Call Us Today! 508-888-2774


Things To Know Before Adopting A Ferret Sandwich, MA

May 01, 2024

Are you considering adopting a ferret? Though they might not be to everyone’s taste, ferrets can be great companions. In fact, a ferret may be the perfect pet for you if you’re looking for something that’s not only really cute, but also energetic, mischievous, and unique. They also can be quite affectionate! However, they do have some distinctive care needs. Read on as a local Sandwich, MA vet discusses ferret care.


They Need Comfy Cages


You’ll have to furnish a comfortable, secure cage, complete with fun toys, comfy bedding, and accessories, such as dishes and a litterbox. Ask your Sandwich, MA vet for specific advice on this, including tips on bedding and toys.


Ferrets Need Playtime


Your ferret may spend a great deal of time in his cage, but will get bored and restless if stuck inside it too long. Your pet will need several hours of daily free time in a secure, ferret-proofed location. You’ll also need to make time to pet, play with, and just hang out with your tiny buddy.


They Have Specialized Dietary Needs


Ferrets need a customized diet. They are carnivores, and eat meat almost exclusively in the wild. There are a few things that potential owners should know before diving into ownership.


  • Finding pet food might not be as simple as going to your neighborhood grocery or convenience store and picking up dog or cat food.
  • Ferrets can also get enamored with a certain food and ignore everything else. Though this may seem cute, this is really pretty dangerous. It could be really difficult to convince your furry buddy to try a different brand if suddenly their favorite is no longer available.
  • Finding suitable ferret food is crucial. A minimum of 20 percent of the content should be fat and roughly 40 percent protein, and less than five percent carbohydrates and fibers.
  • Like with any other pet, you should know what can be dangerous for your animal companion. Some of the things on that list include chocolate, raisins, grapes, avocado, fruits and veggies, and xylitol, but there are many more.
  • Your animal friend might love duck soup. (Note: this doesn’t actually have to contain duck) recipes are readily found online. 

Ask your veterinarian for individual advice on foods to avoid, acceptable treats, and quantity quantities.


They Can Be Taught To Use Litterboxes

This is a definite plus: these cute little guys can be taught to use litter boxes. However, it’s best if you start training young.


Ask your vet for more information on feeding your ferret, including safe and unsafe foods, portion sizes, and suitable treats.


They Need Proper Veterinary Care


Like any other pet, ferrets need regular veterinary care to thrive. Common health issues include cancer, heart problems (especially dilated cardiomyopathy), parasites, adrenal disease, and tumors. They’re also prone to obesity. Watch for signs of sickness.


Here are some of the most common ones:


  • Drooling
  • Cough
  • Trembling
  • Weakness
  • Weight loss
  • Abdominal swelling
  • Lethargy
  • Vomiting
  • Trouble breathing
  • Appetite loss
  • Black feces
  • Bloody stools
  • Diarrhea
  • Hair loss
  • Itching
  • Reduced muscle tone
  • Seizures
  • Sneezing


Call your Sandwich, MA vet right away if you notice any of these things. The sooner an issue is properly diagnosed and treated, the better!


Climate Control Is Important


Ferrets can quickly get too hot in summer, and need to be warm and cozy in winter. In summer, you can freeze little water bottles and place them inside their cage. A shallow ‘pool’ for your ferret to splash and play in might also be appreciated. In winter, add extra blankets.


Ferret Kits Are Adorable, But Mischievous


Ferrets are most gregarious and energetic during their early years. That’s not to argue that kits wouldn’t be amazing companions. Just prepare to give a young ferret a lot of your attention and effort.  (Note: Ferrets less than around two months old should stay with their moms.)


Ferrets Steal Things


Without question, ferrets are the cutest thieves in the world. They will happily take off with whatever they can carry. That includes things like cell phones, car keys, inhalers, and anything else you might need. Keep an eye on the places your pet likes to hide things. If you can’t find something, that’s where you should start looking.


They Need Buddies


Ferrets are quite sociable, and are happiest with at least a roommate or two. You’ll need to make the right match, of course. (Bonus: you’ll get to enjoy double—or triple—cuteness.)


There Are Many Rescued Ferrets Up For Adoption


If you’re thinking about bringing a ferret into your household, you should see whether any are up for adoption at a nearby rescue organization or animal shelter. We love seeing pets getting second chances! 


They Are Escape Artists


Ferrets are known for being able to fit through very small openings, even shower drains! They move quite freely under couches and mattresses.


They Sometimes Bite


Sometimes, while playing or taken by surprise, ferrets do bite. It is important to understand that this isn’t always an aggressive move. Ferret kits often bite each other playfully. However, while their fur protects them from rowdy siblings, our skin is much more delicate. If you have little kids, think about this before deciding to adopt a ferret. Or two. Or three.


Ferret-Proofing Is A Must


Taking all the required precautions to guarantee a pet’’s safety in your house is crucial. Keep anything that could be a choking, strangling, or poisoning hazard out of reach. That includes anything small enough for your ferret to eat, bat around, or carry. Rubber is also very dangerous.


Don’t forget about toxic plants! Some of the hazardous ones include aloe vera, amaryllis, azalea, baby’s breath, begonia, carnation, castor bean, chrysanthemum, cyclamen, daffodil, gladiola, hosta, ivy, all lily species, milkweed, morning glory, oleander, poinsettia, pothos, sago palm, tomato plants, tulips, narcissus, rhododendron, and yew.


Here’s a tip: Observe things from your pet’s point of view by getting down on the ground. Ferrets are known to have a talent for getting into or behind things like couches, recliners, and futons.


They Don’t Need Baths


Generally speaking, ferrets don’t need frequent bathing unless something spills on them. Some ferrets like splashing in water, while others prefer to stay dry. If you do bathe your ferret, use a mild soap. Products made expressly for ferrets would be ideal. Baby shampoo is another option. Your pet should be able to walk comfortably in the water while keeping their head above it.


Bathing your ferret should be done only every few months at the most. A common misconception is that bathing ferrets can help reduce their musty smell. This is not true at all. Actually, giving your pet too many baths can cause dry skin and can even lead to them developing skin issues.


You will need to trim your pet’s nails and clean their ears on a regular basis, even if you don’t give them a bath. For more information, see your veterinarian.


Make An Appointment With Your Sandwich, MA Veterinarian

Have you recently adopted a ferret? Are you considering getting one of these super cute little pets? Please do not hesitate to contact us if ever we can be of assistance. As your local Sandwich, MA pet hospital, we’re here to help!

Posted in Uncategorized

492 Route 6A
East Sandwich, MA 02537
(508) 888-2774
Also serving Bourne, MA and surrounding areas.

Opening Hours:
Mon, Tue, Thur, Fri: 8:00 am to 4:00 pm
Wed: 8:00 am to 3:00 pm
Saturday: Closed

Visit Our Online Store - Shop Now

CareCredit - Making Care Possible Today.

Pet Portal

Visit Our Online Store - Shop Now

CareCredit - Making Care Possible Today.

Pet Portal