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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi new to the board, I have 6 pet rats and usually have babies. I am looking for a better food for them.

Ive read that proteins should be low, but how low? what foods do you recommend, what do they cost and what are the protein levels?

is the suebees diet really that good? what percentage of protein does it have? How long does suebees mix usually last?

I am considering ordering 33lbs of Teklad Global 2014, the protein is 14%

what do you recommend

thanks!
 

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why do you usually have babies and not know much about proper nutrition? just curious.

teklad is a good choice, and i think that 2014 is a pretty good one, but that's just from what i've heard, personally i feed a modified suebee's mix. i usually use 2 boxes of kashi 7 grain cereal, 2 bags of curly noodles, a cup or so of rolled oats, and a couple cups of quality dog food in my mix, and it lasts me a month and a half for 2 rats; i keep it frozen to preserve it and often throw in other things, like a small bag of unsweetened freeze dried fruit, etc. the protein in suebee's depends on the dog food you use (or other protein source, i think suebee's uses soynuts, etc) and shouldn't exceed like, 16% i think, unless your rats are lactating or are still babies.
 

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Suebees mix is not a good balanced diet for rats. It is lacking in the daily required amounts in vitamins, minerals and macro minerals as well as amino acids.
The Harlan Teklad 2014 is a good healthy block to feed your rats, as well as the Oxbow Regal rat.
Don't forget to supplement with daily fresh veggies.
 

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jorats can you give the recommended daily allowance of vitamins and minerals necessary for rats? suebee's recommends total cereal, whereas i use kashi cereal, and both have plenty of daily vitamins and minerals for humans; i can't imagine that it isn't enough for rats. my rats are also supplemented with fresh tomatoes, carrots, red cabbage occasionally, strawberries, raspberries, apples, bananas, bread and olive oil, parsley etc every day as suebee's mix suggests so i don't see how they can be lacking in anything important. also, mine get dog food which provides them with all the necessary amino acids except taurine, which rats do not need.
 

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Hey Only,
It isn't as though you feed Suebees, which I think is what jorats was indicating. Suebees, on it's own, is not sufficient. But you supplement the heck out of it, so you've got it nailed.
 

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fair enough. but i would still like to know what exactly suebee's is lacking in, since it seems to be a pretty well-regarded rat mix in general and i have never heard bad about it.
 

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How are your rats getting vitamin K? What about Calcium?

You can research it here: http://www.rmca.org/Articles/homemadediet.htm
And better yet, here: http://books.nap.edu/openbook.php?isbn=0309051266

As well, in that last link you will see that too much of certain vitamins also has ill effects.
Dog food is not energy dense enough for rats.

Plus, I've had my own personal experience. I had over a dozen rats on Suebee's mix and dog food. They were fat and lazy and quite sick. My exotic vet asked me what I fed them and wasn't impressed. Since switching to a high quality block, all my rats became slim and healthy and extremely active. I see how everyone speaks of their lazy males, I don't have lazy males, they are just as active as my females.
I've had rats live to 38-41 months and another still live at 43 months, all this after switching to a better diet.

BTW, you should be supplementing with kale, bok choy, romaine, broccoli, peppers... and so on.
 

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jorats said:
Plus, I've had my own personal experience. I had over a dozen rats on Suebee's mix and dog food. They were fat and lazy and quite sick. My exotic vet asked me what I fed them and wasn't impressed. Since switching to a high quality block, all my rats became slim and healthy and extremely active. I see how everyone speaks of their lazy males, I don't have lazy males, they are just as active as my females.
I've had rats live to 38-41 months and another still live at 43 months, all this after switching to a better diet.
i agree. i would never feed my boys Suebee's, but i rarely argue that fact here since most people here do feed Suebee's. my boys get lab block, supplemented with lots of extras (fruits, veggies, cereals, yogurts, chicken, roasted nuts, sunflower seeds, etc. etc.) and they are all bouncing off the walls whenever they're awake (which is whenever i am in the room, or trying to sleep :roll: ) everyone feeds a different diet, and each one has its own pros and cons. in the end its up to you what you want to feed~
 

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i do feed broccoli and peppers regularly, sorry i couldn't think of all the random things i supplement when i was making the list. my rats also get "hamsteroids" which are mostly made of shells so i assume they get lime and calcium from those.

also, generally, vitamin and mineral toxicities are very hard to come by (i wish i had my crap from all my nutrition classes with me, boo) with a few exceptions. my rats were on mazuri lab block as the staple to their diet until recently, when petsmart stopped carrying mazuri rat. they have only just (like in 3 weeks) switched to dog food but i think i might have noticed a change by now. and i can't seem to find any close rat owners to me that would like to pitch in on a teklad order.

my females are very active and such as well. not trying to argue, but trying to defend my rat mix, lol. a local breeder turned me down because she thought my rats were on a poor diet and i'm still a little hurt by it. how dare she accuse me of neglecting my rats?

PS a few posts up oxbow regal rat was mentioned -- i thought that was a bad block to feed? am i mistaken? gah balanced food is such a pain.
 

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I feed the regal rat mix 1/3 with 1/3 Harrison's Course Liftime and 1/3 Innova Senior. This is a new experiment I am trying, as I had previously been feeding only the regal rat, and people on this forum mentioned their rats got bored of it (because it is flavored with apple juice). This way, I figure they get different flavors with each block, and they won't get bored. So far, so good, they are eating a bit of everything. I don't think there is anything wrong with the Regal Rat, other than some rats get bored of it (It is very similar to Harlan Tecklad blocks in nutrient profile). They also get supplemented with frozen carrots, peas, green beans, lima beans, wheat pasta, baby foods, swiss chard, kale, the occasional pepper, etc (tons of stuffs).

My girls are super slim and super active. But I have to say, I had a male that I swear to god lived to be 4.5 years of age on a seed diet (plus supplements of fruit and veggies). I kid you not at all. This was when I was an early teen (before we had access to the internet) and didn't know any better. He was active, glossy, smart as a whip, and eventually died one night in his sleep (probably from heart disease, poor bugger). Go figure!
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
if you must know I always have babies because I have snakes. I feed a basic lab block that I buy in bulk from the local pet shop but I was looking for something a little better for them. the breeders are my pets the babies are well...
 

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OnlyOno - Suebee herself will tell you that her mix is NOT complete and recommends lab blocks over dog food. The site itself says so.

"I supplement the Innova with a homemade grain mix, detailed below. [snip] The grain mix is not complete by itself. It needs to be supplemented with a high quality lab block or dog food as the staple.

Many people choose to use a high quality lab block, such as Harlan Teklad, instead of the dog food, and I highly endorse this. A high quality lab block, if you have access, is always recommended."

http://www.ratsrule.com/diet.html
 
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