I switched folders in my directory, just reposted this. Sorry about not responding to these replies sooner, I didn't get the usual notification! We've had some email server issues lately and that may be why... anyhoot...
For the powdered vitamin C we just go on ebay and buy tablets to crush, just regular 500mg tablets, don't have to be chewable: http://search.ebay.com/vitamin-c_Die...Z19259QQsojsZ1
To crush them, and the calcium as well, we double up a couple of pillowcases and use a hammer- best to do this on the floor. We keep the calc-c mix in a Ziploc baggie in the fridge until we mix it into the chin's food, just enough to dust their food.
You added some cool smiley's, Stephanie!
With vitamin C the main thing is to keep it in their system continually, that's why you can't miss with dusting their pellets. Any excess vitamin C is just urinated out.
DIFFERENT story with calcium, there is a calcium to phosphorus RATIO that must be met for proper calcium absorption: 2 parts calcium to 1 part phosphorus or equal amounts of calcium to phosphorus. I think everyone should read this article
, it addresses calcium supplementation and is just brilliant.
After looking at the phosphorus/ calcium ratio in our feed and the mineral blocks we sometimes use, we decided to buy Bone Builder Blocks for the calc-c mix. These can be obtained least expensively from Seward Breeders
. I measure the amount of powder after mashing vit C and calcium, and put equal amounts of both powders in the bowl that I dust the pellets with, just add enough so that all the pellets get dusted. Then, we serve our chins from that bowl for the week.
We're fortunate enough to have a fridge just for our chinnies, it keeps the feed fresh and we keep their serving bowl in there. I'd recommend refridgerating pellets for anyone who can, it helps retain the nutritional value of feed which would otherwise, even in cool dry storage, deteriorate rather rapidly. We've been told that feed can lose a significant amount of its nutritional value after about a month of storage when not refridgerated.
Regarding taste, our chins absolutely love their pellets dusted with calc-c and I've tried seeing if they'd still like it without, but they hold out waiting to see if I'll put in the "right" kind of pellets... LOL!
After the experience with out maloccluding gal, I got this section of our Prevention and Healing page together: http://www.chincare.com/HealthLifest...m#dentalhealth
There is a list of articles relating to malocclusion, the calcium ratio, skull and x-ray photos, new dental procedures for malocclusion, etc.
Chinchilla Girl, that is an excellent preventative measure, to check their jawline regularly. Everybody should do that!
Our vet just got new dental equipment that I'm going to get a pic of on our next visit. One sure way to help prevent malocclusion is to provide a steady supply of a variety of hays- that's what we do now rather than giving treats. Shredded wheat (spoon size, unsweetened), some grains and dried herbs they get once or twice weekly on top of their food, as long as you don't mix it in they won't dig in their dish. If someone's looking really cute or for a reward, they get the shredded wheat biscuit and they like those as much, if not more, than raisins! And the biscuits require extra grinding and give more roughage to their GI tract, I think it's a better deal all around. Obviously, if overfed they'd cause the inverse problem that overfeeding raisins causes.