If you look at the list of ingredients, of commercial pet foods, including rat pellets, many will include Yucca schidigera.
This is an extract from a plant that grows wild in the deserts of Southwestern USA and Mexico. Research has shown that it helps animals utilize nitrogen more efficiently, and excrete less in their stool and urine.
This is beneficial for their health, as they don’t need to ingest as much protein in their diet to support normal growth and metabolism, their liver and kidneys don’t have to work as hard and they don’t produce as much ammonia.
As you know, ammonia is very bad for rats’ respiratory systems. So, we feed our Roof Rats lower protein lab blocks than Mazuri’s (which is 23%): Envigo Teklad Global 18% protein. Because Teklad’s lab blocks don’t include Yucca schidigera, we give it to them in their drinking water. It is safe for all rats, including pregnant, nursing and babies. They are healthier and smell better, too!
By my calculation, you could add about 100mg of Yucca schidigera extract per liter of water. Hence, 1ml of this extract per 2 liters of water: ANIMAL ESSENTIALS YUCCA JOINT & DIGESTION HERBAL EXTRACT LIQUID FOR DOGS & CATS – 2 FL OZ
We have a lot of rats, so we actually use Micro-Aid 30
Want to see the science behind this? Here is links to some of the research regarding Yucca schidigera:
Exploring the Multimodal Role of Yucca schidigera Extract in Protection against Chronic Ammonia Exposure Targeting: Growth, Metabolic, Stress and Inflammatory Responses in Nile Tilapia (Oreochromis niloticus L.)
Effects of Liquid Yucca Supplementation on Nitrogen Excretion, Intestinal Bacteria, Biochemical and Performance Parameters in Broilers
Yucca schidigera extract decreases nitrogen emission via improving nutrient utilisation and gut barrier function in weaned piglets
Dietary Yucca schidigera Extract Supplementation During Late Gestating and Lactating Sows Improves Animal Performance, Nutrient Digestibility, and Manure Ammonia Emission
The protective potential of Yucca schidigera (Sarsaponin 30®) against nitrite-induced oxidative stress in rats
Anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic effects of yucca schidigera: A review
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