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RE: Depends

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Posted by: Rosebuds at Fri Aug 24 10:25:10 2012  [ Report Abuse ] [ Email Message ] [ Show All Posts by Rosebuds ]  
   

Baby spring mix is okay as part of a daily salad, but he needs better staples, like endive, escarole, or turnip greens. I also strongly recommend the ground up Grassland Tortoise pellets made by Zoo Med. They are made with field grasses, and many of them are grasses that chucks would eat in the wild.

The problem with spring greens alone is that they are inconsistent mixes, and often contain plants that are not as healthy because of their chemical make up, ranging from too much oxalate (spinach, possibly chard), to too much moisture content (various lettuces), bad phosphate/calcium ratio (red leaf lettuce) and even too much protein.

Oxalates-- bond with calcium and prevent calcium absorption, so too much of this can cause MBD and cause bladder and kidney stones which can become a slow death for your chuck.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bladder_stone_(animal)

Moisture content -- Causes chucks to retain fluid. Their natural diet is much lower in moisture than most captive diets

Protein, plant or animal (insect)-- NOT tolerated well in strict herbivores, and chucks are considered strict herbivores. Causes kidney damage and kidney stones if it is fed long term.

Here is a chart made by a tortoise expert, and since chucks share the same food environment, I think it is a good guide for chucks as well, with modifications. For example, I think that chucks can tolerate a slightly higher P/C ratio than torts, but not much higher.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bladder_stone_(animal)

Now, they do need more fiber than the typical captive diet, so for city people like me, I think the grassland tort pellets are a great start toward filling that need.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bladder_stone_(animal)


   

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