Tips for Owning a Ferret

If you have ever seen a ferret in person, the chances are you have either noticed them snoozing in a cozy corner, or doing something outright silly. It seems that ferrets have no common ground or moderation. A ferret will regularly fool around, nibble at toys and climb into laundry baskets, or they will be fast asleep.

Before an owner looks into purchasing or adopting a ferret, there are some important facts to be wary of before bringing the new critter home. The main things to take into consideration include: housing, diet, sleeping habits and schedules.

Where Should Ferrets Sleep?
A ferret is happy enough to snuggle up in to any of your blankets, pillow cases, under couches and inside purses. However, unless you live in a small studio apartment, letting your ferret have "free range" of a larger home is not such a great idea. Ferrets are wanderers by nature and will not hesitate to walk outside or scurry underneath appliances. If you want to keep it safe, you need to think of a realistic headquarters for your ferret to sleep.

Ferret Cages come in different sizes and styles. The style of cage to purchase is completely up to the owner. However, many veterinarians recommend cages with thinner and smaller bars that enclose the cage versus the traditional wide-bar "bird cage" style enclosures that allow a ferret's paw to poke through. Also, if you plan on housing two ferrets, one larger cage is beneficial to two smaller ones. Ferrets are happy to have company in their cages.

Sleeping Habits
Just like cats and sloths, ferrets are renowned sleepers. It is not uncommon for a ferret to sleep more than 18-20 hours a day. When they sleep, a ferret will curl up close in a ball and take a snooze for a few hours, wake up, scurry and use the bathroom and then another nap. It is ideal when you train your ferret to use a designated spot for the bathroom, otherwise you will be tracking down "surprises" next to all of their favorite sleeping spots.

Ferret Diets
A ferrets diet is not as exotic as flying squirrels' or other marsupials. A ferret does not require fresh fruit and protein in every meal. They are not the pickiest animals out of all of the small critters. However, to keep your ferret fit and healthy, you still need to be aware of what a well-rounded ferret diet should include.

Years ago it was common for pet owners to feed ferrets the most high-end dry cat food that they could find at pet stores. This is still common practice for many ferret owners, however there are now special ferret blends of dry food that is available online and at specialty stores. Ferrets are also fond of

Other treats include eggs (hard boiled, scrambled), bits of cooked meats, or freeze dried liver treats. Commercial ferret treats should only be used if they are meat based - avoid those with grains, vegetables or sugars at all costs.

By Sean Bowes
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