Author Topic: Should I?  (Read 2197 times)

Offline Ebonyraven

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Should I?
« on: February 03, 2013, 05:45:00 PM »
My grandmother has given me the opportunity to purchase a ferret and all of its belongings.

I would like to adopt from a rescue if I could.

I know NOTHING about them, I'd do my research of course and make sure I got everything down and ready to go before I even said yes, but I told her I wanted to think about it (which means I wanted to go ask goose moose).

My mother had two ferrets before and they were so amazing, but I don't know... Are they okay pets? do they get along with everything okay? Is a double nation or single nation better for them? I .. Give me all your knowledge!  :help:

I'm going to read the stickies of course, but I really just need to know "Is a ferret okay for my lifestyle?"

I'm home all the time, I go to college twice a week and then I go straight to my room. I have four rats, two guinea pigs and two large fish tanks so there's wires but I could get protectors for those things. We also have two dogs but they don't like my room (They're terrified of the rats)
 
We're going to be moving to a camper soon(temporarily) , but that wont change anything, if anything they'll have more room to roam.

My grandmother doesn't really know what to think of them, she thinks they're 'smelly and mean' but I explained it honestly depends on the person who's raised them and how well the cages are kept. Gah I'm so torn!  :worry:

Offline *Kat*

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2013, 05:50:39 PM »
Ferrets are predictors of rats so you would have to make sure they can not get to your rats at all.   You might want to buy a copy of ferrets for dummies and read through that to get ideas.   Like rats they are social and at least 2 is best.   Being in college can you afford their vet care and know you will be able to keep and care for them for their entire lives (sometimes over 7 years if you get babies)   

Offline Ebonyraven

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2013, 05:55:45 PM »
Ferrets are predictors of rats so you would have to make sure they can not get to your rats at all.   You might want to buy a copy of ferrets for dummies and read through that to get ideas.   Like rats they are social and at least 2 is best.   Being in college can you afford their vet care and know you will be able to keep and care for them for their entire lives (sometimes over 7 years if you get babies)


Yep~ I can afford it for sure. And as for the rat thing, I've thought about that as well and would reinforcing the critter nation with mesh wire be okay? and the cages would be on the opposite side of the rooms from eachother. and two is best? Okay, I can do that, too. I was thinking about rescuing older ones as not many people do, so it would give them a chance at having a good home. :)

Offline mutewolf

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2013, 07:28:48 PM »
Please bear with me for the wall of text that is sure to follow. I have 2 rats and 3 ferrets. I'm gonna tackle this by responding to your points and then I'll info dump a bit. :D

Quote
I would like to adopt from a rescue if I could.

Adopting from rescues is an awesome option. The Lexington Humane Society gets ferrets every once in a while (our most recent came from there). We paid $40 for her. There is also The Ferret Haven in Louisville & Ann's Ferret Shelter in Ohio (near Cincinnati, I believe). Those are the only 2 I know of specifically. Then there's also Craigslist where people tend to sell their ferrets along with cages for anywhere from $100-$300, depending.

 
Quote
I go to college twice a week and then I go straight to my room. I have four rats, two guinea pigs and two large fish tanks so there's wires but I could get protectors for those things. We also have two dogs but they don't like my room (They're terrified of the rats)

It sounds like you've got a lot on your hands already so I'd be concerned about adding ferrets to the mix. Our guys get anywhere from 1-8 hours of out time every day which isn't just let them out of the cage, it's also cuddling, interacting, playing with, grooming them, etc.

Quote
Are they okay pets? do they get along with everything okay? Is a double nation or single nation better for them?

Quote
.... she thinks they're 'smelly and mean'

Info Dump time!


I have 3 ferrets. An approximately 2 year old male, rescued from the streets, an almost 2 year old female, adopted from a woman giving up all of her ferrets, and an almost 1 year old female, adopted from LHS. They live in a repainted Feisty Ferret and eat Innova Cat Food and Taste of the Wild Kitten Food. We free roam them every day in the bedroom for several hours and then the whole apartment for an hour or so. They tend to fall asleep during out time, haha.

They are awesome to play with, hand wrestle, teeth nip, etc. They're very much a mixture of an independent cat and a playful dog. Of course, it depends on personality. They are very intelligent though and will repeat an action over and over again if they got something positive from it just once (i.e. opening a door for out time) whether or not they get negative reactions now. They have no concept of punishment/behavioral training for the most part (I have not successfully trained any of them to stay off of chairs/tables, to stop digging in carpets, etc.)

They require high protein foods. What they eat is what affects their smell and health. The crappier food you feed, the worse they will smell, the worse their poop will smell, and the more health problems they will have. They do not need to be bathed more than every 6 months or so depending on general cleanliness, flea problems, etc. Around 2-3 years of age is when things such as lymphoma, adrenal disease, insulinoma, cancer, etc, begin popping up in almost all ferrets. Treatments are expensive and you will want to have a few thousand dollars in vet funds since surgery is sometimes the only option for treatment. They can get the flu, eat things (plastic, foam, rubber), get stepped on, etc.

Out of the 3 ferrets, only one is interested in my rats. She climbs the cage. She circles the cage. She has been bitten by them through the bars and continues to go to the cage. She's never shown an interest in eating them or anything like that but I wouldn't trust either of my females for 2 seconds in a room with a rat or mouse. Their prey instinct is incredibly high and the girl's kill drive would kick in very quickly. I personally don't feed raw but, I'm sure if I did, I could feed live raw and not have a problem.

There aren't many active ferret boards on the internet unfortunatley. EverythingFerret is one I use and there is also Holistic Ferret. The latter primarily discusses raises ferrets on as natural of a diet as possible (raw, mainly).

Definitely read Ferrets for Dummies. There is a lot more going into their care then you'd think. I've had my three for almost a year now and I'm learning stuff every day still.

Offline Ebonyraven

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2013, 07:34:26 PM »
Please bear with me for the wall of text that is sure to follow. I have 2 rats and 3 ferrets. I'm gonna tackle this by responding to your points and then I'll info dump a bit. :D

Quote
I would like to adopt from a rescue if I could.

Adopting from rescues is an awesome option. The Lexington Humane Society gets ferrets every once in a while (our most recent came from there). We paid $40 for her. There is also The Ferret Haven in Louisville & Ann's Ferret Shelter in Ohio (near Cincinnati, I believe). Those are the only 2 I know of specifically. Then there's also Craigslist where people tend to sell their ferrets along with cages for anywhere from $100-$300, depending.

 
Quote
I go to college twice a week and then I go straight to my room. I have four rats, two guinea pigs and two large fish tanks so there's wires but I could get protectors for those things. We also have two dogs but they don't like my room (They're terrified of the rats)

It sounds like you've got a lot on your hands already so I'd be concerned about adding ferrets to the mix. Our guys get anywhere from 1-8 hours of out time every day which isn't just let them out of the cage, it's also cuddling, interacting, playing with, grooming them, etc.

Quote
Are they okay pets? do they get along with everything okay? Is a double nation or single nation better for them?

Quote
.... she thinks they're 'smelly and mean'

Info Dump time!


I have 3 ferrets. An approximately 2 year old male, rescued from the streets, an almost 2 year old female, adopted from a woman giving up all of her ferrets, and an almost 1 year old female, adopted from LHS. They live in a repainted Feisty Ferret and eat Innova Cat Food and Taste of the Wild Kitten Food. We free roam them every day in the bedroom for several hours and then the whole apartment for an hour or so. They tend to fall asleep during out time, haha.

They are awesome to play with, hand wrestle, teeth nip, etc. They're very much a mixture of an independent cat and a playful dog. Of course, it depends on personality. They are very intelligent though and will repeat an action over and over again if they got something positive from it just once (i.e. opening a door for out time) whether or not they get negative reactions now. They have no concept of punishment/behavioral training for the most part (I have not successfully trained any of them to stay off of chairs/tables, to stop digging in carpets, etc.)

They require high protein foods. What they eat is what affects their smell and health. The crappier food you feed, the worse they will smell, the worse their poop will smell, and the more health problems they will have. They do not need to be bathed more than every 6 months or so depending on general cleanliness, flea problems, etc. Around 2-3 years of age is when things such as lymphoma, adrenal disease, insulinoma, cancer, etc, begin popping up in almost all ferrets. Treatments are expensive and you will want to have a few thousand dollars in vet funds since surgery is sometimes the only option for treatment. They can get the flu, eat things (plastic, foam, rubber), get stepped on, etc.

Out of the 3 ferrets, only one is interested in my rats. She climbs the cage. She circles the cage. She has been bitten by them through the bars and continues to go to the cage. She's never shown an interest in eating them or anything like that but I wouldn't trust either of my females for 2 seconds in a room with a rat or mouse. Their prey instinct is incredibly high and the girl's kill drive would kick in very quickly. I personally don't feed raw but, I'm sure if I did, I could feed live raw and not have a problem.

There aren't many active ferret boards on the internet unfortunatley. EverythingFerret is one I use and there is also Holistic Ferret. The latter primarily discusses raises ferrets on as natural of a diet as possible (raw, mainly).

Definitely read Ferrets for Dummies. There is a lot more going into their care then you'd think. I've had my three for almost a year now and I'm learning stuff every day still.

Thank you so much! We decided to wait until we move to actually sit down and talk about everything that comes with getting one for sure, that way we don't have to put it through the stress of moving.  I'll be getting the book soon and this will also give me time to read it. Thank you so much. :)

Offline mutewolf

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2013, 07:39:42 PM »
No problem!

I accidentally got into ferrets so I've been learning how much work they are so I try to explain that to people. I wouldn't trade them away for anything but it's a lot more work than say a cat, IMO.

Offline Ebonyraven

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2013, 07:45:07 PM »
Oh! I knew they would be a lot of work. But, I like challenges. I help raise a raccoon baby and the absolute DISASTER it left in its wake was both hilarious and frustrating, but I loved every moment of it. Thank you for all your advice again, Mute!

Offline EvilBear

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Re: Should I?
« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2013, 10:40:02 AM »
BEST PETS EVER! Onylreason I no longer own them is that I had to move to California. Found good homes for mine. I mean, I love rats, but if you don't mind that even demusked they might smell a little and they have issues using litter boxes unless well trained(need to be corner boxes) then yes, you need one...or 50....or a million.

I miss my Cyrano.
There is a story that rats are really angels in disguise. The reason their lives are so short is that God is afraid that breathing the air down here will not be good for them, so they are allowed to stay only for as long as they can hold their breath. And when they can't hold their breath anymore...