Description:Ferrets are domestic animals, members of the weasel family. Domestic ferrets are believed to be descended from the European polecat. The basic color categories are albino and sable. You will find many varieties of the sable color. Ferret can weigh between 1 to 3.5 pounds as adults with the females weighing less.
Feeding:Ferrets are carnivorous animals. A good diet is a premium dry ferret food with a meat-based protein and high-fat content. Ferrets need to eat frequently throughout the day because they metabolize their food so quickly. Treats can be boiled eggs or cooked pieces of meat (de-boned). There are many pre-packaged treats available for ferrets. Just make sure the treats are tiny pieces and given in small amounts. Heavy ceramic food bowls are recommended since the ferret likes to tip things over. A water bottle should be secured to the outside of the cage with the spout facing in.
Housing:There are many suitable cages for ferrets. The ideal habitat is a large, two to three story cage. Ferrets sleep between 15 and 20 hours a day so a comfortable sleeping area is important. Hammocks are great to use for their sleeping area. Ferrets can be litter-trained in a small confined area of their cage. A plastic litter pan with litter products made from recycled newspapers is the best. Do not use cat litter as it may cause the ferret's coat to become dry and brittle. The cage should be kept in a cool, shaded, dry area away from direct sunlight. Ferrets cannot tolerate temperatures above 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
Miscellaneous:Ferrets require a series of distemper shots and also a rabies vaccination (consult your veterinarian). Ferrets should not be bathed more than once a week. Frequent bathing can lead to a dry skin and coat condition. The musky smell comes from glands throughout the skin. Change the bedding, litter or paper frequently to help eliminate this smell.
Longevity:6 to 10 years in captivity
S & S Exotic Animals, Inc., 1711 Connorvale, Houston, TX 77039 (281) 590-0426