Message Number: YG1930 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Karen Purcell, DVM
Date: 2001-03-31 16:57:00 UTC
Subject: Re: Ferret diet question


> I posted this earlier in the week but I didn't get a response. I
> didn't complain about it...just figured you all were busy with other
> things. Since Chris and Dr. Williams suggested reposting, that is
> what I decided to do.
I seem to be catching the reposts tonight ;-)

> I just want to make sure that I'm clear on the food issue.
> #1- Rice is better than corn because it does not cause crystals to
> form in the urine which could cause blockage.
True, though even rice isn't ideal, as ferrets do not digest
carbohydrates very well.

> #2- Reducing protein levels in older ferrets is only necessary if
> they are already having renal difficulties.

> #3- Reducing fat levels is only necessary if they are less active.
Well, I call them fat myself ;-) (I have a previously 5 lb male,
now down to 4 'slimmer' pounds run off by the new kit)
Essentially, yes.

> I was going to switch my 4-5 year olds to TF for Adults, but all are
> healthy and still fairly active, except for Teddy, which I just
> posted about. There doesn't seem to be much of a difference in the
> protein, or even the fat content for that matter.
> Should I still switch or leave well enough alone? They also get
> Eukanuba Kitten or Cat mixed with the TF and a separate bowl of
> NutraMax Kitten, which I think I might do away with because I'm tired
> of it getting caught in their palates. Anybody else have that problem?

No, but I removed the kitten foods from the ferrets' diet when I
added the 5 lb boy (love that ferret!) and he trimmed down 1/2 lb
fairly quickly.
Sounds like your crew is doing fine - I tend to be in the "if it
ain't broke, don't fix it crowd" when it comes to diet, unless it is
completely objectionable (ferrets on Tender Vittles give me the
shudders, and their teeth!!)

Hope this helps (can you tell I need to get some sleep?),
-Dr. Karen
This e-mail is provided for general informational purposes only. It is in
no way intended as a replacement for a consultation with a qualified
licensed veterinarian. If you are concerned about your pet's health, you
should seek the advice of your regular veterinarian as soon as possible.