1. If this is your first time on BYC, we suggest you start with one of these three options:
    Raising Chickens Chicken Coops Join BYC
    If you're already a member of our community, click here to login & click here to learn what's new!

Why SHOULDN'T I get a ferret?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by matthewschickens, Jun 9, 2011.

  1. I've been researching them with the goal to one day get a few. Most of the things I've read seem positive, but I know there has to be some negatives. So, please post why I should not get a ferret.

    Thanks!

    Matthew
     
  2. Kaitie09

    Kaitie09 Chillin' With My Peeps

    1,200
    14
    173
    May 28, 2009
    South Central, PA
    They bite.

    Not sure if that is true with all, but my friend had 4 and they would attack you if you got anywhere near them. They ran all over the house and you would just be walking and something would pop out from under a table and bite your toes.
     
  3. bufforp89

    bufforp89 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Jul 26, 2009
    Chenango Forks NY
    They stink and you have to bathe them on the regular.
     
  4. carolinagirl58

    carolinagirl58 Chillin' With My Peeps

    Mar 30, 2011
    Lugoff, SC
    Their litter boxes stink something terrible! Unlike a cat, they don't cover up the poop....they might put it in their litter box but it just sits there uncovered and stinking really bad.
     
  5. jenni22776rn

    jenni22776rn Chillin' With My Peeps

    579
    4
    121
    Mar 6, 2011
    Central Maine
    Ferrets are great pets and can be gentle and loads of fun to be around, but like with every pet..you have to be a responsible. They do have a smell and need to be kept clean because they do not like to have a dirty home. We had many ferrets and the last pair lived about 10 years which is considered a long time for them. They were sweet and never bit anyone. They do require vet care and are very sneaky!! If you can not find your keys or socks or anything...chances are they are stealing them and you may find them behind the couch or under chairs. They are wonderful pets and it seems as though you have done your research! Good luck and enjoy them once you do get them! [​IMG]
     
  6. NurseELB

    NurseELB Chillin' With My Peeps

    507
    3
    141
    Oct 16, 2008
    Lacey, WA
    As a fellow ferret enabler I feel there is NO reason not to get one- PROVIDED- you do all your research and are prepared to care for it like a family member.
    reputable dealer, vaccinated, adequate cage, ferret proof the house- they are always into things! We had a great relation ship with ours, and loved her dearly. The only problem we had was we probably should have gotten 2- she was alone alot.

    good enrichment and they won't bite- much [​IMG] ours did like socks. As long as you had on a shoe or were barefoot she was okay- otherwise she kept at you until you scrambled out of them.

    You can get supplements for their water to help with the smell. Bathe them no more than 2x a month, use a baking soda base, and wash all their linens weekly.

    Bitter apple spray works for biting and such. early discipline and careful how you play- just like a puppy!
     
  7. Chickerdoodle13

    Chickerdoodle13 The truth is out there...

    6,817
    316
    331
    Mar 5, 2007
    Phoenix, AZ
    The biggest negative with my ferret is I would have to bathe him weekly/biweekly to prevent the smell. He didn't smell terrible, as he was descented, but it was unpleasant if I let him go longer than two weeks without a bath. He was excellent about his baths though and would usually just fall asleep in the little tub I used.

    I got my ferret when he was a baby and held him ALL the time. He was very, very friendly and never nipped or bit. He would play bite when I had him out but it was not hard at all. He was very sweet, but not all ferrets are. If they are not handled as youngsters or depending on their personality, they may bite hard and draw blood.

    The saddest negative is the fact that pet store ferrets are very prone to cancer and that is what I lost mine to. I only had him for five years before he developed lymphnotic cancer. It can be difficult to find a vet to treat them because most consider ferrets exotic. It was also difficult to put him to sleep because they had to access his circulatory system directly through his heart due to insufficient size of veins in ferrets' legs. If you decide to buy a ferret, be sure to buy one from a breeder. Also, it is very, very smart to have them descented and neuter/spay can help with their personality as well. They are not usually cheap pets, but they can be wonderful if you have te time for them.

    Another thing I thought of: It took about a week to litter train my ferret. They aren't naturally prone to using them like most cats. To train him, I had to sit by the cage and watch to see if he looked like he was going to go to the bathroom. If he did, I would scoop him up and put him in the litter box and wait until he did his thing. After a few times of doing this, he caught on. It was just a matter of catching him before he went to the bathroom outside of the box.
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2011
  8. MareeZoCool

    MareeZoCool Chillin' With My Peeps

    [​IMG] STINKY WEAZELS are a perfect nic-name for them! [​IMG] Seems like the more you clean them, the more they STINK!
     
  9. Quote:I believe that can be true. If you wash them TOO often their skin can dry out and it's unhealthy and stinky. But maybe that's just an old wives tale.

    Thank y'all! I have another question, does anyone have a monthly estimate on how much it costs to keep a ferret?
     
  10. punk-a-doodle

    punk-a-doodle Chillin' With My Peeps

    2,953
    118
    213
    Apr 15, 2011
    Some of my friends worked at ferret rescues or pet stores before commiting so they would have a better idea of what they were getting into (maybe you have a ferret owning friend or two as well). I'd read on ferret rescues what some of the biggest reasons for them being given up are. I'd like to look into them someday, but right now, I don't feel the time is right for me to have ferrets because they can come with very expensive health problems, and because they can sneak into teeny tiny places just an inch and a half wide. The house is full of those! If worried. About aggression and health, getting older animals with known behaviors, personalities, and health can be a good intro. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jun 9, 2011

BackYard Chickens is proudly sponsored by