I have recently discovered a whole new way of improving the health of my guinea pigs. Believe it or not, this magic food is actually a very simple sprout.
Sprouting is very simple. Basically, you germinate seeds. The seeds can be broccoli (a sprout that is anti-carcinogenic!), sunflowers, alfalfa (be careful with this sprout for guinea pigs), mixed bean sprout, lentils, radish, wheat grass, and green peas. The sprouts listed here are all not poisonous and my guinea pigs love almost all of them. But actually, what have sprouts done for my guinea pigs?
Sprouts are part of raw food diets. They are extremely healthy, and broccoli sprouts are known for being anti-carcinogenic. Can´t hurt to give that to the piggies, right? Exactly.
The first time I gave my piggies sprouts, they turned their noses up and demanded their tomatoes. But we kept on giving them sprouts, and finally, the food inspectors decided to inspect. Sunflower and wheat grass turned out to be their favourite.
After a period of giving them sprouts, I noticed a different in their health. Now, Theodore and Sneb have always been the cream of the crop, but Dolce, our pet store princess, had urinary problems, especially after being in heat (does anyone else have this problem with their sows?). We gave her cranberry and vitamin C, and that helped, but it didn´t take it away. But after giving her sprouts, I noticed, about a month after, that she did not have any problems with urinating. Even when she´s in heat, she does not squeak in pain anymore. This is a great improvement, because I was very worried about her.
Boars can be a bit dirty, so sows may have urinary problems. Sneb is a healthy girl and barely has this, but when Theodore is a bit active (this is graphic….), she has had also the same problems as Dolce. Not as constant and frequent, but when we gave her sprouts, that vanished too.
Theodore is a healthy boar, however, after his castration, he has had problems with excreting. His feces would not come out with ease and he would have difficulty passing them. However, since giving him sprouts, his complaints have faded away.
Theodore, Sneb, and Dolce, all seemed to have become ´´younger´´ and they are more active. Theodore, who is a big guy, is fitter. (By the way, Theodore and Sneb are three years old now! Yay! :D) Sneb is fitter as well, and her whining has increased as well (don´t feed sprouts to your piggies to put a hold on the wheeking and whining. It will only increase, but that´s a good thing!). Dolce has had a little puff and now it is fading away.
So these are the wonders of sprouts….those little, insignificant looking, sprouted stalks. I highly recommend sprouts, especially the ones I have listed above, to give to your furbabies. Before you sprout, do some research. I recommend this book, by Ann Wigmore.
Note on wheat grass: when sprouting wheat grass, you may notice in the soil some fluffy fungi (why does ´´fluffy fungi´´ sound gross?!). This is no problem whatsoever, as long as you cut off the fully grown stalks well above the fungi. If you have fungi, cut off the stalks and leave ten centimeters remaining. Do not feed your guinea pigs any fungi.
I recommend sprouts to young guinea pigs as well as old. They are fantastic supplements. Let your piggies adapt to them by mixing them with their pellets and hay. Feed them only the young green sprouts.