The ferret is in the family of mustelids and ferrets and weasels. This mammalian predator. Some species can be incredibly active and aggressive.
Despite this, the time has come when ferrets do not live only in the wild but in homes as Pets. It has become so popular that people today are buying these animals, often cats and dogs.
Talk in this article about that:
- looks like a ferret;
- how to care for a pet;
- types of ferrets;
- it is especially a pet ferret.
Description of the animal and its characteristics
Because of its disproportionate legs which are rather short, stocky animal. His body elongated and very flexible. Paws animaldespite its small size, is very strong. Thanks to its extremities ferret is an excellent jumper and swimmer.
On the paws animal large claws, which allow you to deftly climb trees and to dig burrows.
The average length of an adult ferret comes up to half a meter, but females are always smaller by about 10 inches. The weight of the animal varies from 300 grams to 2 kilograms. It depends on the type of animal.
His neck is quite long and incredibly flexible. Head oval, the muzzle blunt. The hallmark of any ferret is its tail, which can reach lengths of 18 inches.
Ferret covered in beautiful fur with a thick podhorska. After moult, which usually occurs in the autumn, the coat of the animal becomes incredibly beautiful. Coat color depending on the species can be in colours or black. There are also rare albino ferrets, fur which kipelno – white color.
Absolutely all individuals (except albinos) on the head is always an intricate pattern which resembles the mask.
In the center of the tail are glandsthat secrete a secret with a very sharp odor. With this secret beast scares away the enemies. Zorek is characterized by very developed sense of smell, due to this feeling they are great hunters.
In the mouth of a polecat of from 28 to 30 strong teeth. Fangs they are particularly powerful.
In the wild the ferret lives of about 3-4 years in the home much longer – about seven years.
Types of ferrets
Hori are classified only into four kinds:
- Steppe, he’s a white ferret. This is a fairly large animal, which grows to a length of 55 cm and reaches a weight of 2 kilogram. The tail in adult animals is just gorgeous and a length of 18 inches. This species has long, brown guard hairs fur, through which clearly visible light Podrostok. The face on the classics like a blackish mask. This beast eats different food: hamsters, frogs and even small birds. In winter when digging is not possible, the polecat feeds on carrion, which living in the wild nature he finds nearby human habitation. But if the animal has enough food, then close to the human realm, he will never fit. The female of the species can give birth to 18 babies in one pregnancy.
- Forest or plain black ferret. It is much less than the previous animal. Its length averages 45 inches, and weight from 400 to 1.4 kg. Females forest polecat and a half times smaller than males. This form does not have a contrasting color. Basically his body is covered in brown fur, and the legs and tail are completely black. On the face mask. You can find also completely white or red animal. They feed mainly on rodents, amphibians and insects. Forest the ferret can get to the rabbit hole and eat all the seed. If the animal lives near people, it will not disdain to eat a house rabbit or a bird. The female of forest the ferret is not as prolific as steppe and results in the offspring only 4-6 pups.
- Fretka or furo (domestic ferret). These animals are only adapted to life in captivity. “Furo” is mostly individuals are called albinos. It is said that the pet can be any solid colour. The body length of the animal reaches 50 centimeters and a weight from 700 grams to 2 kg. Fredo bred as a purebred, and breed with the wild types of ferrets. This crossed home with the wild species is called “hararetli”.
- The American polecat. Very rare predator listed in the Red book as an endangered species. The length of this animal can reach a maximum of 40 centimetres and a maximum weight of 1 kilogram. Its incredibly beautiful tail, length 15 centimeters is striking in its fur. Basically the beast is painted white with dark tips. Paws and tail of the animal, and the mask on the face is completely black. Beasts feed on rodents, but their main food are Prairie dogs. Their population depends on the life of ferrets. A pack of dogs lives on 50 acres and a normal life will last only one ferret, and the whole family in order to survive you need at least 250 dogs per year.
Honoric – selektsionirovaniya, artificially bred species of ferret. To create this type were crossed steppe and forest polecat. These animals more than their parents, but all the other traits they have inherited in full. Their exterior is very similar to mink, and their gorgeous fur is very similar to the fur of a sable. From ferrets they inherited large ears with a fringe at the edges. They are excellent swimmers and hunters. It is worth saying that Honorine extremely angry and aggressive, so the contents in the home this kind of absolutely does not fit.
They eat animals?
They have no cecum and therefore their body is simply not able to digest and assimilate plant food. They mainly feed on rodents, small birds, rabbit offspring, and other small animals such as gophers. Sometimes they eat insects and amphibians. By winter, the ferrets always preparing thoroughly, and store them in their den.
The polecat hunts from ambush or by chasing the victim. But if the hunt fails, the ferret will not disdain carrion, and various waste. People unfairly blame the ferrets and accuses them of crimes they did not commit. Mainly poultry and animal stealing weasels and foxes, but the far somehow remain wild ferrets.
Reproduction and offspring
The breeding period starts in February and ends in late summer. At the steppe, it usually begins in the spring. At the forest in may – late April. Becomes a sexually Mature adult when you reach a year. No mating animals do not have. Mating is very aggressive: the male holds the female behind the withers, and she struggled to resist. After mating, the females often remain lacerations from the teeth of the male.
Gestation is about six weeks. Usually born from 4 to 18 pups. Newborns weigh up to 10 grams. They are weak, feeble, but developing with incredible speed. About two months they eat only mother’s milk.
After eight weeks, the ferrets become independent and can come out to hunt, but still continuing breast feeding. To six months the kids always tag along behind mom, and then gradually leave and live independently.
Homemade ferret food and care
Becoming more and more popular the content of the ferrets in the home along with the cats. Their playfulness and cute faces do not leave indifferent almost anybody. Those little animals have captured the hearts of millions and began to live in captivity with the owners.
Interestingly, the first individuals Furo brought more than 2 thousand years ago for hunting wild rabbits.
The proximity to other Pets
Before you buy a ferret and bring it to your house, you need to know some peculiarities of this animal. It’s incredibly active animals and the contents in the confined space of the cage can kill the animal.
Hori live well next to the cats and dogs. As for birds and various reptiles, this is a questionable neighborhood. Any such kind of domestic animal or bird, whether a lizard or a turtle, parrot or hamster will be tempting prey for home a ferret. It is therefore not necessary to hold in one apartment of a ferret and a chinchilla or a rabbit.
Like other Pets, ferret also needs a vaccination. In particular, the needed vaccinations against rabies, the plague and leptospirosis. The owner must be very careful at the time of vaccination, as these animals more susceptible to other allergic manifestations on vaccinations, so before and after the procedure it is necessary to give the beast antihistamines. Naturally, those that will recommend a specialized veterinarian.
If the animal is purchased by the owner only as a pet and is not planned breeding ferrets, the females must be spayed and male neutered ferret. This will help to avoid bad breath, which is inherent to animals in puberty.
It is worth noting that to get rid of the smell does not work, as even spayed and neutered Hori have an odor of fur, but this is solved by washing with special means in the form of shampoos.
Cage for ferret
The animal needs space in which he will spend time and relax. By the way, ferrets sleep a lot. That is why the cage should contain a place to sleep. This can be a hammock or a special house. Whether the cage is always open or ferret more time to sit indoors – it’s up to the owner. By the way, ferrets are very smart animals and some individuals can easily learn. For example, the animal can learn to open and close the cage door.
The nature of the beast
It is a very curious creature, it will be every day to inspect the apartment and to get all the secluded places. Exploring another place he could sleep there sparkle. The owner must be very careful and attentive during these studies and travels around the apartment, as the animal may eat any small object that gets in his way. It can end tragically. Also animals because of their instinct to dig holes can do this with houseplants on the windowsill.
To the tray, the animal learns very well, but it may additionally fancy the other place and in this case, the owner need to accept and put another litter.
It is a predatory carnivore , and he just needs animal protein. Food options are only two:
- to cook;
- the use of a specialized food for ferrets.
If the owner decides to feed the animal yourself preparing him, it could be poultry meat and offal. The meat is mixed with any cereal and you’re done! Recipes of these dishes are a great many.
If you cook on dry food, it should be remembered that the dog food ferrets absolutely does not fit. Commercially available specialized, enriched with vitamins and minerals feed specifically for ferrets.
You can also diversify food pet small amounts of fruits and vegetables. Once a week is acceptable to add in the diet of a chicken egg and the raw meat of a rabbit. You need to remember that in the diet of the animal must be only meat that he is able to produce in the wild.
The owner should also pay attention to what the animal can do food in a secluded place. Eating spoiled food, it’s easy can poison.
Ferrets Vodoley. That’s why they should always be plenty of pure water.
If you treat the purchase of the ferret is responsible to provide him all the necessary conditions for a normal life, and balanced diet, it will reply the owner with gratitude and affection.