Ferrets are the domesticated form of the polecat, which comes from the weasel family. They are obligate carnivores, which means that meat is the primary source of nutrition in the diet. Their all-meat diet is naturally high in fat and protein with very little carbohydrate and fibre. Ferrets fed on home-made diets are often prone to nutritional deficiency, so may benefit from fatty acid, vitamin, mineral or taurine supplementation. Wombaroo Small Carnivore Food can be mixed in with wet food to help balance out nutritional deficiencies. Carni-vite can be mixed in with raw meat to make a balanced diet. Young ferrets are fed a milk that is also high in protein and fat, which is nutritionally similar to Dog Milk. For this reason we recommend to feed orphaned ferrets on Wombaroo Dog Milk Replacer. This product also contains elevated levels of taurine which is an essential nutrient that is required by developing ferret kits. See under resources for more information on hand rearing ferrets.
Dog Milk Replacer
Wombaroo Dog Milk Replacer is a nutritionally balanced milk substitute for all dog breeds. Use for orphaned puppies or when mother’s milk is limited.
- Specifically formulated to match the composition of bitch's milk
- Elevated fat content for improved growth rate of puppies
- Low in lactose to aid in digestion
Whey proteins, caseins, whole milk solids, vegetable oils, omega-3 & 6 fatty acids (including EPA, DHA & Arachidonic Acid), taurine, vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, B12, C, D3, E, K, nicotinamide, pantothenic acid, biotin, folic acid, choline, inositol, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium, magnesium, zinc, iron, manganese, copper, iodine, selenium.
Solids when reconstituted 215 g/Litre Protein (% solids) 34% Fat (% solids) 37% Carbohydrate (% solids) 18% Ash (% solids) 5% Taurine (min) 500 mg/Litre Metabolisable Energy (ME) 5000 kJ/Litre
215g, 1kg, 5kg & 20kg
Success in hand-rearing puppies greatly improves if they receive colostrum at birth. Puppies that don’t get colostrum from the mother can be fed Impact Colostrum Supplement. Commence feeding Dog Milk Replacer after the initial feeds of colostrum.
Making up Milk
To make 30mL of milk: Mix 1 level scoop (6.5g) of powder with 25ml of warm water.
To make 1 litre of milk: Mix 215g of powder with 850ml of warm water.
Add half the water to the powder first and mix to a paste. Then add the remaining water and mix thoroughly. Pre-boil the water to ensure it is sterilised. If the water is too hot it can cause the milk to curdle. If it is too cold then it will be difficult to disperse the powder. Wombaroo contains elevated fat levels, so the milk needs to be well mixed to prevent it from separating out. An electric whisk can be used for mixing larger quantities. Milk can be stored in the fridge for up to a day or can be frozen for up to 2 weeks. It is useful to make milk up in larger volumes, and store it frozen in small portions (eg ice cube trays), so that the required daily feed volumes can be easily thawed out. Once thawed out, discard any unused milk, and wash feeding utensils thoroughly.
Warm milk to about 35°C. Feed from a bottle with teat, a Wombaroo SD or Wombaroo LD Teat is recommended for small and large breeds respectively. For some breeds a Wombaroo F Teat may be used. In emergency cases tube feeding may be required. Feed every 2 hours for the first 3 days, reducing this to every 4 hours by the end of the first week. During the second week reduce feeding to 6 hourly intervals. Stimulate puppies to defecate and urinate after each feed. Encourage puppies to lap once their eyes are open and voluntary bowel motions begin. To avoid dehydration during periods of hot weather give puppies a drink of pre-boiled water between feeds. Always offer puppies drinking water once their eyes are open and they become mobile. Consult your veterinarian or breeder for particular advice about caring for your breed of puppy.
Different breeds of puppies have different growth rates. Carers should contact their veterinarian or breeder for information about the growth rate of their particular breed. It is important to weigh puppies regularly to verify weight gains and determine the volume of milk to feed. Overfeeding milk can cause diarrhoea so feed the suggested volumes in our tables.
When puppies are about 4 weeks old they should show interest in solid food. To entice them to eat solids offer a small portion of specially formulated puppy dry food soaked in Wombaroo. Once they start to eat solid food continue to increase the solids and reduce the milk in their diet until they are fully weaned at about 8 weeks.
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