One thing that caught my eye was Lynx mentioning discussions regarding an acidifying diet for Ca-based stones. Is there a thread on this as I would be interested to read it? I have had a look around, but can't find anything - I would be really interested to read it or find out more about this diet.
Does/has your pig had stones? You might want to start him/her on polycitra (not sure of the UK name, sorry!) and make sure he/she's on a diet with a proper Ca:Ph ratio.
Proper hydration also is really important.
None of my pigs have stones or sludge at the moment (touch wood), but I have lost a pig in the past due to stones. She did have surgery to remove them & her diet was modified accordingly, but her last x-ray showed them in her bladder, urethra & kidneys, so we decided it was unfair to put her through anymore. I am now paranoid about stones occuring again in my pigs, so now feed them on a pellet-free diet - loads of grass, hay & veggies carefully selected using your excellent CA:Ph ratio chart.
I must say they have never been so healthy - my five year olds ( I have three) are like spring chickens & have had no health problems since I cut out pellets a year ago. Hopefully I'm not tempting fate by saying this.
I'm knocking wood for you here that your pigs continue to do well. I tried taking out pellets a while back, but my senior started losing weight. I might try it again this summer, and supplement her if her weight goes down again.
Our Oxbow Timmothy pellets, though, are pretty carefully formulated in terms of Ca:Ph ratio. Don't know about the pellets you have there. (Gerty or something like that?)
I'm also a real believer in a Ca:Ph diet for these guys. I think it's had a lot to do with eliminating the sludge from my pig. (Knocking wood for myself now!)
Continued good health to your herd!
Crannberries are good, but not because they acidify the urine (which makes for an unfriendly environment for bacteria). Here's a snippet from the following site:
"In this study, however, urine did not become more acidic, which lends credence to another theory that something in cranberry juice prevents bacteria from sticking to interior tissues of the bladder, making them easy to flush out and unable to multiply," Dr. Avorn explains.
In the article (and a few other articles), they make it clear that crannberries are preventivtive, not curative. They won't help an infection that's already started.
- Cavies 'n Cobwebs
The effect of cranberry juice was more pronounced in converting urine samples out of a state of bacteria with pyuria as compared with preventing the conversion of non-infected urine samples to infection.
Still no positive proof it's curative, but if I had pigs prone to UTI's I'd certainly give it a shot along with the AB's.
My pigs have never liked drinking cranberry juice. Since it needs to be changed out daily, I gave up. They get fresh cranberries when they're readily available in the stores. Blueberry juice, however, they adore.
In the meantime, cranberries and cranberry juice all around!
And now my rat has been diagnosed with a kidney stone of some sort (vet says it's a soft stone as it did not show up on xray). He again suggested vitamin C supplements.
Argh - my brain hurts LOL
- Little Jo Wheek
There are multiple types of Ca-based stones and different treatments/causes. That's why we recommend getting them analyzed. You're just guessing otherwise. I remember Sharlene telling me a few years back she had a rash of struvite stones in several of her pigs. You just never know until they're analyzed. Totally different treatments from any Ca-based stone. The research in this area is so new and lacking.
- Cavies 'n Cobwebs
Hooray for blueberries too!Studies in recent years have shown that cranberry juice inhibits adherence of E. coli cells to cells lining the bladder. Two different constituents have been implicated, one being fructose and the other a large polymeric compound of unknown structure. Fructose is present in all fruits, but the large polymeric compound is found only in cranberry and blueberry juices.
Nancy, I'd say you're doing more good by giving the cranberries.