Pellet round up for breeders (not meat)

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northernnevadahollandlops

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If you feed pellets, I'm curious what brand/supplier you use and your method for feeding. we are located in Nevada in the US. I haven't found a pellet that I love and that my rabbits also love. I currently feed Modesto milling organic feed and have mixed in oxbow garden select. Unless they are pregnant or nursing, they always leave pellets in their bowls, which perplexes me because it's measured. It's like they pick out the pellets they like and leave the rest 🤷🏼‍♀️. Also, when you have kits sharing mom's food, do you switch to a different pellet? ie, alfalfa vs Timothy based? TIA!
 
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It may be helpful to add your location. We use a local brand here, but I don't think you'd be easily able to find it if you are in the States.

The way you are describing it sounds like there may be other things added in the pellets. Is it a blend you are feeding? Are your rabbits eating around the pellets to get whatever is mixed in with the pellets? As a very general statement, most blends like the below are not all too great for rabbits.
1644955692575.png

You'll be better off with plain pellets, shown below, and giving rabbit-safe treats as needed.
1644955864144.png

As for mothers and kits; we switch to a "breeder blend" pellet, which has a higher percentage of protein in it. The kits nibble on them as they are weaning. As they age and are getting closer to leave the mother, we'll gradually mix in the standard feed with a slightly lower protein content. If the doe isn't regaining condition, we keep the breeder blend and switch the kits off of it when they are separated from the mother entirely. You won't want to immediately switch to another pellet when your kits begin eating. They'll continue to get nutrients from the mother and are going to have serious digestive issues with a drastic change of food. This is why weaning can sometimes result in diarrhoea. As soon as the doe is bred is when we begin the pellet transition for her.

If my memory is correct, alfalfa-based pellets are higher in calories and lower in fibre than timothy-based pellets. Those calories will be important in the growth phase, but make sure there is still plenty of fibre in their diet (hay, cornstalks, etc.). Those calories will also make them accumulate fat, though, if you're not careful and overfeed. This being said, we don't specifically switch between types of hays for the pellets here.
 

northernnevadahollandlops

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It may be helpful to add your location. We use a local brand here, but I don't think you'd be easily able to find it if you are in the States.

The way you are describing it sounds like there may be other things added in the pellets. Is it a blend you are feeding? Are your rabbits eating around the pellets to get whatever is mixed in with the pellets? As a very general statement, most blends like the below are not all too great for rabbits.
View attachment 28934

You'll be better off with plain pellets, shown below, and giving rabbit-safe treats as needed.
View attachment 28935

As for mothers and kits; we switch to a "breeder blend" pellet, which has a higher percentage of protein in it. The kits nibble on them as they are weaning. As they age and are getting closer to leave the mother, we'll gradually mix in the standard feed with a slightly lower protein content. If the doe isn't regaining condition, we keep the breeder blend and switch the kits off of it when they are separated from the mother entirely. You won't want to immediately switch to another pellet when your kits begin eating. They'll continue to get nutrients from the mother and are going to have serious digestive issues with a drastic change of food. This is why weaning can sometimes result in diarrhoea. As soon as the doe is bred is when we begin the pellet transition for her.

If my memory is correct, alfalfa-based pellets are higher in calories and lower in fibre than timothy-based pellets. Those calories will be important in the growth phase, but make sure there is still plenty of fibre in their diet (hay, cornstalks, etc.). Those calories will also make them accumulate fat, though, if you're not careful and overfeed. This being said, we don't specifically switch between types of hays for the pellets here.
Good points! I added my location and what I currently use. We are in the US, and I currently feed a Timothy hay based pellets with no additives. I like the idea of transitioning to the higher protein pellet after they are bred, then it's already in the bowl when the babies start nibbling! I'm going to do that going forward. One of my issues is that I have a bonded trio, two of of my breeders does and their neutered brother. So far he's been super sweet with their babies, but I also don't want him to have unlimited access to the girls' and kits feed. They do have unlimited hay.
 

HTAcres

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I am in west Texas and I pay to ship in pellets from Petrus Feed in Louisiana. Even with the shipping charges, it costs me about what I pay at Tractor Supply for Manna Pro. It is a lovely pellet with probiotics and such. I supplement my moms with oats, BOSS, calf manna in equal parts. Feed coastal hay and forage.
 

rockyhillrabbits

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I'm located in northeast Arkansas and use a 17% alfalfa based pellet made by Hirsch Feed in Thayer, MO. The pellets are always fresh smelling, green, and I use it for all my rabbits. I never had an issue with rabbits not eating it before and it's cheaper than anything from Orschelns or TSC. I will add a small amount of old fashioned oats to it when the does kindle and if I have one who needs a little weight I add BOSS. I generally feed either Timothy or Bermuda hay, whichever I can get and give grass and weeds too.
 

northernnevadahollandlops

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I'm located in northeast Arkansas and use a 17% alfalfa based pellet made by Hirsch Feed in Thayer, MO. The pellets are always fresh smelling, green, and I use it for all my rabbits. I never had an issue with rabbits not eating it before and it's cheaper than anything from Orschelns or TSC. I will add a small amount of old fashioned oats to it when the does kindle and if I have one who needs a little weight I add BOSS. I generally feed either Timothy or Bermuda hay, whichever I can get and give grass and weeds too.
Thanks! I just found a semi-local supplier that mills their own feed that I'm going to try. I love adding oats and BOSS and my bunnies love it too!
 

Big Mac

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If you feed pellets, I'm curious what brand/supplier you use and your method for feeding. we are located in Nevada in the US. I haven't found a pellet that I love and that my rabbits also love. I currently feed Modesto milling organic feed and have mixed in oxbow garden select. Unless they are pregnant or nursing, they always leave pellets in their bowls, which perplexes me because it's measured. It's like they pick out the pellets they like and leave the rest 🤷🏼‍♀️. Also, when you have kits sharing mom's food, do you switch to a different pellet? ie, alfalfa vs Timothy based? TIA!
Turn the bag over and read the analysis, then find feeds that match the blends you like, for the purpose intended. Feeding adults is not the same as youngster’s the needs are different.
feeding animals is like feeding humans you can’t buy what is good for you at a fast food joint, and there is no shortcut to good health For you are the rabbit.
lastly caged animals can’t get to herbs that grow naturally and feed producers are in for the money and are meeting a basic need, look for the herbs that are good for me and the rabbit and see they get them daily.
 

Rabbits by Accident

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I am in west Texas and I pay to ship in pellets from Petrus Feed in Louisiana. Even with the shipping charges, it costs me about what I pay at Tractor Supply for Manna Pro. It is a lovely pellet with probiotics and such. I supplement my moms with oats, BOSS, calf manna in equal parts. Feed coastal hay and forage.
How do you order their food? I went to their website and don't see any ordering capability. Thanks :)
 

ladysown

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You might find it advantageous to NOT mix things into your pellets. For a lot of herds, mixing feed encourages the rabbits to be picky and only eating the fun stuff. You would be better off feeding your pellets and mixing your BOSS and oats and feeding them at a separate time of day.
 

HTAcres

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How do you order their food? I went to their website and don't see any ordering capability. Thanks :)
Have you checked to see if any is available near you? There are dealers in east Texas. Anyway, to order you call and talk to Chris or email [email protected]. I was buying by the pallet and I have to order 2-3 at a time to make the shipping costs within the realm of reason. If you can find a dealer within an hour or so and you can buy and store a month's worth or so, that is going to probably be most cost effective. It's a family run business though and they are very nice.
 
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