Advocating for ferrets in Michigan since 2001
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Basic Care

DO research on how to care for a ferret prior to purchasing/adopting. Talk to as many ferret owners as you can. Ferret people love to talk about their ferrets.

DO ferret-proof your home. Check any possible access through the walls or to outside (i.e. pipes under sinks, dryer vent hoses). Block access under stoves, refrigerators, washers, etc. Remove any rubber items, such as pipe insulation, insoles to shoes, etc. Get any plants up where they cannot get to them (eating or digging dirt). REMEMBER: If their head will fit, the rest of them will follow.

DO check your dryer, dishwasher or refrigerator before shutting the doors.

DO feed a high-quality ferret food. Ferrets are carnivores and require at least 33% animal protein. Always have fresh water available.

DON’T feed dog food, chocolate (toxic) or milk products (cause diarrhea) and keep treats to a minimum.

DO give your ferret toys to play with such as dryer vent tubing, ping pong balls, hard plastic squeaky toys. Check all toys for loose parts or soft rubber. Plastics or latex can cause intestinal blockages if ingested, which may be fatal.

DO get your ferret use to responding to a noise, be it a squeaky toy, ball, shaking of a treat box – anything they might respond to if they should get loose outside.

DO house your ferret in a wire cage with a solid bottom (either carpeting, linoleum or bedding so the wire does not hurt their feet). A 2-3 tier with a hammock is best. DO NOT use Carefresh-related product for bottom of a cage. Fleece, baby blankets or towels are best.

DO keep nails trimmed and ears cleaned. Also, if you are uncomfortable cleaning teeth, see a vet at least once a year.

DO bathe your ferret with a mild tearless shampoo but NO MORE THAN ONCE A MONTH.

DO keep their litter box clean and use a pellet or dust-free non-clumping litter.

DON’T use cat litters with baking soda or perfumes. DON’T use wood chips, i.e. cedar or pine, because they can cause respiratory problems. Never use clumping litter as it can cause a blockage if ingested or gotten up the nose.

DO have your ferrets vaccinated against rabies (Imrab 3). There is currently NO FDA approved distemper vaccine for ferrets.

DO play with your ferret daily. Ferrets love to play and will bond with you quickly. DON’T leave your ferret with a small child unsupervised.

DON’T have your ferret declawed or defanged. This is mutilation to the animal. Declawing actually requires the removal of the toe tips.

DON’T let your ferret play in an area that has not been “ferret-proofed”.

DON’T abuse neglect or ignore your ferret. Never pick it up by the tail.

Ferret Color Chart

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