Exotis ISSN 2398-2985

Ferrets

Nutrition overview

Contributor(s): Cathy Johnson-Delaney, David Perpinan

Introduction

  • The domestic ferret is a strict carnivore, requiring high protein and fat levels in the diet.
  • The ferret’s anatomy and physiology are adapted to its carnivorous diet.
  • There are a number of commercial ferret diets which adequately meet the ferret’s nutritional needs.
  • Nutritional diseases have been reported in ferrets as seen in other species.
  • There are specific nutritional considerations for ferrets with insulinoma Insulinoma Nutrition for disease states or who are geriatric Nutrition for the geriatric.

Anatomy and physiology

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Clinical significance of the gastrointestinal system

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Commercial diets

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Dietary considerations

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Specific nutritional requirements

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Minerals and vitamins

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Water

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Switching to an optimal diet

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Supplements

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Johnson-Delaney C A (2014) Ferret nutrition. Vet Clin North Am Exotic Anim Pract 17 (3), 449-470 PubMed.
  • Eroshin V V, Reiter A M, Rosenthal K et al (2011) Oral examination results in rescued ferrets: clinical findings. J Vet Dent 48 (1), 8-15 PubMed.
  • Chen S (2010) Advanced diagnostic approaches and current medical management of insulinomas and adrenocortical disease in ferrets (Mustela putorius furo). Vet Clin North Am Exotic Anim Pract 13 (3), 439-452 PubMed.
  • Li X, Glser D, Li W et al (2009) Analyses of sweet receptor gene (Tas1r2) and preference for sweet stimuli in species of carnivore. J Heredity 100 (Suppl 1), 90-100 PubMed.
  • Church R R (2007) The impact of diet on the dentition of the domesticated ferret. Exotic DVM 9 (2), 30-39 IVIS (pdf).
  • Orcutt C J (2003) Ferret urogenital diseases. Vet Clin North Am Exotic Anim Pract 6 (1), 113-138 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Johnson-Delaney C A (2017) Nutrition. In: Ferret Medicine & Surgery. CRC Press, USA. pp 47-64.
  • Powers L V & Brown S A (2012) Basic Anatomy, Physiology and Husbandry. In: Ferrets, Rabbits, and Rodents Clinical Medicine and Surgery. 3rd edn. Eds: Quesenberry K E & Carpenter J W. Elsevier Saunders, USA. pp 1-12.
  • Lewington J H (2007) Nutrition. In: Ferret Husbandry, Medicine and Surgery. 2nd edn. Saunders Elsevier, USA. pp 57-85.


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