are great for them. You need to increase veggies to about 40% of their diet. My pigs are about 60% hay and 40% veggies. I split one head of romaine lettuce among 4 pigs EACH MEAL (2 meals in a day so 2 heads total per day) plus one red bell pepper a day and some added misc, usually parsley, dan. greens or cilantros. Then some watermelon peels for desert. If there are no pellets in their diet, you need A LOT of veggies... I have each pig waaaay over the 1-2 cups of veggies a day.

spikes mom

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 1:12 pm


2 heads of romaine A DAY? You must go broke at the food store. Of course my two could eat that much parsley a day.

Nurgle
...what, what, what?

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 1:24 pm


They definitely need more variety; either over time or in each feeding.

I used to make sure they got variety over the week. One day was kale, another was green leaf lettuce, next day green pepper, next day escarole, and so on. The positive of this, is that you know everyone is eating at least some of the day's veggies.

Now, I've been prepping veggies for the week (less trips to the store!) and stuffing quart baggies (to ensure that there are at least four cups of veggies going into each cage, and I smoosh the stuff into the bags since I was never sure if the four cups was a compacted measurement or a loose leaf measurement). I just did this week, and on their plates for this week is a head of escarole, three heads of green leaf lettuce, three bunches of parsley, two bunches of spinach, and some odd carrots thrown in. The green peppers were 89¢ each, so they missed out there this time. My only worry with this system is that some may start to pick-and-choose. I know green peppers (besides being damn expensive) are not a favorite of my group. So if they get thrown in with a mix, they are not eaten until much later in the day, when everyone is in nibble phase, and I'm pretty sure there are those who turn up their noses completely.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 2:58 pm


To do it right, you need to make it double blind. Have your mom feed the vegs so you don't know who is getting what.

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Red Blur
Chocolate Giver

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 3:15 pm


Nurgle, I've tried that system of preparing veggies and I find that they spoil really fast. The "juicier" veggies (like tomatoes and cucumbers) get the lettuce and other veggies kinda slimy. Am I not doing something right?

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swannie
For the love of pigs!

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 3:22 pm


Don't add the cucumbers and tomatoes to the bagged mixes. They should be cut just before serving (to pigs and people alike).

At least with tomatoes, you can cheat by buying grape or cherry tomatoes and chucking them in whole when you empty the veggies into bowls. In fact, tomatoes should never be refrigerated, anyway.

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Red Blur
Chocolate Giver

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 3:26 pm


swannie - I have to refrigerate them here or they go bad super fast in the summer. Even with the a/c on they seem to just turn into mush in a day or so. I have a hard enough time finding ripe tomatoes that aren't already soft in the store.

My pigs seem to ignore tomatoes unless they are sliced open. They never eat cherry tomatoes for me. Maybe they don't like being squirted by the tomato? ;) I suppose I could slice the cherry tomatoes but they're pretty expensive and I never seem to be able to use a whole container.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 5:17 pm


Personally I think regular tomatoes taste better. Agree about the pigs not always knowing what to do with whole grapes and tomatoes but they eventually learn.

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Red Blur
Chocolate Giver

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 5:22 pm


I think they just don't like cherry tomatoes because they have no trouble with whole grapes, blueberries, etc. and they don't get those things very often. They go nuts over them when they do. Local grocery store had pint containers of blueberries on sale for $1 ea. Pigs got really spoiled and are going to miss their precious blueberries. My cereal bowl will miss them too.

Nurgle
...what, what, what?

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 6:51 pm


No, I don't put those in. Just leafy greens get this pre-prep. My pigs don't go for tomatoes anyhow, so that isn't a problem, and green peppers don't seem to cause a problem.

I tend to just feed a huge variety of leafy greens anyhow; one vet once upon a time told me to feed what they would be able to get if they just wandered into your garden (barring poisonous stuff, obviously). That this would be what is most natural. So grass, leaves, and so on. Just because they love the carrots and so on doesn't mean that it is good for them! And so far, even though that advice is nearly ten years old, I haven't seen anything to contradict it.

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swannie
For the love of pigs!

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 9:49 pm


Red Blur, you can freeze the blueberries and thaw them throughout the year. They hold up really well when frozen. Spread a single (unwashed) layer of berries on a rimmed baking sheet, and pop in the freezer overnight. Then transfer them to freezer bags, pressing out ALL the air. Return to freezer, and thaw as needed.

critterluv02

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 10:13 pm


Mmmm...frozen blueberries. That is one of our favorite treats around here. Bryce and I eat them as cool summer snacks. We add them to the dogs breakfast, etc. Love 'em.

This may already be well known, but I just wanted to add that when we were free feeding Oxbow pellets, our piggies were balooning up and just getting very fat. Now that I use the recommended amount by Oxbow (1/8 cup per pig, per day), they have all been maintaining their weights very well. It was hard to cut down to that small amount of pellets, but it really seems to work well for us here. I could never prepare enough veggies to satisfy all the piggies in the shelter each day.

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LER

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 10:21 pm


Why do you not wash the blueberries before freezing? I know nothing about food storage and prep.

critterluv, yes, I have stopped freefeeding as well and just giving the recommended amount as well. I think this is a good way to go, to to be pellet free. I wonder if it would cost less overall to feed with no pellets? Probably not enough to make this a factor, I suspect!

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swannie
For the love of pigs!

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 10:51 pm


They tend to go sort of nasty (freezer burn, mushy when thawed) if there's any residual moisture on them. I guess you could wash them if you dried them really, really, really well.

We pick our blueberries from an organic farm each summer and have loads and loads in the freezer to last all year. My mom got one of those foodsaver sealers since she's started buying meat in bulk and freezing it (now that there are 6 adults in the house to feed), so she used it for the berries, too. Works a treat.

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LER

Post   » Wed Aug 04, 2004 10:54 pm


Thanks Swannie! I wish I could get access to organic berries! We do have the $1 containers in stores right now, and I love blueberries, as do the animals in the house, so I may try to freeze some. I think I will try washing and drying first, because I know I won't wash them after they are frosen before eating/serving! Thanks for the tip - if I try this, I will be sure to let them dry thoroughly before freezing!

critterluv02

Post   » Thu Aug 05, 2004 12:22 am


The crazy thing that always facinates me is that when you suck the skin off the frozen blueberry, the inside is very bright green.

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