While you may look forward to the warm summer temperatures, your ferret probably doesn’t share your enthusiasm. Ferrets are very sensitive to heat during the hot summer months. This is because they don’t have sweat glands, causing them to suffer in high temperatures; temperatures over 85 degrees Fahrenheit can be fatal to a ferret. Here are some tips for keeping your fuzzy safe and cool this summer:
- Keep your air conditioner set at a steady, cool temperature. If you don’t own an air conditioning unit, set up your ferret’s cage in a cool part of your home and direct a fan towards it.
- It is important to keep your ferret's cage out of direct sunlight, preferably a cool area where temperature is between 55 and 70 degrees.
- Keep a cool water bottle in your fuzzy's cage! This will provide them something cool to lie near when they are too warm.
- In hot, humid weather, monitor the amount and intensity of your ferret's play and exercise, especially after just eating. If you do plan on exercising your ferret, try to do it in the cool of the early morning or evening.
- Make sure there is a constant supply of water available for your ferret to quench his or her thirst. This is very important to keep them from overheating.
- Be on the lookout for symptoms of heat exhaustion and overheating. This includes panting, a bright red nose and dark foot pads, lethargy, and unconsciousness. Place a cool, wet rag on your ferret's head, torso and legs if you suspect it of being overheated.
Warmer days mean more time being spent outdoors with your ferret. However, being outside comes with its own set of rules to follow, even if it is your own backyard.
- Keep your ferret close to you at all times with collars and leads. Ferrets are renowned escape artists. When given the smallest opportunity, they will escape and investigate everything and anything.
- Ferret playpens allow your little fuzzy to freely roam around without being harnessed. Some are also covered to protect your ferret from sunlight or birds of prey.
- If you do plan on spending time outside playing, bring along a spray bottle filled with cool water. This way you can keep your fuzzy nice and cool with a little spray here and there.
Remember to have a fun yet safe summer with your fuzzy.