Before you adopt

Some Things to Consider

  • Do you have children?
  • Do you have other ferrets?
  • Have you considered food and medical costs?
  • If you rent, do you have permission, preferably in writing, to have pets?

About Our Ferrets

Distemper vaccination: We no longer automatically update distemper vaccinations, since recent research has shown protection lasts longer than originally thought. We have been checking the distemper titer* (a measure of how protected they are) and vaccinating only if the ferret needs it. Ferrets have a high rate of vaccine reaction, and there is some conjecture that over-vaccinating might actually affect the immune system in a negative way. Therefore, we try to only vaccinate when actually needed.

If the ferret is adopted before the results come back, we will notify the new owners of the test results.

*For more information about distemper, titers and testing, please click here: distemper article

Holding period: We try to allow a 2-week acclimation period before adopting out a ferret, since some ferrets will get sick due to stress. We will also check for ear mites and fleas (and treat if needed) as well as watch for any behavior problems. This holding period also allows us to get to know the ferret’s personality so we can match up the new owner with the best ferret for them.

The Procedure

Submit an application: You will be asked to fill out an adoption application with various information about you, where you live, who lives with you and previous ferret experience among other things. All information is confidential and we do not sell our lists. The information requested is to help us get to know you and your situation so we can match you up with the best ferret for you. Not having experience or not already having supplies* does not disqualify you. We view the application as an opportunity to educate. We’re not judging you and you will not be graded!

*In fact, we’d really rather you did not buy supplies until you have talked to us. We hate it when people waste their money on inferior products. Remember, pet stores are there to sell you things. Not everything they carry is good.

Wait for our reply via email: We will review your application and reply via email with questions and/or suggested reading. We usually answer within 48 hours. If you do not receive an email within that time period, please contact us. Once any questions have been answered (feel free to ask questions of your own), then we move on to the next step. [To ensure you get our email, make sure our domain name is on your email “allowed” (white) list ( so our email won’t be put in your spam folder.]

Schedule an appointment: Appointments are usually evenings and weekends. Shelter mom has a day job, so if you just drop in, you may be disappointed to find no one here. We would appreciate notification if you cannot make your scheduled appointment or if you change your mind. Please email or call to let us know if you can’t make it.

If you have other ferrets, the best way to pick a new friend is to let them do the picking. Not all ferrets get along, and it’s best to try them out first.

Taking Your Ferret Home

Getting home: Please bring a carrier to take home your new ferret or ask if the shelter has second-hand carriers available for purchase. Make sure the carrier is big enough. We recommend “intermediate” or “medium” size carriers for up to 3 ferrets. The best carriers are hard plastic and large enough to hold a small litter pan in the back. We like to string a small hammock in them and put additional bedding on the floor of the carrier in front of the litter pan. We recommend using newspaper in the litter pan rather than litter, as ferrets delight in tipping over the pans and making a big mess.

We do not recommend soft carriers (those ferret teeth can make short work of an expensive carrier), cardboard boxes (unless specifically made for animals, and still only for short trips), holding the ferret the whole way home (they will get wiggly and might need to potty), or letting the ferret loose in the car. Ferrets will jump out car windows, get under your feet, get stuck in the mechanism under the seat, and most entertaining, pull down wires and air ducts in the firewall area of your car.

You can use a small “travel” cage to transport your ferret, too, but carriers are usually less expensive. For more information and suggestions regarding carriers, please read Choosing a Carrier. insert link

Introductions: Allow your ferret a little time to explore before introducing other pets and children. That will help calm the ferret. (Be aware, however, that sometimes it takes up to two weeks for ferret to feel completely comfortable in his new home.) Introduce dogs, cats and children under careful supervision. A frightened ferret will bite, and they will bite hard. Dogs are capable of killing a ferret in a split second, so I recommend keeping the dog on a leash and under control at all times until you’re sure of them both. Cats aren’t usually a danger to the ferret, but they can bite and scratch if annoyed. Make sure your cat has an escape route in case he or she becomes overwhelmed with your new friend. Small children should never be left alone with any kind of animal.

<emReturns: Part of the contract states that if for any reason you cannot keep the ferret, you must return it to the shelter. You cannot give it to someone else, sell it or drop it off at a Humane agency. If things don’t work out within 30 days, you can get your money back or choose another ferret (if a suitable ferret is available).


If you are ready to get started you can view the ferrets we have or move right to the Adoption Application form.