Ferrets as Pets
Are Ferrets For You?
At the end of a very long day, it is good to come home to a house where someone or at least, something will be excitedly waiting for you. Common pet owners usually have dogs happily wagging their tails to meet them or cats sleazily telling them they need to be fed right away.
Then there are those people who prefer exotic pets that can be misinterpreted as living warnings even miles before someone reaches the doorsteps. These may vary from snakes to arachnids. Those who do not have phobias will suddenly rethink their fears. Then there are some who prefer something in the middle – not so ordinary but no so wild—ferrets.
Ferrets “come from the mustildae family with minks, weasels, otters, skunks, badgers and European polecat as its cousins.” However, even as its cousins thrive in the wild, ferrets cannot survive without the care and protection given by humans. They are more dependent on humans to survive. They’re animal instincts can only do so much to help them in surviving in the wild. Because of this feeling of dependency on humans, many pet lovers become attracted to these furry animals. They know that ferrets as pets need special attention and extra care. Not everyone is a suited candidate to be a ferret’s owner.
Ferrets as pets have “engaging personalities, playful activity and fastidious nature”.
When it comes to keeping the house looking and smelling decently without traces of urine and feces, ferrets are highly trainable in using litter boxes. Just leave a low-sided litter box where they can see it.
It is also good to know that ferrets do not wage wars against dogs and cats. However, it’s a different story when it comes to birds. So, it is advisable that owners keep the birds in higher places or better yet, don’t challenge Mother Nature by having birds and ferrets in one household lest the owner wants fur and feather in a battle arena.
As much as we want to protect our pets, they still find creative ways in putting themselves in trouble.
“Ferret-proofing” is a term that owners use in protecting ferrets against dangerous places and things which can harm them at home. This can be as simple as blocking small or big holes with duct tape (temporary only) or wood and other materials. Ferrets may be trapped inside if left opened. Different pieces of furniture, as harmless as they look, can also become threats to the ferrets’ safety. Ferret owners know that any kind of hiding place can be a good place where ferrets take naps. So, before letting these pets loose, make sure that “couches, upholstered furniture, mattresses, etc. by tacking hardboard, masonite or heavy duty sheeting materials to the bottom.”
Owners should also double-check their electrical appliances, kitchen, laundry rooms, bathrooms, plants and windows. These can potentially harm these furry creatures, too. Aside from these parts of the house, owners should caution themselves too because even if the house is fully ferret proof, the owners themselves may accidentally harm them.
Because it requires more responsibility to take care of ferrets, it is encouraged that adult owners do not let young children pat ferrets without proper supervision. Kits, as baby ferrets are called, “are very playful and may scare or hurt children. A child who roughly cuddles a ferret may be bitten or scratched.” 8 But this doesn’t mean that ferrets as pets are dangerous. They just need to be handled with more gentleness and awareness in the owner’s part. Who knows? One day you might just become one proud ferret owner.