Hey guys! So my little Spike has gained quite a bit of weight and when we saw our vet he told us to put my fuzzies on a scheduled feeding diet instead of having food 24/7. I am 100% okay with this, but since it's summer I don't want to start it yet since I am not on a strict schedule myself so I would like to start it when school starts. I was wondering if there are any additional ways I could help my little guy lose some weight that aren't so strict?
Are you feeding raw or kibbles? This makes a big difference on just how you can cut back on the food. I'm assuming that heart conditions were ruled out? Like us exercise does come into play. Take him for jaunts outside on a leash. Teach him to run up and down stairs. If he's on raw, he shouldn't have food available to him 24/7. That's for kibblers. There are very specific amounts for feeding ferrets raw. How old is Spike? ciao
At 6 months and a kit he's going to be the heaviest he's going to be this winter. I do not condone putting a kit on a diet, much less a kibbler kit. The only thing I can suggest is more exercise and give him more stimulation and play ciao
Kibble is usually filled with all sorts of unnecessary extra carbs, which can give you an overweight ferret, or worse, even lead to insulinoma in your fuzzy. A raw diet is going to be your best bet in getting a nice regulated weight, as with the Frankenprey and Whole Prey methods of raw, fuzzies tend to regulate how much they eat, especially if they have to work for the food by chewing and crunching bone (the same cannot be said for just soups or grinds on which they can and very well may overeat). I've seen skinny fuzzers gain healthy weight, and tubbers slim down too on raw.
Just like Heather said, playing extra games, running around with, rough-housing a lot and taking your fuzzy for walks should help increase the exercise he gets and can help burn some of that off. But the baby fat will usually shed after their first winter moves into spring again.
I would also like to point out a possible health issue with the kibble you are feeding. It's not a very good kibble, and contains sweet potatoes as the second ingredient. Sweet potatoes, like peas, have been linked with increased risk of bladder and kidney stones related to diet. If you truly wish to keep him kibble-fed versus the species appropriate diet of raw, at least change him over to a better kibble. Orijen works really well, and while it may contain peas, it's very far down in the list, like the 15-18th ingredients depending on the bag of choice. Since by law ingredients are listed from highest quantity ingredient to lowest quantity in the product, there is rather little of that in the Orijen, making it a much better choice. Ideally, a kibble needs to have its first 6 ingredients be meat-based to be decent for ferret use. A raw diet will always be better of course, for a whole magnitude of reasons. Just some food for thought.