A ferret is one of the nicest pet to have around. It is fun, playful, friendly and highly trainable just like a cat or dog. A ferret may have similarities with a cat from size and facial features but they have a lot of differences as well.
For one, a ferret requires higher maintenance and care which makes it very dependent on its owner. A ferret also has different dietary requirement that needs to be strictly adhered to.
To be very specific about it, a ferret requires on its diet the following: 30 to 40 percent high protein, 20 to 30 percent high in fat and only very little at most 3 percent fiber.
Protein must also be of high quality, easily digestible and only animal-based as there is also plant-based protein the market.
Ferret has a unique and tricky food requirement, which can be a cause of concern as there are not a lot of commercially available products that can pass the standards set. But finally now, this need has been slowly addressed by commercial pet food manufacturers with the availability of certain products in the market.
Cat food is for cats. It is basically created for a cat’s nutritional requirement. Fortunately for cat owners, cat food is commercially available, cheap and convenient.
Unfortunately for ferret owner, there is so very little commercially available ferret food in the market. To ensure that it is getting the right sustenance, a ferret owner makes its own pet food. This can be a quite a hassle, time consuming and also expensive. But because this is all for the welfare and love for your ferret, a ferret owner makes it happen.
But there can be times when you run out of homemade or commercially available ferret food or some instances when you need a variety and mix to a ferret’s diet. It can be handy to be able to reach for some cat food, right? And now, you actually can. If you are unable to find a good quality ferret food, yes you may have to settle for cat food. There are now some very high quality cat food that not only pass the 30-40 percent animal protein content and even exceeding it. Just make sure that what you feed your ferret is premium quality cat with contents match its nutritional requirements.
Can I Feed My Ferret Cat Biscuits?
Yes, but be very picky.
Though there are now widely available high-quality cat food that you can feed a ferret, it is important to scrutinize the ingredients first. Raw meat should be the first main ingredient and virtually no fiber, vegetable or fruit content if possible.
If you are going to give any cat food to a ferret, be sure of its high quality ingredients. Usual cat biscuits in the market though are made up off whole wheat flour, milk and egg. And these are products that are not tolerated well by a ferret and therefore should not be fed to your pet.
To understand why a ferret follows a strict and special diet, you need to know that a ferret has a very delicate and short intestinal tract which is pegged at about 5 times the length of its body. This means that food passes through a ferret’s digestive system rather very quickly. Because it is a carnivore, it can only derive nutrition from meat products and cannot digest well plant matters. A cat, for instance even if it is another obligate carnivore, has a longer intestinal tract 10 times the length of its body. This is why not all cat food is fit for a ferret.
Cat biscuit is not totally forbidden as well. It can be given a treat once in a while. And one should choose a better quality cat biscuit too. Some easily available ones contain so much filler so be very picky.
Another thing one can do is to make your own cat biscuit so you can decide and control the ingredients used and ensure that only those that can be tolerated by a ferret will be in the mix. The usual biscuit recipe can be tweaked so raw meat such as chicken, beef and lamb can be incorporated to make tailored to a ferret’s needs.
Specialized care is really needed to make sure a ferret gets enough nutrition. It may require a lot of time, planning and preparation but seeing your ferret happy, energetic and contented makes all efforts all the while.