Obsessed With Turtles
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: Land of Procrastination (MN)
Ok, here's my thought. I agree that the most important thing is to make sure she is healthy. Is she eating & drinking? What are you feeding her for food? Ferrets tend to sleep most of the day & play at night so I wouldn't be too alarmed about her sleeping too much. Whenever in doubt ALWAYS take her to the vet. It has to be someone familiar with exotic animals such as ferrets because the needs are much different than that of a cat or dog. If the stools are formed & her urine is yellow, eating & drinking is fine than I can only assume she is a normal young ferret. BUT it would still be a good idea to get a new animal checkup with a qualified vet just to be on the safe side. Especially since you are new to the world of ferrets.
Ferrets take a LOT of patience. There really is a great deal of information that needs to be learned about them. Just because she is nipping does NOT mean you have a "bad" ferret. When they are kits that is normal behavior. As Tweak said each one is individual (just as children are). I have 4 ferts. 2 of them bite, both for different reasons and are doing so less & less as they grow. 2 of my 4 are sorta cuddlers but would much rather run around & play than be bothered.
Ferrets have a lot of energy and if you are looking for a cute & cuddly attention needy animal I wouldn't suggest a ferret. They are a lot of work and as tehy get older can become quite needy in the areas of vet care. This is something you need to be prepared for. While I am certainly NOT saying you shouldn't keep your ferret I am just saying that they are not for everyone. I would strongly suggest buying the book "Ferrets for Dummies" There is a great deal of knowledge & info in there that is beneficial to every ferret owner. (This book was reccommended to me by some of the best ferret owners/breeders out there.)
Now as for the biting issue: If you are willing to have the patience with her & teach her not to bite than it will be more than worth your time. It isn't so much that you are training her NOT to bite, you are teaching her to behave differently. When she bites hold her by the scruff (loose skin on back of neck) away from you & firmly tell her "NO". Do not hit, flick or spank her for doing it as it will only maker her biting worse. Ferrets have a short term memory so if you choose to put her in her cage after she bites only do it for a couple minutes than take her out & love on her for a bit telling her she is a good girl for not biting.
The reason they tend to bite is because ferrets have much thicker skin than we do & they don't know that it hurts us. They naturally rough house with each other so to them the behavior is completely normal.
Try to hang in there with her & good luck with whatever you decide to do!