Levine SY, Toddes B, Erikson J. 1999. Conversion of six domestic ferrets (Mustela putorius furo) from commercial cat foods to a commercial domestic ferret food: a food acceptance trial. In Proceedings of the Third Conference on Zoo and Wildlife Nutrition, AZA Nutrition Advisory Group, Columbus, OH.
For years the Philadelphia Zoo struggled to find a simple, palatable diet for the domestic ferrets (Mustela putorius furo) in the Philadelphia Zoo collection. The ferrets are used in the zoos education program and housed at the Children’s Zoo. Many of the animal caretakers at the Children’s Zoo are volunteers; thus, the animals are cared for by a number of different people. For this reason, the diets for animals housed at the Children’s Zoo must be simple to ensure consistent feeding practices by all animal caretakers. The Philadelphia Zoos base diet for the ferrets was a combination of dry and canned commercial cat foods. To entice the animals to consume this combination of food yogurt as well as other dietary augments were frequently needed. The dietary components for each animal’s diet had been derived through trial and error in food acceptance. Actual feeding practice was inconsistent.13_LEVINE.pdf     101 KB