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Discussion Starter #1
Hello all,

I'm looking for a pellet type food for my rats that does not contain flax.

Unfortunately I have a less common but very severe allergy to flax. I've had rats for many years and have always always fed them Oxbow because it came well reviewed and was the best food (nutritionally speaking) I have available to me in my area. I also supplement them with a variety of fresh fruits and veggies.

I've always had a little itchiness and redness whenever I held my rats. I juts figured it was my sensitive skin. I tend to be a little sniffly around most animals but it's tollerable and I take a daily antihistamine. So I made sure to be very particular to wash my hands after playing with them. I never even thought about their food and my food allergy because I wasn't eating their food! Totally not thinking about the fact that I'm exposing myself anytime I'm handling my rats. Especially when they accidentally scratch me.

When I first realized there was flax in their food, my reactions to their scratches made so much sense. The reaction has been getting worse and my doctor and I are both very concerned.

Any help would be appreciated. Right now I have two 8-9 month old neutered boys.

Jennifer
 

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Of the most often recommended brands, Oxbow seems to be the only one that contains flax seed. [Envigo Teklad 2014], [Mazuri 6F], and [Science Selective] don't appear to contain flax. Acquiring some of these options may be a little more difficult and/or expensive.

The Mazuri that's available in small bags in pet shops is the Rat & Mouse formula and it's a bit high in protein. The 6F formula is a little more appropriate but you can only get it in giant 50 lb. bags. That's way too much to be purchasing unless you have a ton of rats. If you know other rat owners in your area, you could potentially go in together to purchase a large bag then split it up between you.

I've purchased Teklad blocks from my local reptile shop. Some breeders or rescue organizations might also sell them
 

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Tesla, Ruby, Cloud, and Poe
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I have some Mazuri rat & mouse and it contains no flax. However, I recently switched to Oxbow because they really didn't like the Mazuri pellets.

On a side note, I don't have any food allergies, but whenever the ratties scratch me, I also get red and itchy. I think it's a mild allergic reaction to the rats themselves. Hopefully yours is food related though and can easily be solved.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Of the most often recommended brands, Oxbow seems to be the only one that contains flax seed. [Envigo Teklad 2014], [Mazuri 6F], and [Science Selective] don't appear to contain flax. Acquiring some of these options may be a little more difficult and/or expensive.
Thanks so much! I will investigate those options. The science selective looks promising and it's only a little more expensive than the oxbow.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I don't have any food allergies, but whenever the ratties scratch me, I also get red and itchy. I think it's a mild allergic reaction to the rats themselves. Hopefully yours is food related though and can easily be solved.
Yeah I've gotten the just red and itchy near the scratches thing but this has escalated to my entire hands swelling and being painfull and itchy for days. When you have a severe food allergy every time you expose yourself your reaction can get worse. If I eat it I immediately have to use my epi pen because of anaphylaxis. My doctor and I are thinking that I've exposed myself topically in tiny "doses" like this too many times and this is an escalation of the mild skin irritation. :(
 

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Tesla, Ruby, Cloud, and Poe
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Yeah I've gotten the just red and itchy near the scratches thing but this has escalated to my entire hands swelling and being painfull and itchy for days. When you have a severe food allergy every time you expose yourself your reaction can get worse. If I eat it I immediately have to use my epi pen because of anaphylaxis. My doctor and I are thinking that I've exposed myself topically in tiny "doses" like this too many times and this is an escalation of the mild skin irritation. :(
Sounds serious... You need a flax free home!!
 

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Thanks everyone for the suggestions. I decided to go with Science select and the boys seem to like it. Now comes the slow switch over.

Now I have two unopened bags of oxbow. Need to find somewhere to sell them. LOL
 

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Tesla, Ruby, Cloud, and Poe
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Thanks everyone for the suggestions. I decided to go with Science select and the boys seem to like it. Now comes the slow switch over.

Now I have two unopened bags of oxbow. Need to find somewhere to sell them. LOL
Try Craigslist maybe? What state are you in?
 
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