If you own a ferret or you are thinking of getting one, you have probably wondered How Long do Ferrets Live. Well, it is very hard to give an exact time frame. Many people believe that ferrets live for around 9 years. However, the lifespan varies depending on where you get your ferret.
The lifespan of a ferret has a range of five to nine years. The reason why there is a gap of 4 years is that ferrets available at pet stores don’t live for very long. Whereas, ferrets bought from breeders live longer.
Ferrets Lifespan – How Long Do Ferrets Live?
Genetics play a part in the lifespan of a ferret. Like humans, the lifespan of a ferret also depends on the lifespan of their ancestors. It is difficult to know how long the parents of a ferret available at a pet store lived. But, if you get your ferret from a breeder, you can have this information and have an idea about your ferret’s age range.
Ferrets are carnivorous animals. They need to eat meat on a regular basis. They will live a longer and healthier life if their nutritional needs are met. Water is also essential for a ferret. Dehydration can be life-threatening for your ferret. Make sure there is a bowl of clean water close to your ferret at all times.
Ferrets are social animals and live happily when they get a lot of love from their owners. Constant care will make your ferret happy and prolong his life.
Diseases can cause premature death. They have to be caught early to be treated properly. It is important to notice any signs of fatigue or lethargy. Take your ferret to a vet immediately if there is anything off about him.
Ferrets are known to be the best versions of themselves in groups. It is said that a ferret’s lifespan decreases if he feels lonely. If you want your pets to have a long and happy life, instead of one, get multiple ferrets. If ferrets have a companion to play with them all the time, they tend to be much happier.
Getting multiple ferrets will give you some time to breathe as well. However, the cost of keeping multiple ferrets should be taken into consideration. Compromising life quality for companionship will produce the opposite of the desired effect. Unless you can afford to care for multiple ferrets, only get one.
Can Ferrets Live Outside?
Ferrets are completely capable of living outside. It is up to the owners if they want their ferrets living indoors or outdoors. The natural light and environment will prove to be beneficial for your ferret. But, there are a few risks involved in letting your ferret live outside. It is important to be aware of and take precautions for these risks. Some weather conditions can be a bit too extreme for a ferret. Hot weather, wind, rain and the cold are likely to cause a few problems. The housing or cage of your ferret should be suitable to protect your ferret.
Ferrets have a reputation for being quite the escape artists. If they cage of your ferret isn’t secure enough, he can find his way out. Spaces that are only a couple inches wide are enough for a ferret to squeeze through. Depending on the cage, ferrets can also dig their way out from the bottom. It is important to use a cage that cannot be escaped.
Ferrets are susceptible to heartworm infection. Heartworm is transmitted in the form of larvae and is fatal to your pet. The larvae are carried by infected mosquitos. Larvae develop and become adult heartworms. They usually attack the blood vessels between the lungs and heart of a ferret.
There are prevention treatments that kill the larvae. There is also a drug available that kills the adult heartworms. The drug, however, isn’t the ideal treatment. Adult heartworms will remain inside the artery of your ferret even after it is dead. It can cause blockage and eventually lead to death.
Therefore, it is important to take the necessary precautions before you let your ferret live outside. Temperature, housing area, and prevention toward infections should all be taken seriously. If there are a lot of mosquitos or other insects outside, it’s better to keep your ferret indoors.
How Long Do Ferrets Sleep?
Ferrets are very active animals when they are awake. They run around all the time and burn a lot of protein. Because of this, they get extremely tired and sleep for very long periods of time. Sleeping for 18 to 20 hours is normal ferret behaviour. Some ferrets even sleep for 22 hours a day without any health problems.
Ferrets are crepuscular. They don’t sleep for 18 hours straight. Dusk and Dawn are when they are active for the most part. Normally a ferret would be awake for 2-3 hours really early in the morning and then go to sleep for the next 12-15 hours. At dusk, they would again wake up and play for 2-4 hours and then sleep for the rest of the night.
The amount of sleep also depends on the weather and temperature. Ferrets add one or two hours of sleep to their schedule during winters. Even during summers, your ferret will sleep more than usual if the room is a bit too cold. Sick ferrets also sleep more depending on the medication. A common disease, insulinoma, also causes ferrets to sleep more.
Baby ferrets or kits sleep more than adults. They sleep for 20-22 hours a day. Kits, however, are much more active when they are awake because of their new environment. Kits don’t know when to sleep sometimes. They will be slower than usual and their eyes would be droopy. Stop them from playing when that happens. Put them in a comfortable and dark place so they are forced to sleep.
Ferrets have a trait know as ‘Dead Sleep’. They sometimes sleep so soundly and quietly that it may seem they are dead. They don’t respond to anything. Even if you pick them up and shake them, they will just hang limply in your hand. The best course of action is to leave your alone and he will probably wake up in a few hours. The most common cause of dead sleep is insulinoma. Not all ferrets in dead sleep have insulinoma, though. Some are just very comfortable. Still, it is best to visit your vet just to be sure.
How Big Do Ferrets Get?
Ferrets are almost fully grown by the age of just 4 months. Fully grown ferrets have an average weight of 1-4 pounds. From nose to tail, the average length of ferrets is between 18-24 inches.
The size of each ferret varies depending on the species. Species found in Europe are bigger in size compared to the ones found in America. The size of a ferret depends heavily on the diet too. Ferrets that are neutered at a very young age do not get very big. Breeders do not spay or neuter their ferrets and they are much bigger than pet ferrets because they are allowed to reach sexual maturity.
The size of a ferret also depends on the gender. Males are usually bigger than females in size. Females can weigh anywhere between 1 and 2.5 lbs. The average length of a female ferret is 18 inches approximately. Males, on the other hand, weigh 2-4 lbs and are usually 24 inches long.
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