Friday, June 15, 2012

Traveling With Ferrets Part 3

HPIM3763

If you are a long term reader you know that the boys and I are getting ready for a road trip to Utah to attend the Blog Paws conference.

For those just now finding this blog check a few of the earlier posts.

What many people don’t realize is that you need to have a health
certificate for any pet traveling across state lines or around the world. These are obtained from you vet.

Many of us pet owners have a tendency to spell out going to the vet because Fido or Puss have learned that isn’t a fun place to go. I tell the boys where we are going and why. I am sure many will say that they are just animals and don’t understand. I disagree. I have found that by telling my two boys what is going on reduces the amount of stress they have.

So on Wednesday Manny and Marcuz had their vet visit with their vet Dr. DoverSpike. We had to make the appointment in May as Dr. DoverSpike is very popular and is well versed in ferret care.

Both the boys had a physical that Marcuz wasn’t overly happy with and decided he wanted to let doc know it. Marcuz took a nip at him but Dr. DoverSpike was ready for Marcuz and all that happened was a small pinch.

Manny and Marcuz also got vaccinated for rabies and distemper. Unlike dogs and cats who can get a three year rabies shot. Ferrets should be vaccinated every year.

Ferrets can also contract distemper from canines. Depending on how many ferrets a veterinarian clinic treats they might have ferret distemper vaccine but because the Franklin Animal Clinic only sees a few ferrets they don’t keep  the ferret distemper vaccine on hand because it goes bad more often than it is given. Thankfully ferrets can be vaccinated with canine distemper vaccine.

Both boys got vaccinated by the tech. Unfortunately it was given in the hind end. When Manny got certified as a therapy ferret he was given his vaccinations in the scruff of his neck. I am not sure if there is a reason for what location is used or if it was just easier for the tech to given the shots in the butt.

Some ferrets react badly to vaccinations so it is always a good idea to stick around the clinic for 30 minutes encase they do have a reaction. This is also true for ferrets that have never had a reaction before. The old adage “Better safe than sorry.” applies here.

I also discussed heartworm preventative with Dr. DoverSpike which surprised him that I even knew that ferrets could get heartworms and I found out that in our area there is almost no heartworm issue and the two dogs a year he treats often have relocated from down south to the area. But he did look up what is recommended as a heartworm preventive for ferrets. I was surprised to learn that one of them is a topical application of revolution.

Dr. DoverSpike gave my boys the best compliment which was that they were the most well behaved, calm ferrets he has ever seen.

So now the boys are truly ready for the road trip to Utah. Blog Paws here we come! Salt Lake City you ain’t seen nothing yet.

Have a chittering good day,

Jo

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Wordless Wednesday: Memories

HPIM2893

 

The boys after exploring the hotel room at Blog Paws 2011

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Traveling with Ferrets Continued

 

I have found that not all Pet Friendly hotels will except ferrets. I think mainly because they have no clue as to exactly what ferrets are.

When traveling with the boys I make a point of researching the hotels that I would be staying at. Then I email, tweet, or call the hotel to ask if they accept ferrets.

The few I have stayed at have required a deposit this can range from per ferret to 50 dollars. Thankfully the hotels where Blog Paws is held don’t require a deposit.

Once at the hotel the boys are kept in their carrier until I have ferret proofed the bathroom. HPIM2916

This entails putting the lid down, taking the toilet paper off the holder and put up on the sink. Trash can put up on the back of the toilet. Any cords that are hanging down get put so they are away from curious paws. Shower doors are shut and finally I make sure that there is no easy way up onto the sink.

I then set up a litter pan and put some food and water out for the boys before letting them out of their carrier. I let them play in the bathroom while I ferret proof the rest of the room.

This includes checking how the closet doors shut and how much space is under them. HPIM2915

Trash cans are picked up and placed high. Dresser is looked under and behind for any “surprises” left behind from other guests. HPIM2911

TV cord is checked to make sure it fits tightly in the plug and if I can I pull it up so that it isn’t a temptation. If not then it gets sprayed with bitter apple.HPIM2918

 

Under the bed gets checked to make sure there isn’t any fuzzy looking items or Lego men left behind by house keeping. HPIM2912

 

Learning from last Blog Paws I will be placing Puppy pads in corners for my boys to use.

 

To be continue

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Traveling with Ferrets

In a few weeks the boys and I will be headed out west to Utah and the annual Blog Paws Conference. This will be my 3rd Blog Paws and the boy’s second one. We will be driving almost two thousand miles as ferrets aren’t allowed in the cabin of any airlines and I will not put my boys in cargo.

Which is why we are driving and thanks to a lot of help from some awesome folks on twitter we will be traveling in style. The Ferret Chariot will be set up for traveling with ferrets not a small task in itself.

Because ferrets are curious little critters you can’t let them run free in a vehicle as they will find a way under the dash and find the one hole they can get through and will either end up in the engine compartment or worse on the road in the middle of traffic.

So the first thing you need is a crate or carrier for the ferret. The size depends on how much traveling you will be doing with your ferret. As I tend to take my boys as many places as I can and often that includes long distance trips I have a medium dog carrier that I use. It is big enough to hold a small litter pan, their hammock, and the door supports their food dish and water bottle. I also put a dollar store rug on the bottom of the carrier to give them something to curl up on if they don’t want in the hammock.

I seat belt the carrier so that the door of the carrier is pointing towards the vehicle door for easy access. In the case of the van the carrier will be pointing forward on the long bench seat.

Packing for the boys Mind you their suitcase can be bigger than mine depending on how long of a trip it will be. Short day trips only require a bottle of water, their harnesses and leashes, poop bags, and maybe a couple of treats.

For this cross country trip the requirements are a bit different.

Leashes Harnesses Puppy Pads
poop bags food A gallon Jug of water from home
A few toys playpen Health Certificates
Rabies tags Groom kit First aid kit
Information kit Treats Hand Sanitizer
Trash bags litter disposable foil baking dish
food/water dishes Photo Id’s List of Ferret Vets along route
freezer cooler packs The Mini Ferret Chariot Ferret Backpack
a few outfits    

 

I am pretty sure I am forgetting something but as you can see it isn’t a short list. What’s in my suitcase?

Clothes Groom kit Journalism bag
Business Cards shoes coffee cup

 

As you can see it is a much shorter list. Traveling with ferrets isn’t for the faint of heart as you have to keep an eye on temperatures both inside and outside of the vehicle. Ferrets don’t do well with temps over 68-78 degrees.

When taking breaks be respectful of the rest stop and use the areas marked for pets and even though ferret poop isn’t that large I still set an example and pick it up and dispose of it properly. Be aware of who is around and any other pets.

Some dogs will chase anything that moves and neither of my boys knows to be scared of dogs or cats as they have both at home. Also watch for children that might come running up to pet the neat/weird animal. Some parents have never taught their children to be respectful of others and will touch without asking. I have a strict policy of picking up my boys off the ground and holding them to me and asking them certain questions before sending them off to have their parents come talk to me about them petting the boys.

This does two things it keeps my boys safe from being mauled and keeps the child from getting bit because they have something yummy smelling on their hands. It also gives the parents a chance to come talk to me about my strange critters. This is where the hand sanitizer comes in no matter how much a child says they have washed their hands some don’t do it.

To be continued…

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Sunday, June 3, 2012

It Is Still Sinking In.

 

I can’t believe that the Ferret Chariot is a reality. It is all in part to some wonderful people who thought the need was great enough to give a helping hand by donating, spreading the word, and being encouraging. Now when I am asked “How can social media help me?” I can show them.

If it wasn’t for social media mainly twitter the Ferret Chariot would still be a dream. I am still pinching myself to make sure that it isn’t a dream. Enlightened Ferret would like to thank the following people for their support.

@PumpkinPuddy, @Danapixie ,@PepiSmartDog ,@HartzPetz @PetBlogsUnited, @Flicka47, @anipalacademyawards, @Pasikas, @Jazzydacat ,@DaneRay, @DFSmith @PuppyaGuineaPig ,Xena and Wiggly Schnauzer, and Birdcage.net @BigBoyBosco

I am still working on adding everyone’s name to the van and the main graphic so until that is complete there won’t be any pictures of the Ferret Chariot and maybe not until Blog Paws when certain individuals get to see it.

We realize that many wanted to help out but couldn’t do so until later so we have decided that we will have a chip in for the maintenance of the Ferret Chariot. Those that donate to this chip in will be placed on a section of the van labeled FC Mechanics. There will be levels denoting Head Mechanic, Mechanic, Part supplier, Grease Monkey. These are still in the works and when finalized will be posted here, twitter, and on the boys facebook page.

Dreams are the foundation on our world but it takes the courage, strength, and support to make said dreams a reality.

Thank you all for helping us make our dream a reality.

Have a Chittering Good Day

Jo