Can Ferrets Eat Pepperoni?

While it’s true that the ferret is a strict carnivore, you as an owner should ever only feed them raw or minimally cooked meat. You should avoid giving them pepperoni or other types of processed meats, due to their salt content.

Just like it’s not recommended for humans to eat highly processed meat, it’s even worse if you feed it to a ferret. Their system doesn’t handle the heavy salt content from salami, pepperoni or cold cuts, and even jerky is something that I’d avoid giving them.

The idea is that you should treat the ferret like a wild animal when it comes to its diet, at least in terms of the ingredients being used. While you can feed them both raw and cooked meat, you don’t need to add any spices or ingredients to the mix. Give it to them with everything it has, even with feathers and bones, they all have a role to play.

Can Ferrets Eat Pepperoni?

Photo by Payam Tahery on Unsplash

No, you shouldn’t give pepperoni to a ferret. While it’s an obligate carnivore, it doesn’t process salt as well. Instead, you should always give them meat in a form as close to the source as possible, either cooked or raw.

Other foods that are in the same category as pepperoni, and which I’d also recommend you avoid giving them, would be foods like cold cuts, jerky, or salami, to give just a few examples.

What Type of Meat Do They Eat Then?

Rather than give them highly processed foods, that they might enjoy but could have a negative impact on their health, you should instead focus on giving them clean meat.

Buy the raw meat from any source that’s cheap and safe, such as a supermarket or a butcher shop. Then, store it in a freezer, or give it to them immediately, in raw form.

If you’re not sure about the safety of the meat, you can also cook it, without seasoning it.

These are excelent examples of types of raw meat that you can give ferrets:

  • Chicken parts or even whole chicken carcasses;
  • Turkey necks;
  • Rabbit;
  • Pigeons;
  • Minced beef;
  • Lamb meat or organs (heart);
  • Raw bones, which helps with teeth cleaning and calcium intake;
  • Rodents as whole prey;
  • Quail.

Foods To Avoid At All Costs

Since the ferret is a carnivore, its entire diet is built around this type of food, and you should avoid giving it vegetables, fruits or others that don’t fit the description. Besides the cured meats that we mentioned above, an even worse idea would be to give it things like fruits (apples, berries, pears, bananas, tomatoes, etc), or vegetables of any kind (spinach, beans, broccoli, lentils, etc).

As a general idea, just make sure you stick with meat and bones, as close to their natural state as possible. Many even feed their ferrets with whole prey, so carcasses of small animals and birds, which they can devour at their own pace. Give it to them as close to their natural state, so how they would find them in the wild, and they will be happy. This is a predator after all, even though it’s in your household.