Friday, 16 October 2015

Of Rats and Ferrets

Bad Ferret!

I'm sure it has not gone unnoticed by my regular readers that the mention of ferrets and things ferrety have come to a standstill. I blame my new medication. So before the mere mention of the word, 'ferret', causes toe curling derision from the author, here is my last ferrety gasp. Of course, I could stop taking my meds: things could become very ferrety after a short interval- Isn't that right, Mr Mugumbo? Please note, I have posed answers to common ferrety conundrums, followed by commentary.

 Let's get started........

Ferrets make excellent pets for people who have the time for them, and who bond well with animals. Ferrets are naturally quiet, inquisitive, intelligent, and companionable. At certain points in the day, they are also exceedingly active and capable of getting themselves into trouble unless they are supervised. Their intelligence makes them interesting companions, and they are able to amuse themselves when you are not around. But they do require attention and interaction with their owners; their mental and physical health depends on it.

Yep, what that doesn't tell you is that ferrets can be extremely mischievous. I once fell dead drunk over my snooker table to awake next day with the little toe of my left foot completely gnawed off. Bad ferret! Luckily the passage of the resultant bones took no more than 6 hours. I now have a newsworthy memento of my folly. The upside is I got a free anatomy lesson- 'Go Shagger'. The little toe is vastly overrated especially when it comes to gait. I think I compensate rather well and only an expert in bio-mechanics, would ever notice.

, county, state, or military regulations can all dictate whether or not it is legal for you to own, breed, or sell a ferret where you live. The regulations can be quite involved. California, for example, allows only neutered males to be kept; and in Carson City, Nevada, it is illegal to own a ferret if you have a small child in your household. To determine the regulations in your area, check with your local Wildlife or Fish and Game department, with the Humane Society, or with your local veterinarian. These organizations should also be able to advise you on license and permit requirements. Depending on where you live, you may need a license or permit for your ferret.

Or you could tell the nosy state to fuck off. Probably a good idea not to tell them at all. As for nosy neighbours: Tell em that its your pet rat that got caught in the washing mangle. This works especially well where ferrets are verboten, as they have no idea what a ferret looks like or what a 'mangle' actually is. Also folk, are generally, very stupid. Any intrepid official types turning up at your door should be killed forthwith and slowly fed to your ferret(s). They are unlikely to be missed. In my experience, 'Officials' are sad lonely creatures who get off on the minutiae of regulations and sniffing their neighbour's underwear placed salaciously and enticingly on the washing line.  Admittedly, disposing of a whole carcass can be wearisome unless you own a coterie of ferrets. If you don't, get acquainted with your local pig farmer.

Many prospective ferret owners are naturally concerned about how well a ferret would get along with their children or other pets. A ferret is a demanding pet for a child, requiring careful adult supervision and the maturity of the child. The child must be able to recognize that a ferret behaves differently from a dog, cat, or other pet. The child must also be old enough to handle the responsibility of caring for the ferret. Ferrets are not recommended for a household with children younger than 6 or 7 years, and especially close supervision would be required around infants or babies.

Because they are natural hunters, ferrets usually can't be trained to get along with birds, fish, rabbits, rodents, or lizards. If you have these animals in your home, you will need to provide vigilant supervision at all times. But ferrets can generally be trained to get along with cats and dogs. Note, however, that terriers and similar dogs were originally bred to hunt.

Here is the news: Don't mix small children with ferrets. If you do, you will have a perpetually howling brat covered in sticking plasters. As for the presence of other animals: Tis true that terriers will kill a ferret with a flick and toss of the head. Other dogs are usually dominated by ferrets. If in doubt, dig a pit and toss in ferret and dog and let them work it out. Don't forget to video the 'social kinetics' with your latest i phone. If you own unconventional pets such as lizards and snakes and frogs you should be fucking ashamed. Put aforementioned thingys in a blender and feed resultant mush to your adorable ferret. Ferrets are particularly fond of hamsters.

Ferrets must be taught not to nip or bite, much the same way that kittens and puppies are taught what behaviour is appropriate. A domestically bred ferret will usually not be vicious or aggressive, but it is in its nature to enjoy games that simulate hunting, tug-of-war, chasing, or mock combat. A young ferret will not understand what hurts you and what doesn't hurt you until you communicate the boundaries. It will be up to you to establish those boundaries appropriately, without hurting your ferret or teaching it to fear or mistrust you.

Some ferrets do respond to fear, pain, or to certain noises or actions by biting. The key to altering that behaviour is to understand and eliminate the underlying reason.

Ferrets are nasty little buggers and unpredictable; that's why I love em. Generally ferrets respond to any stimuli by attacking and biting. Play with your ferret but always count your digits after every encounter. My hands are bedecked with a tracery of scars which become particularly apparent after a tan. Always discipline your ferret if you think their behaviour becomes too extreme. Hold them firmly by the scruff of the neck and flick vigorously with the fingers of the other hand at the base of the nostril. Once you see a fleck of blood you have made your point and your ferret will respect you, until they forget. Repeat as often as is required.  

Here endeth the ferret lesson.

Normal posting will resume once the new meds kick in.

Go one, treat the nasty little bastard


  1. So basically, they're like salt water crocs only smaller?...

  2. I have dog and two ferrets. for me ferret are better pet becouse for dog you need more time, attention and the cost are bigger