I almost bought a ferret

toomuchglassJune 8, 2011

I went to a pet store for dog food (Petco ) ... and one of the sales people there was walking around with a ferret wrapped on his neck. I'm such a sucker for animals ..... I thought "Charlie" looked so sweet . He was an albino ferret .

I know nothing about them. My friend's daughter had 6 of them - their cages took up the whole basement. She said when they were let out -- they played like kittens and were very smart. ( Then she asked me if I wanted to buy them ........hhhmmmm...) um ..... I don't think so .

I asked to hold Charlie ..... he just squirmed the whole time - never really looked at me - he was eyeing up the store to see where he could go. I knoww they LOVE to explore to the point of being a terror .

Are they good pets ? Does anyone have one ? I'd love to hear about their personalities and how much they interact with humans. Something tells me - they weren't meant to be pets.

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kittens

I never had one. I held one once at the mall before going in to the movies. I could smell ferret on my clothes all during the show. That curbed my desire to own one :) I think it would be a fun pet if you were into that kind of animal, for sure.

Did you see that they have ferret rescues? I just googled and found the Ferret Den Rescue/Club located in Milwaukee. Take a look at the cutie-pies up for adoption on the link below.

Here is a link that might be useful: ahh - look at little Gidget!

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 1:22PM
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calliope

My son had four of them when he was just graduating from high school. That translates into I got into ferret sitting on occasion. I will agree with your statement that 'Something tells me - they weren't meant to be pets'. They were well cared for, but a cage isn't my idea of ideal for an animal like that.

Yes, they'll find any type of hole and go for it. We live in a two hundred year old house and there are plenty of nooks and crannies and I thought a couple times when son had them out in his room and playing with them that we'd never get them back.

It's absolutely necessary to spay a female ferret unless you breed her each time she cycles in because they do not go out of estrus until bred and failure to do so can cause them to die. The males are stinky if not neutered.

My son's male ferret was mean and if I was feeding, I dare not put my hands anywhere near him to put in the food. And when I cleaned the bedroom after he moved, I found ferret poop in a corner where he'd had them out to play and they did what came naturally......you don't housetrain them.

I'm sure there are ferret owners out there who enjoy the care and upkeep of them and more power to them, I guess. I'm not one of them. LOL.

    Bookmark   June 8, 2011 at 9:17PM
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mazer

If ferrets are not hand raised - just like dogs and cats, they can become aloof or mean. They are great pets as long as they get enough attention. They require a bath - they are members of the skunk family and get a musky smell after a while. They are also naturally nocturnal and unless properly raised will be up all night and sleep all day. They usually get along well with cats and dogs and kids, and they really suffer without alot of attention. If they get out of their cages they can become an issue, those tube like bodies are perfect for hunting prairie dogs, gophers, moles and mice and they can fit in a surprisingly small area ending up where you dont want them like between the walls of your home.
We had one at the vet office I once worked at, and he was great fun, when cleaning out files we would put him in the garbage can with the wadded up papers and he would play happily for hours, we also use to curl him up and toss him down the linoleum hallway, where he would slide for yards. He loved that!! He would get up and dash into the nearest office with the office cat right behind him!!
I would not suggest buying one from a store, I would rather a first perchase be with a reputable breeder who you can check on, ask questions of and make certain the little ones are being raised properly.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 2:52AM
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toomuchglass

I never knew there was a ferret rescue !!! I looked at those pictures and they could melt anyones heart !!
I'm so glad I curbed my impulse - now I see I'm totally unprepared to have a pet like that. Thanks for your stories :)

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 1:46PM
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calliope

I think Mazer summed it up well. My son took on his ferrets after an owner found them too much to upkeep, so he inherited adult ferrets who didn't get the attention they needed and deserved. He did a good job with them and I don't remember what happened to them after he moved out. They were quite the fad here about twenty years ago and I guess I have an issue with fad animals......pit bulls have been the fad here now for several years and before that lab retrievers. The pound and shelter are just so full of them, I don't see how they'll ever find homes and yet the bulletin boards in stores are still full of puppy pictures from back yard breeders who are still cranking them out.

    Bookmark   June 9, 2011 at 2:23PM
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Meghane

I disagree that non-hand-raised ferrets are not good pets. My Tavi was an ex-Marshall Farms breeder who was given to the vet school for us students for a class (I neutered and descented him). He was 2 years old at the time and I just fell in love with him and took him home. He was an awesome pet, very loving, easy to train, playful, and sweet. The smell is a lot for most people to get used to but their personality overcomes that easily IMHO. Kind of like pot belly pigs...

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 8:15PM
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