Choosing a Ferret
Ferrets come in several different colour schemes: the polecat ferret is the most popular. polecat ferrets have a buff coloured coat with black markings on the face, feet, and tails. Albino ferrets are white with pink eyes. Some ferrets have a buff coat with light markings.
The female ferret is called a Jill, the male is a Hob, and the infants are called Kits.
Ferrets can make good pets. Commercially produced ferret food is now easily available, and they easily learn to use a litterbox.
ferrets are considered geriatric pets at 3 years of age (compared to 8 years of age for dogs and cats)
Selecting Your Pet
Some people are concerned about owning a pet ferret, due to potential attacks on people (specifically children, as ferrets can be aggressive and bite). Ferrets can often be purchased through breeders or ferret club members. There are also many ferrets looking for homes in rescues centres – sadly there are still ferret owners that breed Jills every year rather than having them neutered or injected. The British Ferret Club are usually able to put people wanting ferrets in touch with rescue centres.
Check your prospective new pet for general good health.
- The eyes and nose should be clear and free of any discharge that might indicate a respiratory infection (or distemper).
- The ferret should be curious and inquisitive; i
- It should not be thin and emaciated.
- Check for the presence of wetness around the anus, which might indicate diarrhoea.
- Check for the presence of external parasites such as fleas and ear mites.
- If possible, examine the ferret’s mouth for broken teeth, discoloured gums (they should be light pink), or any obvious sores, any of which could suggest disease.
- Inquire as to whether the ferret has been neutered; some ferrets have these operations performed by 8-12 weeks of age prior to purchase.
The first veterinary visit
Your ferret should be examined by a veterinary surgeon who treats these pets ideally within 48 hours of purchase. The vet will discuss proper diet, housing, and toys for the ferret.
A vaccination program will be set up and general health advice can be offered as required.