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General Info

Ø      Ferrets are not wild animals. If they were to escape they would probably die within two to three weeks due to thirst, hunger or predator.

Ø      Ferrets come in a variety of colours:

Albino – white/yellowish white with red eyes.

Polecat – darkish in colour with a band across the     

                                        eyes.

Sandy – sand in colour

Silver – grey and silver in colour.

(These are the most common colours; there are variations within these. )

Ø      Ferrets live for approximately seven to twelve years.

Ø      Males are called ‘hobs’, females are ‘jills’ and young ferrets are ‘kits’.

Ø      Jills come into ‘season’ once sometimes twice a year.  They will need to be brought out of season, but do not have to have kits to do this.  There are 3 ways to bring a Jill out of season:

1)   Mate with a full hob(Will have babies)

2)   Mate with a vasectomised hob. (Hob has had his tubes cut)

3)   ‘Jill Jab’, a hormone injection from the vet (this may have to be done twice)

Alternatively you can have your Jill speyed. (this is the best option for your jill)

Ø      Ferrets will sleep for about 15 to 20 hours a day.

Ø      Ferrets do not have the homing instinct of a cat; consequently, if they get free they will be unable to find their way home.

Ø      A ferrets coat will alter with the seasons, similar to that of a dog.  However, they do find hot weather very distressing.

 

Homes

Ø      Ferrets can live either outside or inside. The more space you have for your ferret the better

Ø      Outside, in a very large rabbit hutch with run, placed out the wind and direct sunlight. A converted shed makes a great outdoor home. .

Ø      Inside, in a good-sized cage with plastic ramps and surfaces.

Ø      Ferrets are very lively animals and need adequate space to run around when homed inside or outside. (Please seek further advise before getting a home for a ferret)

Ø      Always be sure that your ferrets are running around in a  secure area.  Ferrets are exceptional escapologists and will find a way out if they can.  Not because they want to get away, but because the want to explore, they are by nature nosey and curious animals.  (Just like us)  Anywhere they can fit their head the rest of them will and can follow!!!!!

 

Food

Ø      Ferrets are obligate carnivores so they need raw meat. Pet mince,  is fine.

Ø      There is also a selection of ‘Ferret Complete Biscuits’ that have all the nutrients a ferret requires and can be found in many high street pet shops.

Ø      Milk is not good for them. Like cats, ferrets have intolerance to the lactose in milk, it gives them diarrhoea.

 

Playtimes

Ø      Ferrets love to play with you as well as other ferrets. 

Ø      They also love to play with a selection of cat toys including balls and plastic bags. Avoid rubber toys or things they could bite small bits off - these bits could cause a blockage.

Ø      They are very social animals.

 

Illnesses

Ø      They can catch the common cold, which can be serious for them.

Ø      Earmites are common in ferrets, like cats they will scratch their ears and shake their head a lot.  This is easily treated by the vet.

Ø      The Canine Distemper Jab.  This vaccination can be controversial; however, if you take your ferret for a walk it is advisable for them to have this.

 

This is just a basic guide - for more information please email us and we will gladly help with any advice we can. 

Email the webmaster gemferret@hotmail.co.uk