Considering My First Ferret... - Paw Talk - Pet Forums
Ferret Discussion Mischievous antics, missing items, and all else ferret.

 
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post #1 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2009, 05:23 PM Thread Starter
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Red face Considering My First Ferret...

Hello!

I've been falling in love with this ferret in the family-run petstore nearby...you see where this is going ...
If I get this new job, I'm very tempted to get her and a cage. I've never owned a ferret, but I'm definitely not new when it comes to pets.

So here's some questions:

What type of cage? Would a one-story be alright for now, as long as it was relatively wide/long?

Any ferret websites you'd recommend?

Any tips, comments, advice etc etc that you'd like to tell me?

Anything I should be worried about, or look out for?

Thanks in advance!! I'm all ears to anything you'd like to tell me.


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post #2 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-24-2009, 09:53 PM
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I have three good URLs for you..but I don't have enough post counts to post them yet... I'll come back here and post them when I do have enough post counts.

Apparently peanut butter is a laxative, I've read, in the event he/she should swallow something it shouldn't have.

Ferrets LOVE Ferretvite - it's good for their coat.

Ferrets also love raw chicken bones - the marrow is real good for them, has a lot of nutrients in it.

As for what to feed it, I'd suggest Innova EVO's ferret. It contains the high amount of meat protein that they need to thrive: 30-40%.

Other ferret foods that I've read have been "Zupreem's Ferret" food, and "Totally Ferret - Older Ferrets". I don't trust Totally Ferret, personally, I scanned their website and their ingredients and wasn't at all impressed. Innova EVO contains the amount of meat protein ferrets need to thrive, as they are obligate carnivores like cats. Zupreem seems...borderline... they're an OK company in general, I feed my rabbit and my guinea pig on Zupreem, because it doesn't contain Menadione(deadly synthetic Vitamin K) like Oxbow and many other pet food companies do. But they're only being fed on Zupreem temporarily until my plants grow, then my rabbit and guinea pig will be fed an all-natural diet of plant greens and veggies, with little to no pellets offered.

The main thing I don't like about Zupreem, though, is that it contains corn ingredients - mainly corn gluten. Corn in general is bad ingredient in pet foods, but corn gluten is 10x worse. Pet foods should be gluten-free.

Overall, I'd suggest Innova EVO's Ferret would be your best bet. And if that's a little too out of your price range, ferrets can be fed on cat food, and in the event you'd rather do that, "Wellness Complete Dry Cat Food" is a good bet.

I can't post links, but google search "wellness pet food", then click on the "Cat Food" link on their website, and then click on the "dry formulas", and then click on the "Chicken" link in the side bar.

For Innova EVO, google search Innova, in the side bar click on Evo, and scroll all the way down to the bottom to find their listing for ferret food and click on the "Learn More" link.

Whatever dry food you do, make sure the meat content is high, and make sure the ingredients are chicken or turkey-based, apparently ferrets aren't all that fond of fish-flavored foods.



Good luck.

EDIT: I read on one of the web pages that I'd love to link you to, that female ferrets should be spayed before their first heat cycle. Apparently, if they aren't, they develop anemia and don't make it past a year old. I'm sure another ferret-lover could verify that for sure; but that's just what I read. Still, that might be something to look out for should you get the little ferret-bugger at the pet store. Verify if it's either male or female.

That's another piece of information I can offer you, also found on one of the web pages I'd love to link you to - males and females can be distinguished not only physically(males feel heavier in your arms than the females), but also in their litter box. In a litter box a male is using, everything is sorta scattered, while for a female, everything is kind of neat. Females are also more typically high-strung and don't like to be held as much as males do. Again, I'm sure someone else can verify that.. but it might help to verify, at the pet store, what gender the ferret is at first glance. I know at least in any pet store around where I grew up at, the ferrets were litter-trained, so... there you go.

Last edited by FlickeringHope; 09-24-2009 at 10:01 PM.
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post #3 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-25-2009, 12:06 PM
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Hm - sorry for the double post, for some reason the "Edit" button won't show up on my own post.

Now that I have over 20 posts, here are the links I was referring to:

http://www.ferretcentral.org/

http://www.ferretcare.org/neutering.php

http://www.everythingferret.com/nutrition.htm
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post #4 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2009, 05:57 PM Thread Starter
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It's no problem!! Thank you so much for all the help and information. I appreciate it so much!


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post #5 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-26-2009, 11:07 PM
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Not a problem, happy to have helped.
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post #6 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-27-2009, 02:08 PM
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aren't ferrets supposed to be already spayed/neutered when you get them? (in the us and canada at least... and deglanded)
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post #7 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-27-2009, 03:07 PM
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They're supposed to be de-scented, but I'm not sure about fixed...:/
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post #8 of 13 (permalink) Old 09-28-2009, 10:55 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dustette View Post
aren't ferrets supposed to be already spayed/neutered when you get them? (in the us and canada at least... and deglanded)
Yeah, they're normally fixed already. The only way you'd have an intact ferret is if you purposely got one directly from a breeder.




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post #9 of 13 (permalink) Old 11-21-2009, 12:43 PM
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The anemia is Aplastic anemia. What it is basically is when a female ferret is not spayed or does not have the chance to conceive she will stay in heat for the entire breeding cycle. She will continue to secret high levels of estrogen from her ovaries and the high levels of estrogen severely damage her bone marrow. This weakens her immune system and will cause her to get uterine infections. Aplastic anemia is fatal to 90 percent of the jills it infects. Some common symptoms are pale gums and foot pads, decreased appetite and things like that.

As for the cage, he/she will be fine in a one story until you can get another. The new baby will be happy with the augmented space of the new cage all to herself anyways.

Other tips I will give you is to feed a raw diet if possible. I have an awesome link to give you but I guess I'm not allowed yet. Its an awesome site that has mentors that will stay in touch with you via phone, email, the forum, or face to face and they will walk you through step by step and help with any problems that would arise.

Another thing is don't be scared or shocked if you go in to the store and see a sleepy ferret. Ferrets sleep quite a bit until someone starts playing with them.

Good luck with your new baby and the new Job!
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post #10 of 13 (permalink) Old 12-03-2009, 01:25 AM
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Just a thought..............

Where I live I have seen several ferrets on craigslist most very cheap or free. Its kind of sad. I have 2 dogs from a rescue. Why not rescue a ferret? I can't imagine how those things feel when people dont want them anymore I would think you would make a ferret very happy giving it a good home. From what I have seen they are very loving.
My dogs had a few behavior problems at first but they are the best dogs I have ever had.
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post #11 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-11-2010, 10:41 AM
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stuff

I got a ferret about 3 years ago and she is my best friend now. She is such a happy ferret and makes me smile all the time, you won't regret it. I saw that you were interested in stuff for it. I highly recommend something for her to play in/with. Just my 2 cents, and I hope you enjoy your new pet!
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post #12 of 13 (permalink) Old 02-13-2010, 06:02 PM
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I had a ferret about a year or so ago, keep them away from plastic [they love to eat it for some reason] and they absolutely adore snuggling. :]
my mom didnt know much about ferrets and moved him into a room with bad insulation in the winter and he got phneumonia.. but he was the best little friend ever.. i am thinking about getting another one .

~Mommy of~

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post #13 of 13 (permalink) Old 04-03-2010, 11:03 AM
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And remember, if you can, every ferret you add doubles the fun. She will probably do better with a friend, but not always. Keep your eyes out for people giving them away (if your area has freecycle or cheapcycle, and on craigslist) or if there is a shelter nearby. I hate to say it this way, but remember, Ferrets aren't hamsters. They require a good bit of love and attention, more than just food water and a clean cage. They require a good vet who knows ferrets, and generally their bill will be more than a dog/cat, and they can't do the "only when sick" care either. They're more like having the eternal 4 year old hyper ADD kid... except instead of sugar spice and everything nice, it's mischief, fun, and unconditional love.


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