Ferrets are some of the most social pets you can keep. They are friendly to people, other ferrets and sometimes with household pets. However, you must understand that ferrets are quite self-sufficient. They can live well alone but they enjoy the company of each other.
Before you bring in the new roommate, you should introduce your pets to each other. Without a proper introduction, ferrets can become enemies at first. As with most animals, ferrets are territorial. It can result in nasty fights between the two ferrets.
In this article, we are going to explore the sociable character that enables ferrets to live together. At the same time, I will give you a step by step guide on how to properly introduce two ferrets.
Ferrets are social and affectionate
While ferrets are self-sufficient, they are social, playful and not to mention affectionate. This means that a ferret will do well when he is alone but he could use some company. As with every pet, you must make sure that your pet is not bored.
A ferret will enjoy having the company of another ferret. They can play and snuggle up together. In fact, you can spend lesser time playing with your ferret. Most ferret owners who may not have the time to play with their ferrets every day should bring another one. Instead of spending 4 hours, you can now spare two hours of your day!
At the same time, ferrets need to interact with their owners. Therefore, getting another ferret does not mean you shouldn’t play with your ferret. Instead, you must take some time to play with them, preferably every day.
As I have mentioned above, you must introduce the two properly. You want to make sure that your ferrets are well socialized before they move in together. You can keep two ferrets, despite their gender in the same cage upon proper introductions.
How to introduce ferrets to each other?
So, you have has such a great experience with your ferret and you want to add another? Well, getting one from the pet store is not such a challenge. The challenge is to make the two ferrets get along before you can move them together.
Below is a step by step guide on how to introduce ferrets to each other:
Step 1: Bringing a new ferret home
Assuming you have already made up your mind, introducing ferrets to each other is a crucial step in establishing their relationship.
Do not just bring home a new ferret and put him or her in the same cage as your old ferret. This can result in a nasty fight between the two. Instead, you are going to need another cage. Note that this process could take some time, especially if the two ferrets fail to get along with each other.
Now, when you bring your new ferret home, ensure the other one is in her cage. Ferrets can be quite territorial of their space.
Step 2: Allow the new ferret to explore your home
Ferrets rarely show any neurotic behavior. However, these pets can be stressed, or scared especially in a new environment. Having the old ferret see a new ferret can result in aggression or even fear. You want your new ferret to get familiar with being in a new home.
It could take a week or two before your new ferret settles down. At this point, he is probably ready to meet the old ferret. However, do not allow them to interact yet. Note that the old ferret has not seen the new ferret yet.
Step 3: Switch beddings to introduce scents to your ferrets respectively
Before you allow your old ferret to see the new fuzzy ball, you need to alert him or her of their presence. Well, the last thing you want to do at this point is to upset your ferrets. Now, use beddings, or maybe you could rub an article of clothing on each ferret’s body before swabbing them.
Let your new ferret get used to the scent of the old ferret and vice versa. They will now be aware of each other’s presence, even without seeing each other yet.
Step 4: Let them sniff each other
I have been emphasizing on ferrets being territorial. Well, to ease this process, I suggest you find neutral ground in your home. Do not let them close to each other in the old ferret’s room yet. Instead, you can use a bedroom or living room. Make sure it is ferret-proofed.
For this step, you need someone else to help you. They should hold the new ferret as you handle your old ferret. Let them sniff each other.
Note that ferrets could hiss or even urinate to mark their territory. Do not give up yet as the ferrets are just getting to know each other. However, should the aggression become intense, you will have to separate the two ferrets.
You must repeat this step over and over again until your ferrets are comfortable with each other. It should not take more than a few weeks for ferrets to get along with each other.
Step 5: Schedule play sessions with your ferrets
Now, your ferrets are aware of each other’s presence. You can schedule play sessions where you allow them to interact for a few minutes. Watch how they play as well as their body language. You can supervise them as they bond and play with each other.
Within a few weeks, you can let your ferrets move in together. For this, you will need to purchase a larger cage where they can play and interact with each other. Do not be surprised to see them snuggling with each other.
You can keep male and female ferrets together, and in the same cage. However, you should get them sterilized unless it is for breeding purposes.
Also, you must be patient when introducing ferrets to each other. They do not just get along with each other. To establish a relationship between them, be patient and available to socialize with them.