How Often Should Ferrets Poop?
Ferrets are affectionate and pretty fun pets. While they are rated the third most popular pets in the USA, new ferret owners struggle to understand these pets. Note that they are completely different from owning a dog or a cat, some of the primary pets around the world. So let’s answer your question How Often Should Ferrets poop.
I have dedicated most of my articles to breaking down ferret care. From feeding your ferret to how often ferrets should poop, this article will focus on what you need to know about their digestion.
To answer your question, ferrets will poop in intervals of 3-4 hours. Well, it can be pretty difficult to keep track of how many times he eliminates. It is because ferrets are free feeders. They eat when they want to, which is why you must leave enough food for your ferret all the time.
Should I be concerned if my ferret’s poop looks weird?
Well, as vague as that question sounds, it is among the most worrying for ferret owners. First of all, normal ferret poop should have a tan, almost brown. It has the texture smooth as that of toothpaste.
However, how often a ferret poops will depend on the type of food you feed him. For instance, changing his diet can also affect his bowel movement. Therefore, you cannot really count how many times he eliminates or base his health on that.
However, should you notice a really weird color or smell, it is definitely something to worry about. Having lived with ferrets for years now, I am quite observant of these changes. For instance, when I changed our ferret’s diet, it would take a few days to pass a normal bowel.
Well, you should be concerned if your ferret’s poop has any other the following qualities:
As I have indicated above, your ferret’s poop should have the texture of toothpaste with a brownish color. Now, if it has suddenly started changing to green, then this is a need for alarm. This is usually referred to as the green slime.
It is associated with the deadly ECE infection in ferrets. You will need to contact your vet immediately.
Poop appears stringy
In most cases, this is something you can sort out at home. Maybe your ferret has ingested plenty of hairballs leading to blockage. If you have your first aid kit, then you should be able to clear his intestinal tract.
However, if this is going on, it could be that your ferret has serious blockage issues. These pets can be quite mischievous. They will steal your stuff and probably chew them up. As a result, this will cause an intestinal blockage that needs immediate vet care.
Black tarry poop
Well, this should bother you a lot. The black tarry stool is usually an indication of stomach ulceration. Also, if your ferret has been under medication, it could be toxic to your ferret leading to black poop. Some of the illnesses associated with black tarry poop include stomach ulcers, Aspirin, and other medication toxicity.
Seedy or grainy poop
Well, if your ferret has a seedy appearing poop, then it could have something to do with the type of food he is eating. Of course, dry ferret food is safe for your ferret, you should consider supplementing it with a raw/wet diet.
Also, always make sure that you leave as much water as you can for your ferret.
Blood in stool
Having blood in the stool should not be happening to your ferret. It could be that your ferret is traumatized, and in return has blood in the stomach. Other times it could be an infection in your ferret’s colon leading to bleeding when pooping.
Reduced or no bowel movement
Ferrets feed as much as they want. I mean, all they do is run around the cage, sleep, and wake up to feed and then play again. And because they are heavy feeders, they poop up to 8 times a day. If your ferret does not seem to have a smooth and normal bowel movement, you should consider taking him to the vet.
This is usually as a result of intestinal tract blockage.
Discolored ferret stool
If your ferret is eliminating discolored and almost grey poop, you could be dealing with anemia. Consult your vet for an immediate check-up.
Should I change my ferret’s diet?
Well, why are you considering changing his diet? In my opinion, changing your ferret’s diet occasionally is not such a bad idea. I mean, you want him to get used to eating dynamic foods. Else, if your ferret gets used to only one brand of food, he will refuse to eat anything else.
Well, this is a fragile process, it is possible to feed your ferret different foods. You must be very gradual and observant of your ferret’s bowel movement and behavior. At first, he may need to poop more often than usual but will adjust.
If you are concerned that he could be sick. It is always better to be safe than sorry, you know.
Components of a healthy ferret diet
Ferrets are strictly carnivorous. They will only eat whole prey in their natural habitat. However, it is not always possible for your ferret to eat whole prey at home. Fortunately, you will find ferret dry food in your local pet stores.
However, I always urge people to be very careful with the brand they use. Read the ingredients list to make sure the ferret food you use does not contain harmful substances. If you are just getting started, then I suggest you ask your vet about the best type of food for your new fuzzy friend.
In general, your ferret’s diet should be made of proteins and fats. You should not include complex foodstuffs such as starch and carbohydrates. This means that you keep away fruits, vegetables, and dairy products from your ferret’s reach.
Also, if the dry food you are feeding him contains fiber, you should discontinue it immediately. Your ferret’s digestion track is quite short and unable to digest fiber.
Ferrets are generally healthy animals. However, you do have a task to clear the litter boxes every day. I mean, your ferret will need to go to the litter tray for at least 8 times a day. Well, you cannot just leave it there.
However, you must monitor your ferret’s bowel behavior. Changes in your ferret’s poop frequency, texture and color could indicate something serious. Speak to your vet if you have health concerns about your ferret’s bowel movement.
Also, enquire about the type of food to feed your ferret from your local pet store technician. You can choose to continue with the same diet or consult your vet.