Are you thinking of having ferrets as pets? If so, you need to know how to take care of these cuddly animals properly. Unlike cats and dogs, keeping ferrets as a pet is different. They have their own characteristics and unique ways to care for them. So in this article, we are going to give you insights into how to take care of your ferret properly.
How To Take Care Of Ferret?
Ferret’s cage should be large enough for about 18 x 18 x 30 inches, with two or more levels included in the cage to climb. There should be enough space to roam around and toys to play for in their cage. Also, we need to mention that ferrets are escape artists. So choose closed wire cages. As wires can hurt ferrets’ feet, so washable carpet or linoleum flooring should be done for their safety.
In terms of sleeping, ferrets can beat cats. Ferrets love to sleep for about 14 to 20 hours. So inside their cage, you should set proper bedding for them where they can sleep for hours. You also have to give your ferret hammocks or shelves to rest on. Additionally, a dark enclosure should be given for their nesting.
Ferrets are true carnivores. So their food should be full of meats like chicken, beef, pork, turkey, etc. Or you can give them other sources of high protein like egg yolks. But don’t ever think of giving them any sort of fiber like- rice, wheat, or oats.
Ferrets have a very weak digestive system that can not sustain fiber food or even vegetables. So, if you want other options for a ferret’s diet, packaged ferret food can be a good option. But remember, ferrets also don’t like fish. So avoid any food that contains fish.
Litter Box Training
Just like cats, ferrets can be litter box trained. But don’t give them clumping cat litter because they can chew them on. Besides that, a box, pee pad, or newspaper will be a safer option to give. Also, they always need a dropping area because of their small GI tract. So, provide a litter box on their cage and multiple on the playing sides. Also, they like to do it in the corner, so make sure they get their privacy.
Bathing / Grooming
Though ferrets are very clean animals in nature, they have a bad reputation for having a musky odor. It doesn’t matter how many times you bathe them; they will always smell like that. Also, regular bathing can cause overproduction of their body oil, as body oils are stripped during baths.
So, it’s better to bathe your ferrets only twice a month. For bathing your ferret, make sure you use pet-friendly shampoo and warm bathwater.
Ferrets are very active and playful pets. Though they sleep most of the time on days, when they are awake, they need a spacious place to roam and play around. They love crawling through just about anything, including cardboard boxes, PVC piping, clothes dryer hoses, paper bags, and even pant legs or long shirt sleeves. They tend to play rough and will often playfully nip in the beginning, so it is important to teach them not to nip. Also, it’s better to give them toys they can’t chew on such as plastic balls, cat toys, or stuffed cloth toys.
Another great feature that makes ferrets special is their social skills. Ferrets love to socialize, so adopting them in pairs is always recommended. Moreover, ferrets love to play with their owner, so just have an enjoyable time with them whenever they are out to play.
It will increase your bonding with those cuddle babies and make you happier. But don’t leave your ferrets alone with children. As ferrets are fragile animals, they can be easily injured if handled inappropriately or dropped.
As said, ferrets are very fragile animals and prone to being sick quickly. So, it’s recommended to take a ferret for an annual checkup until they are 5. After that, the number of vet visits will increase to 2, and you have to be more careful with their health.
With that, our beginner guide for ferret care has come to an end. Ferrets are naturally weak animals and need your special care for survival. So, if you want your furbaby to remain healthy and happy, keep a sincere eye on it.