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Some petting zoos have a small dispenser containing sheep food. They look like small pellets that I believe are a chametz mixture.

Shulchan Arukh, Orach Chayyim 442:1 says:

. אבל דבר שיש בו תערובת חמץ ואינו ראוי לאכילה מותר לקיימו בפסח, כגון: עריבת העבדנין שנתן לתוכה קמח ועורות, אפילו נתנן שעה אחת קודם זמן הביעור הרי זה מותר לקיימו.

Part of my question relies on the translation of ראוי לאכילה - Does this mean "cannot ever be eaten by humans" or just "humans usually would not eat it"? I've never eaten these sheep pellet food, but, perhaps, it's edible?

If we assume the "lenient" definition, that humans would not eat this food, can one feed the sheep with it on Hol Hamo'ed?

  • Generally, you may not feed animals not dependent on you on yom tov. However, I don't know about chol hamoed. (I suspect it may be permissible in a case like this even if it's prohibited chol hamoed, as the prohibition was enacted because of tircha and this is clearly for your own pleasure. But consult your rabbi.) – msh210 Mar 25 '15 at 3:34
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Star-K says it is forbidden.

Q. During a Pesach visit to the zoo, may one purchase the feed for the animals? A. No. This feed is often chometz and should not be purchased or fed to the animals during Pesach

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