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Hello!
I'm getting two rats in December and I wanted to mix my own food for them. I'm having a lot of trouble finding a good base mix in the US and I'd love to know what y'all use for your babies. I wanted to use Harrisons banana brunch but I can't find anywhere that ships to the US.
Thank y'all!
 

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The subject of nutrition is a lot. I know very little about it and the more I read about it, the less confident I feel that I'd be able to offer any good advice.

Homemade mixes aren't as popular in the US as they are in the UK. I might suggest using a quality block/kibble as the base and adding a mix to it. If you're looking to create your own mix from scratch, you could purchase The Scuttling Gourmet e-books to get a handle on possible ingredients/proportions to use for the base mix. If this is the route you choose to take, you'll also want to research vitamins/supplements to give your rats in addition to the mix. A manufactured kibble/block will come already fortified with vitamins but a homemade mix will be lacking no matter how carefully you formulate it.
 

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I use a blend made from dog food, seeds, nuts (in moderation), but you can also add other rat food to it. If you add a kibble/block to the mixture it would give it that extra vitamin and overall make it more nutritionally appealing. If you can't do this homemade would be the way to go, though like Corbin added it will be lacking. I did this before when I first owned rats and I just fed them fresh or leftovers from meals to help supplement.

Like fresh veggies, carrots, boiled eggs, peas, etc., just absolutely make sure you check a rat diet guide before giving them anything since they are quite sensitive when it comes to their diet. I keep all their food in containers since having variety is imperative for rats I feel... they love new foods and being introduced to all sorts of things.

On the side feel free to home make dog biscuits for them, baked rat treats, and so on. If you own dogs dog treats or small chicken bones are great too. They love gnawing on them...if you can handle worms they also enjoy dried mealworms. (Live mealworms are good too but some would disagree since it is inhumane to the worms)
 

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you may as well just buy a good rat block, they can produce higher quality food than you will ever make and at a more affordable price and it is fortified with essential vitamins. As fun as making your own is there's lots of ways to go wrong. Dog food tends to be made from offle from animals, it can really vary in quality heavily, I wouldnt recommend it but I know people use some high quality dog food in their blocks. Its expensive.

in the UK i go with selective science. I hear oxbow is the other great block.
I'd just go with that and supplement with fresh veggies and snacks every so often
 

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Another vote for a quality rat block and if you'd like there's nothing wrong with adding a few things in with your blocks. I add in a bit of farro, oat groats, dried blueberries, rice crispies, and a few dried crushed egg noodles for protein. It makes them feel like they have a variety even if the mix is still 90% Oxbow blocks. They also get a little bit of fresh fruit and veg regularly.
 
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