Wellness Tips and Signs of Illness: Ferrets


Neville the Ferret

While ferrets are technically illegal in New York City, this law does not prohibit veterinarians from treating them. In fact here at the Center, a large percentage of the pets we treat are illegal to own in this City. We are committed to the welfare and wellbeing of all exotic pets and owners should be assured that we will not report them to authorities or confiscate their ferrets.

Ferrets should all be evaluated for a post purchase exam immediately after you purchase or adopt your new companion. During this exam, our doctors and staff will examine your pet for any obvious signs of physical illness, teach you how to properly feed and care for your ferret in ways the pet stores can not, and offer you appropriate testing and vaccinations to ensure your new investment is happy and healthy. Our goal here is to help set you and your pet up for a long, happy life of good health and preventative medicine.

After their initial exam, ferrets should be examined at least on an annual basis. During these exams we get the opportunity to answer any questions you may have about your ferret’s health over the year. We will examine your pet to evaluate any changes that may be important such as weight changes, hair/skin abnormalities, or any irregular growths that may be important to detect. We are often able to find subtle problems that you can not at home. This allows us to prevent illness and disease, educate you on changes you may need to make at home to improve your ferret’s health, and share with you any new advances we have learned during the year in ferret medicine.

If during the year, your ferret exhibits any of these signs of illness, we would strongly recommend scheduling an exam with one of our specialists:

Signs of illness

If during the year, your ferret exhibits any of these signs of illness, we would strongly recommend scheduling an exam with one of our specialists:

  • Hair loss
  • Itching
  • Decreased appetite
  • Increase in urination
  • Increased drinking or thirst
  • Difficulty eating or change in food preferences
  • Drooling
  • Change in color of urine
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Diarrhea
  • Limping
  • Raspy or loud breathing
  • Wheezing
  • Discharge from the eyes or nose
  • Growths on the skin
  • Decrease in activity
  • Sleeping more
  • Head shaking
  • Wax or debris in the ear
  • Swollen vulva
  • Hind limb weakness
  • Weakness, tremors, or seizures
  • Bad odor from mouth
  • Dirty teeth or cracked teeth
  • Vomiting
  • Swallowing foreign objects
  • Grinding teeth

Signs of Illness Requiring Emergency Treatment

If your ferret exhibits any of these signs or experiences any of these events, your pet may be having an emergency and you should call us right away:

  • Bleeding
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Bloated abdomen
  • Inability to stand
  • Inability to urinate
  • Prolonged seizures
  • Trauma

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9:00 AM-7:00 pm


9:00 am-7:00 pm


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