What can I do to alleviate my ferret’s odor?
Although your ferret has already been de-scented, you may still notice a slightly musky odor. You can minimize the odor by following a few simple rules:
• Keep the cage and litter pan clean
• Add Marshall Goodbye Odor to ferret’s food or water daily – this is a safe and natural product
• that works inside the ferret’s digestive tract to eliminate body and waste odors
• Shampoo and condition your ferret as needed
Although we wouldn’t call ferrets a high-maintenance pet, they do require some special care to keep them in tip-top shape. For example, a ferret’s ears are prone to ear-mites and infection, especially in warmer temperatures and climates. And remember, a ferret doesn’t need to go outside to contract ear mites – they can be transmitted from other pets or bedding, just like fleas. You may notice that your ferret is scratching his ears a lot or that he has little specks of black “dirt” in his ears. This may be due to ear mites or flea infestation. The best way to tell for sure is to take him to the vet and get the proper diagnosis and treatment. If left untreated, continuous scratching could introduce bacteria leading to ear infections, which could result in bigger problems or even permanent hearing loss.
Keeping a ferret’s coat shiny and smooth is relatively simple since ferrets naturally have an oily coat. The key is to not over cleanse your ferret – that could lead to dryness, itching and a dull coat. Realistically, ferrets only need shampooing once a month. Over-bathing strips the coat of essential oils and can actually cause a ferret’s musky odor to increase! Brushing your ferret’s coat is important, not only because it makes the coat brilliant and glossy, but it also aids in the prevention of hairballs by removing loose fur. This is especially important during shedding season. Ferrets do not cough up hairballs like cats and they are prone to getting hairballs; so always keep some Lax or petrolatum on hand to help those hairballs move through their system smoothly.
Clipping your ferret’s nails is also a simple, yet important step in keeping your ferret healthy. The best way to do this, is to distract your ferret with a tasty little treat, like rubbing a little bit of Furo Vite or Furo Tone on its tummy so he can lick it while you clip his nails. You may find it easier to have another person helping you. Nail trimming should always be about an 1/8" beyond the pink-red vein, or “quick” in order to avoid causing your ferret pain or bleeding. Always have a styptic pen or powder on hand to stop bleeding if it occurs.
Ferrets, especially babies, are susceptible to upper respiratory infections so it is extremely important to shield your ferret from sick humans or other sick pets. Prevention is key, but if your ferret contracts a cold or the flu, you will notice sneezing and you may see a nasal discharge. Cleaning your ferret’s nose is a good step since ferrets have a hard time breathing with URIs. In addition, make sure your ferret is well hydrated – solutions like Duk Soup are particularly helpful and soothing. Your ferret, like a sick child, should start to get better in a few days. If that isn’t the case, you should take him to a veterinarian, because he may need antibiotics.