It can at times be tempting to share salmon fish with our pet ferrets. But before actually giving a ferret salmon fish, one will want to know whether feeding ferrets on salmon is alright. This article has the answer.
Can ferrets eat salmon? Yes, ferrets can eat a little salmon once in a while. Besides being safe for them, salmon also has nutrients that can be good for ferrets’ health.
Just ensure that you cook the salmon well, before having your ferret eat it, as uncooked salmon may sometimes lead to parasite infestations in ferrets.
Then again, with regard to feeding ferrets on salmon, you also need to beware of the mercury levels controversy. Levels of mercury that can be dangerously high for small animals like ferrets have been found in some wild salmon populations.
This often gets people to ask, can ferrets have seafood such as salmon, in spite of the discovered high levels of mercury in it? Or you may find someone asking, can I give my ferret fish (like salmon) that may have high levels of mercury in it?
Those can be hard questions to grapple with. On the whole though, feeding ferrets on a bit of salmon occasionally doesn’t seem to do too much harm.
It is a question of weighing the potential toxicity risk against the benefits of the ferrets eating salmon. Often, the potential benefits of the ferrets eating salmon outweigh the fringe potential toxicity risks.
It is on that basis that many people opt to feed their ferrets on salmon. And that is in spite of the high levels of mercury that have sometimes been found in salmon.
Is Salmon Safe For Ferrets?
Based on that experience, it is fair to say that salmon is safe for ferrets.
In any event, there is really nothing in salmon fish meat that we can say is patently harmful to ferrets.
The only concern that may arise is with regard to the high levels of mercury that some salmon populations are said to have. But if a ferret is only having a little salmon once in a while, these may not be too much of an issue.
Farmed salmon may be entirely safe with regard to mercury levels.
The most important thing is to cut the salmon into small bits. This way, risks like those of the salmon causing choking or obstructions are minimized.
Is Salmon Good For Ferrets?
Salmon can be very good for ferrets.
It has omega fats (omega-3 and omega-6), as well as minerals such as potassium and selenium. It is of course also a rich source of protein. All these are nutrients that ferrets needs.
Ferrets that eat salmon get protein that promotes growth and repair of damaged body tissues. Such ferrets also get the likes of omega-3 and omega-6 fats, which promote the best coat, heart and brain health.
On the basis of all those facts then, we can say that salmon is good for ferrets.
Can Ferrets Eat Salmon?
So far we have focused on the safety and ‘goodness’ of salmon for ferrets.
With regard to safety, we have said that salmon is quite safe for ferrets: if we overlook the mercury-related concerns.
And with regard to ‘goodness’, we have pinpointed several benefits that ferrets can derive from salmon.
Taking all those facts about ferrets feeding on salmon into consideration, what can we say? Can ferrets feed on salmon? The answer obviously is ‘yes’.
Since the salmon is safe and has many potential benefits for ferrets, there should be nothing to stop ferrets from eating it.
Of course, there are those who may find the mercury-related concerns too huge. So they may desist from feeding their ferrets on salmon on account of those.
But for those who are ready to overlook the mercury-related concerns, salmon is otherwise safe and good for ferrets. Therefore ferrets can eat it: in moderation, just like any other foodstuff.
Which Type Of Salmon Can Ferrets Eat?
Salmon comes in many forms. It can be cooked or raw salmon. It can be freeze dried or smoked salmon. It can be canned or fresh salmon…
The question that arises is on which of these many salmon forms ferrets can eat. In answering that question, we will look at several of these salmon forms in turn.
Can Ferrets Eat Raw Salmon?
Sometimes, the salmon that is available may be raw/uncooked. That is as opposed to cooked salmon. The question about it then becomes, is it OK to feed raw Salmon to ferrets?
Now in principle, ferrets can eat raw salmon. If you give a ferret raw salmon, he will normally devour it in no time.
However, it is important to understand that raw salmon may have some parasites that can harm a ferret. Among those are the sometimes troublesome anisakis parasites.
Thus whereas ferrets have the ability to eat raw salmon in principle, it may not be the best for them.
Can Ferrets Eat Cooked Salmon?
Here, we need to start by asking ourselves, can ferrets eat fish that is cooked? And the answer turns out to be ‘yes’, ferrets can eat fish that is cooked.
In fact, cooked fish is often better for ferrets, as cooking destroys any parasites that may be in it.
With regard to salmon specifically, the cooked variety may be much better than raw. This is because the cooking process destroys the likes of anisakis parasites, which are often present in salmon fish.
Can Ferrets Eat Canned Salmon?
Canned salmon may be alright for ferrets, as long as it is unseasoned.
Then again, most of the canned salmon we find in the market tends to be seasoned. And anything with seasoning is not very appropriate for ferrets. It can actually cause them lots of harm.
Thus if the canned salmon is unseasoned, it may be good for the ferret. But if the canned salmon is seasoned (as most are, read the labels), it wouldn’t be ideal for a ferret.
Can Ferrets Eat Smoked Salmon?
Smoked meats, including the smoked salmon in question here, are not ideal for ferrets.
Therefore it may not be proper for ferrets to eat smoked salmon at all.
Can Ferrets Eat Freeze Dried Salmon?
Freeze dried meats tend to be alright. That is provided that they are just freeze dried, with no potentially harmful preservatives.
Applying that to salmon, we may say that freeze dried salmon should be alright for ferrets.
Can Ferrets Eat Salmon Treats?
Some salmon treats may be good for ferrets. Besides providing the ferrets with nutrients, the treats can help remove tar and plaque from the ferret’s teeth.
That is because the treats tend to be crunchy. And as the ferrets chew on them, they remove any tar or plaque that may be in their teeth.
Then again, if the salmon treats are heavily seasoned, they may not be ideal for ferrets at all.
But plain salmon treats are alright for ferrets.
While at it, it is worth noting that many of these treats are made using salmon skin.
Thus what we have said is also what would apply in answering the can ferrets eat salmon skin question.
Can Ferrets Eat Salmon Oil?
In small quantities, salmon oil tends to be good for ferrets.
Ferrets can get, among other nutrients, omega-3 and omega-6 fats from the salmon oil. Those can in turn help in maintaining optimum coat, brain and heart health for the said ferrets.
Just ensure that the ferret doesn’t get more than 1.5 ml of salmon oil per day. Otherwise the ferret may develop stomach upset, diarrhea and other issues.
How Much Salmon Can Ferrets Eat?
Ideally, a ferret should eat only half a filet of salmon in a day.
With regard to salmon oil, that should be limited to 1.5 ml per day. That is with a maximum of a teaspoonful per week.
How much salmon is too much for ferrets? Anything beyond half a filet per day may be too much for a ferret.
Final Verdict – Can Ferrets Eat Salmon
Ferrets can eat salmon. Many people feed pet ferrets on salmon, without any bad incidents. This means that salmon is basically safe for ferrets.
A nutritional analysis of salmon reveals several nutrients that are good for ferrets.
Thus besides being safe for ferrets, salmon can also benefit them nutritionally.
Granted, there may be concerns about the high mercury levels that are sometimes said to be in salmon. But if ferrets only eat a little salmon on an occasional basis, these shouldn’t be too much of an issue.
Cooked salmon may be the best for ferrets, as it is unlikely to contain parasites like anisakis.
It is best to only feed ferrets on salmon occasionally: like just once per week. And the ferrets should only have half a filet of salmon meat per feeding.
Welcome to Learn About Pet. My name is Rajkumar Ravichandran and I love all pets, travel, and amazing food. I write about my passion and personal experience caring for multiple pets in this blog! ❤️
DISCLAIMER: THIS BLOG OR WEBSITE, "Learn About Pet", DOES NOT PROVIDE YOU WITH MEDICAL ADVICE AND IS NOT A SUBSTITUTE FOR MEDICAL ADVICE. ALWAYS GET IN TOUCH WITH YOUR PERSONAL VETERINARIAN AND USE INFORMATION HERE AS GENERAL ADVICE.
The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this website are for informational purposes only. No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional veterinary advice, food recommendation, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your veterinarian or other qualified health care provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition or for pet food related questions.