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Discussion Starter #1
Well, we have had a fair amount of itching with the chicken, so I've kind of been playing with it a bit to see if I can figure anything out. I'd been putting a half pound in the ground rabbit, the chicken muscle, fat, and skin, then also feeding a few cubes of straight chicken at night for a snack. I had bought some gizzard, but Kitten was the only one who would eat it, so I was only feeding it to him. I noticed him start to dig in his ears after a couple days of eating gizzard, and I was getting more itching slowly over time with him.

I'm not sure exactly what it is, if it's the amount of chicken they are getting, and I also pulled all the skin off completely when I make my mix now, so does it possibly have something to do with that? Not sure. So right now the only chicken they are getting is the half pound I put in my mix, just the muscle meat and fat from one thigh. No skin, no gizzard, and no extra chicken at night for a snack.

The digging in the ears has stopped, and the itching is slowly subsiding each day. I think this is what I'm going to stick with, and just give it a few weeks. They were shedding ALOT, but that is even better, well, with everyone but Kitten. He is shedding much more, but he has a really really thick fur, and I'm almost wondering if it's because it's spring. I can brush him several times a day, and I still get a fist full of hair every time I brush.

I've been brushing them alot, and Lucy just loves it! She jumps up on the half wall by the steps, and walks back and forth while I brush. I have a little pony saddle we bought, sitting on that wall, and I haven't had the heart to move it because she LOVES to sit on it while I brush her there too. She is just so goofy!

It's just a crappy cell phone pic, but it's just to funny not to share! She even jumps up on the saddle to hide when I pull out the vacuum, and sometimes when I wake up in the mornings, she's sitting there when I open the bedroom door. :p Ya can't help but laugh at her!

 

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I love that pic of her on the cute saddle!

I had a thought when reading about the chicken ... I am wondering if the kitties aren't reacting to something the chickens are fed or encounter in their (commercial raised) environment and excret mostly to the chicken's skin and internal organs, and not the muscle meat?
 

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Heidi has a good idea. Your kitties seems to all have the SAME allergies? What are the chances?!?

I'd try some organic chicken (or grow your own poultry). Or just stick with low percentage of chicken and add other meats? Perhaps some beef heart next (not ground), my kids love that stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Heidi is probably right I'm sure. I had better luck with the WalMart thighs. I did find a local farm that raises pasture raised chickens and ducks. Their site says they also offer quail and pheasant, so I'm going to check it out. I'm not complaining though, they are doing so much better than they were before, and they aren't any where near as uncomfortable as they were in the past. Lucy Goose looks so much better.......so much! She feels better too, I can tell. She was always the worst one.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
So I called this farm, and they have quartered and whole chickens, but she also has a duck, and I might want to try it. What is duck meat like in comparison to chicken? Is it more fatty, and how about the smell? It's a whole frozen duck, I might just cut all the meat off the bone, cube it, and freeze it in 1/2 lb amounts.

They raise quail and pheasants each year, but they don't have any left, you have to pre order them as she said they are quite expensive to raise.
 

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Quail are not that expensive to raise. I have a friend who raises his own (where I order mine from) and he says as long as you keep them warm, fed properly, and they feel "safe" they're easypeasy. And cheaper in the long run (although I get a good deal hehe).

I have used duck, it is much fattier, but I usually cut a bit off so it doesn't cause runs. Since you're doing a mix, it should be fine as long as they have the bone to counter balance. I always worry with mixes that you don't know who is getting what portion of what. :( Chunks is just so much easier to portion for us.. we can see exactly who is getting what (ex. our eldest doesnt do well with the amt of bone the youngsters do.. in a grind/mix, we'd not be able to adjust his diet as easily to accommodate this).

With your duck, I'd def. just use most of the meat/fat, maybe keep the ribs..
 

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That is a funny pic of her in the saddle. I think she's deemed it her safe place and you won't be able to remove it without her putting up a fight! :)
 
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