Any new pet that will be living with you requires some house changes. When it comes to ferrets it seems that if you are decided to adopt or get a one there is lot of work preparing your house to be a safe place for your new pet.
In order to provide a safe environment in which ferret will play freely and really enjoy you must follow some steps and make necessary modifications in your home so we listed 12 tips on how to ferret proof your house.
Ferrets are very cute and lively animals. In most cases, emotional creatures that easily bond with their owners. That is why, I am sure, you would do anything to keep your furry ball protected here are the tips that i found very useful so please keep reading.
Buy the Cage for Your Little Friend
This one goes without saying but still, it is better to mention. Cage will be a home of your pet, place where you will put food and water bowl and one of the litter pans ( you have to collocate several of them in few places out of the cage )
Always pay attention to the lock of the cage as ferrets are very clever and as masters of escape,if they find the slightest possibility to run away they will do that.
Also bars on the cage must not be wider than 1-2 cm ( I am telling you this in case you are making the cage for your pet by yourself.
Pick the Right Room for Your Ferret
If possible pick up one room in your house that will be 100% ferret proofed. This room should have doors (or any other way so it can easily be blocked ) and should be away from the kitchen, bathroom, laundry room or garage that are considered to be most dangerous places in the house for one ferret .
The room you pick will be a play area for your pet when he is out of the cage, where he will be wandering around, exploring every corner of it ( this should not be risky ,that is why you need yo secure this room).
If it is not possible to pick one room, just bear in mind that should always keep your ferret away from already mentioned places in the house and that every ferret’s stay out of the cage should be strictly supervised.
Obstruct any Hole, Crack or Space Which Ferret Can Use for Escape
Ferrets are very good in getting away, they are so-called liquid animals and can squeeze through the holes and cracks you would never imagine as possible. Please focus on the room you picked up as ferrets play area but also secure other rooms as well if possible.
Block every hole or crack you can find, check the space under the doors, look for holes near AC ducts, plumbings or cupboards, small opening that lead to outdoors ( dryer vent for example ), doggy doors, make sure all windows and doors in the house are closed when your pet is out of the cage.
Secure Your Furniture
Furniture is one of the favorite play areas for your furry balls. Ferrets like to hide, dig, chew and can either ruin your sofas, chairs etc or hurt themselves or even both. Therefore you have to make sure that your pet cannot reach inside part of the recliner bed, sofa or chair.
These pieces of furniture are extremely dangerous for ferrets due to the reclining mechanism that can trap or even crush them. Rocking chairs are similar hazards for ferrets.
As your pet likes to hide, you should always check cushions if there is a trace of chewing. Ferrets can even go inside of the cushion and chew the cushion material which can harm his /her digestive tract. Another warning – always watch before you sit to avoid sitting on your pet!
Collect garbage that can hurt your pet
Do not let small garbage all around the house. You might not notice small plastic pieces of food packings, food leftovers, aluminum cans …. Ferrets are very curious creatures, they like to explore and might try to chew and accidentally swallow some of your small garbage ( plastic pieces or food leftovers ) Both can be very risky or even poisonous.
For example ferrets cannot digest dairy products, should not eat garlic or onions nor fruit or vegetables ( for example carrots are literally poisonous to ferrets),sugar.
Ferrets can see aluminum can as a small tunnel and get hurt itself on sharp edges. Also remember to secure the trash bin the same as a laundry basket,as ferrets like to dig and to explore. When you join these two ferrets habits and have either trash bin or laundry basket in vicinity ,I assume you can see the disaster is coming.
Remove all of your very important belongings
If you particularly like some blouse or you have new shoes ( not to mention -expensive one ) or you recently got a new beautiful leather bag, please remove all that you want to save on some secure place (closet or similar ) as ferrets like to play with all items I mentioned. If you do not do that one day you will find your precious piece of cloths or shoes chewed and damaged.
Secure all chemical products
Bear in mind that all chemical products are a potential threat to your pet’s health.
Try not to keep poisons, pesticides or garden fertilizer inside the house and cleaning products place in some secure spot ( some cabinet which ferret cannot reach or at least you hope so )
Proofing household appliances
Same as with furniture, the ferrets like to play inside of the washer, to squeeze in between the wall and the freezer, to find some hole and get in the workings of the refrigerator . The last one is particularly dangerous as ferrets can come in contact with wires and electric power.
First of all, as mentioned at the beginning you should always keep your furry friend away from kitchen ,bathroom and laundry room. But you cannot be 100% sure that you succeeded so it would be good if you always check washer or dishwasher before you turn it on.
Another thing – ferrets like to play with clothes , laundry basket is special ‘treat’ for them so pay attention not to put your furry ball along with dirty clothes to the washer , by accident of course . Make sure there is not space your pet can squeeze through to get to the back side of freezer or refrigerator
Secure water sources in the house
Any larger amount of water in the house is very risky for ferrets as they can drown. For example toilets are big hazards,as the ferrets might want to drink the water and fall into. Also be aware that standing water in a tub or sink may be a potential threat as well.
Secure electrical cords
Again, ferrets like to chew on things. You must wrap a cord with electrical tape to ensure extra protection for your little friend. Additional tip – you can put a bitter solution or repel chewing on the cord to prevent ferret to chew. It would also good if you could snag the cords at least two feet from the floor.
Secure all cupboards , cabinet ,closets
This applies especially to those cupboards, cabinets, closets to which ferret can easily approach. You can use child proofed lock but do not use plastic one, magnetic one is far better . Plastic lock can leave some space which ferret would use to open it.
Educate your home mates and family about importance of all precautions
It is very important to speak to all people you live with, about your pet and all precautions.
If you pay attention to all details, always close the door and windows and other things and your sister or home mate or whoever you live with, does not, then all your effort is useless. Explain to them all the dangerous things that can happen to your furry friend if they are not careful.
One more thing – if you have visitors to your house, make sure your pet is securely placed in his cage. If you are distracted, talking to the friend or relative you have not seen for a while, maybe you miss an open door or window.
Additional general tips:
Watch your ferret carefully
Watch your little friend when he is playing. Where is his favorite hiding place? What is his favorite toy? Where does he go? You will learn something from this,it may turn out that you neglected someplace.
Ferrets are small but very energetic animals, they can climb walls, fence, like to jump and the best thing is that they are fearless so maybe they will jump from some high spot you would not imagine.
That is why you should also keep them away from the stairs. They can easily get through the space under the door even though that space is very small ( if ferret’s head can go trough, be sure that body will follow with no problem )
Keep your pet away from the heat source – candles, fans, different heaters, fireplaces …
Provide toys for your furry ball
In order to keep your tiny friend well occupied, get him different toys. They adore balls, tubes, different kinds of tunnels, old clothes…. and play with them. Spend some time with them. Keep them busy by offering different games. You buy a maze or make it on your own.
Ferrets love maze, they like to explore and discover, they like to dig. If you have the opportunity to put sand in some tub and leave some small toys to dig them up, your pet will be thrilled. If you think that sand will make a big mess, put rice grains instead( uncooked of course ). The result will be the same- happy ferret.
Remember always to supervise, never ever let you furry ball alone when he /she is out of the cage.