Can ferrets eat cat food?
What about treats, can ferrets eat cat treats?
Today our post will focus on another nutritional question and that is what kind of cat food can ferrets eat. Here we will talk about dry cat food also known as cat biscuits and kibble. Also, we will talk about wet and canned cat food and cat treats so you can be sure you chose the best option for your ferret.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
What Do Ferrets Eat?
Ferrets are obligated carnivores, which means they should eat raw meat diet. But, due to the fact that it is not always possible to feed ferrets raw meat, there is an alternative and that is kibble/dry food. That dry food can be the one made for cats, but it mustn’t be the one made for dogs. So, to answer your “can ferrets eat cat food” question – yes, ferrets can eat cat food. Keep in mind that you can’t buy the first cat food you see and here you can learn all about them.
Can You Feed Ferrets Cat Food?
Ferrets and cats have similar nutritional requirements so you can use cat food to feed your ferret. So, yes, you can feed ferrets cat food, but only a certain type. Due to the fact that ferrets have special digestion, there are a few rules you have to respect to keep your ferret healthy. You can see them right below.
Meat Yes, Fruits & Vegetables No
A good quality cat food should have meat as the main ingredient. Cats need meat just like ferrets. Recommended cat food should have at least the first 3 ingredients on the list meat (turkey, lamb, beef, chicken). Fruits and vegetables shouldn’t be on the top of the list, they don’t work well with ferrets, especially grains. That is why you should pick grain-free cat food.
High Percentage Of Proteins And Fats
Ferrets need nutrition that is high in proteins and fats. By high, I mean 30-40% of proteins and 20-30% of fat. The majority of energy ferret gets is from proteins and fats so make sure those two are with the high percentage. Make sure you get cat food with those percentages to keep the nutritional value high for your ferrets.
Low Percentage Of Fiber
Fiber is completely unnecessary in the ferret’s diet. They don’t know how to digest it and it can only make them sick. So, avoid any cat food that comes with a fiber percentage that is more than 3%. Too much fiber can cause various problems with digestion, it can even cause blockages that are extremely dangerous for ferrets.
What Kind Of Cat Food Can Ferrets Eat?
As you know, there are different cat foods on the market. You can set them apart by the ingredients and structure so you can have dry cat food, wet cat food, and canned cat food. If you want to be sure to choose the best cat dry food, read my post about the best ferret kibble and you will learn everything from fat and protein percentage to recommended brands of kibble.
Can Ferrets Eat Dry Cat Food?
Yes, ferrets can eat dry cat food. Cat biscuits are one of the best options for ferrets if you can’t feed them with raw meat. But, not every dry cat food is good. You have to make sure the food doesn’t have too much fiber and it has to be grain-free. Besides that, dry cat food should have a high percentage of protein and fat. If you decide that cat food is a better option for your lifestyle, then make sure your ferret always has enough water because dry cat food requires a lot of water.
Can Ferrets Eat Kitten Food?
Yes, ferrets can eat kitten food, as long as it follows every requirement for good ferret nutrition. Kitten food is milder than adult cat food so if you have a ferret with some digestive problem, it is a good idea to start with some high-quality grain-free kitten food and see from there.
Can Ferrets Eat Wet Cat Food?
Yes, your ferret can eat wet cat food, but I wouldn’t recommend it. Just like the dry food above, wet cat food has to be high-quality, grain-free, without salt or sugar, and high in protein and fat. The main problem with wet cat food is the fact that almost none of the brands produce it with that high criteria so I would suggest that you avoid wet cat food for your ferret. Also, your ferret will have tartar build-up from wet food much faster than from dry food which is not good.
Can Ferrets Eat Canned Cat Food?
Yes, ferrets can eat canned cat food, but, again, I wouldn’t recommend it. Wet cat food and canned cat food are basically the same things which means that the same rules apply. If you can find good canned food that is high in protein and fat, low in fibers, without salt or sugar, and with high nutritional value, then you can give it to your ferret. Most canned foods are high in proteins and fat, but their nutritional value is low so your ferret won’t get everything he needs from it. You have to give your ferret more canned food than dry food for the same amount of nutrients due to the fact that over half of canned food is water.
Can Ferrets Eat Cat Treats?
Yes, you can give your ferret cat treats, but only if they are high in proteins and fat, low in fibers, salt, and sugar. One of the best treats you can use for a ferret is salmon oil and salmon paste you can get in your pet store. Just keep in mind that treats are made for training, occasional snack, or reward. You don’t have to give your ferret treat every day for no reason. Use it for grooming your ferret, for visit to the vet, etc.
I hope that I have answered your question: “Can ferrets eat cat food?” and that you know the difference between good and bad food for ferrets. Make sure you give them only the best kibble so they can stay happy and healthy for a long time! Cat food is OK, but make sure you choose the right brands! If you want to know more about ferrets, subscribe to the Friendly Ferret newsletter today!