Ferret Facts

  • Ferrets are not rodents. They are obligate carnivores designed by evolution to eat other animals. All their teeth are pointed, which indicates a “meat eater”.
  • “Meat eaters” do not eat just meat. They need a balance of meat, bone and fat to be healthy. If you fed your ferret just meat, it would die.
  • Ferrets have a higher brain-to-body ratio than dogs and cats. This implies they are smarter.
  • Because ferrets are so intelligent, they get bored easily. You need to give them lots of playtime, rotate toys, and give them challenges. A bored ferret is a naughty ferret. If he doesn’t have enough to play with, he will play with your stuff. If your stuff is more fun than his stuff, guess what? He’ll play with your stuff.
  • Ferrets have an excellent sense of smell. They have such a large space for discerning smells, it would be like a dog being able to smell a fly 2 miles away.
  • Ferrets have relatively poor eyesight with poor depth perception. Ferrets have been known to jump out windows and off high things because of this.
  • Ferrets have decent hearing, but have trouble figuring out where the sound came from. If they hear something strange, they usually hide first and ask questions later.
  • Most people don’t even notice if their ferret is deaf. They do just fine.
  • According to recent research, ferrets (as well as ourselves) may be suffering from a vitamin B deficiency. Some supplements sold for ferrets contain B vitamins, but you really have to look hard to find one that contains them all. I’ve been looking at ingredient lists, and so far Nutri-Cal and Vita-Sol (the liquid you put in the water) seem to be most promising.
  • Deaf ferrets will often fling their head backwards when held on their back and look at the world upside down. They might also sleep with their head hanging out of the hammock upside down.
  • Ferrets who go blind are so good at learning the room that you might not realize they’re blind unless you move the furniture. Like deaf ferrets, blind ferrets do just fine.

Have any ferret facts of your own? Please share them with us in the comments.

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