20 Facts About Animals That Will Make You Smile The Pros and Cons of Having a Ferret For a Pet

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The Pros and Cons of Having a Ferret For a Pet

My ferrets “dook,” do a war dance, and “skitter” between my legs, and they make my husband, kids, and I smile. For my family, ferrets are the best pets. My husband thinks they are better than dogs, and we all prefer ferrets to cats. Ferrets are very different from cats and dogs, however. Their behavior, smell, motivations, and shape are all different from cats and dogs. They are classified as great pets, and it is important that you consider the pros and cons of ferret parentage before adopting one of these wonderful weasels.

The differences between ferrets and other pets create pros and cons of owning a pet ferret

Knowledge: I hesitate to say that cats and dogs are smarter than ferrets, but I readily admit that ferrets have a very different type of intelligence. Ferrets are very good problem solvers. For example, for Christmas, I put an apple in the fridge for my ferret. (The ferret liked to steal apples and hide them. He didn’t actually eat them.) The apple was a tad smaller than the market. Ernie put his head in the drawer, took the apple, and took a bite. Break down. After only two attempts, he exited the market and reached his head. He pushed out the apple.

Power: Every ferret I’ve ever seen is far more motivated than the most dedicated cat or dog. Ferrets are very curious. They must know what is behind closed doors. They must know what is behind a barrier. They need to study the back of the washing machine and the inside of the furniture. If a ferret somehow manages to get into your pots and pans, don’t be surprised to find them later with your silverware. This stability makes it difficult to “ferret proof” and makes your home safe for your beloved pets.

Bandit: Dogs tend to steal shoes and socks as puppies, but they outgrow the habit. Ferrets “steal” throughout their lives. If an object appeals to a ferret, it will take the object and hide it in its pouch. Ferrets don’t grow up in this – people learn to carry their keys and shoes.

Food (Import): While dogs are omnivores, ferrets are like cats. They are flesh. In fact, fish are obligate carnivores and they eat meat and fat. Ferrets need ferret food, and ferret food is more expensive than cat food.

Result: Farms will not bury them in a landfill. Dogs are easily trained to go outside. Ferrets, on the other hand, generally do their business in corners. While they can be trained to use litter boxes, it is rare to find a ferret that will walk into another room to use a litter box.

Names: Cats and dogs quickly learn their names and dogs are easily trained to come to their names. Few ferrets know their names. Only two of my ferrets know their names. A woman I know who has run a ferret shelter for 18 years told me she had seen a ferret that showed knowledge of its name.

Which of these are pros and cons? Well, the answer to that question is different for each person.

Before getting a ferret as a pet, ask yourself these questions.

  1. If your pet ferret steals your keys, is it cute? If your pet ferret stole your keys twenty times, is it still cute?
  2. Are you ready to re-arrange your home to be proof-of-concept?
  3. Are you ready to deal with magnetic locks on your cabinets?
  4. Do you want to remove your listeners?
  5. Do you print out the shape of the bottoms if your doors have dents on them?
  6. Do you mind cleaning litter boxes?
  7. Do you mind cleaning non-litter box areas?
  8. Can you overcome a two-foot-high Plexiglas barrier?
  9. Do you have sensitive nose?
  10. If you put down a glass, would you notice if you stepped on it and nosed in it?

It’s not all bad though. Ask yourself these questions too.

  1. Do you like watching curious animals?
  2. Do you like playing with your animals?
  3. Do you like pets that will play with you and that they will play by themselves?
  4. Do you like beautiful animals?

Ferrets are not for everyone, but they are wonderful for some people

Ferrets can seem confusing at times, but once you know the species, they are not.

Are you still considering a pet ferret?

Please visit your nearest ferret shelter and talk to the shelter staff. Besides the fact that almost every ferret shelter is now thriving, the shelter people can help you understand a particular ferret’s behavior. The shelter people are also able to do what is needed to make your home a forever ferret home. The American Ferret Association and Ferret Life both have guidelines for ferret shelters.

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