Thursday, March 28, 2013

Did You Know?

 

That a ferret’s heart weighs less than 1 ounce.

 

That a normal heart rate for ferrets is between 200 and 300 beats per minute. Human heart rate is 60-80 beats per minute.

 

That the average male ferret has 2 ounces of blood in his body and the average female has 1.5 ounces.

 

Now you know.

 

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Justice for Grace.

 

Disclaimer: Photo is graphic. If abused animal disturb you then this is not the post for you.  If you continue to read you do at your own discretion.

For my regular readers you know I don’t often post about those evil people who abuse animals but when I do it is because one of them has grabbed a heart string and plucked it making it sing out in need.

Grace is one of those that has plucked more than just my heart string among us ferret lovers. I first saw a picture of Grace when it was posted on the Washington Metro Area Ferret Outreach’s Facebook page.

She is one of the lucky ones as she was abandoned in an apartment building hallway and animal control was called who in turn called the Outreach who knew exactly where to take her for the best medical care she could get.

An investigation has been opened to find Grace’s owner so that charges can be brought against him or her. There is no way this happened in a few days

amazing grace

and I hate to think about how she managed to survive this long.

If you would like to help Amazing Grace you can donate to the Chadwell Animal Hospital - 443-512-8338 VET INFO or send it to PayPal account steph@wmafo.org and add a note that says for Grace.

Another way to help is to bid on some amazing items from the Ferret Fabulous Finds Auction House 10% is donated to a weekly ferret shelter from all of the artists who have items listed and I am proud to be one of those artists with my unique ferret clothing and I will be donating between 15% and 100% depending on the item sold.Amazing Grace

( Ferret WarmUp Jacket for fur challenged ferrets)

If you live in the Washington D.C. Area and recognize this little girl or might know who abandoned this sweet soul please call your local animal control with the information. This little girl did nothing to deserve this abuse.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Thursday, March 21, 2013

Fur is in the Air

Silly title I know but Spring began on March 20th this year and it is time for the ferrets to blow their coats for the first time this year. For those that don’t know ferrets shed their coats twice a year. This is known as blowing the coat.

The boys have blown their coats enough times to know that it will be daily grooming until they aren’t leaving a lot of hair on me and in the air, more likely up my nose.

Marylin on the other hand isn’t too sure of what is going on but she loves the daily grooming like the true princess she believes herself to be.

Disclaimer in accordance with FCC rules: This is my opinion about a product I received in 2010 and the replacement in 2012. There is no other compensation for this post.

The one tool I absolutely love is the FURminator®. I was lucky enough to score one at the first Blog Paws and have never looked back.

Although I had to get a replacement one since Trixie the Blood Hound decided, it would make a great chew toy and broke several of the teeth.

FURminator® was at the Salt Lake City Blog Paws and when I told them about needing to get a replacement they laughed at the fact Trixie broke the teeth on the tool and not her own. My only complaint it’s pink not one of my favorite colors but hey it is a great tool for the amount of grooming I am doing now days.

I wanted to see just how much fur came off each fur kid in one sitting. So I put a plastic baggie next to the grooming area and as the FURminator® got full, I would put the fur into the plastic bag. 

Imagine my surprise when my chubby Marylin nearly filled the bag from her 30 minutes of grooming. Most of that chub was from the amount of fur she had surrounding her little body.

 digital cam 364

Second place went to Marcuz with him filling his bag almost to half. What surprised me was Manny he had hardly any fur to put in the baggie. But I found out why when I went to change their bedding. He has been using one side of the blanket as his personal scratcher so now it looks like a furry blanket instead of soft baby blanket. Yes, my kids are spoiled.

I went to do groom time only to find that the FURminator® had grown legs and walked off the table. I was pretty sure it was Marcuz who had taken it as he had been trying to take it all day. The handle of the FURminator® is made from a soft rubber and I guess to him it smells good.

Looking into Marcuz’s hidey-hole I was surprised not to find it there but he was curled around his favorite mouse sound asleep. Off to the next hidey-hole that belongs to Marylin who decided it was time to play sneak attack as I looked into the basket.

Good thing I was expecting it…sort of as it is still unsettling to have just less than two pounds of fur leap up at you with paws outstretched from under the pile of toys but no FURminator®. That left Manny’s hidey-hole and looky what I found in there.

digital cam 299

Guess I am gonna have to lock that tool up when it isn’t in use.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Unusual Friends

digital cam 711 digital cam 406

 

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Blog Paws Nose to Nose Finalist

                I'm a Best Wiggle Blog Finalist badge

 

Enlightened Ferret is a Finalist in the Best Wiggle Blog category for a Nose to Nose award. This year our competition is:

The Rat Whisperer

My Mini Pet Pig 

The Maaaaa of Pricilla 

Congrats to you and may the best wiggler win.

We also want to make sure we thank our two amazing sponsors for our attendance at Blog Paws this year.

Our first sponsor has supported us for the Salt Lake City Blog Paws and this year. She is one of the funniest ladies I know with a dog that loves his neighborhood cats and who created the Cat Patrol. This Canadian loves to have a good time and it shows in her smile. We can’t wait to see Lisa Taron who is known as The Pet Blog Lady  in Tysons Corner.

Our other sponsor has been a part of the Enlightened Ferret family in so many different ways. From the birthplace of Manny and Marylin to many of the toys that are hidden within the kid’s room. Marshall Pet Products was established in 1993 as a new division of Marshall Farms.

This is a new adventure for both of us so I can only hope it will be the start of great things to come for the both of us.

 

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Friday, March 15, 2013

Harness Training Pt 2

After choosing harness you want to use on your ferret. adjust the neck first if using a harness with adjustable buckles. Once adjusted to the right width you can leave the neck loop closed so you can slip it over your ferret’s head then adjust the chest strap.

Remember you don’t want it too tight or too loose. You should be able to slip your smallest finger under the harness if you have large hands then use the eraser end of a pencil to check.

Put the harness on your ferret in a room you have ferret proofed and let the ferret get used to having the harness on.

Many will attempt to get out of the harness and if it isn’t adjusted correctly, they will do so in a matter of minutes.

Continue to adjust until your ferret can’t easily get out of the harness and reward them with some Ferretone so they see that wearing the harness is a good thing.

I also use a belled collar as to know where my ferrets are. With Manny being the only hearing ferret in the business he gets excited when I shake his collar as he knows that means he will be going outside.

 

Once your ferret has gotten used to the harness on for more than a few minutes the next step is to clip the leash to the harness and play your ferret in the room.

This allows the ferret a chance to explore the leash while seeing that it is a good thing. It also allows you to interact with your ferret while they are getting use to the leash in a safe environment.

If you have more than one ferret like I do then you should put a harness on those ferrets you plan on taking for walks or other outings.

Manny and Marcuz are very use to the harnesses they have but when I had to get a walking jacket for Marylin because of her small size the boys had to investigate the new type of harness and actually tried to take it off of Marylin. Not that Marylin minded. As she wanted the harness off as well.

Letting the boys play with the harness before I put it on Marylin did two things it let the boys get use to the different harness and let them rub their sent on the entire thing.

It also made Marylin feel more comfortable by having the boys scent surround her.

Once the ferret is use to having the leash trailing behind them and are eager to have the harness put on. You are ready for your first outing.

I would only make it a few minutes in the yard. Let the ferret explore the area while watching for signs of stress in the ferret.

These include but not limited to:

Trying to climb up your pant leg.

Cowering between your legs.

Finding a corner and backing into it as far as they can go. However, don’t pick the ferret up to quickly encase they are using the bathroom.

If the ferret climbs your pant leg cradle them in your arms and let them get use to all the new smells and sounds from the safety of your arms or in the case of Marcuz the top of your head. ferret life 003

Remember this is all new to them so let them get use to the new world you just opened for them. First outing shouldn’t be more than ten minute.

A word of caution when walking your ferret outside keep an eye out for the neighbor’s dog or cat as many will rush the strange creature and many ferrets don’t see this as a reason to run away. Also look up now and then to make sure there are no birds that might swoop down and take your little darling.

The tandem lead is a great way to walk a pair of ferrets as it keeps you from being pulled in two different directions.

The biggest thing to remember is that you will never get your ferret to walk in a straight line, as they have to check out everything. Nevertheless, it is well worth the work to have people stop and ask about your unusual pet.

By harness and leash training my fur kids I’ve opened up a whole new world for them and I as we travel to different places such as Blog Paws and other events along with letting them play in the snow and chase the fall leaves.

HPIM2897 ferret life 002 FashonableFerrets 004 ferret life 001

With a little work you can provide your ferret with enrichment that will allow them to explore the new wonders that all curious ferrets are looking for.

ferret life 008 ferret life 009 ferret life 004 ferret life 006

 

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo

Monday, March 11, 2013

Did You Know…

That ferrets can be taught to walk on a leash like a dog. I get an assortment of different looks when I walk my three fur kids and the most received statement is “I didn’t know they would walk on a leash.”

Like training a dog, you have to have the right equipment.

What you need:

A harness

A belled collar

A leash

A tandem lead

Ferretone

There are different styles of harnesses to choose from and the one you choose has to fit your lifestyle. What works for me may not be the style or design you want. There are three main styles of harnesses and they are:

This is one of the cheapest one it’s made from a twisted cord that loops over the head and has a plastic slider that has a button lock making it look like one of those Bolo Ties   seen on Oil Tycoons but without the silver tips.

To make the second loop you take the line with the metal clip under the ferret’s body behind their front feet and clip it into the plastic loop on the side of the slider.

This type of leash is attractive to many first time ferret owners because of cost but the effectiveness of using this leash is almost nil. The button lock doesn’t stay locked and agile ferrets can maneuver enough to unlock it and slide it so they can walk out of the harness.

The Neoprene Harnesses are usually brightly colored and has Velcro® on the ends that go around the neck and around the body.


 

The Comfort harness is similar to the Neoprene Harness in design but also features buckles for added safety. The furkids buddy Snotface Critter wears one on his travels and Marylin wore a smaller version until she was big enough for her newest harness.


I use the H style harness mainly because it was the only style available where I live until recently when the store started adding more designs to their inventory and Most of the time you bought the harness and leash as a set. These are made from nylon webbing and are adjustable around the neck and body and has the same buckle as the comfort harness.


 

All but the string type harness have a D ring for the leash to attach to. It is important to make sure the harness fits correctly. To loose and the ferret will escape too tight and then the ferret won’t be able to breathe or move properly. Rule of thumb I use is one finger between the ferret and the harness.

Always start harness training inside.

I cannot stress this enough. First, it allows the ferret the chance to get use to having the harness on in a controlled situation. If the ferret realizes they can get out of the harness, they will do so in the safety of their home and not in the big wide world of unknowns.

Second, it lets you adjust the harness so that it is not too tight or too loose without the worry of the ferret escaping.

To Be Continued…

 

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo