Natural Rearing Report
Well, here I am again. The feeding seems to be getting much easier, less time/trouble as I get into the routine and everyone has settled into the regime very well. Let's talk a little about sources.
Grains can be found in grocery stores that have bulk bins, health food stores and feed stores. Packaging can be by the pound, 25# sacks or 50# sacks. Of course, the larger the quantity, the lower the cost. Unless you can find a larger health food/grocery store like I have in Escondido, the per pound price will probably be higher there. Lowest cost is feed stores in 50# sacks. Lisa has asked her local feed store to special order steel cut barley and it runs about $7.00 for the 50#. I have found $7-9.00 pricing for rolled oats and rolled barley at feed stores.
The 50# sacks of rolled oats and six-grain cereal (used for kibble recipe in previous issue as well as for part of their morning meal) from Boneys in Escondido (a large health food/grocery store) are $22.00.
Goat's milk yogurt and raw goat's milk come from the same health store as the grains. Cost of 32oz yogurt is $4.45 and a quart of milk is $3.49. While this may seem high, quantity used is not that much -- the yogurt lasts about 1« weeks and the milk one week for four dogs. I have not found a dairy that sells raw product to the public, but that is another option. When the health food store is out of one or the other, I revert back to my local grocery store for buttermilk and any plain active culture yogurt.
These are the easiest. Any grocery store or produce market is fine. If you have a source for organically grown items that is even better. I am considering growing some of my own, but haven't put this plan into action yet. Use seasonal vegetables for economy and give variety. Remember, they must be finely ground (a food processor is great) for digestibility or steamed slightly.
This one is the kicker. Have not been able to find a good source of meat yet, certainly don't have a "local rendering plant" as indicated by Volhard's book. Short of raising my own (wish I still had my 70 acres in upstate New York), I have been forced to haunt the grocery stores for sales.
I have picked up ground beef as low as 98 a pound and ground chicken and turkey for as low as 79 a pound. Sometimes you can get the grocery store butcher to mark down meat packages that are close to or on the last sale date. This way I have gotten the ground beef at 49 and 69. I have found some specials on boneless shoulder clod and chuck roasts for $1.49-$1.89 a pound. Summer seems to be better for this particular type of meat sale. While lamb would be excellent, the best price I was able to find was $2.99/pound so this is only an occasional treat. Lisa has found it much cheaper in her area (as well as other meat pricing), so it is probably a function of geography. So far, I have been able to keep the cost of meat to an average $1.00/pound with current feeding of 4# a day for the five meat days (current four dogs).
Homeopathic/Herbal/Bach Remedies are usually found at health food stores. Some stores have better selections than others. Most carry the herbals, but some do not have the homeopathic or Bach. These items can be ordered directly through the mail, sometimes cheaper than in the stores, but sometimes not because of postage.
Standard Homeopathic Products from Homeopathic Educational Services 2124 Kittredge St., Berkeley, CA 94704 (510) 649-0294 Ellon Bach USA, Inc. updated: Traditional Flower Remedies Customer Service Center 302 East Winona Ave. Warsaw, IN 46580 tel (574) 267-7040 fax (574) 267-2614 email@example.com old: 644 Merrick Road Lynbrook, NY 11563-2332 (516) 593-2206The VetLine vitamin/mineral supplement (has the best ingredients I have seen) can be ordered from Holistic Pet Center, (800) 788-7387 for order and/or catalog. The best fatty acid supplement is Omega 3. An excellent source of this is Primrose Oil which is available in capsules (similar to vitamin E) at health food stores. Much superior to adding any type of cooking oil to the food.