Ferrets are among the most popular pets to own by the pet industry. They have a unique body structure that makes them natural at feeding on animals that live in the wild. However, what happens when you have a ferret as a pet and would want to provide them with something else but meat?
Can ferrets eat grass? The answer is no. Ferrets should not eat grass!
Ferrets are strict meat-eaters. They are not made to eat grass. Their digestive system can’t handle it, and your ferret may suffer. Why? Well, ferrets need a diet high in animal-based protein and fat.
Fiber is something they can not digest well. A ferret’s digestive system is not meant to handle fiber. Ferrets are obligate carnivores. Their whole system is made to thrive on meat. Feeding your ferret grass will cause it to become constipated or suffer from diarrhea.
What Should Ferrets Eat?
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A diet high in proteins and fats is a must for your ferret’s health. That does not include grass. Ferrets are strict carnivores who should be fed meat-based pet foods that provide them with the proper nutrients they need.
Should I Feed my Ferret Meat?
But should you feed your ferret meat? Indeed, a ferret’s diet should consist of food like chicken, beef, or turkey.
Some examples are:
- chicken breast
- chicken wings
- fish such as salmon
- organs (liver)
- whole prey (feeder mice)
- raw meaty bones
- ferret treats
- ferret snacks
Ferrets are more dependent on their owners for feeding them the correct type of food. Unlike cats, they don’t hunt but consume food at home.
The Frankenprey Diet
The Frankenprey Diet is based on the idea to feed your ferret a diet consisting of different kinds of meats that, on their whole, would mimic the body of a prey animal (such as rabbit or mice).
To do so, you can combine different body parts such as chicken wings and beef, plus some chicken liver. There is a specific ratio of meats, bones, and organs you should be aiming for.
80/10/10 = 80% meat, 10% organs, 10% bones.
In case you want to find out more about this diet, head over to: https://thenaturalferret.wordpress.com/diet/frankenprey-raw-diet/
An excellent resource for everything ferret-related!
If you do not want to deal with raw meat all the time, there is an alternative. Kibble.
Kibble is dry food and is made out of a mixture of different ingredients. Ferrets need a unique kibble consisting of over 95% of protein. Unlike dogs, ferrets can not eat kibble that contains plant material.
Make sure to check the ingredients list and look out for stuff like “chicken by-product.” That should definitely not be listed as the number one ingredient. You should aim to buy kibble that has “real” meat as its main ingredients.
read.. can I give my ferret hay?
Another good thing about kibble is that it’s still high in protein but is easier to chew. This means your ferret will not be running away all the time when you plan to feed your ferret. You can also provide them with a quality commercial ferret diet. You can read more about the recommended ferrets foods here.
How often do Ferrets Eat?
Ferrets are carnivores. They have short digestive tracts, which implies that they need to eat small meals frequently. It is not uncommon for a ferret to eat 6-8 times per day. Ferrets eat up to 7% of their body weight in foods daily.
That’s why it is essential to provide your furry friend with a constant supply of food. Do not forget to give a continuous supply of water either!
Ferrets should never eat fruits. Fruits contain high amounts of sugar, which can lead to serious digestive issues and even death. Although some fruits are okay for dogs, the same cannot be said for ferrets.
Examples of fruit that you should never give to a ferret include apples, cherries, figs, grapes, guavas, lemons, limes, and mangoes. Just to be clear: DO NOT feed ANY fruits at all. Never!
Ferrets should never eat vegetables either. The fiber in vegetables will cause serious digestive problems for your ferret. There are no exceptions to this rule. DO NOT feed any vegetables at all! They are not beneficial to your ferrets’ health. And plainly said, ferrets do not need plants in their diet.
Plants (fruits, vegetables) are not a part of a ferret diet, and they should never be fed to your pets. This includes things like grass. Ferrets cannot eat grass because they do not possess the necessary enzymes for digesting cellulose found in plant material.
Are Ferrets Wild Animals?
Although they are often described as wild animals, they are actually domesticated species. They were originally bred as hunting animals. First records date back more than 2000 years. In ancient Egypt, they were kept as pets and to hunt down rodents.
In some areas of the world, Ferrets are still used for hunting rabbits. You can read our article here.
From the ancient Egyptians to the present day, Ferrets have been taken as pets and used for hunting. Ferrets are strict meat-eaters. That means you should not feed them with any plant-based foods. Grass, for example, would be one of those foods ferrets should not eat. Ferrets need a diet based on animal protein. You could feed raw meats or rely on a diet based on dry food (kibble).
Last update on 2021-07-28 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API