Monday, May 16, 2011

The Terrible Avocado Experiment Transforms Into The Ferret Lover's Blog!

Well as I said in my last post things were going poorly. I know it has been more than two weeks since then, but I've been working a lot of extra hours lately, and between that and taking care of my ferrets, I've not had a lot of spare time. But things are slowly returning to the way they were before, and now it seems I have too much time on my hands. Anyway, I have given up all hope for thew avocado thing, it just didn't work out. Shame on me for not doing any research in the first place, but then again that was part of the fun was doing something to see what works. Unfortunately for me, nothing I did was even close to right, except for the submerging it in water thing...

Anyway, it is time to let dead fish float down stream, and start a new topic. As you have probably guessed from the title, I will now be talking about ferrets. At first I will give a basic outline, in case anyone reading this might be interested in raising their own ferrets. But after that's all over with I will begin discussing raising my own two ferrets, different experiences I have with them, and why I love ferrets so much. I am also more than willing to do a Q&A session or two, and I'm always more than happy to answer questions left in the comment area. I love ferrets, but that doesn't mean all of you will end up liking them too, and that's fine. Ferrets aren't for everyone, but maybe you just don't know enough about them. This might just change your mind. Well, let's get started then!

First off, as I said, I'm going to give an introduction to ferrets. That includes a short history and tackling some of the common misconceptions.

The first boring fact is their Latin name, which is Mustela putorius furo. They belong to the Mustelidae family, along with weasels and polecats.

Ferrets are also crepuscular which means they sleep 14-18 hours a day, and are usually most active early morning or late evening. However, most ferrets will adapt their activity time to whenever their owners are awake and active. For example, I usually don't wake up until 8am or so, long after early morning sunrise when they are normally active. And after just a few weeks of having them, they began to wake up with me. And between having dinner and going to bed is when they are active in the evening.

And now with that over with, I will go into some common misconceptions. First off, and by far the biggest and most common one is that ferrets stink. That is about as wrong as you can get! It is true that They are a distant relative of the skunk, and they are born with must glands, but they are removed when they are very young. Ferrets do have a rather distinct smell, but it's no different from a dog or cat having a distinct smell. You can also, and it is highly recommended by veterinarians, give your ferret a bath once a week or so, and there are several products out on the market available at most pet stores where ferrets are sold, that you can spray on your ferrets to give them a fresh smell. Personally I've never had any problems with my ferrets smelling bad, I just bathe them once a week and I don't even use the ferret spray I've got.

Common misconception # 2 is that ferrets are bad for the environment and can destroy entire ecosystems. Wrong again! And in fact, it is because of this reason that they are still illegal to own in California and most parts of Australia and New Zealand. The fact is they are burrowers by nature, and they love to dig holes, but they aren't pets you just let loose outside for hours at a time. I am considering building a large structure for them in my back yard with plenty of dirt to dig in, but it will basically be a very large cube so they can't tunnel their way out. And I'm sure that pit bull owners feel the same way with the stereotype that they are vicious dogs. It's true in the cases with the irresponsible own, and they seem to ruin it for the rest of us.

Well I'm down off of my soap box now, and I'm going to stop here.

I will finish off with a picture of my own two ferrets, Scott on the left and Logan on the right. They are my little bundles of joy, and we will go into more detail on that next time. So until then, bye for now!