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Diet Low calcium diet

snickers33

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Snickers passed away today due to a bladder stone and my husband and I would like to get another pig in the next couple months.

Because of the way he died, I naturally want to avoid the only thing I can control (diet) and make sure its low calcium.

Does anyone else follow a low calcium diet from young pup onward?

I fed Snickers Bermuda hay (allergic to timothy) which is higher in calcium, kaytee pellets, parsley, romaine, carrots, and fruits (orange, blueberry, apple).

I want to switch to KMS pellets and avoid the higher calcium foods.

I want to avoid another stone pig and I have researched the low calcium foods but is this safe for the young pups?

What is the lowest calcium hay?
 

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scoottie

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You can try bluegrass or orchard kms has the best hay and you can get it with the pellets
 

bpatters

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From your former diet, the three things I see that are mostly likely to have contributed to the problem are the Kaytee pellets, the parsley, and the romaine. Romaine is no higher in calcium than the other lettuces, but some pigs excrete excess urinary calcium when eating it, and so should avoid it. I'd also suggest cutting back on the fruit, which should be only an occasional treat.

I wish you good luck with this low calcium diet, and hope it helps. My own experience is mixed. I had two sows, littermates, that were fed the exact same things all their lives. One had recurring stones, and the other never had a problem with them. I also have one friend who has fed her seven year old pig lots of parsley, romaine, and other high calcium foods all his life, and he's never had a single problem. In short, it's a crap shoot when trying to prevent stones.
 

scoottie

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[video=youtube_share;HeJZr1D7sjk]https://youtu.be/HeJZr1D7sjk[/video]
 

Comely Guineas

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Make sure you adopt two pigs rather than just one
 

VBaamonde

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I have a calcium intolerant piggie as well. She would get crystals in her urine almost constantly which would cause irritation and bleeding. I went to every vet under the sun for answers and got none so I took matters into my own hands and limited her calcium as much as possible. So this is what worked for us:

-1/8 cup KMs hayloft pellets (1/16 cup 2x a day)
-green leaf lettuce
-sliver of green pepper
-1 cherry tomato
-1 baby carrot
-1 slice cucumber
-1 blueberry or other tiny piece of fruit

Good luck!
 

sallyvh

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First off, please get 2 guinea pigs. They lead infinitely better lives with a friend.

Second, I have a sow who has ongoing calcium/sludge/stone issues. She had a stone and I switched her diet around and was fine for a little over a year. She had a lot of sludge in November though so she has since been switched off of pellets. Her diet includes:

- demineralized reverse osmosis water
- unlimited Timothy with orchard grass hay
- no pellets (she used to be on 1/8th cup of KMS)

- ~1/2 cup red or green leaf lettuce
- 1/4 of a large green pepper
- 2 cherry tomatoes or a slice of tomato
- 2 half in cucumber slices
- a baby carrot

Sometimes I will give them radicchio, Belgian endive and escarole.
 

snickers33

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Make sure you adopt two pigs rather than just one

Yes, we are going to adopt 2...we have 2 brothers in mind at the DC rescue. We also are going to get the big, luxury cage here on guinea pig cages.

We are excited to get new pigs and become better parents!
 

snickers33

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thanks for the diet lists! We will experiment with a low supply of pellets and go from there.
 

barbaramudge

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Yes, we are going to adopt 2...we have 2 brothers in mind at the DC rescue. We also are going to get the big, luxury cage here on guinea pig cages.

We are excited to get new pigs and become better parents!

Ok, this sounds awful but I'm going to say it anyway. When it comes to stones, you're better off getting girls. Girls have a chance at passing stone on their own and non-surgical removal by virtue of their anatomy. Having been through stones with Colonel Mustard, and I suspect he may be getting new ones, I probably won't ever get boys again. I mention this only in the sense that if you're really hoping to cut your risks, get girls. Now girls can absolutely get them and can die same as boys but girls seem to stand a better shot at making it through. This is all my opinion of course. Good luck.
 

bpatters

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It's a pretty accurate opinion, in some ways. The urethra (the tube from the bladder to the outside) is MUCH shorter in a female than in a male, and it's also stretchier. So if the stone isn't too large to pass at all, it can sometimes be worked out without surgery.

Post op care for either sex is about the same, and keeping the area clean, and the cage clean, are both key to getting the pig through the aftermath without an infection.
 

barbaramudge

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Agreed, post op care and preventions would be the same but I'd rather at least have a shot at passing them by having a girl. I love Colonel, he's my sweet little man, which is why I'd give anything to avoid this helpless feeling again :(
 
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