ANIMAL FEED STORE: NO GOUT ABOUT IT
We all love our animals. And we all do the best we know how to do, to take great care of them. Sometimes - even when we have the best intentions - we unknowingly do things that can actually hurt our animals. For instance, a lot of us might actually be contributing to gout in our reptiles by feeding them diets that are too rich in protein. Here's the deal . . . Cockroaches are a great food source for our reptiles. But did you know that roaches are able to convert excess dietary protein and nitrogen to uric acid, store this uric acid in their bodies, and then convert it back to essential nutrients when they need it? Amazing, isn't it? This conversion of protein to uric acid typically occurs when roaches consume a diet that is higher than 10% protein. And what do you suppose happens when our reptiles devour these yummy, crunchy, but uric-acid-laden roaches? What happens with uric acid build up (especially combined with insufficient hydration)? Gout. As uric acid builds up in the blood system, it is often converted to crystals and deposited like little shards throughout a reptile's body. You've seen the results of this, haven't you. The reptile you love, struggling to step, with swollen joints and limbs. None of us wants that for our pets. So, what do we do about this?
Let's see what mother nature has to tell us. First, because roaches can convert, store and recapture nutrients, they are able to survive on diets with protein levels around 4%. In the wild, roach protein levels hover around 15 micrograms/milligrams (µg/mg) of uric acid, while roaches fed a diet of 23% protein developed levels around 125 µg/mg. Big difference. Another thing we learn from mother nature is that roaches are quite capable of drawing sufficient protein from fruits, grain, and vegetables. When roaches consume a diet of fruits, grain, and vegetables that is 10% protein or less, they don't build up uric acid and pass that nasty stuff on to our pets. So, how about we do that? That's what we thought! And ta da! Everglades Feed Supergroovy Bug Food was born.