Message Number: YG214 | New FHL Archives Search
From: Sidsel L. Espersen
Date: 2001-02-25 19:58:00 UTC
Subject: [Ferret-Health-list] Live Mice?

This is gonna sound a bit..hmmm...bloody!

A friend of mine had two ferrets in her care, and one of them
just loves mice, well he was feed one mouse, and he killed it
fast and ate it, my friend thought that maybe he was hungry
still, so the ferret had another mouse - wrong! The ferret
wasn't hungry, but it sure was playful, and for around 5
minutes the poor mouse was used as a ferret would normally use
a squeaker toy. (Only the ferret seemed to enjoy the
mousesounds more than he likes squeaker toys now.)

Bottomline is I think the ferret will enjoy the kill, just as
much as my guys enjoy their sandbox or fluffyballs. Of course
I could give the ferret another kind of stimulation, but my
intetion is to provide my new kit with as much fun as his
little heart can possible bear! (And as long as I know the
mouse has been well cared for while alive, I have no trouble
whatsoever about feeding live mice!)

As for the bachterias (SP?) I will be using mice suited for
reptile food, tested and checked over and over, and the kit
will get a worm pill once a month to ensure his health!

I did read the Diet Posts and I found them very informative,
but I am unsure whether to feed only BARF or ½ and ½. The
three older ferrets I have will not be feed BARF since they
are all turning 3 this year, and it's hard enough to integrate
a new kinda kibble. The new kit will probably have a mix of
Eukanuba Kitten and Companions Choice available at all times,
and BARF for supper and breakfast.

As for the nutritional values of mice and other prey animals,
you should go to - they
have a list somewhere.

Sorry for such a long post!

- Sidsel

-----Original Message-----
From: FurTulsa []
Sent: Monday, February 26, 2001 9:13 AM

As long as the whole BARF issue is out here. I have
seen/read etc all the arguements about the "benefits" if
feeding live mice for nutrition and "stimulation". I have no
"moral" issue with it and have fed live prey to animals who
DO need it. (per working with exotic rescue)
I am also NOT referring to chicken gravies, eggs or things
like that... strictly the live mouse issue.
But on the whole ferret/mouse issue, no matter what I read
about the benefits... two main questions stick out in my
1. Nutritional value. I have trouble believing a mouse has
sufficent meat protein and fat levels for a ferret, nor do I
know of any mutelids whose "natural" diet is mice. IF you
were going to feed live/fresh prey... wouldn't animals like
chickens or rabbits be more beneficial nutritionaly speaking
and closer to a "natural" food source?
2. Does the Domestic Ferret *really* need the "thrill of the
hunt" to be stimulated and/or psychologically satisfied?
Mine seem to be plenty stimulated and challenged with the
stuffed mice, toys, playtime and interaction I provide them.
I go out of my way to find things like baby crib toys to
attach to their cages and switch them around and this seems
to provide a lot of stimulating activity.

I am not against BARF or live feeding etc .... I just need
to be convinced the animal needs it for nutritional or
psychological reasons... and I have yet to be convinced that
the Domestic Ferret does.
Opinions? Thoughts?

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