Sunday, July 10, 2016

AZ Heat

Okay so we made it to Blog Paws Thank you for having us. We got to meet Marjorie from @DashKitty and attended a couple of interesting sessions. Marylin was part of Pawject Runway and rocked the Elizabeth Taylor Diva look. We didn't win but we had a lot of fun.

This was a first conference for the kitties both of who did wonderful to the point that Boyd was happy to perch on top of the stroller as we wandered the exhibit hall and made some great connects.

I promise as soon as I have more than a few minutes of internet I will get all the logs ins done.

Was planning on being in Washington state as of this writing but the Universe has other plans for me one of which is Jury duty so that means I need to find a way to keep my fur kids safe. The first option that came to mind was a hotel room for two nights. Granted that would make sure I had a shower so that I don't stink and a soft bed and wifi but it also means a pet deposit and dipping deep into funds that are already getting low.

The other option is a pet sitter or boarding we will have to see how that prices out.

So that leads me to the main reason for this post.

We've been camping at a place called Snyder Hill and for the most part have the place to ourselves. Meaning there is the occasional over niter and then there is the wildlife. We've seen coyotes, birds of all sorts, ground squirrels that look like miniature prairie dogs, lizards, but thankful no snakes.

Camping is great when the temps are around 80 degrees (26.6 C) but that is even too high for ferrets who do okay up to 78 degrees.

So how does one get around temps that soar to above 100 degrees (37.7 C)?

First and foremost is the van has all the doors open while this would normally drain the battery I have a solar battery maintainer that is doing a great job of keeping the battery where it should be and second the interior lights are off.

Next is to put a tarp over the ferret's side of the van with the silver side out. Believe it or not it does help to drop the interior temps a few degrees.

Then WATER and plenty of it. If I have bought a bag of ice I make sure they have a few cubes in their water dish and a bowl of just ice.

I keep a close eye on them and if I see they are panting too much I give them a dip in a tub of water. Think how much you love going for a dip when it is hot outside. While Marylin isn't overly fond of it. Messes up her perfectly groomed hair. Marcuz loves his pool time and will roll over into a semi sitting position and just chill for a few minutes.

Normally I do the squeeze the extra water off maneuver but not on days like this. I get them to drips before putting them back in their fan cooled cage. Yes they have their own fan, spoiled much? You bet.

Instead of hot blankets for them to lay on they have a product called a FrogTogg(r)it is made for humans and is for keeping cool. A friend gave me one and I cut it into three pieces two of which are just the perfect size for ferrets and one larger one for me. Although I think they have gotten the most use out of all the pieces.

Last night (July 7) I was worried about Marcuz as he was having a hard time with the heat and hadn't been sleeping well. I made a platform out of the cage door with some fabric on it for him to lay on and then putting the soaked FrogTogg(r) on top of him like a blanket. Marcuz faced the fan and fell asleep with a smile on his face. I just wish the lighting had been better for pictures.

Needless to say I didn't sleep well as I kept a watchful eye on him until he woke up and went to his hammock and pulled himself into it and went back to sleep breathing a lot easier than he had been earlier.

While it isn't the greatest set up it is working for now. But once I can get solar power I will have an AC unit that can be turned on to keep the heat at bay.

The cats are liking the fact they can be outside the van more like under it during the day and Boyd likes to be on top of it just after sunset.

More to come:

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo and the Furry Crew

Thursday, June 23, 2016

The New Enlightened Ferret

As I said the blog is going to take a new direction. While I am not completely sure of that direction it will deal with living on the road with pets. One of our great inspirations is Go Pet Friendly. They have some awesome links and go a lot of different places with their dogs. So we are hoping we can be like them in some ways but because of the uniqueness of my pets it will be different.

If you are new to my blog this is the highlights.

Started in June of 2009 as a way to share what I was learning about being owned by ferrets. These are great pets for the right people. I will admit I made a lot of mistakes with my first 9. Yes I said 9. I got Bandit first and then he needed a buddy so then came Creamer. By October of 2008 ferret math hit remember the Lay's potato chip motto? “You can't just eat one” well it seems if you aren't careful you feel you can't just have one ferret and so on.

One of my 9 had a cute stripe down his head like a skunk and was name Lancelot. What I later learned was that he was deaf and I learned that the hard way. Lance was a baby and babies bite until they learn not to. He bite me on the webbing between my finger and thumb and didn't let go when I screamed. He also didn't react to the vacuum cleaner.

By the time he passed Lance knew about 20 different signs. Yes they can be taught signs just like a dog and some cats. I learned about the gene that caused his deafness. I also learned about the common diseases that often shorten a ferret's life. Average lifespan is 7-10 years but they can live longer.

Then in 2010 I joined twitter and found an awesome group of pet people collectively called the anipals as most adopted their pet's persona online. From there a founding team of three individuals decided to organize the first Blog Paws in Columbus, OH and as they say the rest is history.

Enlightened Ferret took on a life of it's own now fast forward to 2015 life took an unexpected turn and I ended up living in my vehicle with my ferrets and my two cats. Needless to say that took some getting used to and figuring out just what my life was about. The blog was the last thing on my mind and I have lost readers but that is okay. I am on a new journey and that includes my fur kids.

The Fur Kids:

Marcuz: Dark eyed white ferret who is now considered a senior at the age of 6 ½ he will be 7 in November. He is my adventurer and loves to explore everything. He has Adrenal disease which is not the same as cushings. He has an enlarged spleen and last year was going bald. At the time of this post he has a full body of hair and I believe that is due to the natural light cycle he gets since we are in our mini mini RV. 

Marylin: Dark eyed white ferret. She is the Diva of the group and the only female. Believe me she rules the roost in her own sweet way. She loves to give kisses and will try to clean your nose for you. Don't let her petite fool you she thinks she is as big and strong as a Great Dane. She also knows she is a cutie and will use that to get you to awe and oooo over her.

Boyd: Domestic Grey Tabby. He is a rescue from being a barn cat. I guess his age to be around 7/8 years of age and is my stringaholic. He is leash trained and we go hiking together. He would love it if I would allow him off lead to go hunt. But is contented with hiking. At night he sleeps under the covers with me when it is cool otherwise he sleeps on the dashboard.

Dood: Domestic Grey Tabby. He is a rescue from my ex that was going to take him to the pound when she moved. He will be 2 in August. When we started this journey he was afraid of basically everything he has come along way while still a bit timid he does try some new things and is also leash trained but is also my lazy boy. When we are on the road he hides under my driver's seat and for his large size that is a feat into itself. He is learning to sit and do some other tricks.

Then there is me, Jo, the Hooman, the staff, the driver, and food giver. I will be hitting the 50 mark in July and have a completely different life than I had ever planned and at first scared the crap out of me has become who I am and I am enjoying the ride now. 

So the blog will incorporate the ferret's facebook blog, posts about ferret care, post about cat care, places where we have been or will be going and the challenges of it all while living in a van.

Jo and the furry crew.

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Things are a Changing

The idea of this blog was to enlighten people to ferrets and the ownership of them. But while that will still be part of the blog the Universe has decided that it should go a different direction.

It will become more of a traveling blog as we now live on the road full time and will be incorparte the ferret's facebook mini blog here. Boyd and Dood will become part of the Enlightened posts as well.

This Blog Paws will be a major turning point for me and the kids. I am taking a huge leap of faith in knowing things will work out in the best possible way.

So have a chittering and meowy good day,

Jo and the Furry crew

Tuesday, February 9, 2016


I know it has be a long time since I've posted anything about ferrets and I am sorry for that. I can't say I'll be better about posting as I don't know if I will have much to say. I know this is pet dental month and others have posted some great information about brushing your pet's teeth. I've done a couple of posts in the past and they can be found Here and Here.

Losing Manny last year put me in a tail spin I am just starting to pull out of. Marcuz, Marylin, Boyd, and Dood live with me on the road in a 2001 Chevy Venture. It isn't always easy and for a while there I wasn't sure I could do it. I am not sure where I would be if it wasn't for the furry crew.

The van has been redesigned around the ferrets and cats. Marcuz was almost bald in August of last year now has a new coat with one small bald spot on his back. He didn't get an implant and the only thing I can figure is the fact he and Marylin get a natural light cycle. While his coat isn't super thick it is a lot softer than it was. Marylin's coat is thick and soft and the markings she had lost are coming back.

I should also mention that it wasn't only a natural light cycle but they along with the rest of us experienced the temperature ups and downs. I can't say they helped the ferrets to have great results but I can't say it didn't either.

So Marcuz and Marylin update their traveling blog on FB a bit better than I do here.

Last year they were in PA, OH, KY, OK, NM, AZ, and we took a wild, scary ride through the desert to be outlaws in CA for Christmas. This year I am hoping to take them to the beach we shall see how that works out. Hoping to make Blog Paws in Phoenix this year along with the Buckeye Bash in Columbus, and maybe even be at the Greatest Ferret Show on Earth in Chicago. We shall see how it goes.

So if you see a tan van with two cats and two ferrets driving by give us a honk and a wave. See ya on the flip side.

Have a Chittering Good Day,

Jo and the Furry Crew

Wednesday, January 13, 2016

Semi Wordless Wednesday

Marylin the Diva 

Marcuz the Explorer

Boyd the Adventurer

Dood the Hider

Have a Chittering good Day,

and the traveling crew