Non-Pellet Diet

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PiggieMamma
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:29 am


I'd recently read a post in which Pinta mentioned a non-pellet diet.

Does anyone here feed hay and veggies exclusively - and no pellets?

Are there any links/threads I could visit about it? I'd tried searching - but didn't really come up with much.

I think I might like to try it for my two healthy boys.

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:30 am


I've never done it, but I know a few experienced people have done it. And a few who just didn't want to bother with pellets.

Why are you considering it, out of interest?

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PiggieMamma
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:34 am


Why are you considering it, out of interest?
Pinta made a convincing (albeit short) argument - that if a pig fills up on pellets they may not eat their fill of hay, which could, lead to tooth problems.

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rshevin

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:41 am


Well, that's logical but my opinion would be to first try a limited pellet diet. I call this "measured ration" which is different from a restricted diet. I try to have all my animals fed in such a way that they have just a few kibbles left at the end of the day which I throw away and then replace with a given volume. Then I know if someone isn't eating.

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PiggieMamma
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:48 am


rshevin - That's pretty much what we do now, and the boys don't seem to eat many pellets. Probably cause they get so many veggies!

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sus4rabbitsnpigs

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:48 am



Tracis
Let Sleeping Pigs Lie

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:53 am


I think Salana feeds her Suzi a pelletless diet. You could send her an email through the GL mailer.

pinta

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 1:22 am


I think Josephine might have also done it. Because I have a hyperthyroid skinny and a senior with weight loss issues I need to keep giving pellets tho I only give the pellets at night when I can't separate the weight loss pigs out to feed them extra.

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akintolife

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 2:58 am


It's something I've been thinking about doing due to the near impossible task of finding decent pellets here and the much more easily available veggies/grass/hay.

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WEAVER
one pig at a time.

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 7:10 am


My pigs would go on strike with no pellets!

I for one really doubt they are not eatting enough hay because of having pellets. My pigs eat all of the time, non-stop except when they are sleeping. I do ration their pellets, but they get just as excited about the pellets as they do veggies.

If you find that your piggies are not eatting a lot of hay try a different hayrack, or try putting their hay in a pan and just allowing them to forge and play in it.

I can understand not feeding pellets if you have a "problem" pig, but really I just don't get the whole concept of not feeding pellets so they eat more hay. Just my opinion.

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sef1268

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 7:40 am


My guys get a rationed amount of pellets. In the a.m. and then again in the p.m., the "single" pigs each get 1 tablespoon. The pairs get 2 tablespoons. They get their pellets after having very rougly a cup of fresh greens (endive, green and red leaf lettuces, Boston lettuce, and usually a little green pepper or tomato), and they eat the pellets in one sitting. Then they move on to the hay, which they eat throughout the day.

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lisam

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 10:17 am


Some guinea pigs (rabbits too) will not eat hay if there are pellets available. I have several in the rescue, and my own bunny Pippin, who won't touch a piece of hay unless the food dish is empty of pellets.

There are a couple of vets around my area who advocate going pelletless. And although it is not the case with us here (GLers being much more conscientious about feeding) some people come to rely too much on pellets--as long as the pig has pellets they feel they can skimp of hay and/or vegetables and greens.

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Mum
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 10:53 am


I do ration their pellets, but they get just as excited about the pellets as they do veggies.
Mine too!

Unless you had a specific problem I would think it's much easier to feed limited amounts of pellets. I think I would find it pretty hard - and extremely expensive - to work out if my pigs were getting the proper nutritional balance in veggies alone.

And the price of veggies here is through the roof! Just feeding (generously) daily veggies is a big expense here.

Brandilynn
Who's your Branni?

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:13 am


Chunkypiggies also had a pellettless diet for beasts, I think.

milly
Supporting the Bored

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:44 am


I didn't realise pellets were supposed to be rationed. From what age should they be rationed?

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rshevin

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:46 am


I think when you switch them to adult food from alfalfa, maybe between 9 and 12 months?

milly
Supporting the Bored

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:52 am


Ok thanks.

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arnoldthepig

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 11:55 am


FWIW The vet I use has done fine by me and he says either or both will keep the teeth ground down. He also said they won't overeat no matter what you feed them. He also says if they will chew on wood that will help with the teeth but it is not necessary. Mine don't chew on the wood I provide and their teeth are fine according to Dr. Bob. My little family will eat a bale of hay a day and two tablespoons of pellets but I still won't pull the pellets. I suppose that the fact that it is their only source of alfalfa is the main reason but they seem to enjoy sitting in the dish.......lol.

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ellissian

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:19 pm


If pigs dont over eat, how come some are fatter than others?

I have 2 almost adult females who are fed completely the same food. One weighs 830g and the other weighs 1100g.

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PiggieMamma
I GAVE, dammit!

Post   » Tue Mar 06, 2007 12:38 pm


He also said they won't overeat no matter what you feed them. He also says if they will chew on wood that will help with the teeth
Hmm, maybe someone else could comment on whether or not pigs can overeat. Mine will eat and eat until all the veggies are gone - I'd be inclined to think they would overeat.

I've never had a guinea pig chew on wood. If you provide unlimited hay - they usually don't have much use for other things (besides, maybe cardboard). They really aren't chewers in the way the other rodents are. But then, I have a mouse - and have yet to see him chew wood either.

I think maybe I was misunderstood - my pigs eat copious amounts of hay. They have hay racks and hay boxes and toilet paper tubes full of the stuff (Kleenmamas). I'm just trying to be proactive in preventing teeth issues in the future.

I think Mum's right - it'd be awfully hard for me to provide all that they need myself. They do get a variety of veggies twice daily, but it's hard to calculate just how much of a vitamin is present in any given vegetable.

I think I might just further ration their pellets (at least the healthy boys).

Thanks everyone for your comments!

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