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I've researched a lot about rat diets, homemade and commercial. But I would like to hear some first-hand experiences with diets. I'd like to know what diets people are feeding their companions, and more than just what the diet contains but how it is fed - the amount and when, etc. This is my first time owning rats - for the time being I have been feeding them Nutro Choice Lite dog food as a staple, with fruits and vegetables and other things fed as a side or as a treat. It seems to be working well, but I want the best for my companions and I am continuing to learn what I can so that I can create a "diet plan" that is the best it can be.
 

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I'm also trying to get my rats diet better. They love almost all fruits they are offered but hardly any veggies. Even veggie baby food they dislike for the most part. In general I feed them lab blocks, they eat them better when they are small peices so I always break them down as small as I can and they eat em!

Igor (single rat with attitude problems) gets about 6 lab blocks a day and about 1/4 cup of dog food in one dish, and in another dish he gets peices of apple, banana and cherries. He gets a few toddler veggie biscuits and two yogi drops for treats, and a spoonful of baby food with baytril twice a day.

The other 3 rats (Sydney, Stanley and Sylvester) get pretty much the same diet, just more of it of course. They also get some pear mixed with their fruit... Igor will have nothing to do with pear.

I'd love to find some veggies they will eat, I've tried carrots, celery, brocoli, corn, green beans, peas. They might eat one or two but they usually toss the 2nd peice down while eating and move on.
 

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I fill up dishes with lab block and keep them filled at all times i use the harlan teklad 2014 for my older boys and for my younger boys 2018 they also get whatever i eat through out the day plus their dry mix (dry noodles, cheerios, total flakes, pretzels, crakers, oatmeal)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Oh good! I forgot to ask for some information about vitamins and supplements that can be added to the diet.

What is Baytril used for?
What is echinacea used for?
What is GSE?

So when feeding lab blocks there are different varieties for different aged rats? In HT 2014 for older and 2018 for younger?
 

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Baytril is used for URI (upper respiratory infection), myco flare ups. All rats have mycoplasma and at some point usually need to be treated for myco from what I've read. I've yet to have a rat that didn't flare up at some point in it's first year of life. I haven't used the other things mentioned (echinacea or GSE) but I've heard of something called "green mush" that goes into the water that is supposed to be really good for them. I haven't researched it yet though.

There are different varieties of lab blocks for different nutritional needs. I can't be positive off the top of my head but one is for rats 8 months and older, the other is for younger rats or pregnant/nursing females. I also switch my big boys to the type for younger rats when they are sick.
 

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You can only get Baytril through a vet, regrettably.

I feed my rats Suebee's mix and they seem to be happy with it. I feed them once a night (There are 5 of them). I'd love to give them a more constant food supply, but they are stashers and they would just hide it until they had a giant mound of food. I make sure they eat all of what I already gave them before I feed them again, otherwise they won't eat the lab blocks.
 

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Well my rat just had 2 babies so she needs more protein and nutrients in her diet but I give her a little bowl of "rat and mouse fiesta mix" then i will give her a boiled egg probably every 1 1/2 weeks or so. Then I will give her some sliced cheese and some green beans. Then a slice of apple and whatever other fruits I have, then what I eat (cereal, pop corn, biscuts ect...) But she is healthy. I pretty much use that same diet for my other rats.
 

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Chthonicfox said:
Oh good! I forgot to ask for some information about vitamins and supplements that can be added to the diet.

What is Baytril used for?
What is echinacea used for?
What is GSE?

So when feeding lab blocks there are different varieties for different aged rats? In HT 2014 for older and 2018 for younger?
Baytril is an antibiotic used for more than just URI you can buy it online but I don't know the site right now a ftriend orders it for me. Echinacea is a immune system booster you have to use childrens with no alcohol and the GSE is grapefruit seed extract that also boosts health.

The lab blocks are for different ages 2018 is for young (under 8 months) and nutrsing pregnant rats
 

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Right now I'm feeding HT Lab Blocks (2014) with a Suebee's mix that has Brown Rice cereal, Kashi 7 whole grain flakes, Total cranberry crunch, whole wheat pasta, dried bananna's, and Oven toasted old fashioned oats. I free feed them the blocks but not the mix otherwise they will just eat that. I've noticed my rats coats look very shiny since I started feeding the mix as well. I might try feeding a high quality, low protein dog food once I run out of the blocks to see if they like it better. I also feed fruits and veggies and they get some turkey sometimes, which they love. Oh and I can't forget the organic baby food! ;)

Kaytee is not reccommended is it?
Kaytee is a very poor quality food.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thank you all for the information and help. You would not believe how useful it is. It helps me to put together all of my research with real-life experience so that I can make some decisions.

I read that echinacea should be used during flare-ups of myco or other respiratory problems (i.e frequent sneezing) but should not be feed continuously as the body develops a tolerance quickly and the herb becomes ineffective. Is it the same with GSE? Or is GSE something that can be regularly added to the diet to aid their health?

Basically I want to know what, if anything people feed their rats as supplements etc in a regular diet just to boost health and strengthen their immune system.
 

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I put the GSE in their water you have to go VERY slowly because it is very bitter it is supposed to be something like three drops per ounce (can't remember off hand) but you have to start out with 1 drop per water bottle for two weeks or so then move up a drop every third week
 

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sorry the echinacea I give them a drop or two on a peice of bread once a day for two weeks then two weeks off and so on and so forth
 

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Mazuri, Regal Rat, also you can look into getting Nutro Lite dog formula it is the best dog food available for ratties

:EDIT: Mazzuri sucks though LoL i would go with the dog food if i ABSOLUTELY had to
 

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Chthonicfox said:
I read that echinacea should be used during flare-ups of myco or other respiratory problems
Where would I find something like that? A health store? Grocery store?
 
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