-Going on Vacation-

[ what to do with your ferret | taking your ferret with you | leaving your ferret at home ]


It is a very good idea to line up a place for your ferret to stay just in case you need to go somewhere and don’t have the time to try to find a person that will care for your ferret while your gone. Remember to plan ahead when going on vacation. When decided whether or not to take your ferret traveling with you, consider the following things:
  • Are you going to have a relaxing vacation with nobody besides yourself to take care of? If this is the case, I wouldn’t bring your ferret/s along. However, if you are the kind of person that will worry constantly, wondering how the ferrets are doing at home, then I suggest you take your ferret/s with you.
  • Will taking your ferret traveling with you be stressful for your ferret? Most ferrets are stressed very easily. It may be better just to leave your ferret home for his/her own sake.
  • What will the temperatures be like where you are going? Remember that ferrets overheat very easily! Your ferret may not be able to tolerate the heat or cold, especially if it’s the total opposite of what he is used to.
  • Does the place you’re staying at allow ferrets? Will it be ferret-proofed? Visit www.petswelcome.com for travel tips and a listing of where pets are welcomed.

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So you decided to take your ferret traveling with you? Here are a couple topics that you will need to think about before you go:

Check ahead Before you set off, check to see if the place your staying at allows ferrets. If you are going to a friend or family members house, don’t just assume that they will welcome your ferret. Some people just do not like ferrets, let’s face it!

What to bring You will need to pack the following items:

  • A current health certificate, which can be obtained from your veterinarian, and proof of your ferret’s current rabies vaccination.
  • Your ferrets first aid kit. See "first aid kit" for a list of things that you should have in your ferret’s first aid kit.
  • A pet carrier. Make sure this is equipped with food, water, toys, litter pan, and comfortable bedding such as shirts, blankets, hammocks, etc… The carrier should fairly large and comfy for your ferret.
  • A ferret harness and leash.
  • Several ID tags showing your ferrets name, address, and phone number. A ID tag should be placed on your ferret’s harness and his pet carrier.
  • A lasting supply of ferret food, water and whatever treats your ferret might want.
  • Litter pan, litter, and scoop.
  • Paper towels to clean up any accidents.
You should also bring any items that you regularly use to keep proper care of your ferret such as any medications he/she is using.

Traveling by car This may be the safest method of transportation for your ferret. Make sure to keep your ferret caged at ALL times while driving! Make frequent rest stops for your ferret to go potty and get some exercise while in a harness. Never put your ferret in your car’s trunk or on top of it’s roof! Please use common sense when traveling with your ferret! Always keep the temperature in the car comfortable for your ferret.

Traveling by airplane This way of traveling can be a bit frightened for both you and your ferret, but if handled correctly it can go quite smoothly. Make sure you check before you purchase your tickets if the airline has any special regulations or rules for traveling with a pet. Try to book non-stop flights if possible. This will be less stressful for your ferret and you because you will not have to worry about transferring from different flights (especially if your ferret is traveling via cargo), and it usually is faster. When possible, always take your ferret in the cabin.

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Now that you have decided to leave your ferret at home, you have the hard decision of which person you would like to take care of your ferret while your gone. No matter who you choose to look after your ferrets, you should provide the following items to your pet sitter, boarding place, or friend:
  • Your veterinarian’s phone number and address, and your emergency clinic’s phone and address.
  • An emergency phone number to someone that you trust close to home and who knows ferrets well.
  • The name of the people who you are staying with and the phone number that you can be reached with.
  • Any medications that your ferret may be using and instructions on how to medicate your ferret. If possible, demonstrate the procedure before leaving.
  • A lasting supply of food and instructions on feeding especially if you have a ferret that needs help with eating.
  • Provide a detailed handbook on how to play with ferrets, look for injuries or illnesses, clean up after them, feed, etc…
Pet sitters - Many pet sitters are only familiar with common pets such as dogs or cats. It is up to you to familiarize your pet sitter with your ferrets. Many times a veterinarian will be able to recommend a good pet sitter that has already had experience with ferrets. Pet sitters can be a good choice if you have a lot of animals that need caring for while your traveling. Professional pet sitters usually charge by the number of times they come to your house each day. I suggest having the pet sitter come by twice daily. Another possible pet sitter can be a trusted neighbor or friend. It is often more calming for you to have a person you know really well to be looking after your ferret than to have a person that you just met once or twice to be visiting your house on a daily basis in complete care of your little ferret.

Boarding your ferret - Boarding may also be a good option for your ferret if you cannot find a reliable person to come to your house. You will have several options as to where you can board your ferret:

  • Some veterinarians board animals for a fee
  • Some ferret shelters will board ferrets for short periods of time
  • A reliable friend may agree to take your ferret in while you’re away
  • A professional boarding facility may also board animals other than cats and dogs
Remember that your ferret can get a disease or illness from another ferret if he is in contact with other ferrets. If you board your ferret at a friends house, keep in mind that your friend may not understand the general nature of ferrets to be as curious as possible, enabling him to get loose if your friend’s house is not fully ferret-proofed.