Working out a Diet Plan
The following is a few examples of suitable meals for a Silver Fox to help you establish weight ratios of each type of food. Be mindful that some foxes require more or less calories than others so this is far from an exact science and if your fox starts to get tubby, we highly suggest reducing carbohydrates and fats and feeding more lean muscle meats in their place. If your fox is struggling to maintain a healthy weight and seems perpetually hungry, we would suggest worming him according to his weight and steadily increasing the over all amount of food offered. If you find that your he has loose stools after feeding offal, be sure to feed only small quantities at a time or to carefully increase the amount of bone you feed until stools harden back up again. If stools are extremely hard and crumble when removed during cleaning then you probably need to drop the % of bone.
Just like dogs, every fox is different and what is an optimal amount of fat, carbs or bone for one may not be right for another. The below weekly diet plan is therefore a starting point only and should be tweaked to suit your fox. If you find that food is being buried or cached and remains uneaten by the following day, decrease the amount of food offered, especially in summer when food will attract flies and spoils quickly. It's normal top see an increase in required calorie intake during cold weather.
The a fit and healthy Silver Fox requires around 100 - 120 calories per kilo of body weight, per day with the average fox being around 4 to 7 kilos as a mature adult. This usually equates to between 500g - 800g in 24 hours with the largest, most active of foxes needing perhaps as much as 1kg of food per day in extremely cold weather.
The below ratios have been worked out for an active animal at the very top end of this weight estimate during very cold weather. Adjust amounts for your fox according to its weight, body condition, energy levels and time of year. It can be expected that neutered animals may require less food than entire animals.
- 4 x chicken wings (approx 150g bone)
- 220g diced beef meat (+ approx 180g from wings) (Total muscle meat - 400g)
- 50g beef or lamb spleen
- 50g pork liver
- 20g raspberries
- 20g cooked sweet potato
- 2 x chicken thighs (approx 60g bone)
- 120g rabbit (+ approx 280g total from chicken thighs) (Total muscle meat = 400g)
- 50g chicken liver
- 50g lamb heart
- 10g blueberries or raspberries
- 10g banana or apricot
- 3 x chicken wings (approx 75g bone)
- 220 Lamb mince (+ approx 150g from wings) (Total muscle meat - 370g)
- 50g chicken hearts
- 20g apple or pear
- 20g cooked pumpkin or butternut squash
- 20g cooked white rice, potato or parsnip
Good Bone Sources
- Chicken wings (around 46% bone), thighs (around 21% bone), drumsticks (around 25% bone), carcass (mostly bone)
- Duck and chicken feet (around 60% bone)
- Lamb or pork ribs (around 45% bone)
- Rabbit (including fur and head but without guts, around 10% bone)
Types of offal
- Heart (no more than 15% of diet over all)
- Liver (no more than 5% of diet over all)
- Lung (generally can be fed as muscle meat but only in small quantities)
Pheasant, Partridge, Grouse, Pigeon, Day old chicks, mice, rats can all be fed as whole prey and are essentially a complete meal requiring no supplementing. We would still suggest the inclusion of small amounts of vegetables and fruit top the diet a few times per week if feeding whole prey. If using portions of the below meats, make sure you balance the diet with the correct quantities of bone, offal and carbs.
- Fish (We suggest not feeding fish every day as thiamine can build up to toxic levels if over feeding certain fish species)
- Eggs (raw or cooked. shell can be fed too)
- Green tripe ( Never feed the sort of tripe that has been treated to make it fit for human consumption. Use raw green tripe that is sold for raw fed pet dogs. It is very good for helping weight gain but it smells revolting. Strong stomach required to feed this one... Don't say we didn't warn you!)
Never feed grapes. The below fruits are safe options.
- Apple, Pear, Quince,
- Banana, Peach, Nectarine,
- Raspberries, Blueberries, Strawberries, blackberries
- Melon, Mango, Sharon fruit,
Carbohydrate sources should be cooked to make them more easily digested and more bioavailable.
- White potato
- Sweet Potato
- Butterbeans, Chickpeas
Other Suitable Vegetables
Cooked or raw but you'll likely find that veggies are more readily eaten when cooked.
- Green Beans
- Courgette and marrow
- Sweetcorn and garden peas
- Broccoli and Cauliflower
- Raw Chicken feet
- Healthy dog treats
- Quality wet or dry dog or cat food
- Dried fish skins