Living a long and healthy life with your furry friend is every pet parent’s dream. That means taking care of your critter, but it all starts with knowing what to expect as your ferret ages.
Here’s what you need to know about your aging ferret, according to a professional vet.
Decrease in appetite
Remember when your young ferret would bounce off the walls with boundless energy, only to eat like a monster before taking a nap? That’s definitely not the case as your pet enters middle and old age.
Aging ferrets don’t require as much food as kits do, but that doesn’t mean your pet’s appetite should disappear altogether. If your critter has completely lost his appetite, it’s important to schedule an appointment with a professional. Dental problems could be making chewing painful, which means your furry friend is likely to stop eating altogether.
As you would expect with any animal, activity levels decrease in old age. Elderly ferrets still play, but it looks very different than play behavior in kits. Aging animals play at a much slower pace and they don’t play for quite as long.
For example, a ferret that used to play for hours on end may be ready for a nap after just an hour or two of activity.
Behavior changes are the most obvious and troubling changes you’ll experience with your aging ferret. One example is that they are less likely to put up with the antics of younger animals. Your older critter may even reject the younger ones in his cage, which may require separation. They typically become loners the older they get.
There are some perks to having an older ferret! Because they rest more, an old critter is likely to turn into a cuddle bug, even if he wasn’t very cuddly in the past.
Just as mobility declines as humans age, ferrets also experience mobility challenges as they get older. Even though your pet may want to run and jump like he used to, it’s best if you alter the cage to accommodate his changing needs.
You should also keep a close eye on your pet’s hearing and eyesight. It isn’t uncommon for an aging ferret to struggle with declining senses.
To make sure your ferret lives a long life, schedule regular appointments with your local vet for animal’s care.