Choosing a ferret for you

Now you are serious about getting a furry but don’t know where to start. The best thing that I can suggest for everyone is when you decide that a ferret is what you want; you have the time, you are dedicated, etc. Start by going to your local ferret shelters, find out if they would mind if you came there and spent some time with the ones they have available.

Find a ferret perfect for you

Find a ferret perfect for you

By arranging some time with your local ferret shelter you will know first hand of what must be done on a daily basis, which is also a good option for children wishing to own a ferret. The other benefit is you can help out the owner to catch up on things while giving the ferrets extra attention!

Another thing to look at is the age of your soon-to-be ferret. If this is your first ferret adopting a baby (kit) might be too hectic, while a senior could ease you into it.

All too often the older ones or those that have had previous surgeries are forgotten about. Yet these ferrets make wonderful companions as they already come trained and tend to be a bit more laid back. Their personality/temperament is known, unlike a kit. Some ferrets are here for a short time –  2 or 3 years – while some ferrets live to be 8 or 9 years old.

That 3 or 4 year old ferret in the shelter could very well out live the baby ferret from the pet store. The older ferrets seem to bond very strongly with their adoptive mom or dad, it is almost like they know they have a second chance to be loved.

Every furry friend deserves a good life, one with a lot of love and proper care. Personally I recommend against choosing a ferret for colour, as throughout a ferret’s life they can completely change from one look to another. There was a ferret named Bandit whom was adopted with a very dark typical sable look, turned white one year and passed away this year with a cinnamon coloured mask and very light sable pattern throughout.

As for allergies; some people who are allergic to cats or other animals are often not allergic to ferrets! However there’s no way to tell from person to person unless they actually go and find a ferret then test it out. Our shelter mom often suggests you handle a baby ferret. If you are going to have an allergy, it shows up quicker from a kit.

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Ferret Colours, Markings, and Patterns

These beautiful little carpet sharks come in a variety of colors with different markings and many patterns.

Turnip

Turnip

When describing a ferret’s appearance, two terms are used; Colour and Pattern.

Colour is in reference to the colours of the ferret’s *guard hair, **undercoat, eyes, and nose.

Pattern is the concentration and distribution of colour on the body, mask, and nose.Where applicable, pattern can also refer to white markings that appear on the head or feet.

*Guard Hairs Are simply the stiffer, more prominent and longer fur that covers the shorter and softer undercoat. Guard Hairs provide the critters coloration or camouflage and, in many mammals, also aid in water proofing the fur.

**The undercoats job is to act as insulation and also to provide a water resistant barrier.

There are competitions in which ferrets are judged on a number of different criteria, including structure, colour, coat condition, temperament, and grooming. 

Every show is different; some shows have seminars and other educational events taking place throughout the day. Others have fun events such as the “best dressed ferret” competition or the “best kisser” competition.

A significant portion of your ferret’s score at the show may be determined by the maintenance of your ferret. 

That is, the judges are looking for ferrets that are not just a nice colours or well put-together, but also ferrets that have been well taken care of throughout their life.

Ferrets need regular routine maintenance to remain healthy. Ears should be cleaned regularly, nails should be trimmed at least every 2 weeks, teeth should be brushed regularly.

If you would like to see the different colors of Ferrets:: Click Here

If would like to see the different types of masks and nose colour/markings and what judges look for at shows:: Click Here.

If you would like to see the LOS National Colour, Pattern Standards and Body Structures:: Click Here

If you would like to see more fur colouring, patterns and markings:: Click Here