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#21069 - 05/25/04 11:03 PM Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking)
Anonymous
Unregistered


I've been reading up on sugar gliders off and on for a couple of years, and have this past month gone on a research binge to determine if I can do well by them. I'm living in Japan and I wasn't allowed to bring my cats with me here due to apartment restrictions on uncaged animals - so I once again started looking in to sugar gliders.
I'm a vegetarian (do not consume land, air, or sea animals), but do consume eggs and dairy products.
What I've been trying to find out is if a glider can have its nutritional needs met without the use of dead animals or dead animal products. I've read a lot of controversial opinions on the use of soy products both within these forums and from other sources on the web - but things like yogurt and eggs seem to be ok to feed to gliders for a protein source.
Is it possible through a mix of veges, fruits, eggs, yogurt, and vitamin supplements, to meet a glider's needs? Are there any other protein alternatives out there? (my personal diet relies heavily on rice, veges, soy, fruits, and vegetarian vitamin supplements and I'm in good health with this)
(I've already read the posts on here with anything vegetarian related in the keyword searches - including several people criticizing vegetarians and vegans in general along with the very idea of thinking of feeding gliders something other than a diet resembling what they eat in the wild - if they're being kept as pets and indoors at that, that's not exactly natural for them either - so please, for the sake of genuine curiousity here - I'd appreciate it if the criticism portion is left out in favor of actual information in regards to possibilities on glider diet plans that exclude animals, if such do exist.
My intention is not to sound testy or prickly in this post either - just - I've done the reading and combing through the forums already for related posts, but with no definitive answers given, but a lot of emotional laced opinions offered. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/nixweiss.gif" alt="" />

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#21070 - 05/26/04 07:01 AM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


I don't think it would be a good idea to use eggs as a gliders sole source of protein. Remember, just because you choose to live a vegetarian life style doesn't mean that it's a healthy choice for you or you animals. I'm not try to criticize you, I'm just pointing out that what you most likely already know. There are health risk involved with being a vegetarian. Humans can tolerate it a lot better than most omnivores because our bodies don't need as much meat as other animals, we can get by on 15% protein fine. Gliders on the other hand need at least 30% protein in their diet, and the more protein the better (up to about 50%).

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#21071 - 05/26/04 06:10 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Thanks! I was pretty much afraid of that - but it doesn't help to double-check before making decisions, right?
Next question - What about Darcy's diet - and for protein use a combo of occasional eggs, and baby food w/ protein sources (ie, the chicken and turkey jars of food that I've seen suggested on multiple websites?).
I couldn't find a satisfactory vege diet for my cats that met their needs so kept them on their normal food - but I'm a squeamish vegetarian too, so it was just cat food for them - no actual meat. Would using baby foods for the protein source work with gliders? <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/question.gif" alt="" /> I'm really hoping to find at the least, a compromise between my distaste for meat sources of protein and the ability to provide complete nutrition for the gliders should I get a pair of them. (won't officially buy them till I have all of this worked out and know I can care for them without grossing myself out when feeding them - I know it must sound stupid - but hey, everyone has something that bugs them - this just happens to be my category)
Thanks once again for the response though! I really do want to make sure I have all the right information so I can make a good decision in regards to sugar gliders.
-Shannon

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#21072 - 05/26/04 06:43 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


What about bugs? As you probably know, sugar gliders are insectivores and their protein comes mostly from bugs. I don't know about your views but most vegetarians I know have little sympathy for crickets or mealworms. If you buy them already freezedried you shouldn't have to worry about them wiggling or jumping around.

Baby food chicken, turkey or veal are all good protein sources. Also see if you can ship Insectivore Fare, a popular diet choice that provides a good source of protein.

BTW in Japan they are referred to as "Musasabi" right? Just touching up on my Japanese, lol.


Edited by Mage (05/26/04 06:47 PM)

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#21073 - 05/26/04 06:52 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


LOL - sadly enough I'm sympathetic to the bugs too - on my last deployment crickets were everywhere - couldn't take two steps without them being all over you, but I'd still get ticked off when my team members would kill them - they learned not to do it around me... but, if I can be willing to compromise and purchase babyfood with animals in it - I should be able to do the same with bugs as much as I dislike doing it. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/worried2.gif" alt="" />

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#21074 - 05/26/04 10:14 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Actually, the BML diet uses turkey baby food as the main source of protein. You don't need to feed bugs, but you do need a good source of protein and I think that the baby food could suffice.
*Also, thank you for not taking offense at my previous post. Life style choices can be a very sensitive subject and I appreciate the fact that you read everything I had to say before passing judgment.

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#21075 - 05/26/04 11:11 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Will look more closely at that one as well - thanks!!

No prob on the not taking offense - lol, I know my choice of eating isn't the norm - but I also know I've done the research to make sure I am eating healthy and keeping up with complete nutrition - which is where a lot of vegetarians seem to falter at. But - as with cats' needs not being met by what would meet a dog's need , it does stand to reason a sugar glider's need is not necessarily the same as a human's so what works for me, unfortunetly might not work for a glider. (But I had to try to see if it could - who knows, maybe someday down the line someone with a good nutritional and scientific knowledge base will do more research with the goal of a vegetarian glider in mind, like they've done with dogs) <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thinkerg.gif" alt="" />

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#21076 - 05/27/04 05:24 AM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr />
.....Actually, the BML diet uses turkey baby food as the main source of protein.....

<hr /></blockquote><font class="post">

[:"blue"] A/P is somewhat confused about the BML diet unless it has been changed very recently. To the best of my knowledge, there is absolutely NO mention of turkey baby food in thr BML diet.[/]

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#21077 - 05/27/04 05:39 AM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr />
.....As you probably know, sugar gliders are insectivores and their protein comes mostly from bugs.....

<hr /></blockquote><font class="post">

[:"blue"] The studies that I have seen describe Sugar Gliders as omnivores or gummivores. While it is true that during a few months of the year, gliders feed heavily on insects, it is also true that for a large part of the year gliders feed primarily on sap, pollen, manna, gum and other plant materials with minimal intake of animal protein. To call gliders insectivores probably misrepresents their true ecological niche. [/]

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#21078 - 05/27/04 05:52 AM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Chicken, I meant chicken.... Whoops... I don't feed BML, I guess I just got a little confused.

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#21079 - 05/27/04 06:35 AM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


What do you cooks for Thanksgiving??? <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/roflmao.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/roflmao.gif" alt="" /> <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/roflmao.gif" alt="" />

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#21080 - 05/27/04 03:00 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Ok, gliders in the wild eat primarily insects, sap and nectar. In many books and encyclopedias this is referred to as an "insectivore" diet. The gummivore one is new to me, but if you want to find a happy medium I'll just call them "omnivores".

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#21081 - 05/27/04 03:27 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Lucy Offline
Serious Glideritis

Registered: 02/14/01
Posts: 7354
Loc: Lexington, KY
I think you probably could do Darcy's diet with only eggs and maybe yogurt as additional protein. I feed this diet to some of my gliders, use the extra protein version, and only add protein every few nights.

However, my guess is that within the product itself there might be animal by-products. You might want to check with the manufacturer before going this route.
_________________________


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#21082 - 05/27/04 05:00 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Maybe if you don't check with the manufacturer (or contense lables) then you could be more satifyed feeding it... (j/k) Sorry, I just had to add that joke in. If you can stomach it (mostly the smell!) I have fed chicken in chicken gravy baby food to my gliders in a pinch when ALL the pet stores in the area were out of mealworms (shortage in Nebraska?). They lovedit, but as I said it really smells. Here's my question with just feeding a soft protein, Aren't mealworms/insects also used to help clean their teeth, or was I misinformed? What will the glider (if I'm correct) use as a substitute "toothbrush"?

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#21083 - 05/27/04 08:04 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Critter Creations Offline
Glider Addict

Registered: 11/02/00
Posts: 3398
Loc: Rock Falls, IL, USA
You could easily feed the BML diet if you are not bothered by the chicken baby food it contains. BML IMO is one of the best diets out there for sugar gliders. THere are other proven diets, but to be honest I do not know a great deal about them so I won't go into them, but you could look at them and see what fits in your lifestyle. When you feed the BML diet the insects are really fed for the protein as much as they are fed to help clean the sugar gliders teeth. You could get away with feeding 2-4 per glider a day so they could clean their teeth. Another way for them to clean their teeth is with branches in their cage. We use apple tree branches so they can clean their teeth by chewing on these. We still feed mealworms, but more on a treat basis. So this is an option as well. I don't see any reason why you couldn't raise sugar gliders in a healthy fashion. It's nice to see someone do their research before they get their sugar gliders though. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> You will make a great glider owner when you decide to bring some into your life.
_________________________
Danielle
owned by 4 dogs and 2 gliders really soon
Formerly known as K & D Exotics


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#21084 - 05/31/04 07:03 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


I didn't even know about the tree branches for teeth cleaning!! Thanks so much to all of you for the input on here! I have about a week to decide which route to go with the diet plan. The pet shop called to let my coworker know they have the two baby girls in now (I don't speak Japanese so need my coworker to translate), and they said they keep their new gliders with them for at least ten days so they can thoroughly check them out and make sure they're healthy and everything is ok. Sooo - I'll have to decide this week what route to go. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/read.gif" alt="" />

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#21085 - 06/07/04 10:31 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Ok last double checky question - for at least a short period! I'm going to be picking the pair of girls up this weekend (hopefully). I've picked up 2 packs of Ensure Plus( a pack of vanilla and a pack of strawberry flavored). I also picked up some calcium supplements at the BX.
So here're the questions:

1. How many mg of calcium per 8 oz Ensure mix should there be added?

2. Fruits and veggies are added as a daily addition to the Ensure - now for the protein.
One of the responses in this thread said adding extra yogurt/eggs every few days should be a workable plan - is this in addition to an added protein source daily, or is this referring to total protein all together in the plan?

3. And for the teeth cleaning - I've looked all over the net for places that will sell apple tree branches - no luck finding them. Will any kind of tree branch work (purchased from pet supply source) or is there something specific inherant to apple tree branches that makes it stand out as a good option?

I just want to make sure I have everything prepared for them before I go to pick them up - that way I can get them adjusted to their new home and have a meal ready for them. (plan to make the Ensure and calcium mix as soon as I can find a definitive on amount of calcium to the mix. I have tablets and will need to crush them up before hand and need to know if using the full tablet is ok, or if it should be broken up to smaller doses, or even added to for larger doses. After that it'll just be a matter of keeping up with fresh fruit every day - the BX sells frozen veges, but not frozen fruit. If the yogurt and eggs alone still won't cut it for protein needs, will see about doing the freeze dried bug thing.)

I'm pretty excited though - the gliders have been at the pet shop for about 2 weeks now. The reason behind this has me pretty peeved - the shop found out they were younger than expected - really irks me that someone would put the babies out for sale so young. The positive thing that makes the shop itself look a little better is that the girl who takes care of the gliders when they do carry them (not a common occurance) really takes care of them. She was the one who let my coworker know about how young the gliders actually turned out to be, and suggested that rather than just making that sale right away with the money, that they take care of them for at least another week (or likewise, if I was determined to pick them up then, that I take a week of leave from work to stay home with them). The girl in the shop caring for them says they're both pretty happy and healthy gliders though and it'll just be a little less than a week now before I can bring them home.
But - just want to make sure I've got a definite game plan for the diet specifics beforehand. Thank you to everyone who's posted so far with all the good info!!
<img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/cloud9.gif" alt="" />

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#21086 - 06/08/04 02:31 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Critter Creations Offline
Glider Addict

Registered: 11/02/00
Posts: 3398
Loc: Rock Falls, IL, USA
I can't answer any questions on the Darcy diet as I don't feed it so I don't have the answers so hopefully someone will be along to help you with that.
As far as the branches though you can get manzanita branches off of ebay quite regularly and these will work and last a long time as they are very hard. Hope this helps you out for the branches. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />
_________________________
Danielle
owned by 4 dogs and 2 gliders really soon
Formerly known as K & D Exotics


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#21087 - 06/08/04 02:42 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Anonymous
Unregistered


Apple branches are generally used the most because they are non-toxic for people and animals. Sugar gliders also like to nibble on the leaves and blossoms. <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" />

Here is a list of toxic plants so perhaps you can find a different branch that would work for you: The Toxicity of Plants

Also it is very important that whatever branches you use should be free of pesticides, paint, paracites, bugs or anything that might make your glider sick. Just picking a branch from a park might be risky, so make sure you know the history of the tree. Some people also wash and bake branches (in the oven at 200 degrees) to make sure there's nothing still alive in the branch when they give it to their gliders.

I'm sorry I can't help you with Darcy's diet, I don't know anything about that diet.

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#21088 - 06/08/04 05:47 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Srlb Offline
Glideritis Anonymous

Registered: 10/30/03
Posts: 16758
Loc: St. Johns, Florida
Hi there. Sorry it took me so long to post. I went back into the archieves to get exactly what Donna (mother to Darcy) stated about the Calcium.

</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr />
The High Protein and High Calcium are also High Sodium: 290 vs. 200mg per 8 oz bottle. I prefer the Regular or Light, and add 3/8 tsp pharmaceutical Calcium Carbonate as it does not settle out as quickly as RepCal (JurassiCal also stays in suspension longer than RepCal.)


<hr /></blockquote><font class="post">
and another
</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr />
If you can't get Ruger's and prefer US Pharmaceutical grade calcium carbonate to snake-grade Jurassical, try your pharmacy for chewable, unflavored calcium carbonate tablets (I believe they are sold as an antacid). They crush easily and dissolve well (according to the pharmacist) and what does not dissolve is mostly binders. Ask for the ones that contain 260mg elemental calcium, and use one and a half tablets per bottle or can of Ensure. (To break a tablet in half, press down on opposite edges on a hard surface.) Crush between two tablespoons. At the pharmacy I pestered for this information, 100 would cost less than two dollars.


<hr /></blockquote><font class="post">

or if you would just like to see the whole thread it is Here !!

I have mine on the Darcy diet, and I use a calcium citrate pill and I got a pill crusher and smash it to real fine powder and than shake the tar out of it!! It doesnt all disolve but my two lick the bowl clean anyway so i know they are getting their calcium in...

Hope this helps ya!
_________________________
Peggy
Critter Love
Critter LoveŽ Diet Center

If you want to know what a person is like, watch how he treats others.

You'll never know what the outcome is if you don't step up and try.


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#21089 - 06/08/04 06:59 PM Re: Protein alternatives?? (Vegetarian looking) [Re: ]
Charlie H Offline
Glider Slave

Registered: 11/13/03
Posts: 1659
Loc: Wallis Texas
</font><blockquote><font class="small">Quote:</font><hr />
Gliders on the other hand need at least 30% protein in their diet, and the more protein the better (up to about 50%).

<hr /></blockquote><font class="post">

I would like to know what A/P feeds to get a 30% to 50% protein diet. When reading these diets it gets confusing. Do you mean 30% to 50% protein or protein source. There is a world of difference.
Charlie H
_________________________
Rescue & Rehabilation
http://www.angelfire.com/tx/glidertree/
[]glidertree@toast.net[/]

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