THE GEMS MIX
This is the mix all of our rats eat here at Pacific Gems Rattery! I love making my own mix and it’s based on the Shunamite diet from Isamu Rats. With the help from Alison Campbell I was able to adapt the Shunamite Diet with ingredients found in the US. I also feed my rats fresh food 3 to 4 times a week.
The rats are thriving on it, have beautiful shiny coats and there’s never one bit of the mix left when I check the next day. It is packed with nutrients, antioxidants and it’s kidney friendly! It gives variety and lots of enrichment.
I cannot emphasize enough that if you are interested in rat nutrition you should definitely purchase the book The Scuttling Gourmet by Alison Campbell. It’s a must read if you want to develop your own mix and to understand the rat’s different dietary needs throughout their life stages. You can find the book here https://shunamiterats.co.uk/services/
This is the original Isamu Mix based off The Shunamite Diet. I have adapted this recipe with ingredients that are available in the USA.
My mix is based on:
55% Base Mix (Straight grain and Horse Muesli)
25% Processed Grains (Pasta and low sugar cereal)
10% Protein (Dog kibble, dried fish, dried worms)
10% Dehydrated Vegetables and Oily Seeds
INGREDIENTS IN MY MIX
BASE MIX (55%) (11 scoops)
- 3 Scoops Cavalor Fifty Fifty Horse Muesli
- 4 Scoops Rolled 9 Grain Cereal
- 3 Scoops Straight Grain Mix (see recipe below)
- 1 Scoop Split peas
STRAIGHT GRAIN MIX
(You can make a straight grain mix using all of the grains listed below or just 2-3 types of grains if you like. I use all 9 grains listed below for extra variety). I buy 5lb bags of each grain and make a big batch. You can also find the grains at the bulk section of your supermarket.
Wild Rice Blend
PROCESSED GRAINS (20%)(4 Scoops)
- 2 Scoops Pasta (I use Eden Organic Vegetable Spirals)
- 1 Scoop Cereal (I use Ezekiel Original Cereal with 0 sugar)
- 1 Scoop Ryvita Crackers or Rice Crackers
PROTEIN (10%)(2 Scoops)
- 3/4 Scoops High Quality Fish dog food (Core Wellness, Innova, Canidae or Wild Earth Vegan Dog food)
- 1/4 Scoop Dried Worms/Dried Fish
- 1 Scoop Red Lentils
DEHYDRATED VEGETABLES AND OILY SEEDS MIX (10%)(1 scoop dehydrated veggies and 1 scoop oily seeds mix)
(You can easily dehydrate your own vegetable at home by just using your oven. Sometimes I do use Canine Caviar Synergy Dehydrated Vegetables Blend (found on Amazon)).
Red/Green/Yellow/Orange Sweet Peppers
OILY SEEDS MIX
EXTRAS (just a handful)
Dried porcini mushrooms
Shredded non sugar coconut
Freeze dried green lipped mussels
Dried Minced Garlic
Dehydrated Salmon Skin
HOW TO MAKE YOUR OWN MIX
Just follow the Isamu recipe in the picture with the adapted US ingredients listed above. Use 5% for each scoop (i.e. for the Base Mix that is 55% it equals to 11 scoops). Here's a list of the suppliers for all of the ingredients I use:
- Azure Standard - All grains, oily seeds, pasta, crackers and cereal plus extras can be found here.
- Chewy - You can find the Cavalor Fifty Fifty Horse Muesli and dog food here.
Mix the above homemade grain mix with lab blocks at a 50/50 ratio. (example 6 scoops grain mix and 6 scoops lab block)
Recommended lab blocks are:
-Nursing moms and babies up to 4 months - free feeding (food should be available at all times. Refill their bowls daily to the rim)
-Adults and Senior rats - 15g to 20g per rat.
There is no set rule on the exact amount to be fed but 15g is a good starting point. Keep a close eye on your rats and if they are loosing weight increase the amount and if they are getting too chubby than decrease the amount. I feed all of my rats at night and don't top off their bowl until the next feeding.
If you are planning on feeding this mix by itself without added lab blocks you will need to add vitamins/minerals and calcium to it just like the Shunamite recipe pictured above. In the US we have the exact same Vitamin as in the UK which is made by Dr. Squiggles. The Vitamins in the US do not come with feeding directions for rodents (only birds) so follow Dr. Squiggles feeding instructions.
The vitamins available here are:
- Daily Essentials 1 - to be mixed with drinking water
- Daily Essentials 3 - powder to be added to fresh food
- Calciboost Liquid - to be mixed with drinking water
- Calciboost Powder - powder to be added to fresh food
Follow the directions from Dr. Squiggles to feed the vitamins:
To be mixed in the drinking water bottle:
- Daily Essentials 1 - one scoop to 400mls water daily or 2 1/2 scoops for a 1.5 liter bottle.
- Calciboost Liquid - give 2 to 3 times a week to non breeding rats and up to 5 times a week to moms with babies - 10mls to 20mls to 1 Liter of water. Can be used together with Daily Essentials 1
To be mixed in the fresh food:
- Daily Essentials 3 - 2 pinches per rat. Mixed with soft wet food or sprinkle over vegetables and fruits.
- Caliboost Powder - 6 pinches per rat. Mixed with soft wet food or sprinkle over vegetables and fruits.
You can find the Vitamins at ALL BIRD PRODUCTS.
You can find the feeding instructions here DR. SQUIGGLES.