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Thread: Oats in Pellets

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Oats in Pellets

    On another thread, a discussion came up about ingredients in pellets. Within the last year, I switched from Oxbow to KM pellets after someone mentioned there might be a link between Oxbow pellets and sludge. I have one that had occasional sludge and still does, even after switching pellets. She's a rehomed guinea pig so it could be from her previous diet, I'm not sure. It's not gritty, so I'm not overly concerned. I've continued buying the KM pellets, though, because my guinea pigs really like them. It wasn't until I compared ingredients between a few different brands of pellets that I realized KM's second ingredient is oats. Oxbow doesn't have any oats in their pellets. I figure that might be what makes them so tasty. But, from what I've read, oats are high in potassium and are fattening. Does that pose any health risk to the guinea pigs? My vet had told me that I could feed whole oats as a treat once in awhile but I thought I read on a thread somewhere that oats should not be fed and oat hay only as a treat. Are oats really that bad for them?
    Last edited by pinky; 04-30-12 at 03:35 pm. Reason: spelling

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    Pigaholic Extraordinaire Paula's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    No, they aren't. Oats are a binding agent and much preferred to some other alternatives. I'd be a lot less concerned about the oats in KMs formula than the calcium carbonate in Oxbow's, honestly.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    Quote Originally Posted by Paula View Post
    No, they aren't. Oats are a binding agent and much preferred to some other alternatives. I'd be a lot less concerned about the oats in KMs formula than the calcium carbonate in Oxbow's, honestly.
    So, are oats safe to offer them as a treat once in awhile? I knew about the calcium carbonate and that's why I switched. As far as taste, my guinea pigs will head for the KM pellets before they eat their veggies, that's how much they like them. They must be very tasty and maybe it's the oats that taste so good.

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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    I'd love to know how the KMS lady decided to formulate her pellets. There's probably a thread on Guinea Lynx, but I'm not finding it.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    Quote Originally Posted by Paula View Post
    No, they aren't. Oats are a binding agent and much preferred to some other alternatives. I'd be a lot less concerned about the oats in KMs formula than the calcium carbonate in Oxbow's, honestly.
    I checked Oxbow ingredients and there isn't any calcium carbonate in it. Do you mean cobalt carbonate (vitamin B12?) Oxbow has calcium iodate and d-Calcium Pantothenate which KM pellets also contain.

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    Pigaholic Extraordinaire Paula's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    Quote Originally Posted by pinky View Post
    So, are oats safe to offer them as a treat once in awhile?
    I sprinkle oats over my pigs' pellets every so often. At first they looked at me like I was a bit crazy but now they love it as a nice treat and will actually toss pellets aside to get to the oats.

    I'd feed in kind of extreme moderation, especially at first, because they can bloat.

    Quote Originally Posted by pinky View Post
    I checked Oxbow ingredients and there isn't any calcium carbonate in it. Do you mean cobalt carbonate (vitamin B12?) Oxbow has calcium iodate and d-Calcium Pantothenate which KM pellets also contain.
    Limestone is calcium carbonate.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    Quote Originally Posted by Paula View Post
    I sprinkle oats over my pigs' pellets every so often. At first they looked at me like I was a bit crazy but now they love it as a nice treat and will actually toss pellets aside to get to the oats.

    I'd feed in kind of extreme moderation, especially at first, because they can bloat.



    Limestone is calcium carbonate.
    That's good to know. I used to give my guinea pigs some oats occasionally and they loved it but I stopped because I thought it was bad for them. Oxbow does contain limestone. From what I've read, limestone isn't bad for you. It's in infant formula, cereal, granola bars and pet food.

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    Pigaholic Extraordinaire Paula's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    No, it's not bad for you, but it is calcium carbonate, which is the composition of something like 98% of all guinea pig stones. There's no point in avoiding feeding your guinea pigs calcium carbonate if you're going to feed them food that contains limestone, because limestone is simply a cheap source of calcium (carbonate) added to pet foods.

    In my experience and after extensive research on the matter, it's a great deal more problematic to be feeding guinea pigs (especially stone-prone guinea pigs) calcium carbonate, whatever the source, than the plant based calcium you'd find in alfalfa hay or vegetables.

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    Cavy Star, Photo Contest Winner pinky's Avatar
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    Re: Oats in Pellets

    Quote Originally Posted by Paula View Post
    No, it's not bad for you, but it is calcium carbonate, which is the composition of something like 98% of all guinea pig stones. There's no point in avoiding feeding your guinea pigs calcium carbonate if you're going to feed them food that contains limestone, because limestone is simply a cheap source of calcium (carbonate) added to pet foods.

    In my experience and after extensive research on the matter, it's a great deal more problematic to be feeding guinea pigs (especially stone-prone guinea pigs) calcium carbonate, whatever the source, than the plant based calcium you'd find in alfalfa hay or vegetables.
    I get it now. Thanks for explaining it to me. I hadn't made the connection. I guess humans need the calcium and don't have the risk factor for the stones that guinea pigs do.

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