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Warm Weather Tips for your Ferret

The days are getting longer and your ferret(s) is shedding his/her winter coat: - Get out the cat laxative. Give a 1/4 inch ribbon daily until no fur is visible in bedding. - Get your ferret used to being brushed. It helps get rid of the winter coat while helping you bond with your ferret(s). - With longer days, your ferret(s) will also lose body weight. Some ferrets can lose up to 40% of their winter weight. This is not a concern unless other symptoms are visible, i.e., vomiting, lethargy, pawing at the mouth, just not “feeling quite right.” If any of the above are seen, take your ferret to your vet. - Talk to your veterinarian regarding heartworm prevention. Yes, ferrets can get heartworms -- only 1 worm can cause death in a ferret. Even if your ferret(s) stays indoors, it’s best to put them on a preventative. You never know which mosquito carries the larvae and mosquitoes do get inside your home! - It is safe to use Revolution on ferrets (the 5-15 lb. cat size is recommended for ferrets - yes, Revolution was studied for the use in ferrets). Revolution is also used to control fleas and ear mites (possibly ticks). - Ivomec can also be used for heartworm treatment. Check with your vet for the correct dosage. - Get ready for flea season. Yes, fleas are a problem in ferrets and can be deadly. If a very large infestation is present, it will cause anemia in your ferret(s). If Revolution is not used, Frontline is a good product for fleas. The most economical is the spray. Used once a month during flea season keeps fleas at bay. - When ridding a household of fleas, you can’t just treat the animal. The area where the pet lives and the yard also needs to be treated. Please note, flea dips can be fatal to ferrets -- stay away from them. A flea shampoo, then when dry, a spray can be used. Area treatments are available at your vet. Use one that contains Siphotrol – it’s long acting. If you take your ferrets for walks: - Check your harnesses and leads for breaks, tears, etc. Make sure the harness is on tight and that your ferret can’t wiggle out. - When walking your ferret(s), check for lawn fertilizer signs. Fertilizer is deadly to ferrets. Wipe your ferret’s paws off with a damp cloth after their walk. - Keep an eye out when walking for predatory birds, dogs, people. - Keep your vaccination records with you. Riding in the car: - Never let your ferret(s) run loose. It is dangerous for not only your ferret(s), but you and your passengers. - Keep your ferret(s) in a carrier when in the car. Strap the carrier in with a seatbelt. A carrier can be a deadly projectile if left unsecured. Holiday Festivities: - Keep ferrets away from all candy, easter baskets, etc. Sugar (even simple sugars are not good for ferrets). - Open doors, screens, and windows: - Ferrets love the smell of spring – don’t let them have access to windows, doors, patio doors, even if they have screens. Many a ferret has ventured outside through closed windows and doors by scratching a hole in the screen! Spring Cleaning: - Keep ferrets in their cage when cleaning. A bucket of water (with cleaning solution) is a great toy for a ferret. Cleaning products contain toxic substances and can be very harmful, if not deadly to ferrets!
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