Ferret

Growth Size

Ferrets grow to a length of 55 – 65cm (including tail), and can weigh up to 2kg.

Lifespan

7 – 10 years.

Temperament

Ferrets are extremely playful and mischievous creatures. Their cheeky nature is amusing to watch. Ferrets are often unfairly thought of as vicious, but if handled appropriately from a young age they can become quite affectionate. They are also excellent escape artists, so any room the Ferret is going to run free in must be 'Ferret-Proofed'.

Training Difficulty

Ferrets can be difficult to train. They can be taught not to nip human fingers with a stern 'NO' command. With perseverance they may also be taught to use a litter box and walk on a harness.

Recommended Owners

Recommended for families with school aged children.

Origin

The domestication of Ferrets is thought to have occurred in the 1800s to aid hunters. Ferrets were used to flush rabbits, hares, and rodents out of their burrows and into traps. Ferrets didn't actually start gaining popularity as pets until the 1980s.

Diet

There are a few commercial Ferret foods available, but Ferrets can also be fed on a high quality kitten food. Raw meaty bones can be offered as weekly treats. This also helps promote good dental hygiene. Make sure the bones are large enough that the Ferret cannot swallow them whole. They must also be raw, as cooked bones can splinter and cause damage to the Ferret's insides.

Please note! The dietary guidelines specified above are only a guide and feeding may vary based on your pet's size, activity level, and metabolism.

Grooming

Ferrets can be brushed fortnightly to remove loose hairs. During the shedding season, they will need to be brushed more often as their new coats come in.

Comments

The name Ferret comes from the Latin word 'furonem', which means 'thief'. This is due to a Ferret's habit of stealing any item they can get their little paws onto, and squirrelling it away somewhere out of sight.