Need help understanding calcium phosphorous ratio

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lilythepig2017

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 9:30 am


Hello

So I’ve read in several places, including this site, about its not calcium that’s the problem per se but the calcium/ phosphorous ratio of the foods they eat and the *type* of calcium can be an issue. I think that alfalfa, for example, is very easily absorbed and this isn’t good. And that the calcium to phosphorous ratio should be 1.5:1 or 2:1.

Example of articles I read:

https://www.guinealynx.info/polycitra.html

https://www.guinealynx.info/stones_diet.html

Questions
1) Does this mean that if I feed her something with calcium, to make sure the phosphorous is half the amount of calcium?

2) does less phosphorous mean less calcium gets absorbed? What does keeping to this ratio do biologically?

Thanks so much and sorry for such a complex question! :P

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 12:06 pm


It is the kind of thing that one aims at an "average".

If your guinea pig has medical issues with calcium and stones, go for overall lower calcium and note the ratio.

Read this over too:
https://www.guinealynx.info/stones_questions.html

lilythepig2017

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 2:07 pm


Thank you for that link it was quite interesting.

My question is, when I see veggie charts on this website for example it will say (first # is calcium)

Collard greens 14.5:1
Basil 3.2:1
Watercress 2:1

So I’m going to assume the higher the calcium # the worse it is? With that in mind Basil looks not “too” bad and watercress, despite being the highest in calcium has a good ratio so it will be on to feed then a few times a week? So as long as ration good is it safe to feed every day basically? Am I on the right path here?
Thanks!

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 3:24 pm


Not exactly. Collard greens are highest in calcium ratio by a huge amount -- 14.5 to 1.

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 3:28 pm


There is a very cool clickable feature to sort on each column. I have also color coded things so you can see visually how they compare. Click the top description of the column and see what I mean.

lilythepig2017

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 4:07 pm


Sorry if I wasn’t clear. What I meant is collard greens are bad as they are 14.5:1 but as long as ratio is good (I.e 1.5:1 or 2:1) then it’s ok daily?
Therefore despite watercress being high in calcium it’s ratio is good so therefore it’s ok to serve daily?
Thanks and sorry for confusion :D

bpatters
And got the T-shirt

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 4:51 pm


No, high calcium veggies shouldn't be served daily, no matter what the ratio. If they're high in calcium, they should be restricted.

lilythepig2017

Post   » Wed Jan 10, 2018 5:08 pm


Ok. That’s good to know.

Ok. So if we are going to serve high calcium but GOOD ratio veggies still give only a couple time a week then.

lilythepig2017

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:35 am


Ok so I found this article from 8 years ago another pig forum. Does this sound like it rings true?

They said high calcium veggies can be served daily *but* the ratio has to be there.

https://www.theguineapigforum.co.uk/threads/calcium-phosphor ... ggies.30297/

The example they gave

Carrot - 0.9:1
Cucumber - 0.7:1
Kale - 2.4:1
Broccoli - 0.7:1 (don’t serve if pig gets gassy)
Apple - 1.0:1

Add all the calcium numbers up (0.9 + 0.7 + 2.4 etc) and all the phosphorus (1 + 1 + 1 etc.).
The total for the above diet is 5.7:5.

Now divide by five - the number of different foods given.
5.7 divided by 5 = 1.14.

The Ca: P ratio for the above diet is 1.14:1.

So does this still hold true almost a decade on a logical way to do it?

Thanks so much!

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 12:05 pm


Keep in mind that you can't just add up the numbers. You would actually have to look at the entire diet and calculate by weight (amount eaten) the calcium and phosphorus.

It is hard to do things precisely. I think of the numbers as "guidelines" to a good diet.
www.guinealynx.info/fave.html

lilythepig2017

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:47 pm


So if I just add them up and try to stay good with this ratio (using as a guideline) and feed her oxbow pellets weekly + some foraging is that decent then? I know it can’t be too perfect but hopefully good enough :)

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:17 pm


Make sure you are giving the timothy pellets instead of the alfalfa ones. For a normal guinea pig, that should be fine. If stones develop, you might need to pay even closer attention. Some people with stones pigs do not feed pellets at all.

lilythepig2017

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:59 pm


If she starts to eat lots of veggies and her hay and fresh grass / flowers etc can I skip the pellets? If I skip them, does she get a lot more veggies?

Thanks for your advice

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Lynx
RESIST

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:22 pm


I don't have good answers for you. It is hard to come up with a pellet less diet but some people whose guinea pigs have issues with calcium do their best.

lilythepig2017

Post   » Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:40 pm


That’s ok :) thanks for all your help though! So appreciated

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