I no longer use this blog, but I'm leaving it up for archival purposes. Feel free to ask me ferret questions, though, through email instead. (See most recent post.)
Sharing from Ferret Owners For Adults (facebook):
“Please don’t feed your ferret Zupreme Grain Free Kibble! Zupreme Grain Free is killing ferrets! I know most people on here already know why kibble is less than ideal. But if you are on here and wavering on the idea of switching to raw, I hope this gives you the little nudge you need to resolve your decision.
There is yet another member of our forums posting about a ferret that was blocked up with stones and needed emergency surgery, and sure enough this ferret was being fed Zupreme Grain Free. This is the 4th case I think I have heard of this happening on this kibble in the past several months just on this board alone. This has been a widely spread issue, and vets are starting to notice. Hopefully somebody with some influence can shame this company into doing something about their crap kibble.
The kibble causes stones to form due to the high content of a particular item -in this case, peas- which throw off the balance of the Ph levels in the urine. There’s a more scientific explanation, but that’s the gist of it. It can take as little as a month for a ferret to go from healthy to completely blocked up with stones and failing fast. Surgery is required to save the animal, and if there are too many stones or they get into the kidneys, they will likely die.
I am thinking that Zupreme may have changed something in their kibble formula recently with the grain free to cause all of these stone cases to crop up all of a sudden. They changed their normal formula without warning, this could have changed too.
Please spread the word if you can, however you can. We need to hit the company back where it hurts- their bottom line if it’s the only way to get change. The media talks about all of these bad Chinese contaminated pet products, but no one knows about the things like this in the pet food industry going on here. People need to know so they can make informed decisions and hopefully, so we can save some lives.
Also, if this does not convince you to go raw, that’s fine. But PLEASE change brands to a better kibble if you feed Zupreme, either type. It’s not a good brand to begin with, and now that it is potentially killing pets…. there are so many better grain free options.”
I always recommend Wysong Ferret Epigen 90. It’s the best kibble out there for ferrets. You can mix in other high quality foods too to add variety, get your ferrets used to eating different foods, and cut costs if one food is on sale or just costs less. Currently my other 2 foods in the mix are EVO and Nature’s Variety Instinct Chicken (cat food). I’m looking to phase out the EVO as it also contains peas. I look for sales on Orijen and other high quality grain free foods. This chart is helpful, but there are other foods that were not analyzed that may be near the top as well: http://moredooks.herobo.com/search.php?chart=ferret
Holy CRAP, I did not know this! Spreading the word!
[Submitted by equuslupus]
More Dooks Food Chart is generally considered to be an excellent way of determining whether or not the food you feed your ferret is good. [Ferretorium note: The site is down, so until it’s back up, see this and this.]
I currently feed a 50/50 mix of Innova Cat Food and BLUE Wilderness Kitten. It costs me $40 for 2 large bags and they have lasted for about 2 months now. I’ll probably buy more food in another 2-4 weeks. With 3 ferrets, it breaks down to $13 per ferret for the two bags.
Feeding higher quality foods means my ferrets eat less, their coats and digestive systems are better, teeth are cleaner, and they are much more active then when I was feeding Purina/Innova.
Sorry for the blurry camera phone photos. ^^’
Showed my mom this blog and managed to convince her to try feeding our ferrets a better diet! (they’ve been eating 8-in-1 for most of their lives, didn’t know it wasn’t very good for them until I read it here.) We tried giving them some raw chicken, to start off. Fujiko (top, age 5 or 6) took interest and licked and chewed the ferretone off of it before spitting it out. Bacchus (bottom, age 8) accepted and ate a few pieces handed to him. He unfortunately ended up with a tummy ache and had a couple funny poops, but seemed to feel better after that.
I think mom’s going to offer them raw meat from time to time from here on out, but mostly they’ll be eating dry food; she’s switching them onto Zupreem grain free and has started referring to the 8-in-1 as “fruity pebbles.” :)
Thank you for having such an informative blog, I’ve learned a lot about ferret care and the fuzz butts are benefiting! Also, thank you for your response to my ask a while back about Bacchus’ incontinence problem. I’m still trying to get my mom to take him to the vet to be examined, but hopefully she will soon.
Aaah, this warms my heart! I’m happy you guys are getting something out of my blog, it makes me happy to know I’m helping. Your fuzzies are beautiful and should start eating the raw more readily soon. It takes them a little while to ease into it, but the’ll learn to love it in no time. :)
Haha, fruity pebbles… xD I’ll have to remember that…
Thanks for the submission and the encouraging words! ♥
Carnivores are gross.
Tossed a pre-killed fuzzy mouse in the ferret room on top of their raw mash. Didn’t really expect them to eat it, honestly, but I had an extra one left over from my snakes.
I went back into the ferret room about an hour or two later to say hi. I found half of the mouse all chewed in half, the top half nowhere to be found. Charming. But I’m glad they’re eating it! It’s really good for them and I’m happy they ate it with no Ferretone dressing. :)