Ferrets 101: How to care for ferrets and what you need
First things first!
Things you need to know if you are going to get a ferret:
The actual ferret can cost anywhere from $60-$200, But that is only part of the cost! You will also need all of these things to properly care for your ferret.
With ferret the bigger the cage the better, Also the more time you are planning on keeping your ferret in the cage the bigger you will want it. Ferrets like to run around and play so they need plenty of room
2. Hammocks, Toys and beds.
Ferrets are very playful so you are going to need lots of toys such as, Little balls with bells in them, tubes, hammocks (ferrets are particularly fond of these), and other stuff that your ferret can climb on or through
No matter what you do, Do NOT put any kind of wood chips in a ferret cage because the oils in the wood cause all sorts of health problems in small animals such as ferrets. The recommendation for bedding in ferret cages is to use an old towel, baby blanket, shredded paper or a sweater with sleeves it can climb through.
4. Food and water dishes
A lot of people think that ferrets drink out of water bottles which they can, They just prefer to drink from a bowl like a cat or dog. You don't need a very large bowl just 2 smaller ones. You will also want to get a food and water dish that clips on to the cage so that they cant flip it over, They LOVE to flip over food and water dishes.
Something handy to have if you are planning on keeping a ferret as a pet is a book about ferrets or a ferret guide.
Zupreem and marshals is said to be the best brand of ferret food, Some people say that you can just use cat food, Which you can its just not the best for them
If you are planning on training your ferret at all or just want treats for it Marshall and N-bone treats are the best for them and are good for they're teeth
8. Litter box/Litter.
Yes ferrets can easily be trained to use a litter box, Which means you will need a litter box and litter. Lots of people say you can just use cat litter but its not good for them instead use paper pellets, again NOT wood chips of any kind. As for the actual litter box a small, plastic, corner litter box is the best.
GROOMING TOOLS AND SUPPLIES YOU NEED:
1. Ferret shampoo.
You can buy Ferret shampoo at pet co for around $6-10, Something conditioning and deodorizing is the best choice because ferrets tend to have dry itchy skin, and a natural musky odor
During shedding season you will most definitely need a brush, You can buy special brushes for ferrets but really a cat or dog brush from the dollar store will work perfectly fine, Just nothing that would scratch them! Ideally you want something with rubber coated ends or something like that so you don't irritate they're skin.
3. Tooth brush, paste.
This isn't unnecessary but is recommended You can use a cat toothbrush and tooth paste. They should ideally have their teeth brushed every day . Their gums may bleed at first. You may have to start with a couple times a week and work your way up to every day/every other day so their gums can get used to the brushing.
4. Ear cleaner.
Ferrets have a tendency to get ear infections so it is recommended that you clean they're ears every week or so. For this most animal shops carry special ferret ear cleaner and you can just use a q-tip and some of that cleaner to clean they're ears GENTLY.
5. Nail clippers.
You want to keep your ferrets nails clipped just like a cat or dog, Just clip them every month or so using just regular old nail clippers or you can buy special ferret nail clippers
6. Flea spray.
To prevent your ferret from getting fleas its a good idea to get some flea spray from the pet store and make sure it is meant specially for ferrets other wise it may harm them or irritate they're skin
7. Cage cleaner and deodorizer.
To keep your ferrets cage sanitized and smelling fresh you can buy special sprays at the pet store, But I recommend just using vinegar mixed with a few drops of essential oils in a spray bottle, To use this take your ferrets(s) out of the cage and spray it all down then feel free to put them back in as soon as its dry.
Now I will tell you some general facts and tips about ferrets:
Males tend to be larger than females in length and weight. Females are 13-14 inches long and weigh anywhere from 0.75 to 2.5 lbs, whereas males are on average 15-16 inches long and weigh 2-3.5 lbs if neutered and are even larger (4 or more lbs) if not neutered.
Ferrets live anywhere between 6-12 years depending on how well you treat and take care of it
Ferrets usually sleep 12-18 out of 24 hours a day but when they aren't sleeping they are all sorts of energetic and playful
Ferrets can sleep so soundly that they cannot be woken up even when picked up and jostled.
Ferrets love to climb into small spaces, nooks and craines so make sure that if you are going to keep it out of a cage that you "ferret proof" your house first.